Netflix is the home to thousands of Netflix Originals (it’s closing in on 4,000 as we speak), and many of those TV shows and movies come from international regions. This explosion of foreign series has led to the sharing of storytelling from across the globe, and thanks to ample dub and subtitle-options, anyone from anywhere can enjoy stories from other countries. Here are our picks of the best eight new international series that have been released in 2023.
If you want to dive into more of Netflix’s international offerings, we offer a complete list of titles on Netflix from numerous languages via our Netflix library pages.
As always, you can keep up-to-date on all the new arrivals from Netflix, whether international titles or domestic, via our What’s New on Netflix hub.
The Law According to Lidia Poët
Released on Netflix: February 15th, 2023
Country of Origin: Italy
From Italy in early 2023 came an iconic new period drama series that’s a mix of Enola Holmes and Suits. Quite a combination, right!?
Over the course of the six episodes, you’ll get to follow the true story of Lidia Poet (played by Matilda de Angelis), who was Italy’s first-ever female lawyer after a law forbidding it was overturned. Great performances, stunning sets, and equally stunning costume designs are just three of the reasons to give this one a shot if you’re a fan of period dramas.
If you already love The Law According to Lidia Poët, we’d thoroughly recommend the German series The Empress and coming up is the ambitious new period drama project from Italy in the form of The Leopard.
Bloodhounds (Season 1)
Released on Netflix: June 9th, 2023
Country of Origin: South Korea
While Netflix hasn’t released any new South Korean series in 2023 that’s to the scale of Sweet Home or All of Us Are Dead and certainly not to the crazy heights of Squid Game, there have been a few new gems. Top of the list for us is the new action series Bloodhounds.
The series follows two youngsters hopelessly out of their depth in a cutthroat money-lending business, risking their lives to bring down an evil loan shark.
The eight-episode series has been praised by the performances of its two leads and excellent production design.
The Snow Girl (Season 1)
Released on Netflix: January 27th, 2023
Country of Origin: Spain
Next up, one of two huge European crime dramas that have dominated the Netflix top 10s in 2023, and for good reason. We begin with The Snow Girl, which adapts the Spanish novel La Chica de Nieve by author Javier Castillo.
Hooked from the beginning through to the end, the show follows a young girl who goes missing during a popular annual parade taking place in Málaga. It’s down to a young newspaper journalist and an uncompliant police force to help Amaya’s parents find her.
This series did break into multiple different countries’ top 10s in the early parts of the year, picking up over 100 million hours watched in the top 10s.
Dear Child (Season 1)
Released on Netflix:
Country of Origin: Germany
The fact we’ve included Dear Child on this list shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who has seen it, and given the show looks bound to be hitting Netflix’s most-watched of all-time list, we suspect many of you have already seen it.
Dear Child (also known as Liebes Kind) follows a woman escaping her captivity who points investigators to the dark truth behind an unsolved disappearance over a decade earlier.
There’s stunning cinematography throughout the series, and some excellent artwork certainly helps get you in the door, but the compelling story is what really grips you and keeps you through to the end.
Ōoku: The Inner Chambers
Released on Netflix: June 29th, 2023
Country of Origin: Japan
It’s been a pretty disappointing year when it comes to Netflix Original anime, with many shows failing to get beyond a six on IMDb, and there are generally fewer titles from the genre hitting Netflix. They’ve managed to nab some licensed titles, but we’re here to only focus on the Originals. That’s why we landed on Ōoku: The Inner Chambers as our top pick so far in 2023. We also included it in our Hidden Gems of 2023 list a little earlier in the year.
Beautifully animated by Studio DEEN, the fantasy anime delves into an alternate history where the male population has been severely reduced and any eligible men serve as concubines to the woman shogun inside the walls of the Ooku.
Turn of the Tide (Season 1)
Released on Netflix: May 26th, 2023
Country of Origin: Portugal
Hailing from Portugal, this series is helmed by Augusto Fraga and follows a group of friends who find their lives turned upside down after they land on more cocaine than an entire population could consume in a lifetime. It’s an addicting show with a familiar rags-to-riches empire business-building storyline that we’ve seen popularized over the past few decades. We’re also happy to report that Netflix opted to renew the series for a future second season.
If you love Netflix’s Outer Banks for its teen cast and beautiful setting, this has many of those elements that should feel right at home.
Rana Naidu (Season 1)
Released on Netflix: March 10th, 2023
Country of Origin: India
While Netflix Original Bollywood movies have been rather few and far between in 2023, the series offering has been far more impressive. Leading the charge and the show we had the most fun with is this adaptation of a familiar series to Western audiences. We’re referring to the Showtime series Ray Donavan that’s excellently adapted here in a 10-episode series.
Taking inspiration from its source material but expanding and changing where necessary, the show follows Rana Naidu, who is the go-to problem solver for the rich and famous. His relatively stable lifestyle is disrupted severely following his father’s release from jail.
The show was a hit in India and even featured in the global top 10s for a couple of weeks, picking up 24.48 million hours watched. Netflix didn’t let the show’s success go unrewarded either, as it’s been given a full second season order.
Is She the Wolf? (Season 1)
Released on Netflix: September 4th, 2023
Country of Origin: Japan
Finally, we wanted to cap this list off with a new reality series, and while we’ve seen plenty of international spin-offs of pre-existing shows for the US or UK, the most unique to arrive on Netflix this year is undoubtedly Is She The Wolf? that is easily ripe for spin-offs given its compelling concept. In fact, it’s the only dating show I’ve been able to tolerate remotely, given that most are insufferable.
On the face of it, the show is about contestants hoping to fall in love, but one will be doing her best to sabotage the format. It’s a mix of the YouTube videos you’d find on Jubilee and has elements of Netflix’s own The Mole in it, too.
The series was released weekly in Japan on Netflix but arrived in full on the streaming service everywhere else in early September.
What’s been your favorite new international series released so far in 2023? Let us know down below.