With the year coming to an end, we look back at the best web-series that came out in the major digital services in the year 2019. Covering multiple genres, these are the shows that are still fresh in our memories and make us go back and revisit them again and again. Here is our list of best shows from the top 10 OTT platforms in 2019.
Netflix has given us some of the best genre-defying shows of our times. Their 2019 true-crime thriller had us all on our edge of the seats with the audience gasping for breath with its realism and hard-hitting drama. Based on the infamous 2012 Delhi gangrape case, this is a nerve-wracking drama that may make viewers uncomfortable but at the same time make us aware of the tragedy and shock that was faced by the victims and the authorities at that time. Shefali Shah and Rasika Dugal give outstanding performances with Adil Hussain, Gopal Dutt and Denzil Smith rounding up the supporting cast. With Delhi Crime, Netflix has given us a show that is terrifying, engaging and definitely important in recent times.
It’s nothing wrong to say Sacred Games took the Indian web series scene by the storm. An impeccable story, amazing characters and a stellar cast led by Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Saif Ali Khan who make every scene and dialogue stick to your heads. Pankaj Tripathi, Radhika Apte, Neeraj Kabi, Kalki Koechlin and Jatin Sarna round up the amazing supporting cast throughout both the seasons.
Another major OTT contender, Amazon Prime has also been consistent with their content in recent years. Their latest crime thriller The Family Man has cemented their position giving us some amazing thrills and so many chills. Manoj Bajpayee is one of the finest actors of India and he proves it all over again in this action-packed adventure where he plays Srikant, a middle-class man secretly working for the National Investigation Agency. Also starring Priyamani, Dalip Tahil, Sharib Hashmi in amazing performances along with Neeraj Madhav, the standout antagonist, this show is sure to blow your mind. With an amazing story, great characters and mindblowing twists, this show is sure to stay as a gem of Indian web series.
The web series tackles through different stories with one common link, a wedding planning agency called Made in Heaven. Zoya Akhtar and Reema Kagti bring us yet another amazing story that deals with issues considered still taboo in our society. Led by Sobhita Dhulipala and Arjun Mathur, this show features a huge cast of talent such as Jim Sarbh, Kalki Koechlin, Vinay Pathak among others and also feature a new set of familiar faces every episode.
The Amazon Prime crime-drama is full of action, blood, slangs and frankly, we can’t get enough of it. Pankaj Tripathi shines as the brutal Kaleen Bhaiya with Ali Fazal, Divyendu Sharma and Vikrant Massey in some of their best performances of their careers. Not only did the show become a trademark with the fans, everything about it stayed with the audience for a long time, from the ultra-violent story to the characters, the uniquely scripted curses and even smaller characters, I mean who can forget the ever enjoyable dance of B*****wale chacha.
With an array of misses, Hotstar finally hit the home run with the adaptation of the British series of the same name. This psychological crime thriller will engage you from the beginning to the end and won’t make you get out of your seats. Vikrant Massey is spectacular as the young guy who finds himself in a grave situation. Pankaj Tripathi is great as usual with his dry humor and witty dialogues. Jackie Shroff stands out as Mustafa who is sure to stay in your minds for a long time. With the right amount of twist and turns and a strong story, this is Hotstar’s best outing of the year.
Adapted from the popular sit-com, the Indian adaptation may squander a little but it still manages to give us a lot of laughs and chuckles, thanks to its brilliant casting and amazing episodes. Gopal Dutt stands out as T.P. Mishra giving us the exact Indian Dwight vibes. Mukul Chaddha, Sayandeep Sengupta and Mallika Dua are amazing in their performances along with Ranvir Shorey for his guest performance as Prem Chopra.
Based on the Iranian series of the same name, this Hotstar show stars Tisca Chopra and Ronit Roy in stellar performances and make it a show worth your time.
TVF has become known for their relatable stories and once again they deliver their finest with Kota Factory. No other show has shown the plights of students going through the rigorous IIT-coaching schedule, something that every student who went to an IIT-coaching institute can relate to and Kota Factory gets it right. Set in Kota, the hub of the IIT coaching centers in India, the show focuses on Vaibhav played by Mayur More, as he struggles through studies with some great friends and an amazing mentor, Jeetu Bhaiya played by the extremely likable Jitendra Kumar. Set in black and white, the show deals with the trauma that education can bring on humans. Also starring Alam Khan, Ahsaas Channa and Ranjan Raj, this is a must-watch for all the engineers and everyone else.
This nostalgic and heartwarming tale of the Guptas through the eyes of their 12-year-old son Harshu might bring you to tears at times and can also make you laugh out loud. Set in Rajasthan in the late ’90s this is a sure trip to nostalgia junction with an amazing family with Mona Singh and Akarsh Khurana in the lead.
Flames is another offering from TVF’s sister channel -The Timeliners. This show is sure to take you on a nostalgic ride of your teenage days of having your first crush while trying to do good in examinations. Starring Ritwik Sahore and Tanya Maniktala, this show manages to hit all chords with its stellar selection of songs from the late ’80s and ’90s in their episodes. Season 2 of the show premiered on 18th October.
From the team behind TVF classics such as Tripling and Pitchers, comes a heartwarming family dramedy, Gullak. This is the tale of the Mishras, more like different events in their lives as they live through them despite difficulties faced by a typical middle-class family. Starring Jameel Khan and Gitanjali Kulkarni as the heads of the family, they give some of the most amazing performances in recent years. The show is a feel-good drama with enough chuckles and lots of relatable drama.
Delving into the world of advertising, Thinkistan’s unique premise takes us into the world of two copywriters, Hema (Shravan Reddy) and Amit (Naveen Kasturia of Pitchers fame), who work in the advertising agency, MTMC. Hema is a proficient English writer and becomes popular in his office in a short time while Amit works as a Hindi writer and struggles due to his inefficiency in the English language. With hilarious moments and brilliant social commentaries, this show will work into your brains. The two leads, Reddy and Kasturia are fantastic in their roles along with its brilliant supporting cast including Mandira Bedi, Neil Bhoopalam and Vasuki. The show released two seasons in 2019 and has become one of the best offerings from MX Player.
This TVF produced comedy-filled ride is sure to take you on a nostalgic trip. The show revolves around 16-year old Dhruv played by Omkar Kulkarni through his high-school days with his two friends. It also features Gopal Dutt and Jitendra Kumar in scene-stealing performances.
When it comes to erotic Indian dramas, AltBalaji‘s Gandii Baat tops the list with their unique storylines that talk about topics ranging from threesomes, BDSM, etc. Each episode of Gandii Baat features a new story with unique characters where they tackle various topics that are prevalent in our society but considered taboo. All the episodes are set in rural India with characters from different races and generations and how their carnal desires are no less than anyone else. The show has become a global phenomenon with its use of bold erotic premises and the use of social commentaries in each episode. The show is bold, unapologetic and full of moments that will make you pause your screens.
This action-thriller is a joyride full of hilarious comedy and mindblowing suspense. Arunoday Singh and Mahie Gill give mind-blowing performances as the lead players with sure chills and mischievous dialogue.
Zee5 has a lot of hits and misses but Kaafir makes sure that it remains in our memories for a long time. Starring Dia Mirza in her comeback, she manages to steal our hearts as Kainaaz, a woman from POK who winds up on the Indian side of the LOC. She ends being a prisoner under suspicion of being a militant. She gives birth to a child while under seven years of imprisonment. An Indian journalist, played by Mohit Raina decides to help her and seek justice for her. Kaafir is a heart-touching tale and will definitely bring tears to your eyes with its dramatic performances and intriguing story.
Based on the life of the notorious UP gangster Shri Prakash Shukla, the show stars Saqib Saleem in the lead along with Tigmanshu Dhulia, Ranvir Shorey and Aahana Kumra in great performances. The show is an unbelievable tale of the gangster marked by a stellar cast set in the rustic background of Gorakhpur in the ’90s.
Ullu has become the latest contender in the OTT platforms giving us more than ten new shows in the last year itself. Their most popular show is indeed the erotic anthology series, Charm Sukh. The show takes a similar approach to Gandii Baat, with episode tackling a new story about the lead characters giving in to their inner carnal desires, the only difference being, Charm Sukh’s characters, and stories are based on the modern society, especially cities, making them somewhat more relatable to Tier 2 and 3 cities. Each episode has a unique storyline with new characters with every character going through their own inner struggle, a struggle to achieve Charm Sukh.
The Viu web series tackles topics such as friendship, romance, LGBTQ in a refreshing way making the main relationship between it’s two leading ladies. XYX is the story of Nikky, Farah and Binny and how their friendship turns into romance. Each episode is pretty engaging with real stakes involved showing us the consequences that situations like being in a throuple or in a same-sex relationship can bring upon the society we live in. Neha Iyer, Preeti Hansraj Sharma and Tarun Galot are amazing in their performances and definitely deserve much more appreciation.