Looking for your next binge watch? Interested in the world of spies, CIA operatives, potential terror threats and undercover operatives? Than girl, do I have the TV shows for you! I found myself drawn to Nat Sec shows especially during quarantine because wow, they were out living in the world! Going undercover! Kissing strangers! Holding large, in-person gatherings. How novel! But I was also just drawn into this world I’ve never been a part of, and frankly hope to never be, so it was like fantasy but rooted in the real world. 

If you like National Security, or are looking for a break from reality TV, here are six great places to start. 

Quantico

Priyanka Chopra Jonas made her US television debut with this thrilling series about a FBI agent who gets blamed for a huge terrorism attack. The show’s episodes go back and forth in time, Alex Parrish joins the CIA at one point, and you won’t trust anyone again.  There are 3 seasons–57 episodes total–that you can watch on Netflix or Amazon Prime. 

Homeland

Homeland is another must-watch Nat Sec show with a strong female protagonist. It’s got thrills, spies, and a CIA officer you’ll be obsessed with watching. Claire Danes plays the lead protagonist in this show that ran for 8 seasons–96 episodes–and can be streamed on Hulu, Showtime, or Amazon Prime. 

Designated Survivor

What happens if the president dies? The VP steps in, of course, but what if there’s a terror attack so large that the cabinet member who was tucked away has to step in? Enter, the Designated Survivor, played by Kiefer Suthlernad, in this show that aired for 3 seasons–53 episodes–and can be streamed on Netflix. 

Covert Affairs

A CIA trainee, the Domestic Protection Division, a blind handler, and a lot of torture make the perfect viewing for Nat Sec buffs who like a little humor. Piper Perrabo plays the protagonist in this show that aired for 5 seasons–75 episodes–and can be streamed on Amazon Prime. 

Sleeper Cell

An undercover agent infiltrates a terrorist sleeper cell in this show that highlights the hypocrisy of many terrorists, puts friendships on the line, and highlights a diverse cast in unique ways. The show–which aired for 2 seasons and 18 episodes–stars Michael Ealy and can be streamed on Hulu, Showtime, or Amazon Prime. 

24

No list of Nat Sec shows is complete without one of the OGs–24. In 24 Hours–each hour a different episode–counterterrorism agent Jack Bauer must stop a political crisis. The show stars Kiefer Sutherland. There are a total of 9 seasons–over 200 episodes–to watch on Hulu or Amazon Prime. 

Aryssa D
FFL Cabinet Member