Be a Netflix Insider: Find Hidden Netflix Categories

Have you ever been watching Netflix and wanted to find a specific category within a genre? Now there’s a solution.

Frequent users of Netflix may have noticed that Netflix sometimes has some very specific categories on their home page. For example, you may have seen something like, “Futuristic Sci-Fi Movies with a Strong Female Lead.” If you’d like something else, or something not so specific, there is a better way.

Get the Hidden Netflix Codes

Dating back to its DVD-only days, Netflix uses codes to classify each of its categories, ranging from broad (Drama), to more specific (Imaginative Action Sci-Fi and Fantasy). These codes stuck around, with more being added through the years. But the question is, how do find the codes and access the content?

Luckily, the website has written a how-to guide and included a sample of common codes within each genre.

Screenshot of the Netflix-codes website, showing main categories and subcategories with codes that are hyperlinked.

Using the Codes

There are a few ways you can access the content on Netflix.

Using a Laptop or Desktop

You can use a laptop or desktop and open up the website in a browser such as Firefox or Chrome. Once you have the category code, you can enter it in your address bar:

The “What’s on Netflix” site has a searchable list of all 4,000+ codes. If you are accessing the codes from a link on or the What’s on Netflix site, you can click or tap on the category name and it’ll open that way.

Using a Mobile Device

If you are using a browser on a device (such as an iPad) that has the Netflix app installed, clicking or tapping on the category name will open the Netflix app to that specific category. Keep in mind that the searchable list of codes may have category codes that don’t currently have any titles in your specific region.

Using a Smart TV or Roku

If you access Netflix on a smart TV or a device such as a Roku, the best way that I’ve found is to find the specific titles you’d like to watch on a web browser, and then add titles to Netflix’s Your List queue by clicking or tapping the plus button on your selection.

Screenshot showing a movie selected with the "add to my list" icon highlighted.

Then, when you open up Netflix on your Roku or another device, you can start playing the title from the My List row, which usually appears at or near the top of the Netflix home screen. Depending on the version of Netflix you use, there may also be a shortcut to My List at the top of the screen or by accessing a menu by moving the selector all the way to the left side of the screen.

Screenshot showing selected titles in the My List category in Netflix.

Have you tried searching for a particular Netflix code? Let us know in the comments.

Cord-Cutting 101: Virtual Edition

Cord-Cutting 101 has been a very popular class with our users, whether presented in-person or online. If you would like to learn more, you can find all of the resources cited during the class on our website, including the slideshow.

If you would rather watch the class, visit this playlist on our YouTube channel. It includes the entire class, broken down by subject.

You can also check our event calendar to see when we are offering the live class again. If no class is shown, we haven’t scheduled one yet.

Got questions? Let us know in the comments!

Free Digital Content, For Everyone

With many people throughout the world being asked to stay home, many streaming providers have been offering free content. We’ll go over some of the places where you can watch things for free while social distancing and how they can be accessed.

Apple TV+ is offering a decent amount of their original series for non-subscribers. You will need an Apple ID to sign in (you can get an Apple ID for free if you don’t already have one). These shows include:

  • Servant
  • Little America
  • Helpsters
  • For All Mankind
  • Dickinson
  • Snoopy in Space
  • The Elephant Queen
  • Ghostwriter

Apple TV+ can be accessed through an app on streaming devices such as Roku, Amazon Firestick/Amazon Firecube and also on smartphones, tablets and laptops. When navigating the Apple TV app, you will see a large “Free for Everyone” tab that you can tap or click to access the content.

Also accessible through Apple TV+ channels app is Epix. They feature a large offering of movies and TV programming. Their selection is free when accessed through the Apple TV app.

HBO is offering a selection of movies, documentaries and its original series to non-subscribers through the HBO Go and HBO Now app. For information on what programming is available, check out their website. Some selections include: series like The Wire, Big Little Lies, The Sopranos; movies like Pokemon Detective Pikachu, Isn’t it Romantic, and Blinded by the Light; and documentaries like The Apollo, McMillion$, and United Skates.

AMC Networks is running a “We’re With You” campaign that includes the first half of Season 10 of The Walking Dead.

Other networks that fall under AMC Networks include BBC America, which offering a collection of nature documentaries, the entire new season of Dr. Who, the entire series of Orphan Black, and many other neat programs. Additionally, the season three premiere of Killing Eve is available. To watch, go to their website.

IFC (the Independent Film Channel) is offering a comedy lineup for those of us that could use some laughs. They are offering free full seasons for the month of April of shows like Birthday Boys, Baroness von Sketch Show, Spoils of Babylon, Spoils Before Dying, Bunk and Mystery Science Theatre 3000. The programming can be accessed on and on their IFC TV app.

Sling TV is offering free TV from 5pm through midnight every evening. There is also a selection of free TV shows and movies available anytime for non-subscribers. The content can be accessed through their website or through the Sling TV app on Roku, Amazon Fire, and many other devices. To get started, select the free option on the app or browse available content on their website.

YouTube is offering a decent amount of their original series for free for a limited time. You can check this list for the complete offering. The list has links to watch the programs.

Last but not least, Hoopla Digital and Overdrive both offer a large collection of streaming videos. Both are services offered from the Upper Hudson Library System and are free for residents of Albany or Rensselaer County. If you belong to a different library system, check out their digital collections, as there is a good chance they also offer one or both of these great services. Both can be accessed on their websites or through their apps, which are available on smartphones, tablets and other devices. The Hoopla app is available on devices such as Roku, Amazon Fire devices, Apple TV, Chromecast, and more. A full listed of supported Hoopla devices can be found here. The Overdrive app is available on iOS, Android devices, Kindle Fire, and more. A full list of devices that can access the Overdrive can be found here.

Other offerings

There are also a handful of original episodes of Showtime original programing that can be watched on their website.

Focus Features will be streaming a free movie every Monday in April for free on their Facebook page. The movies begin at 8pm, EST. The schedule for the rest of April:
-April 20, Mallrats (featuring a Q & A with director Kevin Smith after the movie)
-April 27, My Summer of Love

SiriusXM is offering free streaming of their satellite radio service for all North American residents. To get started, head over to their website.

Streaming Services With Extended Trial Periods

Many streaming services offer a free seven day trial period. During social distancing, many services are offering a 30 day (or longer) trial period, during which the trial can be canceled at anytime. As a heads up, you will probably need to enter your credit card information to begin any of these trials. These are just trials and if you don’t cancel before the end of the trial period, you will be charged the regular monthly rate.

  • CBS All Access For the CBS All Access extended trial, use the code ALL
  • Acorn TV, a large selection of British TV and movies. Use code FREE30 when signing up on their website.
  • History Vault, a collection of documentaries from the History Channel.
  • The Lifetime Movie Club, a collection of new and classic Lifetime movies.
  • Noggin, featuring many children’s programs such as Peppa Pig, Dora the Explorer and more. (60 day trial)
  • Shudder, featuring horror, thriller, and suspense movies and programming. Use code SHUTIN on their website.
  • Smithsonian Channel, a large collection of documentaries on a variety of different subjects. Use the code ALONETOGETHER on their website when signing up.
  • Netflix, movies, TV shows, documentaries, and original programming.
  • Hulu, movies, TV shows, documentaries, and original programming.

Do you know of any other services offering free programming while we’re all at home? Let us know in the comments.