What/If asks a lot of questions of its characters — and by relation, its audience. What if you had enough money to buy an experience that can't usually be bought? What if you let your morals slip for the promise of a quick profit? What if you need to find more shows and movies to watch after What/If because the season only lasts 10 episodes? If you find yourself asking the latter, fret not, because there are plenty of other melodramas, romantic thrillers, and soap operas ready to be added to your marathon.
Let it be known,
What/If show is extra: Entertainment Weekly's review is headlined as " And I Can't Wait To See More," while What/If Is Terrible The Guardian's asks, "Is Renée Zellweger's Netflix thriller the best trash TV show of 2019?" But What/If knows it is, and it fully embraces every morsel of its over-the-top twists — it is the definition of so bad it's good.
So whether you enjoy the show for its cutting dialogue, the high-stakes personal conflicts, or, frankly, just for Zellweger's *chef's kiss* performance, there's sure to be something on this list that will tide you over until a potential
What/If Season 2.
The most obvious place to start is
Indecent Proposal, which seems to serve as somewhat of a blueprint for What/If. Both stories revolve around a billionaire propositioning a desperate couple for a night alone with one of said partners in exchange for an exorbitant amount of money.
What/If, Last Night examines the boundaries of marriage and infidelity. It stars Keira Knightley and Sam Worthington as a couple who both experience extramarital temptation the same evening, and the ramifications those encounters have on their relationship. Closer follows four people who end up trapped in a web of romance and deceit for years on end, illustrating how attraction can be weaponized for manipulation. Even Renée Zellweger's Anne Montgomery could stand to learn a few lessons from Natalie Portman's Alice Ayers...if that is her real name.
Chloe has shades of What/If, but instead of an outside source interfering in a marriage, it's about one partner testing the limits from within. It follows a woman who hires an escort to seduce her husband and prove he's unfaithful, only to get much more than she bargained for.
'My Teacher, My Obsession'
My Teacher, My Obsession — which was called Dad Crush before it arrived on Netflix — is exactly what it sounds like , fitting right in with What/If's taboo and illicit themes.
What/If and Revenge were created by Mike Kelley, and they're similar in theme and tone — though Revenge is more action, less sneaky manipulation.
Perhaps the ultimate primetime soap of the 21st Century,
Desperate Housewives, as its name suggests, follows a group of housewives who resort to some pretty desperate measures. With twists galore and eight whole seasons available for streaming, it should be enough to keep any fan of What/If satiated for the foreseeable future.
What/If, Nashville focuses on the relationship between an established and successful woman and the young up-and-comer in her industry whose lives become entangled .
It's usually a bad idea to mix business and pleasure, but what about mixing business and revenge and also occasionally pleasure? After being conned by her fiance who was secretly working for an international crime syndicate, private investigator Alice Vaughan uses her resources to try and track him down before he can tarnish her name.
Damages is more of a legal procedural than a soap opera, lawyer Patty Hewes and her protege Ellen Parson's tumultuous relationship is similar to the one Anne Montgomery (Zellweger) and Lisa (Jane Levy) share in What/If.
If you like your soap operas to be a little more prestigious, try spy drama
The Americans. The show may not be as flashy as What/If, but the relationships are just as complicated, the twists and just as shocking, and the romance is just as potent.
Though the show is teen-oriented,
Riverdale's twists are so wild that it makes What/If look like a leisurely sitcom.
The show was sadly short-lived, but anyone looking for primetime-style soap operas would be doing themselves a disservice by sleeping on the one-season gem that is
The Ringer. Sarah Michelle Gellar attempts to escape trouble by taking over the life of her twin sister who committed suicide but also has people trying to kill her — and that's just the set-up for the 22-episode show. Things only get wilder from there. The Affair is slow-burning, but manages to keep things interesting by switching between character perspectives within each episode to show how different people interpret the same events. If you're interested in how What/If examines human behavior and decision-making, The Affair does all that, but on a beach.
If you're less interested in the seductive aspect of
What/If but love seeing when wealthy people start throwing that wealth around, then Succession is the show you've been looking for. Following one of the richest fictional families in America, Succession is all about what too much money can do to people. Plus, it has Cousin Greg.
It's safe to say that
What/If and many of the entries on this list would not have happened had Scandal not revitalized the TV soap genre, turning the mere act of loving someone else into a matter of national security. Dynasty is one of the forebears of primetime soap operas, but for anyone who doesn't want to go digging back to the '80s for their television, the CW reboot will more than satiate anyone's craving to see people with lots of money keep secrets from each other and act out.
Did you watch
What/If and think "I like What/If, but I wish all those moments of sexual intrigue were replaced with Paul Giamatti yelling at the top of this lungs?" If so, then Billions will be up your alley; it deals with money and power that Anne Montgomery couldn't even dream of attaining on her own.
Another short-lived soap opera,
The Family follows the sudden return of a politician's young son, who was presumed to be dead. As he settles back at home, suspicions arise about his true identity, and long-buried secrets are forced to the surface.
Characters with money? Check. Secrets? Absolutely. Morally ambiguous female relationships? You bet. Marriages that seem fine on the surface but actually have some deep-seated problems that haven't been dealt with in a healthy manner? In abundance.
Big Little Lies is the television soap opera to end all television soap operas, and anyone who hasn't watched it but loved What/If is in for a big treat.
What/If will be back for more soon — but this list should keep you busy while you wait.