It’s Thursday, which means it’s time for the Thursday Movie Picks feature. This series is hosted by Wandering through the Shelves and offers you a weekly prompt to post some movie recommendations/talking points according to the theme. Usually, you are supposed to post about 3-5 examples, which I find a very manageable amount.
I am sorry if this getting a bit repetitive, but today’s theme is all about 2020 Freshmen Series, which means TV shows that aired for the first time last year. Now, I did a whole post on that already when I ranked my favourite new TV shows of 2020 (which you can check out here if you need a reminder). Seen as I don’t want to do the exact same thing again, I’m going to focus solely on the shows I liked (maybe not my top picks, but still good ones) that I think went unnoticed by the public. A lot of series managed to reach quite a large audience, but others not so much, especially in terms of international content. I’m not just going to showcase foreign shows, but there’s going to be some! Let’s celebrate them!
2020 was surprisingly full of amazing music-centric shows. We had Julie and the Phantoms for a predominately younger audience and Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist for everyone else. I adore both those shows and would 100% recommend them to anyone who wanted something emotional and upbeat at the same time. But, I would also recommend Little Voice. With a beautiful cinematography and amazing songs from Sara Bareilles it is sure to capture your hearts! (Yes, once again, I am strongly advocating for Apple TV+ content)
If you enjoy Norse mythology, but prefer a modern setting, this might just be for you! Tackling subjects such as climate change, Ragnarok feels current, but also captures the intrigue of old myths. It might not be the retelling you’d expect, but the lines on who is the villain and who is the hero aren’t always as clear as they seem. (Season 2 is already filming!)
(would recommend watching it in French with subtitles, but could only find a French trailer without subtitles)
Vampire content fluctuates in popularity and doesn’t always manage to grab audiences. Vampires, on Netflix, felt pretty refreshing to me. Yes, I will admit to still shipping something that’s problematic and there must be some gene in vampires that makes them inherent stalkers, but it also felt different like so many other shows and movies I had seen with those creatures before. (Season 2 has yet to be confirmed)
The Mess You Leave Behind
This is (I think) a limited series, so it wraps up nicely. My main draw for the show was Aron Piper, but eventually I just wanted to know what had happened. Moving between present and past, the viewer learns about what happened at a Spanish school in the country and the mess the new teacher inherited. Not going to lie, it’s sometimes tough to root for … well, anyone? But the intrigue was kept nicely, even with a slow pace.
Blood & Water
Being one of South Africa’s first Netflix productions, it centers around the divide between the poor and the rich as well as child kidnapping and corruption – all things that hook you easily. True to being the teenagers they are, they sometimes trust too easily or are so closed off, it seems ridiculous. I wouldn’t hold it against them, but just be aware of the drama that comes with that. (Season 2 is confirmed)