What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #46

I really enjoy letting you in on all the nonsense I watch, so I hope you continue to like these posts as well! Fact is, it’s very unlikely that I’ll ever slow down in terms of all the stuff I’m watching, so … you might just have to deal with more content like this.

Love & Anarchy (Season 1)

I did not want to be on board with this show, because something inside of me just did not feel right rooting for two people to get together like that. Even the age difference aside, which everyone has their own opinion on anyway, the obvious cheating just really isn’t something I enjoy. They were reckless for the sake of being reckless! But then …

This show wasn’t about romance and cheating and office affairs. In the end, it really was about mental health, what it means to be labeled “crazy”, what people you surround yourself with and whether some relationships are healthy or downright toxic. I did not expect to go it in that direction at all, but it gave it so much more depth and while I still cringed a lot, I was actually very curious about that aspect.

For fans of: Scandinavian Netflix stuff, a guy who looks very much like Bill Skarsgard as a romantic lead

The Queen’s Gambit (Season 1)

Originally, I did not intend to watch this show. When things are set in the past, I often get bored and while the cast was intriguing … I did not think chess was really the topic to get me going. BUT I was wrong. My friends were so enthusiastic about it though (yes, sometimes I do listen to other people when it comes to TV. Rarely, but it does happen), I had no choice but to give it a shot.

I still stand by the claim that the show is a bit boring in some parts. Especially in the middle, certain elements were dragged out and there’s a lot of exposition and repetition of certain elements. However, that aside, Beth was a fascinating character and I was never more interested in chess than after watching that show. I especially appreciated how everyone got over the fact that she was a woman super quickly in favor of appreciating her skill at the game. Loved that! I also adored how there was no apparent bad guy in the end, everyone just wanted to win at a game and it was very respectful.

For fans of: chess, the cast, only moderate sexism even though it’s a historic setting

Dash & Lily (Season 1)

I’ve stated so many times how much I loved the book that was Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares, I was super pumped for this adaptation. To my surprise, it was actually an 8-episode-show though instead of the movie I thought it to be. It was really fine though, because the more content the better.

At this point in time, I have already watched the show twice and might watch it again. It brought the spirit for me, was cute and quick and adorable. It turns out, I forgot all about the book though and only retained the memory of how it made me feel. Now that I have started reading the sequels, I have a feeling that the Netflix show was fairly faithful but improved on certain aspects. So, a general big thumbs up from me.

If you are a very keen watcher, you will also find a reference for Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, which I just LOVED! (Blink and you’ll miss it, but it is there in episode 3)

For fans of: cute and fluffy teen romance with a generous sprinkle of Christmas

Operation Christmas Drop

Look, I am well aware that these type of Netflix Christmas movies are super cheesy and Hallmark-esque. This time, the cast was just too endearing not to check it out and I have no regrets. Operation Christmas Drop is definitely one of the better Christmas movies out there. The generosity and real life aspect of it is so charming and while I am sure it’s not all Santa’s laugh and elf giggles in actual life all the time, I loved this little reprieve. Not every cheesy movie is able to evoke an emotional reaction from me.

For fans of: cheesy Christmas romances, but set it on an island and emotional due to real life stuff

The Mandalorian (Season 1)

I’m gonna keep this very short: It will forever be beyond me how a dude with a helmet and a puppet can convey emotions and story so effortlessly, but it just works! I know exactly the kind of facial expression the Mandalorian has at almost any given point in time, but maybe it is that ability for us to project on to him that makes it so special. Either way, I am glad I caught up in time for season 2, even though the weekly release is killing me. I much prefer to binge.

Also, I never watched Clone Wars, so, initially I had no clue why everyone was freaking out so much recently (as of right now, chapter 11 is out), but I googled up on the matter and – it’s pretty freaking cool!

For fans of: Star Wars lore, space cowboys


Did you watch any of these? Are you starting to get into the holiday spirit with your watchlist? Let’s chat!

What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #45

Once again, I have watched more movies than TV shows. IT JUST HAPPENED! It feels so unlike me to not plunge into shows as much, but nothing really caught my eyes the way it usually does. Maybe I am just still hung up on the Haunting series … either way, here’s what I’ve watched instead.

The Broken Hearts Gallery

I’ve waited for this movie so long and it did not disappoint one bit!

Remember when I raved on and on about Set It Up after its release? I praised it for lifting the dry spell of really actually good romcoms, well … The Broken Hearts Gallery is that for 2020 for me. First of all, the chemistry between Dacre Montgomery and Geraldine Viswanathan is off the charts and effortless and easy and secondly, it follows what you’d expect a romcom to be while still never feeling stale or boring.

Add to that the fact that the lead is a woman of color who is not a size zero, who has an ex who is also played by a man of color and a best friend who is also a woman of color. I mean, thank heavens for that alone. Something that actually resembles reality and makes the characters feel real and still gives you the warm fuzzies inside.

For fans of: GOOD romcoms (not that cheeseball fest that Hallmark does)

Rebecca

I basically wrote a whole freaking short essay in defense of this movie on my letterboxd account, because all I saw was people trashing this movie.

If you adore the book or Hitchcock’s adaptation of Rebecca, then maybe this just isn’t for you. If you are, however, able to look beyond what has always existed and can appreciate beautiful aesthetic, a different/happier approach to how it all ends as well as how stunning Lily James and Armie Hammer look as a couple, then, by all means, check out the movie!

I, personally, enjoyed it a lot. It has a couple slow bits, but I appreciated that this wasn’t just the same story again and again. It may have lost some of its gothic character, but Kristin Scott Thomas delivers a striking performance as Mrs. Danvers and Lily’s character (nameless as ever) carries the whole movie.

There is some doubt in my mind that this was an unforgettable movie, but I do believe that some specific shots will remain in my mind forever.

For fans of: anyone on the cast, pretty Netflix stuff

Clouds

It is so very difficult to review a movie that is not just based on real people, but where the film maker knew the person in question and involved his entire family and group of friends in the making of the movie. I’m sure there were some creative liberties that were taken, but this was someone’s life, someone’s legacy – namely that of Zach Sobiech.

When you watch Clouds, it won’t take long until you find tears welling up in your eyes. By the end, I was a sobbing mess. Zach gave this world so much and always tried to show up for everyone, even when he barely had any energy left, which is why people kept showing up for him when it mattered. I enjoyed the film, but it’s still heartbreaking that this is a reality.

For fans of: inspiring sadness, strength in music

Holidate

Sometimes Netflix just makes utterly cringey stuff. They really tried to pack so much into this movie, including every single holiday they can imagine, which is a lot to being with anyway, and then add more stuff on top. I’m not a huge Emma Roberts fan to begin with, but it was hard to watch this movie anyway.

They tried to be self-aware and self-depreciating, but it just didn’t work? I don’t know how else to phrase it?

For fans of: I don’t even know? Movies that try to include as many holidays as possible?

Love and Monsters

I’ve missed Dylan O’Brien on my screen and am especially proud of him for doing movies like Love and Monsters, knowing how difficult it is for him to film any stunt scenes after his accident a couple years ago. And yet, this movie was so worth it!

A mix of adventure, love story and just pure fun and monsters is what makes Love and Monsters work. Dylan’s character is all of us, freezing in the most crucial moments, but especially faced by larger than life insects and creatures of all kind. But then he goes on this incredible journey and develops in such a beautiful way, while also still being able to deliver that ounce of humour we all need to lighten things. This movie just has so much heart!

The best moment was when he met Boy though. Boy, being a dog and all, doesn’t have a speaking role, but is still a scene-stealer extraordinaire. The dog trainer said that they had never seen such a close bond off screen either, so, that makes it all the more special too. I just loved that tiny bit of bts information!

In the end, the real star was the dog, but still – very much worth it!

For fans of: Dylan O’Brien, cute and super awesome dogs in movies

The Cellar (Ep 1, Amazing Stories)

This was born out of a need for more Dylan O’Brien and Victoria Pedretti.

So, technically, Amazing Stories is a reboot of Steven Spielberg’s series from the 80s. It’s an anthology Sci-Fi show, where each episode is a different story with different people in it. I am just going to talk about the one episode I watched, which was the Cellar.

Basically, you watch Dylan and Victoria fall in love as one of them is a time traveler and the other one was born a century ago. They have to find their places and it’s super tragic and I can’t believe they fit that into 50 minutes. I would have watched a three hour movie about it and would still 100% watch a sequel (which there will never be).

For fans of: Dylan O’Brien, Victoria Pedretti, time travel, love across time

You Me Her (Season 5)

I’m actually not sure if I have talked about this show before or not … I think I might have mentioned it. Anyway, it’s about a polyamorous relationship and this was the final season. It doesn’t really make sense to watch this or read about it unless you’ve watched the previous seasons?

It’s a Canadian show, I’ve been to set before, I generally like the vibe of it. There’s not a lot of shows that treat polyamory like a real long term relationship option, so that always caught my eye and I didn’t know that this would be the final season, but in the end it made so much sense. In the end, I was glad it was finally over, because if they had broken up one more time, I would have thrown them into the sun. But this? It worked and gave everyone the finish they deserved.

For fans of: exploration of polyamory


Have you watched any of these as well? Let’s talk!

What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #41

I’ve watched so much since the last time I posted this feature, but I don’t think I will include everything I have torn through. Here are some of the things though, but please remember that these really are just mini reviews. I am 100% open to talk more about it in the comments!

Julie and the Phantoms (Season 1)

I would have LOVED this show as a teen. His has cute ghost boys, beautiful music and just wholesome content with pretend high stakes (because you KNOW it’s not going to end in doom and gloom). Very much in the spirit of Disney and Nickelodeon shows, the acting isn’t the best ever, but you get attached to those characters none the less and it’s all really funny. That’s really the prevalent theme for me as I watched this: I had a lot of fun.

Not gonna lie, I am pretty sure that a lot of my like for it also comes from the fact that they say it’s Hollywood, but it’s very recognizably filmed in Vancouver and I just walked those streets a thousand times. I miss my town. Also, there’s gay ghost boys and it’s really cute!

For fans of: cute teen supernatural shows with music

Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet (Season 1)

Every time I start an Apple TV show, I am surprised just how much I love it. No matter what I watch on that platform, I end up adoring it and I really shouldn’t be surprised anymore, but it just always ends up so good. Mythic Quest is one of those perfect workplace comedies and especially the Quarantine episode had me in actual tears. Episode 5 also has a very special place in my heart, because it reminded me of a less twisted Black Mirror episode for some reason (still don’t know where that association came from).

Some of the realism that gamers might be looking for in this show is lost to gags, but who tunes into a fictional program for realism? There’s some well known faces on Mythic Quest, but I really loved Charlotte Nicdao as Poppy Li – she was a true revelation for me.

For fans of: gaming industry, behind the scenes shows

Freaks – You’re One of Us

You know that I encourage everyone to watch some of the international Netflix content, or specifically some of the German releases. Freaks is one of those movies that I think might get quite lost, but is actually a really interesting story.

Unlike in so many other “superhero” shows and movies, this is focused on a pretty regular, middle class mother, who learns that her powers have been suppressed since childhood. It’s slow-paced, with a great betrayal-storyline and almost like a set-up for a potential franchise. I don’t know what the plans are, but I’d definitely be here for more.

For fans of: international Netflix productions, adults discovering they have superpowers, the adult chosen one

Uncorked

Anytime I see a movie or show with Mamoudou Athie, I just fall in love with him and his acting again (seriously, don’t hesitate to watch him in the likes of Sorry for Your Loss or Unicorn Store). This movie is focused on his character Elijah, who is torn between following in his father’s footsteps and taking over the family BBQ restaurant or following his passion of becoming a sommelier. 

Back when I was in school, I took an exam to become a junior sommelier (don’t ask me anything about wine though) and I have also gone to France for a while and I have also had to deal with bad family news (don’t want to go into specifics because … spoilers?) while I was abroad. I did not expect to find so much to connect to in this movie, but I really did and loved it for it.

For fans of: wine, anyone from the cast, family dramas

The Sleepover

I honestly just watched this movie, because it gave me Spy Kids vibes. Those vibes were totally justified and I’d compare it to that, although it was obviously far less whacky and not actually about spies. It’s not a must-see, but it’s an okay and nice enough way to pass time.

For fans of: Spy Kids, Babynator, parents having a secret life

All Together Now

This movie is equally heart-warming and heart-breaking. I knew I was going to cry, and even though it took a bit longer than expected, it sure did happen. All Together Now is about allowing others to help you when you need it and overcoming obstacles at a young age.

It’s very much a humble way to tell this (I believe based on a novel called Sorta Like a Rockstar) story. It’s quiet and slowly paced and unexciting, but it will cozy up to your heart regardless. However, don’t expect this one to be as much about singing as the casting and the premise might suggest. That is not the main focus.

For fans of: heartwarming stories


Did you watch any of these things? Do you plan to? Let’s talk!

What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #37

While I am doing all my art stuff, I am having a really hard time being in a quiet room. Mostly, I turn to music, but a lot of the time, I just let movies or TV shows run in the background. Which is partially the reason why I went on a bit of a movie marathon lately. I haven’t watched that many films in a long time …

Palm Springs

This might just be one of my new favourite movies. I know, I have included the trailer and it gives quite a few things away, but this is totally a movie that is super fun (and unpredictable) if you don’t know anything about it beforehand.

While I mostly enjoy Andy Samberg, sometimes his movies can be a bit too borderline weird. Somehow, that didn’t deter me here at all. He has amazing chemistry with Cristin Milioti and even though the story has some ridiculously bonkers moments, they still felt like very grounded and real characters. It had such human moments about connection and fear of loneliness. I enjoyed those underlying themes a lot. The fact that it worked brilliantly as a whole was just the cherry on top!

For fans of: bonkers plot, quantum physics for fun, time loops, the cast

The Old Guard

I came to see Charlize Theron kick ass again, but I stayed for literally everything else. I know people who love it and people who were incredibly bored and in a way, I can get both of those things, but I fell in love with that story.

Based on a comic book series, The Old Guard is about immortal soldiers, who try to do good in the world. They have lived here for so long, with the world just getting worse, that sometimes everything seems pointless. But then, right when they are on the brink of being exposed, a new member shows up.

The storytelling is pretty slow and sometimes you would maybe prefer learning more about the background of everyone and how they became to be the people they are, rather than watch them rain bullets on faceless dudes again. BUT this is clearly a set up for a whole franchise and I found myself caring for the characters deeply already, so I would adore to watch more of them!

For fans of: Charlize Theron with an axe, immortal people, action packed movie where you care about the character development, female director of color, strong black female lead, gay ship that lasts a millennia

Table 19

I just clicked on a random Netflix suggestion that didn’t seem too far out of what I would normally watch and Table 19 it was. I would not call this movie groundbreaking in any way. It’s just a bunch of misfits, each with their own problems, being placed at the worst table at a wedding together.

I find it easy to root for the underdog, but I was actually quite surprised by the love story in this movie. I definitely didn’t expect that based on the premise or trailer, but found it to be something really sweet in the end. This isn’t a perfect movie, but I also don’t regret checking it out at all.

For fans of: Anna Kendrick, wedding setting but not super cheesy

Desperados

Please, I wanted to like this movie, because Ali and Winston from New Girl seemed like a good combo (I realise they have actual names, but let me think of them as their characters), but it was utter trash. I am usually not that harsh, you know me. I like lifting movies up that I enjoy, rather than tear things down, but this was not good!

We need to stop normalising/romanticizing/quirkifying obsessive and stalking behavior. It’s just not cool. Neither is making pedophilia into a joke. There was also a part about getting raped by a dolphin and getting hit with a dolphin’s dick. I don’t even know what more to say.

For fans of: Ali and Winston from New Girl?

Feel the Beat

This was surprisingly wholesome. Sofia Carson plays a bitter dancer who is mean to everyone as a way of coping with her trauma of getting left behind by her mother. One of her means of getting by is biting into a full block of cheese, and I just feel that on a deep, deep level.

Anyway, the kids are adorable, the love interest nice enough looking, the families so supportive and cute. This isn’t a movie that’s going to stay with you forever. It’s not even the best dance movie in recent years (like really not), but it’s not terrible either. Depends on whether you like Hallmark-esque Netflix movies or not!

For fans of: Sofia Carson, small town charm, dance movies, light entertainment


Aside from all of the things I talked about today, I am still living for Stargirl and I have also started Little Voice on Apple TV and am liking it so far. I would like to talk about those once I am done with the entire season though! Have you watched any of the things I mentioned?

What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #36

I still owe you a couple mini-reviews to the stuff I have watched lately. I actually got around to way more than I thought I did, although at least two of those shows were streamed while I barely looked at them drawing all the time, but still … I say they count.

Dark (Season 3/Final Season)

I cannot tell you how happy I was with this final season!

I hope you all know how much I adored this show, but I, unlike my much wiser friends, did not 100% believe that the producers planned every minute detail and had a solid plan. I was legit terrified they would ruin it in the end, but it completely made sense. Of course, there wasn’t going to be a super happy ever after or anything like that, but I found the finale we got very fitting.

There were only two or three decisions that I didn’t 100% understand or back the way they did them. But once again, super impressive casting choices and smart storytelling. I was really wistful when it came to the end and think it is one of the best German (and international) shows to ever come out of Netflix. Pro tip: watch it with subtitles and not dubbed! The cadence of the voices is far better that way.

If you want to talk about it in more detail with me, feel free to do so in the comment section. I just don’t want to spoil anyone who has yet to watch it.

For fans of: complex shows, time travel, different realities, international Netflix content

The Baby-Sitters Club (Season 1)

Unlike a lot of people on Twitter, I have never read or watched anything regarding the Baby-Sitters Club before. Maybe, and even that is a huge stretch, I have seen some film stills, but I would not have known what it is or where it’s from. I just think it’s more of an American thing? I could be totally off-base with that, but I can assure you that it’s nothing anyone would know in my country.

However, having said all that, I get why people like it. The kids, despite their young age, are super relatable and have complex and not just comedy-based interests and relationships. It talks about serious topics, but also has a light-hearted feel to it. While I don’t think this show will be a huge priority for me moving forward, I am still glad I watched it.

I’ve read everything from “It’s better than the books” to “the best adaptation yet”, so I feel pretty good about this being my first real contact with the matter. I can really recommend it, not just to parents who want to talk about more serious topics with their kids in a productive way, but also just for people who enjoy the nostalgia and cuteness of it all.

For fans of: kids being relatable, children with actual fully developed personalities, the books and the previous movies (?)

Warrior Nun (Season 1)

I kind of like shows that mess with angels and demons and I could not tell you why that is the case, it just is!

Warrior Nun is based on a comic series from the 90s, but Netflix definitely made it more angsty. The dialogue and the voice over from the main character can be … cringey to say the least. I think it has a lot to do with the actors and actresses being from a lot of different countries and sometimes they sound a bit off in their non-native tongue … like the intonation is just the tiniest bit different? If you can overlook that though, I think it’s a decent enough show.

I have to admit that I mostly wanted to check it out because Emilio Sakraya is in it and that would mean that non-German people would discover him and I had to know how he did! But, I kind of liked it overall, with Emilio being the lesser interesting part. However, beware of a cliffhanger at the end, with a lot of potential for another season.

Overall, this is a show that needs to grow on you and definitely needs a couple episodes to either win you over or not … and then it’s best to skip it.

For fans of: religion as undercurrent of story, action sequences, the og material?

The High Note

You all know how much I loved Late Night and this is basically the same just in music instead of comedy. I’m not even joking, the movies have the same director and both are about women lifting up women in a very competitive field. Like, it’s such a simple premise, but I am here for it!

First of all, the soundtrack for the movie is really beautiful and I would have gladly listened to the songs on repeat afterwards. I liked the lore they built around the characters and while I found the plot predictable, I still enjoyed the journey.

Lastly, this is not a movie that will stay with you forever (even though, if it does, all the more power to you), but it is a nice way to pass time. I am pretty sure you will come out of this movie with a fuzzy feeling inside of you and a smile on your face and sometimes that’s all I want/need from a film.

For fans of: Late Night (the movie), sweet but kind of forgettable stories, music industry setting

That’s it from me today! What do you all think? Do you have any interest in watching these shows as well? Have you already watched them? Let’s talk!

What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #35

I told you that there was a lot to be watched, which is why this post has come so soon after the other one. The thing is, there’s even more ahead in the upcoming days and weeks. I’ve never felt this blessed with summer content as this year, even if I burn through shows in a matter of days. Here’s what I’ve been watching.

Love, Victor (Season 1)

I liked Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda and I liked the movie they made out of it. When they announced a spin off show, I thought it would be about Leah or any of the other people that Becky Albertalli had written books about, which are actually set in that universe. However, having now watched Love, Victor, I think they made the right choice to establish a storyline with a new cast. 

Coming out is always a unique experience and Victor doesn’t need long to realise that his won’t be anything like Simon’s story (I mean, I’d hope so. Getting outed against your will should never ever happen). His circumstances are different, he’s from a far more conservative latinx family, but we also see him questioning his sexual identity more than we did Simon’s. It was a great mix of nostalgia for the movie with cameos and definite callbacks to it (watch the gay character compliment Victor’s shoes in his first scene, just like Simon tried to compliment leaf blower dude’s boots) and entirely new elements.

Having this be formatted as a show, there was more room to explore the stories surrounding Victor rather than rushing through them like they sometimes had to in the movie. There really wasn’t any character that I didn’t like and I have a deep appreciation for the nuances to all of them. Mistakes are made, that’s just the way life goes. The episodes ended up only being 25 minutes and while I really enjoyed the final shot (it was brilliant!), I would have liked 13 or 15 episodes better than the 10 we got. I breezed through the entire thing in one afternoon and we will have to wait quite a while for more content (hoping there is more), so I just wanted that tiny bit more. I know, I am greedy.

For fans of: Love, Simon, coming out stories

The Order (Season 2)

Season 1 of the Order was a bit of a surprise to me. While I could see that the budget wasn’t always on par with what they were trying to accomplish, the show managed to completely reel me in. I had missed my wolves dearly, because let’s face it, the Knight of St. Christopher and Randall in particular were a prime reason for me to watch. Now I am done with the season and miss these idiots already again. You’d think I’d learn to pace myself, but no.

Anyway, the entire season was comprised of two-parters for episodes. That was strange, but worked pretty well, because it didn’t seem like it was too out of context but still with an overall arc that bound it together. I tend to get very angry at the choices the characters make, because a lot of them are inherently dumb, but I still like watching the show. Here are my main thoughts on this season:

  • Lilith deserved better and got the only romantic storyline I didn’t mind.
  • WHO asked for those new ships? NO ONE. I don’t like them. I don’t want them. The only romance Hamish has is with liquor and Randall is just too himbo for the person they paired him up with.
  • I actually liked Jack’s bleached hair. Make it come back.
  • Alyssa remains a big ???
  • Actually found the threats more credible this time around.

For fans of: magic, werewolves, secret societies, demons, haywire shenanigans

The Politician (Season 2)

The main reason I love this show is the impeccable cast. I’ve become more involved with politics as I got older, but it’s usually not a topic I seek out in particular, but The Politician is still something I enjoy very much. Maybe it’s because this show is so much more about ethics and morals (and their difference) rather than actual politics. There’s plenty of talking points the show goes through, touching on issues that concern us right now in real life, while mostly using them the way actual politicians do – as topics that could get you votes but that won’t necessarily be followed up on. Instead, the show keeps focusing on Payton and whether you need to be a good person to do good things for society.

While I do think that there’s a lot less bite to this season, there is something that just keeps me so very interested in what comes next. We’ve spanned about 7 years time in just two seasons and all I want to know is what Payton will do next. Will he be president one day? Will he actually do good things with the power he has?

Don’t expect anything realistic in this show, I hope that was obvious in the first season already. This is a satire and over the top! Messages are there, but they might not always be in your face, masked by louder topics instead. I firmly believe that you can take away a lot from this show, but most of all, it’s cast is just a joy to watch.

For fans of: satire, politics and scheming, the formidable cast, Ben Platt singing because Ben Platt

Doom Patrol (Season 1)

I am just trying to catch up on DC content, especially with the new season around the corner. I have sort of distanced myself from most of the CW content, not because I have anything against them in particular, but a lot of them just get worse as they go on. I’ve completely lost track of what’s happening, but also just found that I liked the darker aesthetic of the non-CW shows better.

Doom Patrol is incredibly random. I have no other way of describing it. More than once, you think that the episode couldn’t get more ridiculous, be it in visual effects or storyline, but it just seems laughable. Yet, at the same time, it deals with so many far more serious topics. I think they don’t always manage to keep the right balance, but they sure know how to keep it interesting. I’m excited for more.

The only thing I can’t stop thinking about is whether Matt Bomer and Brendan Fraser are always in their costumes or if they have stand-ins and do ADR (voice recording) later on. Don’t know why I can’t shake that thought.

For fans of: random chaos, antiheroes, misfits turned family


This is it! Did you watch any of those things? Could I persuade you to check them out? Let’s chat!

What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #34

There’s a lot of content I’m excited about releasing this and next week, so I wanted to make sure I update you on the stuff I’ve watched lately before I dive into those new and shiny things. Let’s go!

Love Life

Romance isn’t everything. I was in a really weird mood when I started this show and them telling me about the average number of relationships a person goes through and so on just knocked me down even more. I don’t have any relationship stats to share. I don’t have an epic (or even lame or otherwise) love story to tell and sometimes watching those shows that hyper-focus on the way to finding “your person” hit me in the feels especially hard.

Having said all that, it wasn’t a bad show after all. I really liked the ending, although I struggled with some episodes in the middle. I found Darby and her behaviour quite cringey from time to time and struggled with massive secondhand embarrassment from time to time. But you know what? I like that she wasn’t the perfect person. She had flaws, she needed to grow and sometimes things just don’t work out the way you want them or planned them to. I can appreciate a show that doesn’t portray it all through rose-tinted glasses.

For fans of: introspective love stories, realistic portrayal of not everything being happy all the time, complicated family structures

Siempre Bruja/Always a Witch (Season 2)

I had meant to watch this for the longest time, but didn’t feel like reading and concentrating on subtitles. My Spanish is not good enough to go without them and I’d really recommend this show without dubbing (although it exists). Anyway, finally watched it!

I have to say, I didn’t enjoy this season as much as the first one. The villain was less defined and therefore made everything feel a bit all over the place. One of the biggest parts/problems of the season completely went over my head and I now feel stupid. It’s like everyone had to give up on something to help Carmen, just for them to get all of it anyway and yeah … did not get it.

However, I was here for the various romance storylines. Kobo and Alicia in particular are star-crossed over the centuries and I love that. And while I wasn’t to happy about Esteban being sidelined, Carmen’s new love interest has my attention.

For fans of: international Netflix content, witches, time travel

Alexa and Katie (Part 4)

Katie is one of my favourite fictional characters and that’s just that. I wish for everyone to have a Katie in their lives and I want to be someone’s Katie. This show has given me so much joy and even though it seems super bubbly and bright and like something that would run on the Disney channel or Nickelodeon, but it has talked about some great and frankly deep topics over the seasons. I cannot speak to the realism of the cancer portrayal, but the way they handled panic attacks meant everything to me.

I loved the ending to the show! It was wholesome and sweet and heart-warming. Without wanting to spoil anything in particular, I just want to say that I am going to ship Aidan and Katie forever. That’s just a fact now (and he better find an art college to attend in NYC). If they decided to do a special on them in college or after college, I’d tune in to it, but I also get ending it where they did. I am really happy with it all.

For fans of: bestest of friends, looks like a superficial Disney show but has amazing in depth topics

Gifted

It was Chris Evans birthday and for some reason I hadn’t watched Gifted yet, so I remedied that. I don’t actually have very much to say about it? It’s a good movie, because I enjoy complex family dynamics. I like when it’s not obvious what the right thing is for a child (although I felt it was fairly clear here) and the main party struggling to make all the right choices. Obviously, Chris Evans is always a joy to watch, so, go for it?

For fans of: Chris Evans, genius kiddos


Did you watch any of those things as well? Let’s chat!

What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #33

I still stand by the fact that I’ve watched far less since lockdown started, compared to my regular viewing. Regardless, it is time to talk about what’s been happening on my screen lately! So, here we go!

Sweet Magnolias

I started watching this show, because I needed to calm down. I had just watched some episodes with a lot of racial injustice and I was boiling and angry and I needed something to soothe me. The name, Sweet Magnolias, alone suggested to me that this was going to be lovely and it was? Following the lives of these three women was nice, their children had some decent plotlines too. It’s not the most exciting show out there, but I love these kind of soft and sweet stories that border on the line of cheesiness. It just feels so much cuter and less stressful than other shows, even if some plot points have quite a lot of depth if you think about it. So, does it give you Lifetime-vibes? Probably. Is that necessarily a bad thing? Not really.

HOWEVER, I am furious, because the show ended on a massive cliffhanger!

So my plan to distract myself from being mad did not pan out in the end … I just hope they get another season, and if only to resolve that end. I cannot deal with it right now!

For fans of: small town American settings, a certain quality of wholesomeness, book-to-screen adaptations

Upload

I can’t help but think about this show giving me “The Good Place” vibes and that’s something brilliant, because I miss the show SO much. I think the actual series is better than the trailer suggests. Sure, it has some rather silly elements (but let’s be real, so did The Good Place) but it also a very intriguing mystery plotline that I did not necessarily expect. I don’t feel like Upload made me as happy as watching The Good Place did, but it asks the same or at least similar questions about morality, mortality and can we improve after we have died. The fact that we are more and more asking ourselves these questions is really interesting to me.

Especially for a first season, I thought there was remarkable character development, although I wasn’t super happy with the end. I think it already got picked up for another season, so that’s helpful in easing my mind, because they need to resolve some stuff for me that I won’t get into because of spoilers.

For fans of: moral questions about the afterlife, quirky and fun takes on future technology

All American (both seasons)

So, I am still not over the brilliance that was Friday Night Lights and maybe I never will be. Yet, seen as I am still working on my American Football writing project, I needed another show to keep me in the right headspace. While there is a lot of content on college Football, there’s actually not as much focused on High School, so I figured I’d just go with the most recent example I could think of, which was All American.

Obviously, since this is based in LA, it hits VERY different to FNL. I didn’t get the same feeling of just being with those characters for ages, but eventually, I really felt with them regardless. I only have three episodes left, before finishing the second season and I want to savor those. Like so much at the CW, it already got renewed, which is great. I think the show has some really great moments, although I think they need to find more balance with some storylines as they feel just dropped into the narrative and as if they ask people to accept certain relationships and feelings despite us not having seen the development of it on screen.

I am rooting for them to get to tell more impacting stories on the CW! My heart is not over some of the episodes from the second season, such as 2×07, 2×10 and 2×11 – I cried and raged and felt numb.

For fans of: “based on a true story”-stories, American Football, racial issues in the US, community, found family trope

The Lovebirds

I decided to do a mini Issa Rae movie marathon today, so I started it out with The Lovebirds, since it recently dropped on Netflix. There’s no denying it, I love Issa Rae and I love Kumail Nanjiani and I love them together. They know how to keep up with each other’s energy and quick wit and it shows. While this movie threw them into some utterly ridiculous situations (think stuff like Date Night), I laughed a lot and I wasn’t sure I would really find it that funny.

I don’t think this is the best movie ever, but I was so entertained and that’s pretty much point of The Lovebirds. Suspend your disbelief, folks, and it will be a fun ride!

For fans of: funny couples in ridiculous crime-related situations

The Photograph

This was my second choice after The Lovebirds and NO REGRETS! Uhm, I think we’ve established how much I appreciate and adore Issa, so I just want to say that I would watch every single movie with LaKeith Stanfield as the male lead in a romance. I get that he is very versatile and can do all sorts of stories. As an actor, he would probably get bored just doing one thing, but I’ve just fallen more and more in love with him every single time he played the love interest in a movie. That is a fact!

I really enjoyed how calmly The Photograph told its story and it was so much more than just a love story. It told us that our parents had their own lives and past that we likely don’t know about, but that we cannot judge them for. They are, after all, just human. And it was about having a passion for work that overshadows the other elements in your life that might need attention and love too. It is so hard to give yourself to people, not just romantically, but some are worth taking the risk/fall.

So much in this film was told simply through looks and body language and I lived for it. The music and landscapes added to the atmosphere in exactly the way they were supposed to. Truly adored it all!

For fans of: parents who have their own stories/lives, that certain kind of unforgettable love-feeling


Did you watch any of those things? Do you plan to? Let’s talk!

What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #30

Is the fact that this is the 30th post in this series a sign that I watch too much? Let’s hope not, because I really have no intention of slowing down in this climate. Here are some shows I have distracted myself with lately (which are in actuality fewer than I thought they’d be):

Vampires

I AM SORRY! I only found the French trailer, but the show is available with subtitles, cause that’s how I watched it!!!

I really thought I was over vampires at this point, but … I just can’t seem to stay away from them for good. After I finished this show, I thought to myself “huh, there were some interesting aspects, but this surely isn’t essential viewing for everyone”, yet here I am. THREE days later and I still can’t stop thinking about it.

What intrigued me the most was that this really wasn’t your usual vampire society (although they still have an inherent stalker gene it seems). In this world, vampirism is a matriarchy and vampires are created the same way humans are and not through a bite (at least that’s the story so far?). Doina, daughter of a vampire and human, turns out to be a hybrid of the two species, turning her world upside down.

This show features interesting character dynamics, although I will not hold it against you if you don’t like very many of them. To my utter shame, I also have to say that I was mainly watching for a toxic ship. I am trash that way, but at least I acknowledge it.

For fans of: international Netflix shows, different take on vampires, diverse French setting

On My Block (Season 3)

Was this the last season? It felt like the last season, but the end had me in absolute shock!? From the beginning of this show, it had always had its ups and downs. I could never take the danger as seriously as I should for some reason, because it just felt too light-hearted and silly in other moments. So, when those last frames showed up on my screen, I was like “this is a joke? Surely it must be!!” (Except for the Oscar part, I am here for that!)

This wasn’t my favourite season and I honestly don’t know what to say. I think it’s fun entertainment or a little bit, but parts of it I just could not relate to or, as mentioned above, take seriously. I think it might have been the acting, but I am really not here to bash them. I still had a great time watching all seasons after all.

For fans of: teen squad stories that get a bit out of hand and don’t look as realistic anymore

Elite (Season 3)

Okay, so, not my favourite season BUT I really like how they brought it all around. It basically mirrored season 1, but this time everyone stuck together and ended the cycle of misery. I was disappointed, because some character relationships were completely ignored, even though they had so much potential. For example, I was really hoping for a Valerio and Nadia reconciliation and that they’d be the messy friends I love to see, but instead they had Valerio be interested in being in a certain throuple (which I am cool with as a concept, I just didn’t like the other characters and used to love Valerio …). My favourite part was the Nadia-Lu-duo. Those girls really were the light for me this season!

Now, I am confused about Season 4. First, why do we need it? Why does it say no one from the OG cast will be in it? We explicitly saw a certain number of characters who had to repeat the year or were at school for some other reason … so why include that when they aren’t going to be featured anymore? I have questions!

For fans of: murder mystery and character dynamics, moral questions

Greenhouse Academy (Season 4)

Why am I even still watching this show? They completely botched the “who’s behind the door?”-mystery from a couple seasons back and they just haven’t been the same ever since. I was already massively dissatisfied with season 3, because they changed actors for characters and just had some people disappear completely. To me, that threw off the dynamic massively already and they handled it poorly. I even forgot that there was a massive cliffhanger at the end of that season, that’s how little I cared. Similarly, I feel pretty dispassionate about the twist at the end of Season 4.

I just can’t get over the fact that they reopened the whole love triangle thing with Leo, Hayley and Daniel … because someone on that list got screwed over a lot. Also … it was about a virus, so that was just poor timing for sure.

I can’t believe I used to really like Greenhouse Academy at this point, but here is the proof that I did.

For fans of: House of Anubis style over the top mysteries for teens?


Have you watched any of the shows above? Let’s talk about that!

What I’ve Been (Binge-)Watching #26

I have watched so many things that this post is probably going to get a little longer than I initially planned, but there’s just so much to talk about! Let’s get started to not add to the word count by some rambling in the intro!

Another Life

I had this saved to my Netflix list for months now, but never quite felt in the right mood to watch it. However, I generally like alien and outer space stories, so I am honestly not surprised I ended up enjoying this one as well. Even though I found some visuals to be very obvious aftereffects, the show has a cool and believable feel to it, making you wonder how far it is in the future and thinking it’s not quite all that much. Maybe, as if we were only one scientific breakthrough away from getting to that point as well.

Anyway, do not watch this show for Tyler Hoechlin, you’d be disappointed! Definitely watch it for the AI William though!!! He was the kindest soul and my absolute favourite from episode 1 onwards. I’d love to talk some more about the aliens and whether they are a threat or not and if humanity is being a dick once again, but then it would take out all the fun of you watching it. If you ever do want to talk about that stuff though, just hit me up in the comments!

For fans of: people crammed together on small living spaces, precarious situations that escalate past what you think possible, aliens, outer space, human challenges

Ares

I only found this trailer to make it accessible to all of you, but this is originally a Dutch show and I highly recommend you watch it in Dutch with subtitles. As you all know by now, I quite enjoy my international (especially European) Netflix shows and just upon hearing the title of this one, I was intrigued.

It’s another quite short format, but it is VERY dark. I mean that and want to warn you that someone stabs their own eyes and slits their throat within the first three minutes and many more brutal suicides will follow throughout the course of the show. I understand that it is not for everyone and want you to be prepared for the violence. Having said that, the show had amazing layers to its story, showing how karma can build up through generations and metaphorically portraying the consequences to actions in a very interesting way. You never quite know what’s behind it all and what’s going on, but it was very interesting nonetheless. The end, while making sense in a way, was super abrupt though and that irritated me a little. 

For fans of: metaphors, lore, karma, ambition, how far would you go-scenarios

October Faction

I’ve said it before and I will say it again, Netflix is on fire with their comic book/graphic novel adaptations! While I haven’t read this personally and therefore can’t compare the content to its origin, I had the best time watching it. I will admit that it’s not the best comic book series on the platform, but it has its own charm for sure. While the premise seems pretty straight forward, I promise there are twists and turns to the story and characters that will make it ten times as intriguing as the trailer alone might suggest.

I don’t have all too much to say, other than that it was a quick and interesting watch that leaves you wanting more easily. There is a sort of cliffhanger and it definitely feels like not all loose ends are tied up just yet. I assume they made this with several seasons in mind and I can only hope that they’ll be able to get to do far more.

For fans of: comic book adaptations, humans vs. monsters, who is the real monster though?

Sex Education (Season 2)

Pretty sure it’s no secret that I liked the first season of Sex Education quite a bit and I liked this one too. There are still brilliantly shot scenes, good acting, confusing fashion choices that never quite make sense in terms of which decade we are in and lovable characters all around. I think I cried a whole lot more this time around than I did with the first season, but it also felt a little less focused? I don’t really have anything bad to say though (except maybe not loving the definition of pansexuality they used), because I don’t know … the show is pretty awesome.

The storylines that especially touched me were Aimee’s, Adam’s and Jackson’s, but Maeve also had some tearjerkers. But not just the main characters, but also some one episode sidestories were pretty great, with the “asexuality” scene probably being one that I can see helping many people out there. I know a lot of people weren’t too happy with some of the new additions *cough* Isaac *cough*, but just keep in mind that there would barely be any conflict without some new drama. They need material for hopefully a couple more seasons after all!

For fans of: messy teens, all kinds of love

Titans (Season 2)

I wasn’t 100% sure I was going to include this one here as well, because I am not even sure I ever talked about the first season, but here we are! The thing that is on my mind the most is that … I just don’t really love this show but also keep watching it? I just find it very hard to root for some characters, because you never quite get as close to anyone as you would need to be fully invested. The story is all over the place, there’s far too many flashback episodes (which are just a personal nuisance to me) and they keep adding characters.

An ensemble cast isn’t something bad, but if you see a character for a minute per episode or not at all, can you really still call them part of the main team? I don’t know. It’s such a slow build here, but as I said, I still keep watching it. There must be something to it! (Definitely didn’t mind the addition of Superboy and Krypto but will forever be sad about Aqualad’s part in all of this, especially cause I loved the casting)

For fans of: DC comics, origin stories, Titans

Knives Out

I wasn’t exactly impressed with the Oscar nominations, but that’s a whole other topic. Still, I try to catch at least some of the nominations every year and I really, really, really wanted to watch Knives Out. It released in cinemas here pretty late, so there’s still 5 screenings per day now and I finally caught one. I now get what all the fuss is about!

Murder mysteries not being my favourite genre, this was actually A LOT of fun to watch, as in, I laughed out loud several times. I don’t think we even have to talk about how brilliant of a cast they managed to get, but I was really impressed by all of them. Ana carried the movie perfectly and it was great getting to see Chris Evans in something other than America’s golden boy. I even thought I had been spoiled about the ending, but I wasn’t entirely and still loved all the twists and turns. Many people have mentioned it to me before I went and watched it, but the final shot of the movie is perfection!

For fans of: murder mysteries a la Agatha Christie, any and all of the amazing cast members, Rian Johnson as director


Have you watched any of these things? Do you want to? Let’s chat!