Does anyone else tense up when someone recommends something for you to watch, only to have them think you must be Amish if you haven’t or don’t watch it? I’m usually tense when people are talking anyway (I’m the life of every party I’m not invited to) but movies and tv shows are always a topic I feel a bit more comfortable talking to strangers about. However when people ask me “You watch Game of Thrones, right?” (it’s never a “Do you?”) and my surprising answer of “*barely held in sigh* No.” escapes my lips, I’m always treated to a 20-minute shock “Oh my God, you DON’T????” rant followed by a 20-hour long essay why I should.
I’m not going to do that to you. Instead, I will try my darnedest to let you know in written detail (including Michael Jackson yodelling) why I recommend these shows, what I love about them and maybe who might like them that little bit more.
Bob’s Burgers is a show I could binge watch for the rest of my life. The Belcher’s are just a fun, close-knit family that all work in the family restaurant that seems to never catch a break, but they don’t mind as long as they’re all together at the end. Not only are the characters really relatable, but it’s a show that I think anyone of any age could sit down and enjoy. I really can’t say enough good things about this show (Marshmallow, Tina, dramatic zoom ups, little cheeky jokes – usually coming from Gene, Linda’s “Alriiiight!”). If you haven’t watched it, I strongly encourage you to, especially if you just need a show to give you a quick pick-me-up or chill out.
The masterpiece that is Sherlock happens when you get a writer that is not only a brilliant writer but a massive fan of the novels and short stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. You either fall into two categories when I bring this recommendation up: the people that have seen it and love it, or just haven’t seen it and don’t want to or probably think it’s overrated trash. I assure your derriere that Sherlock melts into modern society so beautifully that you forget that it was written a long-ass time ago. Don’t lazily compare it to Elementary. It’s in a league of its own.
MY FRICKEN JAM. TRUSTNO1. Before Supernatural was even a thought, before real shit happening in the world was just fiction, before hardcore conspiracy theorists busted a nut watching Illuminati videos on a site called YouTube, there was The X-Files. I don’t know what there isn’t to love about the show because it has everything you need; original storylines, a smart-talking, alien and conspiracy loving dork and his new partner, a small but badass skeptic that always seems to be looking the other way when there’s a bloody weird creature. If you think you have to contend with a romantic storyline as a quick season 2 punchline, you don’t. The X-Files was great at pacing things while giving you everything you wanted.
While I started watching the show as a tiny person, it’s up to you whether you want to show your kids, some episodes (lookin’ at you, Home) might really confuse them or fuck them up. I do think, though, that The X-Files – and it’s revival – blurs the lines between ‘just a show’ and issues way ahead of its time in the nostalgic 90s that seem to be all too real right now.
It’s pretty easy to pass South Park off as a brash cartoon show that made mothers across the US clutch their pearls at the idea of kids swearing because obviously, that doesn’t happen. Yet South Park is still on air for a reason, and while it does still push the envelope in terms of what some might consider controversial or bad taste, you don’t have to dig to see that it’s always had some sort of message behind each episode. Sure, not microwaving your balls to get medical marijuana is a message in itself, but seeing as some scenes can be completely censored, even though it’s actually talking about censoring has to show that this long-running cartoon has some merit, right?
That, and I am a kid that grew up on South Park, and I turned out alright!…RIGHT?!
With its mind-blowing cinematography, attention to detail and incredible acting, Hannibal is no doubt art on the small screen. With gory details. It’s about Hannibal Lecter so it’s gotta be a bit gory! Hannibal rewinds to when our friendly, neighbourhood cannibal was still practising psychiatry and about to meet the love of his life, Will Graham, the FBI’s little gifted but very screwed up puppy.
I was offended when I first heard they were going to make this into a show, but after seeing some gifs of the in-freaking-sane cinematography from the first episode, I gave it a go… aaand I was hooked. The acting of our main couple, played by Mads Mikkelsen and Hugh Dancy is unforgettable and truly the highlight of the show.
If you’re overdue for an existential crisis, Black Mirror is your show! Combining modern and future technology, the addictive dread of every Twilight Zone/The Night Gallery and an “oh, shit” twist at the end of every episode, Black Mirror makes you slump back in your chair and fight off the urge to curl up in a ball for an hour… away from any source of technology.
The scary thing is how realistic each episode can be, especially in our tech-craved world (and people who can really screw it up, not to mention the uh.. pig thing). Black Mirror has the capacity to make you see the crest of the wave before it comes crashing down and ruins your damn week.
Parks & Recreation
After Black Mirror has fucked up your entire week, you need something to get you back to feeling like you might actually smile again – enter Parks & Rec! While I’ve only seen a few episodes here and there, it’s a show I can’t wait to sit down and binge watch. Between Amy Pohler being her cute self and Nick Offerman being Nick Offerman, it’s a show you can melt into a couch on and just let yourself be entertained. You know, treat yo self.
I Shouldn’t Be Alive
I swear there’s never a dull episode of I Shouldn’t Be Alive. Every single episode has me flabbergasted over the sheer badassery and will of our species. Just when you think that the person/s are ready to be saved- BOOM! More crap they have to try to live through! If there’s a show that makes me feel a bit more hopeful about humanity it’s definitely this one, with the cool narrator (who did lend his voice to the parody episode of South Park, “I Should Have Never Gone Ziplining“), it definitely eats the heart out of Game Of Thrones (reference!).