CONTENT WARNING: Brief Mentions of Stalking, Cults, Suicide, Abortion,STIs, Men- tal Health, Terrorism, Death, Sexual Assault, Homophobia and Transphobia
It is a trying time for all of us. Feelings of anxiety, anger and sadness are all normal reactions to the current unprecedented situation. We need now more than ever to be kind to ourselves. Finding something to keep ourselves busy and distracted is so vital for our mental health. Watching Netflix shows can be an excellent distraction. To save the time and effort scrolling through the abyss of Netflix shows, I have compiled a list of binge-worthy hidden gems and popular Netflix TV shows.
I recently finished watching this four-part mini-series after binging it in just two days. Esther Shapiro (Esty) is only nineteen when she flees her ultra-orthodox Hasidic Sat- mar community in Brooklyn, New York and travels to Berlin. The show is based on the bestselling autobiographical novel Unorthodox: The Scandalous Rejection of My Hasidic Roots by Deborah Feldman. The large part Feldman played in the show’s production shines through in its authenticity. I was awed by the beautiful, heavily detailed sets and costumes. If you are looking for a show to sweep you up in its emotions and incredible storyline, then Unorthodox is a mustsee.
WARNING: This show includes themes of marital rape, stalking and cults.
I have re-watched this hysterical series numerous times. The humour is just so British. After testing positive for chlamydia, Dylan, played by Johnny Flynn, must contact each of his sexual partners to inform them of his diagnosis. It may seem like a weird premise for a TV show, but it is an ingenious device that slowly unravels the dynamics of the friendship between the three main char- actors Dylan, Evie and Luke. Each episode focuses on a different woman from Dylan’s past as we see his multitude of failed attempts at love. If you need a TV show that will make you laugh as well as include the most accurate depiction of friendships on TV out there, then please watch this piece of brilliance.
I have never watched a show that so en- thralled me in its mystic. I am not much of a sci-fi fan, but the ending of the first season of this show had my entire body pulsing with excitement. Season one of The OA follows Prairie or ‘OA’ as she returns home after being missing for seven years and is mysteriously no longer blind. When she forms a group with four outcast boys and a schoolteacher, she recounts bizarre tales of angels, near-death-experiences, time travelling, and celestial movements. While the show defies normal narrative logic and may verge on the side of lunacy, I urge you to take the leap.
Please Like Me
WARNING: This show includes themes of suicide and abortion. I started watching this show with my friends at the end of my first year at university. It was the perfect show to unwind post-ex- ams. Set in the suburbs of Melbourne, Please Like Me is written by and stars Josh Thomas. His geekish charm and light-heartedness is so refreshing even though he deals with serious issues like mental health, sexuality and family issues. The show’s script is very millennial. There’s a sense that none of the characters knows what they are doing in life, but weirdly, this is comforting. One delight you get from binge-watching this series is the opening credits song ‘I’ll be Fine’ by Clairy Browne and the Bangin’ Rackettes. Give it a listen to uplift your mood.
This series is a work of art. The acting, script, costumes, hairstyles (notably the famous Peaky Blinder undercut) will trans- port you to the gangster world of Birmingham in the late 1910s and early 1920s. Thomas Shelby, played by Cillian Murphy, is the brooding, fearless and intellectual leader of the notorious family gang. Cillian’s acting and chiselled jawline will have you enthralled. The rest of the cast is also incredible. If you want to be swept up in a different era, Peaky Blinders is for you.
WARNING: This show features a protagonist who experiences PTSD. This three-part mini-series is one of the most addictive shows out there. The stakes are high, and the drama is intense. The show follows David Budd, played by Richard Madden, a war veteran who now finds himself as a Specialist Protection Officer assigned to protect Home Secretary Julie Montague (Keeley Hawes). Budd must deal with terrorist plots, inside jobs and bomb threats. If you want a show with intense twists and turns, then watch Bodyguard.
There is something so wholesome about this police television comedy. The characters are so loveable and funny that their blunders and mishaps never cease to make me smile. Watching Brooklyn Nine-Nine is always a sure way to put me in a good mood. It is no wonder that, when this show was about to be cancelled in 2019, its viewers rallied together to make sure that NBC would renew the series for a seventh series. If you haven’t watched Brooklyn Nine-Nine yet, then what are you doing? Open your laptop now and give it a go.
This show is suspenseful and dramatic – everything a good teen Spanish drama should be. The show is set at Las Encinas, an elite private school where a teenage girl has been murdered. Everyone has secrets, and everybody is a suspect. You will only be relieved of your intrigue in the final episode where the killer is revealed, and my gosh is it shocking. The series continues for another two seasons where the drama just gets bigger. If you want a show packed to the brim with secrets, teen drama, lies and intense characters, then you will enjoy Elite.
WARNING: This show includes themes of sexual assault. If you are into watching crime and detective shows and you haven’t watched Unbelievable, please do. This series is based on the real-life police investigation of serial rapist Marc O’Leary. The first episode follows the story of Marie as she reports her rape, enduring the trauma of recounting her story to multiple people, invasive medical examinations and detectives who doubt her truth. The series is an eye-opening look at how police deal with rape and its aggravating tendency to question the victim. If you want a show that demonstrates the unglamorous and arduous police work that goes into convicting a rapist, I highly recommend this show.
This new rebooted series of Queer Eye includes five fabulous men who aim to bring positivity and joy to the world. Each episode focuses on a person, nominated by their family or friends to have their life revamped. It examines various aspects of their life, e.g. hairstyle, dress, style, confidence and environment. You cannot walk away from watching an episode of this show without feeling like you haven’t your- self received a pep talk from Jonathan, the fabulous ice-skating hairdresser. If you want a boost of positivity, then watch Queer Eye.