I decided to sign back up with Netflix in November. I think I was trying to find a link to the David Brent film(which is apparently terrible) and saw that it was on Netflix. I figured it was coming up to Christmas so I might have signed up again anyway. Turned out the Brent film won’t be out til March. So I decided to watch some TV series’ instead.
Committing to a series is a big deal for me! This year I only watched The Wire for the first time. That’s about nine years since it was on TV first time around. In 2015 I watched The Sopranos. I think it was down to a combination of stubbornness and a ridiculous loyalty to film. Anyway, everyone else is right, both are brilliant.
So with Netflix, I started with Black Mirror Season 3, followed by Stranger Things. Then Fargo Season 1 and 2 with Happy Valley Season 1 the meat in the grizzly North Dakotan sandwich.
I really enjoyed Happy Valley. Six episodes, very tight writing and well produced. Sarah Lancashire is brilliant as the main character, a Sergeant in a small Yorkshire town.
Her co-stars are also very well cast and deliver well. Particular kudos to Rhys Connah, who plays her grandson.
I think what I liked about it best was her performance but Yorkshire has such a colourful back story of crime and hardship you could almost consider it to be a supporting cast member.
There’s no denying the production value of Valley was minuscule compared to its American counterparts. But 6 episodes. Bang tidy if you ask me.
Black Mirror has been around for a few years now. I really enjoyed the first two series on channel four but must confess I only watched each episode once.
It is an unashamed critique on modern life and where we’re going. All very terrifying. But I’ll never love it. That’s the risk with having completely new characters each time around. I wasn’t invested in all of them. Some I liked more than others.
Stranger Things was charm personified on the other hand. The young actors were marvelous. Very well cast. The story itself seemed to be a hodge-podge of a lot of things I’ve seen before which isn’t all that strange. But it won me over. Cool soundtrack.
Fargo! Well it’s basically excellent. I won’t bore you to tears about how and why it is excellent. Just seek it out post haste. I might write about it in further detail some other time.
But the point of this blog was to maybe identify why Netflix is so popular nowadays. And why many are basing their lives around it.
Obviously there’s ‘hilarious’ play on words I made with the title of this post. And indeed many’s a great meme has been made about it. A cheap night in and a few cuddles with someone you like, sounds good to me. Of course you do run the risk of missing a vital part of the action while you’re in the throes of passion. Is it worth the risk? Or indeed are you going to miss anything vital at all? And what of those single people who actually just want to actually chill and watch some stuff?
I have a theory that it isn’t simply down to the quality of the programmes, great as they are. I think it’s more down to us being broke and wanting to stay out of the cold. Also there’s the thing of binge watching which I found myself doing over Christmas. I hated myself for it too. Three hours plus of watching a very good show and barely being able to remember any of it afterward. Also realizing that I might never find the time to watch it again. Horrible! And yet I couldn’t help myself. There was a satisfaction to completing something even though I knew I wouldn’t be writing a review for each episode. Even though I knew I wouldn’t even be in a chatroom after it talking about the nuances of each act.
So I decided I won’t do that again. Then again I decided I would limit myself to Facebook for thirty minutes a day and that isn’t working out. Boy, do I need to get a handle on that this year.
Here’s some good linkage for this week
- Disability in acting is an interesting topic. I have often wondered if some disabled people might think it’s offensive for a non disabled person to portray a disabled person on screen. This BBC 4 doc answered that question, plus a whole lot more.
- Róisín Murphy goes about her business quite brilliantly. You never hear anything about her private life on social media which is always a plus in my book. Instead she just makes cool sounds and records them, much to the delight of many though arguably not enough. Check this out.
- . Here are some documentaries you might want to track down, and a few I need to see myself. This list is courtesy of the Guardian. I don’t think there’s any of these on Netflix but it’s worth the effort casting the net a bit further.
- Louis CK perfectly illustrates one of society’s greatest failings..or is it two?? The mobile phone joke and of course the flying one.