I have a confession to make.
I never liked the television show Parenthood.
Yep, I’m one of the five people on the planet who never really got into that show. I tried. I really, really tried. But I just couldn’t. It’s probably why I’m one of the seven people on the planet who has never seen Gilmore Girls and one of three people on the planet who hasn’t seen This Is Us.
But, I really, really like watching television shows. I love television. If I was honest, I’d tell you that I love television shows more than movies. There is something SO SATISFYING about having the time to spend in character development. To grow to really hate, or love, or sympathize with a character.
So, this week I’m dedicating my “I LOVE THESE THINGS” to my all-time favorite television shows for Binge Watching.
1. Game of Thrones. (HBO NOW)
This is a show about four families and their intersecting lives on the quest to become King. Sounds simple enough, right? Well, throw in dragons, sex, murder, evil, sex, white walkers, incest, magic, sword fights, sex, beheadings, forced marriages, sex, politics, weird diseases, and secret births … and well, it makes it much more interesting. This show is completely inappropriate for kids. In fact, there are a few scenes that make me wonder how it only got an “R” rating (see my use of the word sex in the description). But the show has enough drama to keep me entertained and enough battle scenes to keep my husband entertained…so it is a show we can watch together (after the kids go to bed.)
Set in the late 60s, this show tells the tale about a group of women who sued Newsweek (referred to as News of the Week) for sexual discrimination. Their revolutionary request sparked convulsive changes and upends marriages, careers, sex lives, love lives, and friendships. The acting is great. The costumes and set designs are amazing. And yet, it is sad that many of the same issues still plague the workplace today.
Set in the 80s, The Americans is a period drama about the complex marriage of two KGB spies posing as Americans in suburban Washington D.C. shortly after Ronald Reagan is elected President. It’s the Cold War, Star Wars, Tang, bad outfits, and marriage all wrapped into one. And it is SO good. You are never quite sure what’s going to happen next. (Like will they get found out or will they defect?)
This show follows Elizabeth II as she becomes the Queen of England. Plenty of drama with exiled family members, affairs, political land mines, and a husband who isn’t really sure what it means to have a wife he has to bow to. It makes you feel just a bit sorry for Elizabeth II and makes you understand Prince Charles even more.
5. Madame Secretary (Netflix)
Fan of The West Wing? If so, this show is for you. It doesn’t have quite the snappy dialogue of WW, but the political drama is all there. Part of the reason this show resonates with me is that I love the cast: Téa Leoni, Tim Daly and Bebe Neuwirth. It’s a great show to end the night with … slightly thought-provoking, kind of formulaic, and a house in Georgetown that any of us would DIE to live in. Oh, and she has great clothes.
The Man in the High Castle explores what it would be like if the Allied Powers had lost WWII, and Japan and Germany ruled the United States. Couple that with the fact that it’s executive produced by the people from X-Files and Blade Runner. So it’s “historical fiction” combined with “science fiction” and “adventure” … plus, it is a tale of good vs evil…you just aren’t sure who is good and who is evil.
7. Breaking Bad (Netflix)
I watched every episode of this show during its original airing. But, I really wished I would have been able to binge watch it because without a doubt, Breaking Bad has the best story lines and character development of any show I’ve ever watched. While it is a show about how a math teacher learned to cook meth and become a drug kingpin…it’s also a show about a man who never lived up to his potential and had a rare opportunity to start fresh and use his talents to become extremely successful. And the ending…oh, my word. There has never been a better ending to a televisions show ever.
8. Stranger Things (Netflix)
A young boy, Will, vanishes in a super-natural way. The whole town goes into lock-down trying to find the boy and uncovers a mystery involving secret experiments, terrifying supernatural forces and one strange little girl. This show has the feel of all the great 80s sci-fi/horror classics like ET and Poltergeist. Plus, it’s set in 1984. The houses, clothes, toys, and technology are awesome and it might go down as my fastest binge watch ever.
If there is one series that holds a special place in my heart, it’s The Good Wife. I stumbled into The Good Wife during it’s third season and became addicted. The writing, acting, characters, and story lines are amazing. I cheered, cried, yelled, and blushed (and then rewinded to watch again) some of the episodes. (Plus, it has some of the best European actors EVER … Alan Cummings and Matthew Goode.)
10. Peaky Blinders (Netflix)
I admit that I would have never watched this show except for the fact I had kidney stones and was laid up in bed on SUPER drugs and needed something I could tune out if it wasn’t that good. Stupid me. This show is BONKERS good. Peaky Blinders is the tale of Tommy Shelby, a notorious gang leader in 1919 Birmingham, England and his rise to power. The accents are THICK. The clothes are AMAZING. The story-lines are filled with twists and turns that you never saw coming. And the soundtrack … well, let’s just say, it’s punk rock. Oh, and it is made by the Weinstein Brothers.
What other shows do you feel are BINGE WORTHY? I’m always looking for recommendations (except Gilmore Girls and Parenthood … I can’t do those).
And here is what else is going on…
- Homemade Thai Peanut Sauce That Rocked My World (ignore the stuff about quinoa)
- What I’m Watching
- What I Splurged On This Week
- What I’m Reading
- What I’m Wearing
See past editions of I LOVE These Things.