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I LOVE These Things: Binge Watching Television And My Favorite Movies/Shows {Week of 2/1}


I love television.

It’s probably one of the twelve deadly sins according to someone somewhere, but I don’t care. One of the greatest joys in my life is sitting down with a bowl of popcorn and glass of wine and a television show I love.

(Cue my Olivia Pope moment…and even though I’m talking not Scandal this week….I do watch it….and WTH? Where is this season going????)

And then Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video came along CHANGED my love to an addiction. I was now able to BINGE WATCH a program/series/season from start to finish! How in the world did I survive before this?

Watching a television show in constant succession is like actually listening to a whole album, instead of just one song here and there. You get more invested in the characters, storyline and series.

So, I thought I would take this week to share an old show you should binge on, a current show (that you should binge watch old episodes to get caught up and then buy the first two episodes), and my new current binge show.

TINY - A Story About Living Small

1. TINY: A Story About Living Small.

I will admit to being obsessed with the TINY house movement. Obsessed. If you are unfamiliar, basically people decide to buck conventional living and create houses that fit on a flatbed trailer. They then park these houses at either friends, relatives, on land they own, etc. and live with no mortgage payment and minimal utilities. Sound like a bunch of nutjobs? Watch TINY: A Story About Living Small (available on Netflix) and you’ll think differently.

Here is a description for TINY: A Story About Living Small.

What is home? And how do we find it? TINY follows one couple’s attempt to build a Tiny House from scratch with no building experience, and profiles other families who have downsized their lives into houses smaller than the average parking space. Through homes stripped down to their essentials, the film raises questions about sustainability, good design, and the changing American Dream.

These homes are less than 200 square feet. During the movie, you’ll see homes that are desperate and sad and homes that are marvels of amazing design. But in the end, it makes you think about your “schtuff” and how your “schtuff” can control you (you have to upkeep it, clean it, replace it, store it) and what “schtuff” is actually necessary for a comfortable living.  I especially loved people talking about NOT having a mortgage and how that has freed them to follow their passions, spend time and money traveling, and living their lives outside of their four walls.

For me and our family, there is NO WAY we will be selling our home and building a TINY house anytime soon, BUT it has made me think about each of our purchases, the need to declutter and enjoy empty space, shelves, and closets in our own home and focus on relationships instead of things. So, in a nutshell, I’ve gotten rid of a ton of “schtuff” and haven’t looked back.

Want more about TINY houses? Check out these articles.

The Americans

2. The Americans.

BEST SHOW ON TELEVISION right now. Period.

It has everything I love in a good television drama. Espionage, suspense, sex, drama, lies, a strong, but complex, and conflicted hero and heroine.

In a nutshell, it’s the 80s (and it has all the amazingly bad fashion of the decade), in Washington, DC and in the middle of Cold War (anyone else remember this time…like nuclear bombs could go off any minute). Philip (Matthew Rhys) and Elizabeth Jennings (Keri Russell) and their two kids, seem to be a typical suburban couple, but they’re actually lethal (like CRAZY lethal) KGB agents plotting to bring down America. As the Cold War escalates, Philip and Elizabeth must take extreme measures to continue their mission and keep their true identities hidden.

As a kid who grew up in the 80s, I love all of the tension between the FBI, KGB, CIA, Reagan and Brezhnev, Andropov, Chernenko, and finally, Gorbachev. The acting is amazing. The story lines are solid. And you are never sure what is going to happen, until it does. Will they be caught? What will happen to the kids? What if only is one caught? Will they stay in America after the Cold War is over?

The third season started two weeks ago, so you could easily binge on Season One and Two (available on Amazon Prime Instant Video and Netflix) and then buy the other two (or three) episodes for $1.99 each and be caught up.


3. Big Love.

For years (before kids when we had more disposable income), I was an HBO devotee. Sunday night was MY night with Sex And the City, Six Feet Under and Sopranos. I also fell in love with The Wire, Deadwood, and Band of Brothers. But then we had kids, money and time got tight, and we got rid of cable.

SO, when Amazon Prime Instant Video announced a partnership with HBO my heart skipped a beat. I could start watching some of the shows I had missed during our “HBO hiatus” and even better, I could BINGE watch them with abandonment.

So, I started my BINGE with Big Love. And it hasn’t disappointed.

While I thought the show that dramatizes Mormonism and Polygamy (and all the issues it can bring) was about the protagonist, Bill, it really is a show about women. Three women (Barbara, Nicki, and Margene) who are married to not only Bill, but each other. It follows their path of sharing one man, their growth as women and mothers, and their ability to question their faith and their commitment to the “principal”. It is HBO at it’s finest.

I could go on and on about my love for television…but instead of writing a 10,000 word post, I’ll just let you know which other shows that make my heart go pitter-patter.

What about you? What are your favorite shows to either BINGE watch or that are television right now?

And here are the posts that were your favorite this week:

See past editions of I LOVE These Things.