So I’m pretty sure I’ve watched more Netflix this January than I have any other month… Hands up if you’re the same?! After going out a lot during December and drinking far too much, it was time to detox and save some money. And what better way to do that, than to stay in and watch Netflix! Some great things were added over Christmas and into the New Year, so I tried to make sure I watched them all. And here’s what I thought!
*none of these pics are my own (obviously!), all found on google*
I mean, who hasn’t watched You yet? I feel like it blew up hugely, in such a short amount of time! I saw something about it online so decided to give it a go, and ended up binge watching it in the space of a few days. This was a week or two ago, and since then I swear it’s everywhere! I really enjoyed it, so I can see why it’s become so popular. It’s so strange, as despite Joe Golbergs (Penn Badgely) character really not being someone you should like, you can’t help but be hoping it goes well between him and Beck. I recently saw an article about how Penn Badgely himself thinks it’s weird people are romanticising his character and it really is, but it’s so cleverly written that you just can’t help but feel so confused by how you feel about him.
I don’t want to give too much away, but I’d definitely recommend it – James and I both really enjoyed it and he usually hates anything that can be defined as a romance in any way! It’s dark, intense and very gripping. There were so many moments I was on the edge of my seat shouting ‘WHY!’ at the TV. There are lots of plot twists and you’re left in the dark about a lot of things which become clearer, so you can’t stop watching it. The only thing I struggled with was seeing Penn Badgely play anyone but Dan Humphrey (xoxo, Gossip Girl).
So, I was super excited for the release of a film by Black Mirror. Every series they bring out such incredible episodes that are just so clever, so the fact this was interactive was set to make it next level. However, I don’t think the ‘choose your own path’ thing was really that great (IN MY OPINION). It’s a really cool concept, and I thought it was cool it fitted the actual storyline of the episode, but I’d have rather just watched a normal episode. It almost felt like I couldn’t properly get into it because there were all these decisions I had to make. I also HATE making decisions, so found the whole process pretty stressful. There was too much ‘what if’ for me, I hated the idea I may be missing something even better and chosen the wrong thing. We went back and did loads of different endings to try and see everything but then this got very long and repetitive..
Having said all this, I didn’t not enjoy it. As all Black Mirror episodes are, the storyline was great, as was the casting, filming and soundtrack – since watching it I’ve become obsessed with listening to 80s music and wishing that I was alive back then. If there had been maybe one path sequence which was the best and you could’ve just chosen to watch that one, I think I’d have rather done that. But as I say, that’s only the opinion of a very indecisive, easily stressed person!
From about ten minutes in, I thought it was pretty rubbish. I’d read online such good things so was so disappointed! I found it quite slow, and that the storyline didn’t actually go very far… Again, I don’t want to spoil it for anyone who hasn’t seen it but I just felt like not that much actually happened. And the ending was just a bit.. yeah. I don’t even know how to describe it but if you’ve seen it and you agree with me then you’ll know what I mean!
I’ve recently been watching Walking Dead, and so I don’t know if maybe I was comparing the two and that’s why I was so disappointed. The whole kind of ‘apocolypse, can’t go outside or trust anyone’ theme was the same and therefore I just couldn’t help thinking ‘well, Walking Dead has much more going on than this’ – and that’s a series. This was a whole film of not a lot, in my opinion!
Another Netflix Original! In fact, I’m pretty sure everything on this list is a Netflix Original. I feel like they’ve really upped their game recently with these. I was a bit worried it was too young/teenager drama-y (so fine for me, not so for James) but the humour makes it feel like it was aimed at an older crowd. It’s really funny, but also has a storyline you follow and characters you feel sympathy towards. All the characters are so unique and lovable in their own way and they do a great job at getting the high school friendship groups and characters right without it being too cliqué.
The only thing we couldn’t quite work out for a while was if it was meant to be British or American. The characters have British accents, a very English looking building to go to school in, yet they seemed to have a jock-varsity thing going on too. They don’t wear school uniform either, but I guess if it’s a sixth form I guess that’s normal as it’s set in a secondary school (but where are the rest of the students?). It felt like maybe it was written by Americans who didn’t really know what going to school in the UK was actually like. But that isn’t a reason not to watch it – it’s just the ONLY negative thing I could say about it. It’s really great, with a balance between it being hilarious but also having a lot of important issues highlighted in the storyline without making it too serious. Then again, I did get pretty emotional at times (but I’m the girl who cries at dog videos so, I don’t know if that counts for much)!
Tidying Up with Marie Kondo
I watched the first episode of this, then decided to go tidy the house. It honestly had that effect on me! I’d seen a lot and heard from people to watch it, so decided to give it a go on a lazy Sunday morning. Marie’s presence is so calming, and it made me feel like my life could also be that calm if I did what she said and tidied in the way she does. I loved her methods of only keeping things that ‘bring you joy’, as I am definitely a hoarder and could do with a big clear out. I know there’s a lot of things in my house that I can pick up and feel no emotion towards! Her way of folding clothes is also something I’m definitely gonna do, as I never know what I have in my drawers. I’d recommend anyone to watch it just for the little tricks she has!
Okay so, maybe a bit of a weird one here. Another Netflix original that I put on for something to ‘fall asleep to’, yet ended up getting absolutely hooked and getting no sleep at all. It’s basically a group of five couples, who all have their own ‘Instant Hotel’ (or in other words, an AirBnb) and compete with each other to see who’s is best. Each episode you see one of the couples’ home, and the other four stay for 24 hours and rate the house on four factors. The host couple then also rate them as guests, and at the end of the first round all the points are totalled (including a rating from an interior designer) and a winner is decided. The first season has 2 rounds, then the final two episodes are the two winners house and ‘the jury’ decide which is the best – the jury being the most dramatic couples from the two rounds. I love house programmes, so loved seeing all the beautiful properties. What made it even better though is there was SO much drama. It’s a competition, so it gets pretty bitchy between the couples and there’s a lot of game playing!
If you want something easy to watch with beautiful houses and drama that will make you laugh, look no further…
Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened
Oh my god. So, if you somehow haven’t heard about Fyre Festival, it was basically a festival aimed at the elite, with a crazy social media influencer campaign to promote it and lead to it selling out – despite tickets costing thousands. However, when festival goers got to the destination (what was promised to be a private island in the Bahamas), they found an unfinished site next to a resort, with no signs of a festival ready to take place. The story blew up on social media (with the help of THAT picture of a cheese sandwich) and it was known to be one of the biggest PR fails of all time. The thing is, afterwards many people found the situation pretty funny, with a ‘well, it serves people right for spending so much on a festival ticket based on the fact that Kendall Jenner posted it on Instagram’ attitude.
What I think many of us didn’t realise, was actually how badly it was planned, how it ruined the lives of many people involved (and not the ones who deserved it). I’d heard really good things about the documentary and was so shocked to discover how bad the situation was. Billy (the man who’s idea Fyre Festival was and who was in charge) was totally deluded as to thinking he’d manage to pull it off and still get away with everything, despite many other people he worked with telling him at multiple times that the thing was gonna be a failure. It was horrible to see how out of pocket so many people were left, most of all the local Bahaman people who had to try and put together a festival, and then pick up the pieces when it all went wrong.
The documentary shows how for so, so long before the festival start date, they knew it wasn’t going to be what they’d promised. Yet, they still went ahead with it. It’s actually crazy too as it shows first hand the power of social media and influencer marketing, and how willingly people will buy into something purely because it’s endorsed by models or influencers with a high following! The way they promoted the festival and the campaign to start with was very impressive, and everyone knew about it (for better, then for worse). So definitely watch it to see the other side of the story and really what went down!
And if you haven’t already…
The Good Place
We started watching The Good Place in November but I find myself recommending it to people all the time, so if you haven’t watched it, make sure you do! It’s hilarious, easy watching that you can have on in the background whilst doing work or fully concentrate on depending on how you’re feeling. There’s a lot of episodes so you can fully get stuck in, and they’re still bringing them out weekly now. It follows a girl who after dying finds herself ‘in the Good Place’ by accident, having lead a pretty terrible life and knowing she doesn’t deserve to be there. I can’t say much without giving away the storyline, but it was one of my favourite things I’ve watched on Netflix so I’d recommend you do the same! They’re releasing episodes each week so I’m still watching it, so it makes it onto this list!
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