Where were we all before the invention of Netflix? What did we all do with our time? In a few short years, the internet-based streaming service has all but made the concept of DVDs and Blu-rays obsolete and has embedded itself deep into our culture and vocabulary. We all know the meaning of ‘Netflix and chill,’ even if we wish we didn’t. We all enjoy the way that it likes to check in on us by asking us if we’re still watching when we’re six hours into a box-set binge, too.
If there’s one drawback to Netflix, it’s that it’s sometimes difficult to work out what to watch and what to avoid. Netflix has taken the field of television and movies and turned them into a giant online slots casino, where you never know what’s going to happen next until you try it.
Netflix only charges a monthly subscription rather than making us pay per show or film. It still costs us in time, though, and so we’d like to save you some of yours.
What we’re about to online below is our take on what’s going to be good to watch in the coming weeks and months on Netflix. We’re going to focus on the titles that are published under the ‘Netflix Originals’ line because we’ll assume you’ve already seen reviews for many television shows or movies from elsewhere you’re likely to be interested in. Without further ado, here’s what we think you should be checking out!
Bojack Horseman Season 6 – January 31st
If you’ve never seen ‘Bojack Horseman,’ the good news is that there are five whole seasons of it already available on the Netflix service for you to watch and enjoy. The bad news is that there’s only one season left, and it’s coming very soon.
In fact, it’s less than that – the first half of the season was made available at the end of 2019. It’s hard to explain what makes a cartoon about a depressed half-man half-horse funny, but it’s delightfully surreal and more than a little dark. The humor of Bojack Horseman is something you’ll either get or you won’t, but if you have a taste for the unusual, you’re sure to love it.
Narcos: Mexico – February 13th
We have only two thoughts about the first season of drug-fueled crime drama ‘Narcos.’ The first is that it was excellent, and may have been the most gripping TV drama we’ve seen since ‘Breaking Bad.’ The second is that it was far too long ago.
The producers of ‘Narcos’ have kept us waiting a long time for the second installment, but we’ve been told by everyone who’s seen previews and been involved with the production that it’s going to be worth the wait. This isn’t ideal viewing if you’re of a nervous disposition or have issues with swearing, extreme violence, and just about anything else that the average person might consider offensive, but if you like your television shows to be gritty, it’s hard to imagine anything grittier than this.
All The Bright Places – February 28th
This is a brand new movie as opposed to a box set, but we think it’s worth a mention because it’s going to appeal to those of you (and we include ourselves in this) who inexplicably love watching things that make us cry.
‘All The Bright Places’ is taken from a Jennifer Niven novel in which two teenagers meet and fall in love against a backdrop of personal strife and mental health problems. It’s not an especially original tale, but Niven is capable of crafting stories in a way that most other authors can’t touch in terms of authenticity or emotional impact. So long as this is a faithful adaptation of the source material, it should be great. Also, Elle Fanning is in it, and she’s almost never in anything that isn’t good.
Ozark Season 3 – March 27th
The topic of money laundering isn’t a fun one. If you work in an office, you probably have to attend informational meetings about money laundering at least once a year, and may also have to regularly fill out questionnaires confirming that you know what it is, you know how to spot it, and you’re not taking part in it yourself. It’s as if your employers hope that one day you’ll suddenly change your mind and confess that you’re a master criminal, but we digress.
Against all the odds, ‘Ozark’ manages to take the extremely dry topic of money laundering and make it both entertaining and amusing. You’ll have to watch the first two seasons in order for the forthcoming third season to make sense to you, but you have plenty of time to do that between now and the end of March.
Eurovision – TBC (but early 2020)
If you live outside Europe, you’ve probably never heard of Eurovision, which is a Europe-wide televised singing contest. That might sound like every televised talent show you’ve ever seen, but Eurovision never fails to be an incredible event.
The best song never wins, and as all the voting is done by way of the countries judging each other, the level of political voting has to be seen to be believed. Britain, despised by most of its European neighbors, could enter the best song you’ve ever heard and still finish dead last. Poorly-conceived political messages and slogans are espoused on the night, there’s usually at least one stage invasion, and more often than not, the whole thing descends into chaos.
This isn’t a screening of the competition on Netflix, though – instead, it’s a movie written by and starring Will Ferrell, who was moved to make it after seeing the contest on television while in Europe. Rachel McAdams co-stars, and it’s guaranteed to be hilarious. Our only concern is whether the intentional humor in this will be better than the unintentional humor in the real show. As Eurovision happens in May, this will likely come out at around the same time or just before.
We think that should give you enough to go on for now, given that you have five seasons of ‘Bojack Horseman,’ one season of ‘Narcos’ and two seasons of ‘Ozark’ to catch up on, but if you do get through it all, just do what everyone else does – scroll endlessly through the whole Netflix library and take a chance on whatever catches your eyes! We’ll be back with more Netflix recommendations later in the year.
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