Remember those hot summer days when we had nothing to do for two (or more) months but relax, sit indoors in the air-conditioning (or outdoors, if that’s your thing), and spend countless hours doing nothing? Well, maybe that’s still true for the lucky few of you. Me on the other hand, I like to pretend those are still my summers. I like the spend my down time doing something people don’t really consider too crazy anymore: binge watch television shows.
This summer I’ve binged watched six shows so far, with a few more up on the docket. Some shows I watched for the very first time and some shows I watched all the way through for my second (or third, shhh, don’t judge me) time. All of these shows come high on my list of recommendations. So, without further ado, I bring you:
Erin’s Summer Watch List
The New Shows
Orphan Black (BBC Aamerica): #CloneClub for life! Orphan Black is by far the number one show I’ve recommended to people over the past few months. I’ve been trying to convert as many members to the “Clone Club” as possible. In short, the show centers around a girl named Sarah who discovers that she is, you guessed it, a clone! Sound kind of cheesy? It’s not. This BBC America sci-fi show boasts some of the best acting I’ve seen from one person (still pressed over Tatiana Maslany’s Emmy snub). The supporting cast is just as talented and the show does an amazing job at making you believe that Maslany is actually seven+ clones. The show has ended its ten episode freshman season and is poised to be back in 2014 for season two.
Hannibal (NBC): This show came to my attention after the members of ONTD fawned over the series throughout its first season run. I was apprehensive at first since a second season for the show hung by a thread for a few months. I didn’t want to get completely enamored by the show if it wasn’t going to continue on. The series is fashioned from the infamous Hannibal Lecter character and books, focusing on protagonist Will Graham. Graham, a criminal profiler with a “gift” to emotionally understand serial killers, befriends psychiatrist Lecter after they are brought in to work together on a case. The relationship becomes tumultuous as Lecter begins manipulating Graham and taking advantage of his special skills. The show is equal parts creepy and thought provoking. For NBC, the series could also be considered pretty gory, not taking away from the horror that is Dr. Hannibal Lecter. Mads Mikkelsen (Lecter) and Hugh Dancy (Graham) lead a talented bunch of convincing actors.
Orange is the New Black (Netflix): During the writing of this blog I decided to give OITNB a shot after hearing rave reviews from everyone who had watched. My one episode trial turned into a full season binge watch. The show is based off of the real life accounts of Piper, a white, affluent, woman who gets sentenced to a fifteen month prison stay after her past catches up with her. Piper, though, can be considered the “Trojan horse” of the show as the assemble of diverse women are just as largely focused on throughout the thirteen episode first season. Each character becomes relatable through flashbacks. Every woman does an excellent job of bringing just the right amount of pain and sympathy to their characters. In the end, it’s hard not to root for almost all of them.
New Girl (FOX): If you asked me to watch a random episode of a show when its right smack dab in the middle of its season I would probably laugh at you. Not because I don’t trust your judgment on shows, but because I like to start fresh from the beginning so I’m not left asking a million questions. Fortunately in this case I have some pushy friends who insisted I would love New Girl. They were right. After watching a random episode in the middle of the second season, I fell in love with the sophomore show. I continued to watch all the way to the season finale of the second season and then went back to the beginning and marathoned the whole series to date. The show is charming, funny, and ridiculous. Quirky Jess moves into an apartment with three very different guys who are all best friends. What ensues is your typical Zooey Deschanel comedy, but the show has a lot of heart. The relationship between Jess and her roommate Nick (Jake Johnson) is really what sealed the deal for me. The FOX comedy is an easy watch that will suck you in.
House of Cards (Netflix): This re-watch came only a few months after I first watched the Netflix hit’s first season. I had the lucky opportunity to be an extra on the show (filmed in and around my home city) and experience the amazing production of the political thriller. Kevin Spacey (now nominated for an Emmy for his role) plays House Majority Whip Frank Underwood. What ensues throughout the show is a whirlwind of dark manipulation through Washington D.C. and its politics. Spacey takes the lead with an outstanding supporting cast that will have you crying buckets by seasons end. The second season will be available next year on Netflix and is sure to bring even more craziness than the first season. (side note: You can also catch me as “sweaty background extra #48” in season 2, episode 5 next year!)
Being Human US (Syfy): I think I’ve spoken about this show ad nauseam by now, which is funny since only several months ago in an earlier blog I referred to the SyFy series as “okay.” The re-watch of the current three seasons also came on a whim. I was testing the Netflix app out on my iPad and thirty-nine episodes later…well, here I am. The show takes the premise of the beloved UK series and follows the turmoils of a vampire, a werewolf, and a ghost as they try to make their lives human-ish as roommates. The first season of the US remake takes a handful of storylines from the UK’s first season while adding their own twists to it all to accommodate their thirteen episode seasons. The show veers in its own direction by season two and season three does an amazing job with their ability to make all characters, main and supporting, compassionate. It’s also fun to note that the cast regularly interacts with fans through social media, conventions, etc. and is one of the most genuine and hilarious casts of a show I’ve witnessed.