This year, it feels safe to say, has been a real humdinger. I have taken to my bed and my Netflix on a fairly regular basis. My husband can attest to that. Soft pants and quality entertainment FTW! I am grateful the subscription service has come through for me, time and time again, and for so much less than cable at that.
- When I don't understand the politics of dear friends or family or neighbors, there is "House of Cards" to help me feel less alone (but away with you, Kevin Spacey. Robin Wright is going to take it home from here.).
- When the budget at my son's public school got slashed again and again and again, there was "Stranger Things" to keep me company.
- When the anxiety and hardship of putting my Dad's financial estate to rest were a bit much, I clicked on "The Crown" to remind myself that all families have struggles.
- When the reality that the majority of white women were comfortable voting for men accused of pedophilia (if they had an R after their name) hit home not once, but twice, well, "Dear White People" and "Master of None" helped me get more woke.
- When the tragedy of mass shootings became humdrum and National Parks came under fire, "Godless" helped reinforce why I really and truly don't like guns and why I love and value and visit our national park lands.
The $6 billion investment Netflix made in original programming and the 1,000 hours of original content it provided was so appreciated and, well, it turns out a necessary tool for coping with a world that feels increasingly chaotic and scary and unrecognizable to me. I needed escapism and entertainment to numb me. Netflix is a lot cheaper than a therapist and less worrisome than drugs or alcohol. It's been a good alternative to the doom and gloom of social media and too many articles about the end of the world.
You can find a list of most of the original series from 2017 at Netflix HERE, and while I don't agree with the rankings, it's handy to have the offerings in one place for reference. My favorites, in addition to the series listed above, include:
- "Mindhunter" - a show about the FBI's first profiler of serial killers;
- "Orange Is the New Black" - women's prison never looked so hip;
- "The Keepers" - if you like true crime, this is your go to. It is a documentary about the murder of a nun in 1960s Baltimore;
- "Glow" - 1980s women wrestling. Need I say more?
- "Ozark" - Justin Bateman caught looking less wholesome than he normally does. So good.
- "Narcos" - a crime show about the rise and fall of Columbia's notorious Pablo Escobar.
- "The Fall" - sexy, creepy, captivating.
Full disclosure, I really didn't like "The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" and was underwhelmed with "Bloodline" and while "13 Reasons Why" was watchable, I found it's glorification of teen suicide highly irresponsible. Pffft. Mistakes happen. And, more truth, there are lots of shows available that I simply haven't gotten to. Yet. Oh! And how could I forget the content Netflix runs that was produced by another outlet? Do not miss "Halt and Catch Fire" or "Being Mary Jane" -- seriously.
So, thank you, Netflix, for saving my sanity. You are like a cup of hot cocoa in January and a cool breeze in August. You made my life better this year, and in 2017, that counts for something.
Filed under: TV Commentary