Popcorn and Netflix anyone?
Most of us unwind as they enjoy watching an engaging series or movie after a hectic day at work. And isn’t it the perfect season to do just that? It’s a bit chilly outside, maybe windy also, and all you feel like is cuddling in your PJs indulging in your favourite series. I am a fan of Netflix myself! This year I binged on Netflix every eve, sometimes watching what I describe ‘a series that is more oriented towards a female audience’ so it’s basically a romantic, drama, soapy series. At other times choosing non fiction, crime, witty genre when having dad as my Netflix buddy.
The below are my Top 4 series I stumbled on this year:
- LAS CHICAS DEL CABLE (A.KA. CABLE GIRLS)
This is a Spanish TV drama and I basically fell in love with everything making up this romantic series. First off, Alba (the main character) is a beauty and I am fascinated by her style, as is classy Francisco (her childhood lover). Secondly, the playlist chosen throughout the 4 seasons is catchy, emotional and it really heightens particular scenes; I ended up listening to the playlist on Spotify every day for a week. Thirdly, I love the setting and the whole concept of the story; this is set in Madrid 1920s and speaks about 4 women who strive for their freedom in an environment where the male dominated and reigned. These women from different backgrounds meet at this telephone company where they are hired as telephone operators (hence referred to as cable girls). Their life amalgamates as they stick for one another, going through hell together, falling a couple of times and striving again. You can see the beauty of women working together, and fighting for their rights!
Alba/Lydia is the main female character with a lot of memories from the past, who tries to make a new life escaping from the dark one she was living back home only to unexpectedly meet her past again at the telephone company – could that be Francisco (the love of her life?) It’s been so long from that moment they parted ways. From then on it’s a roller coaster of emotions as we go through Lydia’s intense love life.
Carlota comes from a controlled family background, where her father mainly follows her every move. I think she is the most rebellious and determined character, rush and impulsive. Carlota fights for what she believes in with passion leading a female movement and falling in love with …
Angeles is the mother of a young girl, married to a nasty husband. He humiliates her in every single way until something terrible is done. Angeles plucks up courage, having to make some tough decisions for her own and her daughter’s good. The evolution of this character from the start to the very end is clearly visible.
Marga is the cute, religious, innocent girl who worries a lot about everything; she can be described as the good girl who fears herself, who is cautious in falling in love, who always wants to do things in the right way until…. well, everyone fucks up sometimes.
Go and watch these bad-ass women in action!
Sam Gardner is a teenager on the autism spectrum, facing adolescence challenges at college and in his personal love life. Teenage life is already harsh with changes and a lot of decisions that can be overwhelming; for Sam EVERYTHING is overwhelming – crowded and noisy places, fast talking, too much information given at once, simple decisions, the dynamics of a relationship … This heartfelt series encapsulates Sam’s self growth through different stages of life as he becomes more independent, moving away from his mother’s (Elsa) over protection. He manages to maintain friendships and relationships as he gets out of his comfort zone, despite sometimes being ridiculed.
I fell in love with Sam’s direct personality and dedication. Something the world around him would never express, he just says it with all honesty as if ‘duh, obviously I’ll say what I think straight on!’ He is very intelligent but has difficulty reading signals (sometimes making me tender) and he has a black and white vision of life. He is loyal to his beliefs, and this is what I learned from Sam, to stick to what I believe and deem correct. Sam has a lovely sister who feels it’s her duty to protect her brother all the time, but eventually she starts seeing Sam from another perspective and she also steps down from this role encouraging him to go to college and do what he loves. Actually, this series is not just all about Sam! Elsa has a self-transformation while Casey discovers something new about herself, so you are in for a lot of surprises (if you have not watched it yet). oh and before I forget, Sam loves penguins and knows everything about them, which is also very cute – awh!
It is beautiful how the family struggles to keep united in the toughest of times, striving to keep real to each other.
- WHEN THEY SEE US
There is something more special and unique when the series is based on a true story. The emotions are raw as the audience is horrified at what is happening, knowing it actually did happen in real life to real people. This is the case! In the span of 4 episodes, we witness 25 years of injustice towards five young males (Antron, Yusef, Kevin, Korey, and Raymond) falsely accused of assaulting and raping a female jogger in New York’s Central Park. The police start the interrogation of these 5 boys, clinging to any information they consider valid. The corruption of the state prevails as we see snippets from their questioning; they make them confess things they never really did, putting them into difficulty, trying to turn the boys against each other. The parents of the boys are devastated, and together with lawyers they fight to show the world their children are innocent.
They face the harsh reality of prison as they are charged with the crime. It is truly heart-breaking seeing these boys under the legal age of 18, spending fundamental moulding years innocently behind bars, as they hug and say goodbye to their families after visiting. Actually, it was Korey Wise who had it the worse. Being the oldest (age of 16) he had to face adult prison, and that was crude! The series shows us Korey’s journey through solitary and upsetting scenes from his encounters in prison. Well, he gets to spend 12 years until one man confesses the truth… This series makes you question everything! The credibility of the state, justice, life, people… everything.
And no compensation could ever give back those missing years they served locked up for no reason, when they could have been doing great things with their life.
- LA CASA DEL PAPEL (A.K.A MONEY HEIST)
Seems I was into Spanish series this year! And this one I even watched in Spanish with English subtitles. Basically, it is the story of a criminal mastermind referred to as ‘the professor’ who wisely chooses his team to rob the Royal Mint of Spain, holding the employees hostages as they finalize their project of printing billions of euros to make themselves rich. In not having a clean record, they have got nothing to lose. However, the eight characters come with their load of baggage, emotional disturbances, and a messed up past. As the story unfolds and they are taught the tricks of the trade by ‘the professor’, friendships form, bonds grow, and a sense of protection towards each other develops at the expense of losing it all.
So what do I like about this TV crime/thriller? Apart from the fact that it’s exciting and full of suspense, it has a mix-up of crime, romance, humour, and real life situations that makes it even more appealing. I also love the concept of city names given to each team player. Anyone I know who watched Money Heist have grown fond of the characters, and I think that’s one hell of an endeavor! because usually the audience hates bad guys and those who are going against what’s ethical and just, but in this case, the audience falls in love and fully supports the characters. I have two favourite characters myself, who happen to be Tokyo and Denver:
Tokyo is a burst of energy! She is impulsive, sexy and tough at the same time. I might also describe her as sensual and passionate in everything she does. I can relate to her impulsiveness and urge to fight, and that is why maybe I like her so much.
Denver is a family man .. he is a robber but somewhat gentle with a sense of compassion. He is cute also (and that’s always a plus) but I like Denver for falling in love with a non-party and sticking to it, making me hope that love overcomes every obstacle.
So that is my list based on my preferences; you might not agree, but still, I would be happy to know which are your top series for 2019. Currently I am on the lookout for the next series to watch and I already have some ideas. So next up will be one of the below 3:
- Anne with an ‘E’
- Peaky Blinders
- Alias Grace
Let me know if you started any, and know it’s a good one 🙂