It’s no secret that I’m addicted to television. It’s even in my author bio. I like to say that if it’s been on television, I’ve probably watched it! I could dish about tv ALL DAY (spoken, obviously, in the voice of Schmidt from New Girl.) I typically post my random musings on Twitter but since I don’t know how much longer I’ll have the opportunity, I thought it would be fun to start a new (hopefully) weekly blog series chronicling my television watching over the last seven days. This inaugural installment is long, but I don’t expect future “episodes” to be as lengthy. There are spoilers so read at your own risk.
I’ll start with last Sunday.
Christmas with You (Netflix). I’m a sucker for a Christmas movie and it’s been a while since I’ve seen anything with Freddy Prinze Jr. I also loved Aimee Garcia in Lucifer. While this wasn’t my favorite holiday movie ever, I enjoyed it. I thought the characters had decent chemistry and I love movies where the cast breaks into dance! I kind of felt bad for Angelina’s assistant Monique who was stuck babysitting her. She even spent Christmas with Angelina, Miguel, and his daughter and I wondered if she had to diss her own family and friends! Like I said, I enjoyed it, but I probably won’t watch it again.
The Walking Dead (AMC): This was the series finale after 11 seasons. I never thought I’d be into a show about zombies, but a friend convinced me to try it. She insisted the character development would make up for the goriness/violence and that as a writer I’d love it. She was right! I remember watching the first episode on Netflix after brunch on New Year’s Day one year and barely moving from my couch until I finished the season. My interest waned around the time Rick left, but I kept with it. I almost gave up during the Whisperers era, but when I heard the 11th season would be the last, I had to see it through. And I’m so glad I did. The series finale was everything I hoped for aside from a cure. (I really wanted someone to come up with a cure! Seriously, why weren’t doctors working on this?) I cried when Rosita died after heroically saving her and Father Gabriel’s daughter. Negan finally apologized to Maggie, and I thought their conversation was handled so well. And Judith! Judith was shot and still managed to shut the walkers out of the hospital. That child is fierce! I love that some characters got happy endings and it wasn’t all doom. My favorite part was Rick and Michone’s cameo right at the end. I’m honestly not sure I’ll watch all of the new Walking Dead Universe shows, but I’ll give that a try for sure.
Bachelor in Paradise (ABC). Oh my God. Where do I start? I could probably (definitely) do an entire blog about this show. I gave up on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette many seasons ago, but I love BIP! There’s usually a great combination of people there “for the right reasons” and people who…aren’t. And that definitely goes for this past season. There’s too much involved to go into detail of the entire season, so I’ll just use this space to spill the tea on the characters now that it’s over.
Who I liked: Sierra (classy, beautiful, and honestly too good for Michael, who I actually liked) Serine and Brandon (they need to stay a unit because, seriously, they are the cutest, most nontoxic couple in BIP history!) Michael (although I thought he could have handled things better with Sierra, I was thrilled to see him happy at the end.) Logan (I had a love/hate relationship with him, but at the end I was totally team Logan. Kate strung him along). Genevieve (there were times I wanted to scream at her, but I also found her endearing for reasons I cannot explain). Casey (I was sad to see him go so early); Johnny (poor poor Johnny. He deserved so much better.) Rodney (C’mon. what’s not to love?); Shanae (I waffled over this one, but I liked her. Do I think she was on BIP to find true love? Not a chance, but she was entertaining). Tyler (what a sweetie! I hope he finds someone better than Brittany.)
Who I hated: Romeo (player) Justin (Are him and Romeo the same person??) Brittany (I liked her until the finale. She broke poor Tyler’s heart and was pretty unapologetic about it and tried to pin it on him.) Andrew (This guy is such a mess.) Victoria (I hate her with the heat of a thousand suns.) Aaron (I wanted to like him. I tried to like him. But I just couldn’t. An itch and pain are not the same!!!) Jessenia (She rubbed me the wrong way from the jump.) Kate (ugh. Kate strung Logan along while constantly looking for something better…richer…around the corner and also tried to gaslight Logan into thinking it was his fault). Eliza (ugh again! I hate what she did to Rodney and how she blamed it on him not telling her not to go on a date with Justin. Own your mistakes and your choices! I was so glad Rodney wasn’t interested in giving her yet another opportunity to stomp on his heart.
Whoever I didn’t mention left no lasting impression. Sorry!
New Amsterdam (NBC): Not gonna lie, I mostly watch this for Ryan Eggolds as the exceptionally altruistic Dr. Max Goodwin. Could he be any cuter? His chemistry with Helen was off the charts from season one and I predicted the death of his wife Georgia allowing the two of them to get together. I did not predict the ending of their relationship though or the slow burn of a new one with Elizabeth, but I’m here for it. Dr. Bloom is a bit too much for me and the actress’s British accent slips out every so often and takes me out of the story. I could share my feelings about all the characters, but I’m honestly exclusively vested in Max’s love life. In the last episode, Elizabeth was finally ready to take things to the next level with Max when he was distracted by seeing Helen, who is visiting NYC, on the television screen.
Criminal Minds Evolution (CBS/Paramount): I loved this show in its original iteration, although there were nights I couldn’t sleep afterward because it was so creepy! I don’t have Paramount Plus but watched first episode on CBS with my dad on Thanksgiving. I was sad that Luke/Penelope only went out that one time because I was so stoked when he asked her out in the series finale. I’m crushed that Spencer Reid isn’t in it but am already hooked so it looks like I’m going to be paying for yet another streaming service!
Haul Out the Holly (Hallmark): I really liked this one. It was genuinely funny, and I like both leads. Lacey Chabert rarely disappoints, and Wes Brown is, in my opinion, one of the hottest male Hallmark actors. Ellen Travolta had some great one-liners. And the cameo with Kristoffer Polaha was a treat. There wasn’t much romantic chemistry, but there never really is in these movies, to be honest. I’d recommend this one for a laugh.
Others: I prefer rotating through a variety of shows over a longer period of time to binging, and these are some of the other shows in my rotation right now.
Manifest (Netflix): I was so excited this show was picked up after NBC canceled it because I need to know what it all means. Where did flight 828 go for five years and why? What are the callings? Will Angelina ever be captured? My thoughts after seven episodes of the first part of the final season: I’m glad Sam got his head out of his ass and realized that Eden is not his only child. It’s just a shame that it took him so long. I’m so torn by the love triangle between Michaela, Jared, and Zeke because while Michaela and Jared’s chemistry is undeniable, I love Zeke. Unfortunately, I just saw a spoiler and know how this all ends…I kind of saw it coming. I’m so impressed with the casting of older Cal because he looks so much like little Cal and can actually act. The “omega Sapphire” and “divine consciousness” stuff goes a little over my head, but the mystery is fun. I just dig this show. Not quite to the extent of Lost (not even close) but it’s definitely worth watching through the end.
The Sex Lives of College Girls (HBO Max): This show is just pure fun and eye candy. I love it. I’m only a few episodes into the second season. It’s been compared to Girls, but the main characters in this one are so much more likeable.
Fleishman is in Trouble (Hulu): I have trouble seeing Jesse Eisenberg as anyone besides Marc Zuckerberg but otherwise, I’m loving this one so far. One plus is that it co-stars Adam Brody. Seth Cohen has my heart. Three episodes in and Rachel is horrible! It’s hard to watch those flashback scenes. Toby, on the other hand, seems like a truly decent person and a great father. I never read the book but saw a spoiler that we’ll see things from Rachel’s POV eventually and all is not what it seems.
The White Lotus (HBO Max): Season two follows a new batch of rich, entitled people on vacation, this time to Italy. So far I like season 1 better because this one is a little bit too focused on sex. While it doesn’t bother me, I prefer a little more substance. Tanya was particularly egregious in the first three episodes trying to force Portia, her assistant, to hide in her room so her equally awful husband wouldn’t find out she’s still there, but I like her a lot better now that she’s made some new friends. And I have less sympathy for Portia because she strung poor, sweet Albie along. I really don’t like when people hedge their bets. Just tell him you’re not interested! I’m curious to see where this thing with Albie and Lucia goes! I can’t tell if she really likes him or thinks he knows that she’s a sex worker and is going to expect payment for the BJ. I really like Harper, but I wish she’d confront Ethan (who’s hot) about the condom wrapper. He didn’t cheat! Well, he kissed Mia but he cut it off really fast. Ethan, by the way, is spineless. I didn’t like Lucia initially but she’s growing on me and Mia almost killed the piano player! Anyway, I like this show, but I don’t find myself thinking about it in between episodes.
Everwood (HBO Max): This is an oldie, but I found it in a list of shows to watch if you enjoyed Hart of Dixie and Gilmore Girls and, if you read As Seen on TV, you can probably tell that I loved both of these shows. I really like it although some of the plotlines didn’t age well. I’m often tempted to tweet about this one, but it’s been twenty years since season one and I doubt I’d get any engagement. If anyone watched and remembers it, let me know and we’ll chat! It is sad to see Anne Heche looking so young and healthy. There are actually quite a few actresses on that show who died way too young. It’s fun to see a young Chris Pratt, Sarah Drew, and Emily VanCamp before they were famous.
The Umbrella Academy (Netflix): I started watching this one after loving Locke and Key and searching for another paranormal series. I love it. The smart banter is reminiscent of Buffy the Vampire Slayer but take out the vampires and throw in time travel and special powers. The music is outstanding. The Footloose dance-off? Such fun! And Aidan Gallager, the actor who plays Five, is beyond talented. He plays a middle-aged man trapped in a child’s body and when I watch him, I swear that he’s really a middle-aged man trapped in a child’s body! I’d watch the show for him alone, but the rest of the cast, including Elliot Page, Tom Hopper, and Robert Sheehan, is phenomenal. I just started season three and apparently a fourth season is coming. I hope so!
Dead to Me (Netflix): A third season of this show was a treat I was not expecting as I thought it was cancelled! I’ve only watched three episodes so far. This show is dark comedy at its very best and Christina Appelgate and Linda Cardellini have amazing chemistry. I think if I ever stop writing romance, I might want to try dark comedy like this.
Animal Kingdom (Prime): Does anyone besides me watch the show? I don’t know why I enjoy it so much. The characters are all despicable selfish people who can’t see beyond their own desires and couldn’t work an honest job with a gun to their heads. (Although they’re the ones usually holding the guns!) But it’s somewhat addictive and I love how in the last two seasons, it’s a dual timeline allowing us to experience the backstories of each of the characters in sync with the present time. Fun fact: The character names of Aaron and Greg as the cousins in As Seen on TV were inspired by Deran and Craig in Animal Kingdom.
That’s all for this week. Comment below if you watch any of these shows too!