Bingeworthy TV

I have been so uninspired to blog lately! I hate forcing a post, I like it when they just have to be written. Nothing like that in the past few weeks. Work, new house, not sleeping very well due to details of house equals one tired, uninspired gal. Here’s one of the things that has been keeping me going. No joke. Shameless on Showtime. It is entertaining and crazy, but so outlandish that it doesn’t stress me out. Parenthood, on the other hand, no can do right now! Yeah, I’ll pass on watching Joel & Julia’s heartbreaking separation and painful, tearful conversation with their kids about daddy moving out, thanks anyway!

Without further ado, I present my list of bingeworthy TV from the past few years. If you have as much time as I do to devote to this worthy cause, I’m giving you some grade-A beef. Note, this list is certainly not representative of all of my TV (duh!). This is literally a list of shows I have binged on via instant streaming over the past few years and loved.

Shameless – not available on Netflix instant streaming or Amazon Prime. I had to watch on-demand as a Showtime subscriber. William H. Macy and Emmy Rossum head up the cast, but the supporting Gallagher family members you will come to love. And Joan Cusack? She is amazing. 4 seasons.

Damages – Glenn Close and Rose Byrne. Lawyer show. Plot mostly contained per season. Lots of twists. Fantastic. 5 seasons.

Suits – Harvey. Spector. Enough said. Add in lots of witty banter, great movie references, another solid laywer show. 3 seasons.

Parenthood – I’ve talked about Parenthood ad nauseam. The Bravermans make for emotional, relatable TV, blah, blah blah. Watch it. 5 seasons.

Homeland – I mean, do I really need to give you a reason to watch the best CIA show around with some of the best acting and writing out there!? 3 seasons.

Dexter – Although the final season was a little bit shark jumpy, this show was addictive and kept me entertained the entire time. I love Michael C. Hall. Hot stuff. 8 seasons.

Felicity – True story, I watched all 4 seasons of Felicity last year in the span of 3 weeks. Personal record. This was one of the best when it came out in the late 90’s and I wanted to see if it held up. 100%. I would argue this is one of the best shows of all time (Jen, you may be the only person other than JJ Abrams to agree). I laughed, I cried. Ben is just so lovable (and hot), and so is Noel for that matter! If there is one show I would like to insert myself into, this is it, I just know that Keri Russell and I would be friends. #felicitydelusion

Orange is the New Black – I’ve talked about this a few times, how much more convincing do you need? If you have Netflix, you have to watch it. 1 season.

House of Cards – Ditto to above. 1 season (with season 2 about to premiere).

Scandal – It took me a few eps to get into this guy. It can be a little cheesy and I’m just not used to watching network TV. It’s different. But Kerry Washington and her wardrobe, both insanely beautiful, plus her chemistry with Fitz, make the show worth watching. 3 seasons.

You’re welcome.

Midseason TV Check In

I have been dying to do this post. There is so much good midseason television on right now, new shows and returning, I don’t even know where to begin. Click any of the images for individual trailers.

GirlsGirls (HBO) – season 3’s 2 part premiere was on Sunday. After the downer which was season 2, I was ready for some lightening up, and it paid off, Hannah and Co. were back to funny, rather than depressing.  The opening scene was so amazing, it was one of the best tell-offs I have ever seen.

True Detective2

True Detective (HBO) – also premiered on Sunday. This stars Matthew McConaughey (fresh off of his Golden Globe win) and Woody Harrelson and looks dark and gritty. The story – Two detectives, Rust Cohle and Martin Hart, become entangled during a 17-year hunt for a serial killer in Louisiana. I haven’t watched yet, but it’s sitting in my DVR waiting. Update, watched it last night. This show is going to be awesome, Matthew McConaughey is at the top of his game. Creepy murder plot. HBO just makes great TV.

ShamelessShameless (SHO) – season 4 premiered on Sunday. I have recently gotten into this comedy starring William H. Macy and Emmy Rossum. I’m on season 1 right now, it’s my current binge. I like it and recommend, it’s funny, not too dark. The gist – An alcoholic man lives in a perpetual stupor while his six children with whom he lives cope as best they can.

rake 3

Rake (Fox) – series premieres January 23. I love Greg Kinnear. He’s just real handsome and likeable. Plot – An outspoken and self-destructive criminal defense lawyer takes on the most challenging cases. Could go either way, but it’s going in the DVR queue.

RHONYReal Housewives of NYC – season 6 premieres on March 11. Yes, I am getting this on your radar early. It’s that important. I am very excited to watch this level of crazy. Very. Excited. Check out the season 6 preview here.

House of Cards3

House of Cards (Netflix) – season 2 premieres February 14. This political thriller was one of the best shows of 2013 (won the Emmy for best drama) and I cannot wait for the new season. Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright are both fantastic.

Flowers in the AtticFlowers in the Attic (Lifetime) – premieres January 18. Once in a while, a Lifetime movie comes along that I must watch. This is it for 2014. I mean, didn’t everyone read these books in middle school? I cannot think of one friend who didn’t read it. Very risqué for middle school. And this version stars Ellen Burstyn, Heather Graham and Kiernan Shipka (Sally from Mad Men). Done. Sold.

Downton Abbey

Downton Abbey – season 4 premiered January 5. Coming off of the season 4 knife-in-the-heart ending, we pick back up to see how Mary is managing without Matthew. I’m 3 episodes in and it’s still so good. New characters this season, new storylines, it’s staying fresh and has had some pretty big surprises already.

Is there anything I’m missing? Hit me up! You know I hate missing out on good TV.

Fall TV Check In – What’s Working & What’s Not

It’s been almost a month since I posted on the new fall TV lineup. I have to admit, I am not that impressed with the bevvy of new shows. I’m an equal opportunity watcher. I tried a bunch, some are sticking, but I’m not super excited about a lot of the stuff that’s  on my list. Nothing this year has knocked my socks off (except for Ray Donovan, which just wrapped season 1 on Showtime – MUST WATCH!). I figure that if something I didn’t watch ends up being REALLY good (and doesn’t get cancelled), I can catch it on instant streaming and consume it in my favorite way – bingeing, of course!

What Didn’t Work:Bad Shows

  • Hostages – Toni Collette, I love you, but eat something. You don’t look good skinny. I’d rather see you looking like Muriel Heslop (please, someone, get that reference). And Dylan McDermott, this show is too ridiculous for you to be so stern. The plot: a doctor (Rexy Collette) is supposed to perform surgery on the President and an FBI Agent (McSerious) holds her family hostage unless she kills the President in the surgery. So stupid.
  • Marvel Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D – I watched one episode and liked it. It reminded me of Heroes. I forgot to DVR episode 2 and didn’t really care, not a great sign. This is the only one on this list that I can maaaybe see making it and being good. Like I said, I’m open to bingeing on it if that happens.
  • The Goldbergs – It’s just a regular sit-com that is playing way too hard on the 80’s humor. I just don’t see how that sustains without getting super old.
  • Dads – I CANNOT watch comedies with laugh tracks. No likey. Dads has 2 decent actors (Seth Green and Giovanni Ribisi), but not good enough to keep me interested. I stopped watching after 5 minutes so I have no idea what it’s about, but I assume they are dads (and they have dads). Sorry Nick Lachey, your wife is about to be out of a job.
  • The Michael J. Fox Show – this one, I feel bad about. I WANTED to like it, I gave it 2 episodes, but I just couldn’t do it. The premise is he is a news anchor that had to take a leave for his Parkinsons and is getting back in the game. Look, I think it is GREAT that he is acting and has a show on NBC, but it isn’t good.

What’s Working (So Far):

good shows

  • The Blacklist (NBC) – James Spader is an over-actor and really can only play one role – smarmy. It’s kind of a ridiculous plot, but I’m giving it a chance because I don’t hate it, and because there is nothing else to watch on Monday from 10-11. Good job NBC! You don’t make good TV anymore (other than Parks and Rec), but you got one on my list!
  • The Trophy Wife (ABC) – I like Malin Ackerman, she’s cute and funny. I love Bradley Whitford. The plot? Meh. She’s the 3rd wife of Bradley Whitford, he has 3 kids by his ex-wives. Hijinks ensue. This one could go either way. There is an ex-wife character that is so bad, I almost can’t watch. But it’s working for now.
  • *Brooklyn Nine-Nine (FOX) – Fox is making the best comedies right now (except for Dads). It’s in a super sweet spot, leading into The New Girl and the Mindy Project (funniest show on TV right now).  My favorite comedies all have really good, funny, supporting casts, that’s the winning recipe. Lead by Andy Samberg, this ensemble has great potential and the show has a solid chance of being great.
  • Super Fun Night (ABC) – Better than I thought. Rebel Wilson is obviously a very funny gal, but I don’t know if this will have the legs to survive. I’m on the fence after one episode, but keeping it on the list.
  • *Betrayal (ABC) – this is one of my favorites, totally soapy, kind of Revenge-esque. The chemistry between the two having the affair is pretty hot (Stuart Townsend and Hannah Ware). Good plot, good cast. Sold. Oh, and Henry Thomas is in it! I don’t know why, but I just like that guy. It must be the E.T. effect.
  • *Masters of Sex (SHO) – This is on Showtime, so it’s just super quality TV. Great acting from Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan (she is also super hot, I love her! You should totally check out her movie “Save the Date” – adorable). This is the true story of Dr. William Masters and his assistant Virginia Johnson, who study the way the body reacts to sex in the late 50’s and 60’s. (non)Spoiler Alert – there is a lot of sex.
  • Hello Ladies (HBO) – Stephen Merchant, the show’s lead, is really funny. Uncomfortable, but funny non-the-less. He is a gawky Englishman in LA, looking for love. He’s a super smart guy, was a writer for the Office, I think this one is going to be a big hit.

*my favorites

I’d love to know what you’re watching and liking, if I’m missing anything I shouldn’t be, or what you’ve given up on! Hit me up!