Some *AWESOME* (and not so awesome) TV I Watched in 2018

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Maybe it’s the cold, maybe it’s the end of the festive season, but for me, January is the perfect time of year for TV… and also wrap ups. So I decided it was a great opportunity to share some of my TV related thoughts from 2018!

The Good Place– wowee! This was one of those GOOD decisions I made in 2018. I adored everything about this: the characters, the storyline and the fact that it delves so much deeper into philosophy than I ever could have expected. I’m actually learning things while I watch- and that’s one of the things that makes this so much more than a regular sit com. I don’t want to say anymore in case of spoilers. ItI’m currently upto season 3 and it’s still blowing my mind! Thanks so much to the wonderful Kat for bringing this to my attention- and if you’re looking for good TV advice, that’s where you need to go too!

Rating: 5/5 bananas

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Black Mirror– I was reluctant to try this because I’d been told how freaky this was- and as many of you know I don’t do scary. In fact, when I sat down to watch this, I’d already chickened out of American Horror Story- but fortunately this was nothing like that. So if you’re like me, don’t worry! It may get you thinking, yet I’ve never had any problems sleeping after an episode, though I’ll admit it’s not as bingeworthy as the other shows on this list cos I don’t want it to mess with my brain too much 😉 Every episode is different, with some being better than others, however overall the self-contained storylines are definitely one of the show’s strengths. I still have quite a lot of this show left and I’m nervously excited for the Bandersnatch episode!

Rating: 4/5 bananas

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Peaky blinders– while this takes a lot of liberties with historical accuracy and is incredibly violent, I did find it completely addictive. Tommy Shelby’s dubious character is endlessly compelling- as he never quite fits into the hero/villain mould. I also thought the family aspect of the story is executed perfectly. I fell completely under the story’s thrall- it’s non-stop action all the time. The acting and production values are superb. However, I would be remiss though not to mention the niggling issue I had with the Judas-style-turncoat, bordering on blood-libellous portrayal of Alfie Solomons. And no, having a “hey you’re just as bad as me” moment doesn’t excuse the implications of having a character fall into a racial stereotype. Anyway, as usual, I’m not casting any shade on people who like this, just trying to point out something a lot of people might not have realised. I still think this is great TV… but flawed.

Rating: 3/5 bananas

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A Very English Scandal– everything about this is amazing.  The acting, the story, the acting, the soundtrack, the way it’s shot. This is why Russell T Davies is the king of TV! Yes, it’s bonkers, but it’s also funny and oh-so-quintessentially British. Underneath the drama (and there’s plenty of drama!), it’s a sad state of affairs that will make you feel all sorts. It was very very very good; I simply had to watch it all in one go.

Rating: 5/5 bananas

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Luther– what a good old fashioned suspense-thriller! And let’s face it: I ❤ Idris Elba. The titular character makes for a fascinating study. I don’t often watch procedural dramas, but I actually binged the *entire* boxset. Because I had to; there was a gun to my head. O-k-a-y- you got me, there wasn’t… but there was frequently a gun to my lovely Idris Elba’s head and you all know I LOVE him (*ahem*). Oops this went full circle 😉 On the downside, this was on the graphic side for me and it got FAR TOO disturbing by the end. And even if the conclusion was thrilling, I’m not sure I’m totally on board with it. I mean, it makes sense as an ending, but I could have done with *more* than just “makes sense” after what a sensation the rest of it was.

Rating: 4/5 bananas

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And since this is (kind of) a wrap up, this was also the year when I rewatched Buffy and fell head over heels for the Last Kingdom! I reviewed those in full, so feel free to check them out.

Alrighty then- have you seen any of these? Do you plan to? And what were your favourite TV shows you watched last year? Let me know in the comments!

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100 thoughts on “Some *AWESOME* (and not so awesome) TV I Watched in 2018

  1. Beth (Reading Every Night) says:

    The Good Place and Black Mirror are two shows I really need to start watching. I’ve basically heard nothing but amazing things about the former, in fact it’s going to be the first new TV show I start in 2019 (and hopefully at the end of the year I’ll call it one of my good decisions of this year!) Also I can’t imagine Black Mirror being very binge worthy (I think when i get around to it I definitely won’t be able to binge it) but my friends have loved it so I kind of want to know what all the hype is.
    Great post, and hopefully 2019 will be full of more awesome TV than not! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kat Impossible says:

    May I ask where you are in Black Mirror? Because there were some episodes that cost me sleep to be honest. I felt scarred afterwards haha I always say that I don’t do scary but then I watch some really weird stuff in the end.

    Liked by 1 person

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      haha well that’s a good question because I watched quite a few out of order, so I’m not sure, but I’ve definitely seen at least the first 2 seasons. I can totally see why it freaks some people out- I don’t know if I did a very good job of explaining, but it’s not the kind of show that scares me. I can usually cope with dystopic stuff tbh- but not anything in the horror/scary movie genre, if that makes sense.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kat Impossible says:

        Yeah, I am the same and the show as a whole doesn’t scare me either. I love episodes such as Nosedive, Be Right Back, USS Callister and the ones that aren’t actually all that creepy like Hang the DJ or San Junipero. But Playtest gave me legit nightmares. I’d consider that one horror to some extent. (And just fyi, I haven’t watched all the episodes and I never will. I have a weird selective method of which episodes I am subjecting myself to haha)

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Gemma says:

    Awesome list! I have to take long breaks in between Black Mirror though. It’s really good but really such a consistent downer. The Good Place on the other hand I can’t get enough of after saying for ages oh, I don’t think I’m going to like that. Why don’t I listen to people? A Very English Scandal is great as well really fun performances in that one!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sarah says:

    I was beginning to think ‘Oh, no, I don’t know any of these! How embarrassing!’ 😂 And then you wrote about Luther – yay! Totally love Idris Elba too!! 😍 He’s just awesome, right? And the series obviously is brilliant! And incidentally: my aunt was one the same plane with him when she flew Ibiza last summer!! When she told me I went completely crazy! 😂 And she didn’t even asked him for a selfie because she didn’t want to bother him. I mean, I do get that – but it’s Idris Elba for God’s sake!!! 😁

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Grace says:

    Current season of The Good Place – meh. We’ve stopped watching it. Black Mirror – Loved it. not interested in Bandersnatch. Luthor – Oh yes! Top notch, every episode. Wish there had been more. ( and yes, Idris Elba *sigh*)

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Mischenko says:

    Luther is one I need to get to. I also love Idris! I swear everyone says that haha. 🤣 We started watching The Wire a few months ago and he’s in that. It’s okay, but my husband likes it much more. My absolute favorite show in 2018 was the second season of Ozark. That series is bananas! 😁♥️ I’m going to add these to my list. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Fran Laniado- Author says:

    I definitely like The Good Place and Black Mirror. I haven’t seen the Bandersnach episode either, but I’ve heard mixed reviews. I also watched Luther in 2018. I enjoyed it but was a bit disappointed somehow. I couldn’t quite invest in the characters. I’m currently watching Bodyguard and Killing Eve, both of which I’m enjoying. Have you seen either?

    Liked by 1 person

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      Glad you agree! Yeah I have- but I’m curious just cos it’s different (and I always liked the whole “choose your own adventure” stories when I was growing up, so why not 😉 ). Ah I can understand that- I personally think it’s fairly flawed- it’s just that for me, Idris Elba’s charisma carries that show (plus I liked the old fashioned tension that seems to be missing in a lot of more modern shows). I haven’t seen either, but have had both recommended to me- I’m glad to hear they’re good- I’ll check them out 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. littlebookynook says:

    I loved the first 2 seasons of the Good Place, but I started the 3rd season and I couldn’t get into it whatsoever. I personally feel like it doesn’t know what direction it is heading in. And as an Aussie, those accents were absolutely horrible and I just couldn’t lol. I’ve been watching Broad City, which is now one of my favourite shows because it’s hilarious and just messed up. I’ve also just started watching You, so interested to see how that one pans out!

    Liked by 1 person

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      Ah fair enough- I’m hearing that a lot about season 3 (I haven’t finished it, cos I’m watching it with someone else). That does kinda make sense given the content. hehehe fair enough lol! (I have so many problems with “British” accents in TV and film, you have my utmost sympathy 😉 ) Oh cool! I definitely want to check out You and now I’m curious about broad city 🙂

      Like

  9. Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum says:

    I tried Black Mirror, and it’s weird because it’s everything I know I like, but for some reason I couldn’t get into it. I think I get too invested and when dark/bad things happen, it stresses me out 😛 I do want to give Peaky Blinders a shot though, but I hardly have time to watch TV these days.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Sharon Bonin-Pratt says:

    Absolutely adore Idris Elba (brilliant actor whose humanitarianism comes through the screen) and loved the episodes I was able to watch, but it is simply too violent.

    I love Babylon Berlin, a German show that portrays Berlin in 1928 with all its corruption, political complexities, and social failures. So very well acted though we had to watch each episode twice in order to understand the detailed plot line. Also love Poldark, Dr. Blake Mysteries, and Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries. All are well written and though somewhat stereotypical, the characters are interesting to follow.

    Liked by 1 person

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      So agree with you there! Yeah I do understand that though- I was okay with the violence at the beginning, but it got too much for me and I can definitely see people not picking it up for that reason. It’s a shame, because it does some things like tension really well.

      Oh cool- that sounds like a really interesting show. Ahhh Poldark- that’s one of my favourites- should’ve been on this list, but I’ve been watching it for years. Definitely want to check out the others- thanks for the recommendations!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Vera says:

    I’ve seen Good Place and Black Mirror – and loved both of those. I haven’t seen Peaky Blinders & A Very English Scandal yet. Started watching Luther recently and am enjoying it a lot.

    I recently watched Killing Eve (BBC iPlayer) and absolutely loved it. I got a bit of Luther vibes there – it’s a brilliant cat / mouse chase. 🙂 And I also loved watching Marvellous Mrs Maisel – it’s on Amazon and I found it highly enjoyable. 🙂

    Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Christopher says:

    Black Mirror was described to me as “like The Twilight Zone” and while that was enough to get me started I think it was comparing apples and pineapples. Black Mirror is much darker and more thought-provoking, but, fortunately, it does resemble The Twilight Zone in that it has some episodes that are lighter in tone. And that’s needed because so much of it is so depressingly plausible.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. dragonsandzombies says:

    I never got into ‘Peaky Blinders’ even though I LOVE Cillian Murphy.. And I hear Tom Hardy is in the later seasons? I was bored after 3 episodes and never picked it up again..

    ‘Luther’ is still on my list though 🙂 Mr. DZ and I, we don’t often agree on TV shows or movies lately, but we both love Idris Elba 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Michelle says:

    YAS – The Good Place was amazing! I was SO skeptical about starting it but once I did I couldn’t stop. The characters are amazing and definitely goes really deep, it had me question loads of things while watching.

    I watched a few episodes of Black Mirror but didn’t get hooked. I did watch the Bandersnatch movie and really enjoyed it 🙂

    Some of my favourites from last year included Brooklyn Nine Nine, Grace & Frankie and Santa Clarita Diet ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Sophia Ismaa says:

    Oo, you got some of my faves on this list! LOVE the good place. I have a short attention span and yet I was captivated. The episode where Tahani and Kamila make up has to be one of my favourite tv episodes ever and I think it’s something that a lot of siblings will relate to. And Chidi, well, damn. What a spice.

    Black Mirror is definitely hit and miss with some episodes, but for the most part, it’s a brilliant social experiment kind of show which is what I love about it. Easily one of the best things I’ve ever seen on tv and, yes, close to Game of Thrones too. Can’t wait for the next season!

    Still yet to watch the last season of Luther, but I plan to soon. So gripping!

    Like

  16. Nicola @ Thoughts on Fantasy says:

    I loved Black Mirror!! As you said some episodes are much better than others, but overall I thought the quality was really high, and the great ones were just awesome! I’m not usually a big fan of short films but that series really changed my mind.

    Will definitely check out some fo the others on your list too!

    Like

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