#Lockdown Entertainment – TV shows you need to watch Part 1

Posted: June 4, 2020 in Life

Assuming we aren’t all spending our time watching America implode under the rule of an infantile idiot, we probably need some good TV to watch. This is our list of binge-worthy TV shows which you may have heard of but not caught up with yet, or may not have heard of. Trust us, our standards are high, and these are worth your time.

Comedy/Fantasy

We are a big rap for a series of whimsical little fantasy show called The Good Place.

Kristen Bell and Ted Danson in the afterlife …

The series aired from September 19, 2016 to January 30, 2020 on NBC.

It focuses on Eleanor Shellstrop (Kristen Bell), who arrives in the afterlife and is welcomed by Michael (Ted Danson) to “the Good Place” – with Danson delivering possibly in the best work of his career, yes, even including his ineffable genius turn in Cheers – a highly selective Heaven-like utopia he designed, as a reward for her righteous life. However, Eleanor realises that she was sent there by mistake and so must hide her morally imperfect behavior while trying to become a better and more ethical person.

William Jackson Harper, Jameela Jamil, and Manny Jacinto co-star as other residents of “the Good Place”, together with D’Arcy Carden as Janet, an all-powerful artificial being who assists Good Place residents.

To tell you any more would spoil the show, but it rewards sticking with it as the plotline develops, and it is highly intelligent writing, receiving critical acclaim for its writing, acting, originality, setting, and tone. In addition, the most unusual exploration and creative use of ethics and philosophy have also been positively received. The recognition earned the series a Peabody Award in 2019.

Beautiful people, interesting history, plenty of suspense and humour, and a time machine. What’s not to like?

We recently caught up with – and thoroughly enjoyed – a short-lived but highly original show called Timeless, an American science fiction television series that premiered on NBC on October 3, 2016. It stars Abigail Spencer, Matt Lanter, and Malcolm Barrett as a team that attempts to stop a mysterious organisation from changing the course of history through malicious time travel. It’s currently available on Amazon Prime.

The series was also stars Sakina Jaffrey, Paterson Joseph, Claudia Doumit, and Goran Višnjić. The executive producers include John Davis and John Fox of another show we love (see tomorrow’s post) The Blacklist.

Although NBC cancelled the series after one season, the series was renewed three days later. The ten-episode second season premiered on March 11, 2018, and ran until NBC cancelled the series again in June 2018. One month later, NBC ordered a two-part finale to conclude the series, which aired on December 20, 2018.

It fast developed a small but highly loyal following, who are still agitating for a Series 3. The acting is of an unusually high standard for what could hardly be called deeply serious TV – especially from Abigail Spencer who shows great emotional range and flexibility – and the plotline is held consistently throughout. Some of the ventures into the past are genuinely educational. Timeless received generally positive reviews from television critics and won a Rockies Award.

While we’re on “Comedy/Fantasy”, if you haven’t caught up with Upload yet, then you simply must.

Andy Allo with another relative newcomer Robbie Amell, who also seems destined for stardom.

It stars a young lady who is surely destined to be the breakout TV star of 2020 – Andy Allo -a musician-cum-actor who simply lights up the screen whenever she’s on it.

Allo is a Cameroonian-American singer-songwriter, guitarist and actress. She released her first of three albums in 2009, and joined Prince‘s band, The New Power Generation, in 2011. She had a recurring role in three episodes of the comedy-drama series The Game in 2011, followed by a number of other roles, including a supporting role in the 2017 film Pitch Perfect 3 and now the lead role of Nora in Amazon Prime‘s series Upload.

Supported by an equally impressive cast of mainly unknowns, it’s a witty, sexy, fascinating and thought-provoking exploration of what the world might be like – not such a wild fantasy, given advances in computing – if we could upload our consciousness into a virtual reality of our choosing and thus avoid death – sort of.

It’s full of interesting philosophical exploration (although delivered with such a light touch that you might not even notice yourself receiving it), it’s great to look at and often laugh out loud funny. The characters are easy to invest in, leaving the viewer hungry for more. Along the way, it lands some serious blows about the current state of our community and its life priorities.

Not coincidentally at all, it is made by some of the team responsible for The Good Place. It has been renewed for a second season.

Tomorrow, we review thrillers and stuff like that.

 

 

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