The best shows at the moment are not on Netflix or Amazon
I am a self-confessed Netflix and Amazon addict. I have a hard time trying to turn my Sky box on to see what BBC or Sky Atlantic might have to offer. The box is constantly recording stuff, but most of it are films on Film 4. Last month, however, I had to do a double take. It started with Chernobyl (96% approval on Rotten Tomatoes). Followed by What We Do In The Shadows and now I’m hooked on Catch-22. Sorry Netflix and Amazon, you will just have to wait.
There are no real spoilers, but if you are the kind who doesn’t want to know even a little, tiny bit then close the page. Now! Ok, the rest of you can carry on reading because you really don’t want to miss these shows.
If you’re not watching Chernobyl, believe me, you’re missing out. It is, undoubtedly, the best program out there. This five-part HBO-Sky production details the aftermath of the Chernobyl nuclear plant disaster in Ukraine and how the Soviet government tried to cover it up with lies and misinformation in order to keep the truth from getting out. At the same time, it celebrates the bravery of the men and women who stopped an entire continent from becoming uninhabitable. Mikhail Gorbachev, the then President of USSR admitted that Chernobyl was the start of the disintegration of Soviet Russia. Despite this, and in keeping with misinformation dissemination, Russia is making its own version of Chernobyl in which it blames the West for negative propaganda and tries to prove that there was a CIA agent present at the nuclear plant when the explosion took place. Good luck!
Killing Eve (BBC)
Swoon! Villanelle is back with a bang. And Eve is finding that apple more and more enticing. Killing Eve Season 2 has proven to be as good as Season 1, although not better. Villanelle is still as crazy, Carolyn as sarcastic and Eve’s hair just as messy. The only difference is that Jodie Comer and Sarah Oh are sharing the screen a lot more this season. Well, after the ending in Season 1 that was bound to happen. No longer a cat-and-mouse chase, this season sees the partnering of Eve and Villanelle. Is it their mutual attraction that has brought them closer or does “something evil this way comes?”
Big Little Lies (HBO)
How amazing was the first season of Big Little Lies? And how gorgeously evil was Alexander Skarsgård? I do miss him in season 2, but Meryl Streep makes up for his absence big time. She plays the mother of Perry (Alexander Skarsgård) and is not buying the story of the Monterey Five that her son just slipped off the stairs. She is hell bent on finding the truth by making herself indispensable to her daughter-in-law, Nicole Kidman, who has been having some horrendous nightmares and keeps shouting incriminating things in her sleep. While Reese Witherspoon, Laura Dern and Shailene Woodley are trying to move on, Zoë Kravitz has crawled back into herself. After all, she was the one who gave that push. They overcame Perry. Can they overcome his mother?
What We Do In The Shadows (FX)
Anyone who doesn’t find this program funny is dead inside. And if you think it’s going to be just like the film then you’re wrong. What We Do In The Shadows follows the lives-after-death of four vampire roommates and their familiar. They are like most vampires in that they burn in sunshine and don’t like garlic, but it’s their sheer incompetence and bizarre hobbies that make them hilarious. For a start, one of them is an energy vampire and feeds on people’s energy by talking them to death. Another one gets caught by animal control in his bat form. Yet another keeps searching for her human lover who’s been reincarnating through the ages. Their goal seems to be wold domination, but they haven’t made much progress beyond their street in Staten Island.
About time someone adapted this satirical novel! And George Clooney being an Executive Producer gives Catch-22 a lot of clout. I started watching it only to see how this bizarre novel has transferred to the screen, but I was hooked from the very first scene. It’s not every day that you watch programs based on the Second World War and laugh out loud and want more of it. There are no heroes here. There are men like Yossarian (Christopher Abbott) who wants to get out of combat duty by claiming illness or Milo Minderbinder who is only interested in making a profit as the mess officer or Major Major Major whose career progresses dramatically because of his very fortunate name. This one is a must-see, if only to understand where the famous “Catch-22” comes from.