Master of None

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I can’t even remember how I discovered this series, but it’s just magnificent. Created by Aziz Ansari and Alan Yang, the show talks about the life of a 30-year-old actor named Dev who lives in NYC.

Aziz (who created wrote and produced the series) is also the main character. The series deals with extremely important social issues, from the alternative birth control Plan B, appreciating immigrant parents, a relationship in this modern and technological age and discrimination, sexism and injustice.

It’s a comedy, but not some dumb and idiotic thing with no actual depth. I was really surprised by the quality of the show. Not because I didn’t have faith in Aziz, but it said comedy and the trailer is upbeat and funny. I hadn’t realized the social issues that were being discussed.

Season 2 is coming out tomorrow on Netflix and I plan on completely putting my life on hold and binge watching the shit out ot of this new season.

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I love this series so much because it’s real. I’ve been saying it a lot in past blog post (This is us mainly…), but this is what I’m looking for in a tv series.

The cast is really good, really authentic, diverse and really talented! Denise and Arnold are just two amazing characters and Lena Waithe and Eric Wareheim are hilarious. Also, Dev’s mom and dad are Aziz’s real parents! And they are soo funny!

 

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Left to Right: Aziz’s parent Shoukath and Fatima Ansari, Alan Yang, Lena Waithe, Aziz Ansari, Kelvin Yu, Eric Wareheim and Noel Wells

All the episodes are amazing, but if I had to choose, episodes 4-6-7-8 are the best.

Episode 4 is called: Indians on TV, where Dev talks about the lack of roles for Indian men to play and the stereotypes he has to overcome. He inadvertently sees an email from an executive producer with racism remarks and he had to decide how to act.

Episode 6: Nashville: Dev invites Rachel, the girl he likes, to a spontaneous trip to Nashville. The episode is just adorable. It’s something different than the usual first date and it’s truly delightful.

AND NOW, MY FAVOURITE! Episode 7: Ladies and Gentleman: This one is pure gold. Rachel and Dev’s friend Denise explain to their friend the constant misogyny that is (sadly) part of our everyday life. I was really impressed by the episode. It’s rare to see a TV that deals with this horrible issue as well as “Master of None”. What I truly appreciated about it, is that they stated that men can’t understand the situation. They don’t face the same problems as women do and consequently, aren’t aware of how big the problem actually is.

Episode 8: Old People: I also loved that Aziz and Alan Yang (the two main creators of the show) took the time to dedicate an episode to the elderly. I love my Grandmother and I realized I don’t spend as much time with her as I want to. We tend to forget that they can become lonely, especially if widowed. Even though the episode is absolutely silly sometimes, it’s thought-provoking and it will definitely make you pick up the phone and call your grandparents.


I am a huge fan of Aziz… both of this stand-up work and his acting roles… and don’t get me started on his book “Modern Romance” because I LOVED IT!

I’m really excited about season 2, mainly because it was partially shot here in Italy, so I can’t wait to see how Aziz decided to portray my country.

I hope you’ll check it out and you’ll let me know your opinions.

See you!

Georgia

The Office US

Since I didn’t grow up in an English speaking country, many many (frankly too many) famous TV shows weren’t part of my childhood.

So I’ve been missing out A LOT.

A few months ago, I caught up on Will & Grace. Today (you have probably guessed by now) I’ll be talking about THE OFFICE.

Based on the namesake comedy show created by Stephen Merchant and Ricky Gervais, the show is filmed like a documentary with a single camera set-up.

It follows the employee’s lives of a paper company, describing all the awkward and highly inappropriate moments.

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The Office Cast (from left to right): Phyllis Smith (Phyllis), Paul Lieberstein (Toby), John Krasinski (Jim), Oscar Nunez (Oscar), Jenna Fisher (Pam), Angela Kinsey (Angela), Mindy Kaling (Kelly), B.J. Novak (Ryan), Creed Bratton (Creed), Steve Carell (Michael), Brian Baumgartner (Kevin), Kate Flannery (Meredith), Rainn Wilson (Dwight), Melora Hardin (Jan), Leslie David Baker (Stanley) and David Denman (Roy)

I must admit, at first I didn’t like it very much. I couldn’t properly understand the irony and sarcasm of it, but after a few episodes you get into it. REALLY INTO IT.

In just a few weeks I saw up until season 7 and the very last of season 9. AND I LOVED IT. I got basically obsessed. The show is beautifully created, every single character is PERFECT and you grow to love each one of them.

Steve Carell is one of the greatest comedian EVER and Michael Scott, regional manager of Dunder Mufflin, is incredibly awkward, funny and one of the most irritating people on the planet. He is a bigot, insensitive and highly uneducated and without realizing it he makes everyone feel uncomfortable and embarrassed.

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What I love about it is that it feels like a real show, with real people. (Except Michael, because if he were real, being his employee wouldtumblr_kw4nn9npz61qaseldo1_500 literally be devastating.)

Another confession: I only started watching “The Office” because of John Krasinski.

After seeing a couple of interviews of him on a couple of talk shows (Jimmy Kimmel, Conan O’Brian…), I decided that I also wanted to check out his filmography.

AND, Stephen Merchant is a beautifully rhythmic name. No seriously, try saying it out loud. I’ll wait: say it.

See? It just rolls off your tongue.

It’s one of those names like Charlotte Tilbury or Daenerys Targaryen.

Ok, back on track… Once you get into it, the show is hilarious: its irony and sarcasm are amazing and each character is completely out of their minds.

Frankly, these are two fundamental ingredients for a GREAT tv show.

From Dwight to Meredith, the office employees have distinct personalities and weird behaviours: nobody is sane and this is what makes the show relatable and extremely enjoyable.

Dwight and his devotion/obsession to Micheal, is hilarious. Not to mention his beet farm and his totally weird relationship with Angela, one of the accountants for Dunder Mifflin.

the-office-pam-jimJim and Pam’s mutual attraction to each other is one MANY MANY  ingredients that makes you what to keep on watching. Their relationship is not the glossy or filled with over the top romantic gestures: it’s about the little things. It’s real, genuine and relatable. They look like two normal people trying to figure out each other’s feelings.

I would highly recommend it to anyone who was looking for a fun and at the same time quiet series.

There are no background laughs or quick jokes. Every single scene is a joke and a punch line. Personally, it is one of the most amazing comedy shows I have EVER seen. And I have seen a lot of them.

Leave me a comment down below and let me know who your favourite character is.

Georgia  🙂

Photos by NBC.com

The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

I didn’t want to give into the hype of the show. I really didn’t. Mainly because I had no knowledge of the trial and the murder case.

If like me, you weren’t born yet or you simply aren’t familiar with it, this is what happened: in 1994 football player O.J. Simpson was accused of the murder of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Lyle Goldman. The case shook America, they called it “The Trial of the Century”.

There are a lot of topics that go beyond the trial itself: sexism, racism, the celebrity status (that were fundamental in shaping the final outcome of the case) and the Kardashians.

Yes, the same Kardashian we are painfully subjected to every time we open a magazine or social medias like twitter, instagram or snapchat.

I went in knowing nothing, except of the many prices the shows has won and the great actors who are part of it.

Speaking of actors, the cast is great. Cuba Gooding Jr plays OJ, “American Horror Story”‘s Sarah Paulson is Marcia Clark,, John Travolta, David Schwimmer as Robert Kardashian, the brilliant and adorable Sterling K. Brown, Courtney B. Vance as OJ’s the defense attorney Johnnie Cochran and Kenneth Choi as Judge Lance Ito.

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Some of the cast

To tell the truth, I’m not sure if wasn’t impressed with Cuba Gooding Jr’s performance, or maybe I simply don’t like OJ’s personality and well, everything. I thought it was over the top, a bit forced.

On the other hand Sarah Paulson completely blew my mind. I’ve never watched “American Horror Story” so I didn’t know much about her. But here she was amazing. And shout out to my favourite man on the show: Sterling K Brown. He is just so talented! Every time he acts he makes you exactly feel the character’s emotions. He is truly spectacular.

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Sarah Paulson and Sterling K Brown ❤

We see the America of 20 years ago, an America that was divided and spread further apart by this murder case.

I was reading an article on the nytimes.com website that dates back to the 8th October 1995, two days after the verdict was announced.

Isabel Wilkerson who wrote the article quotes a professor of women’s studies at Wellesley College and she says:

“This is a story about race and gender and how they intersect. It’s about a black man married to a white woman being judged by black women.”

Wilkerson also writes: “White women tended to identify with Mrs. Simpson as an abuse victim. Black women, pulled by competing loyalties, tended to see Mr. Simpson as a black man framed by the system — even if he had been indifferent to the black community, and even if they thought he might be guilty”

There was also the issue of having a black man (Christopher Darden) as a prosecutor on the case, when almost the entire community was convinced Simpson’s arrest was all about the police’s fury against black men and women. Then the detective Mark Fuhrman, who found the two bodies, was accused of racism and this only reinforced the boundaries.

BUT, the trial wasn’t just about racism. It obviously played a BIG role, but another horrible issue was persistent: sexism.

Towards women in general and towards Marcia Clark, the lead prosecutor. Since the case became a media sensation, Miss Clark was criticized by the media and the “Dream Team” (Mr Simpson’s legal defence team), she was judged on her clothes, her hair and also on her capability of raising her children (At the time she was battling her ex husband for custody of her two boys).

“The verdict exposed a chasm in place for generations, often breaking open when black women feel pressed to choose between the men with whom they share race, and all that goes with it, and the white women with whom they share the experience of sexism. While to many black women sexism pales in the face of racism, white women, unburdened by race in a predominantly white society, are freer to focus on sexism.”, wrote Wilkerson.

As I’m writing this,  I am halfway through the series and my opinion has definitely shifted.

In the first couple of episodes, I had the feeling it was a bit “soapy” and definitely too much focused on the Kardashians. I mean, they had more screen time than O.J.’s children! Come on! And we also had an Alanis Morrisette’s “ironic” moment: when David Schwimmer’s Robert Kardashian says to Kim, Khloe, Kourtney and Rob:

“We are Kardashians and in this family, being a good person and a loyal friend is more important than being famous. Fame is fleeting, it’s hollow. It means nothing at all without a virtuous heart.”

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ARE YOU SERIOUS, WRITERS? I know that the goal of the show is to humanize both sides of the case, but this was ridiculous.

I LITERALLY laughed out loud for at least 10 minutes.

But as the show progressed, it got really good. I’m hooked and with only 4 episodes left, it’s all I’ll be watching this afternoon.

I hope you enjoyed this different review… Let me know if you liked it better.

Have a nice Sunday!

Georgia 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2016 In TV Shows

I told myself I wasn’t going to do this, but I’ve been working all week, I spent more than 72 hours non-stop with my family and relatives and I need to talk about my love for television and not a bunch of lies about my university career.

So many horrible things have happened in 2016, but for television this has been one of the best years EVER. At least for me. So, this is my 2016 narrated through my favourite TV shows. (there are more, obviously. But there are the new ones or those that made an impression).

JANUARY

This was a busy months for me: I did 4 exams at Uni and my shows came back from the holiday hiatus.

And what better way to start the year with a special episode (obviously set in the victoria age. Mark Gatiss is obsessed) of Sherlock called “The Abominable bride”.

After a devastating winter finale, “Suits” came back on January and it was incredible. The tension, the drama, the unknown… I’ve been a Suits fan since season 2 or 3 (aka when I discovered it existed) and I still can’t wait for it to come back after the break. Season 5 was unforgettable. Probably the best one.

But then my friend got me into “Black Mirror” and so I watched the fist few episode… which traumatized me. Obviously I needed a pick-me-up and although the title and the trailer seemed utterly stupid, watching Mozart in the Jungle was a great decision.

FEBRUARYLast Week Tonight with John Oliver

Lots more shows came back from hiatus, but they were suddenly cast aside: I had just discovered my GOD of satiric comedy (and let’s say it: journalism): JOHN OLIVER. I absolutely adore him and his show “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver”. I have watched some of his pieces so many times that I’m almost ashamed. (Can’t wait for him to come back on February 12th 2017!!!!)

MARCH

Another dull month (wait until April ’cause then you’ll think I’m crazy)…  The 4th season “House of Cards” was released on Netflix (still have to finish it, BTW) and my favourite italian TV show came back for 3 episodes! Based on the books by Andrea Camilleri, “Il commissario Montalbano” is about a police inspector in Sicily who tries to solve particularly difficult cases and he is often faced with the mafia. Absolutely stunning!

APRIL

Things here went downhill… I wasn’t mentally well… I hit a rough patch and I felt really really down. So of course I buried myself in tv shows.

My beloved “Game of Thronescame back for season 6 (the best one, in my opinion), HBO’s “Silicon Valley” premiered its 3rd season (LOVED IT).

I started 2 new series: “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” and “12 Monkeys”. Despite its good reviews, I didn’t really get into Kimmy Schmidt, but for the first time I enjoyed watching a supernatural/sci-fi show that wasn’t Doctor Who. I really enjoyed “12 Monkeys” and I’m definitely going to keep watching season 3 (rumour has it, it will air in June 2017).

April was also a months of old TV shows: I started watching “Will and Grace”. And I really really liked it! It was so innovative for its time, funny and totally weird.

The only downside of April: Limitless. The CBS show was cancelled. The show was kind of a sequel to Bradley Cooper’s movie, but the amazing thing was: there was actually Bradley Cooper in it! Looking absolutely stunning! It was the weirdest TV I had seen in a long time and I didn’t immediately get why it was great. Anyway, it got unfairly cancelled, so…

MAY

May was probably one of the worst ( 😉 ) months of the year. I had a terrible breakdown, I felt like shit for days and going out of the house had the same effect of someone stabbing me in the back.

BUT I discovered a new show. You’re the worst“. And to this moment I still can’t believe how much it helped me.

Every time I was feeling depressed, I would watch season 2, get into Gretchen’s shoes and allow myself to feel nothing. When I saw the character being in the same situation that I was (although she was a lot worse than me) made me feel less alone, it made me feel like it was okay for me to be like that. Definitely one of the most honest and real portrayal of a mental illness on TV.

JUNE

 

June means “holiday at the beach with other 6 people of my family” so I definitely packed my computer with TV shows.

Starting at home with “Unreal”, a show about the behind-the-scenes of a reality like “The Bachelor” or “The Bachelorette”. I though it was one of the most amazing thing ever. And I still do. I hate reality shows, but this behind-the-scenes look is fantastic. Don’t know why, but I loved it. It’s so clever. (Since as I’m writing this, it’s January 3rd, I’m so going to watch the new season of the Bachelor this year!)

I downloaded the 3rd season of “The Night Shift” just for the LOLs but I actually enjoyed it. It talked about police brutality, racism, discrimination, the war in Syria… Really politically and socially relevant. Didn’t think I would, but I enjoyed it. Definitely tuning it for season 4.

I don’t usually watch BBC Dramas, but “Doctor Foster” was definitely a must. I adore Suranne Jones! She played David Tennant’s love interest in “Single Father” in 2010 and I really really like her! She is a great actress! And in this 5-episode-series, she didn’t let me down! The story, though… ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. Loved it. I also watched BBC’s “Thirteen”. It wasn’t as good as “Doctor Foster” but I recommend it! Very dark and obscure.

I got really really into “The Office” (the US version). I didn’t think I would, given the weaker episodes in season 1, but as soon as I got to season 2… WOW. I LOVED IT. I fell in love with John Krasinski and I truly understood Steve Carell’s brilliance. What a show!

If this list wasn’t enough, I started watching for the 5th time “Breaking Bad” and had a look at two pilots: “The Last Tycoon” (Amazon) and “Bloodline” (Netflix).

Thank God Amazon picked up”The Last Tycoon” for a full series because if not, I would have been really really pissed off. (And no more Matt Bomer in the 30s would have been a crime against ME).

JULY

After everything that happened in June, I took a step back. The brilliant “Mr Robot” premiered its second season (that I finished watching last week and it’s mind-blowing) and saw the first couple of episodes and I chose to watch the comedy “Parks and Recreation” (mainly because I was missing “The Office” and “Parks and Rec” has the same producer and some of the same writers).

AUGUST

Despite studying for my German exam, I got started watching almost all new series.

The only exception “Pretty Little Liars”, my guilty pleasure, that ended its 6th season. (season 7 premieres in April 2017, ICYMI.)

If you go back here on my blog, you can see my detailed reviews and opinions on these following shows: I started watching “Stranger Things” because everyone was obsessed… Meh.

For the first year I watched and really REALLY got into “The Great British Bake Off”… Obviously I started watching it and then it got cancelled and moved to channel 4, but never mind that.

Then there was ITV’s “Victoria”… Utterly enjoyed it. Jenna Coleman did a wonderful performance.

After in the middle of all of this: FOX’s “Brooklyn Nine Nine”.

SEPTEMBER

TV show wise, probably the best months along with May.

Waiting for my regular shows (Modern Family, New Girl, Grey’s Anatomy…) to come back I found two other series, and one of them changed me. I am obviously talking about “This is us”. And FX’s “Better Things”.

I reviewed This Is Us here on my blog, but I feel like I can’t make it justice. I think the only way is for you, yes you who is reading this now, to go watch it. It will tear you apart. I didn’t even know I was capable of feeling some of the emotions that the show evoked. A MUST of 2016.

OCTOBER

friends

Shittiest months of the year. Got obsessed with “Friends”. Don’t have a single regret.

 

NOVEMBER

The day I had been waiting for more that a year finally arrived and on November 4th I was finally able to watch “The Crown”. AND WHAT A MASTERPIECE. Matt Smith is brilliant in it! I had missed him so much!

But in late November I discovered the show that destroyed me almost (but not really) as much as “This is us”: Gilmore Girls.

After the mind-blowing discovery that Jack from “This is Us” was Jess from “Gilmore Girls” (and it took me a LOOOOOOOOOOONG time to figure that out), I was hooked. Still am actually.

DECEMBER

Finally! The last months! This has been a never-ending post!

I got into two new Tv shows! “Westworld” and I managed to watch the first two episodes of “The Affair” even though it came out in November. (I’m still stuck on episode two, BTW).

A memorable thing that happened in December was the last three episodes of “This Is Us” that I hadn’t seen as they came out, ’cause frankly… I was not emotionally ready for them. I kid you not, I cried for three hours straight. NEVER in my life, I had ever cried this much. It was one of the most liberating feelings in the world. I hate it and loved it at the same time.


This year was bad: from terrorist attacks, to shootings, to celebrity’s deaths (George Micheal I’ll miss you) , to arrogant narcissistic bigot orange racists being elected as President of the United States Of America.

Television wise, this has been a great year. Full of amazing shows, talented NEW and diverse actors and fantastic writers.

I probably forgot a lot of series I glanced at in this past year, but apparently they weren’t worth remembering!

I hope you had a fantastic year and I wish all of you an even better one! Happy 2017!

Georgia   🙂 ❤

 

P.S. Definitely not going to write this in one sitting next time! Creating the “2017 in Tv shows” post right now!