Everything I was obsessed with in 2020…

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So, as we all know, 2020 was quite the year, but there was plenty of time to be watching tv shows which I view as a plus. So I decided to let y’all know what shows got me through those long lock downs and online university. This year brought a lot of change for most of us but for me, one thing it brought was this blog so I want to thank everyone who has looked at my site or any of my posts, those who have followed, liked or commented, over these last 6(ish) months. It means so much to me so thank you and I hope you enjoy this list of mainly not 2020 titles…

I am choosing to skip certain shows which are always on my mind, for instance, Pretty Little Liars and The Vampire Diaries, I feel no reason to explain these, they just speak to me and are on a constant cycle in my house.

Veronica Mars

So, I discovered Veronica Mars early in 2020/late 2019 and it quickly made its way to the top of my all time favourite shows and I haven’t stopped loving it! It’s on Stan Australia now if you haven’t given it a chance yet.

Grey’s Anatomy

Grey’s Anatomy is always a good time and I watched all the seasons back to back during this year. Obviously helping me with the Derek Shepherd post… But nonetheless, I enjoyed it the second time through then started watching again (what can I say, I missed Lexie).

Criminal Minds:

I love Criminal Minds and I have for years, but this year I did the same as Grey’s Anatomy and I watched it start to finish. I can’t see a point where I wouldn’t be obsessed with Criminal Minds. My favorite episodes are the grossest/wackiest. For instance, amputation+reattachment to other people, anything with dolls, etc.

Don’t ask me why I love it so much because I don’t have an answer but I do, similarly to how I love SVU.

Keeping up with the Kardashians:

I can’t believe I have been sleeping on Kardashians for so long, but since it arrived on Netflix this year, and I got Hayu I have been loving Kardashians, I always thought to watch it you needed to care about the Kardashians and be fans of them but it is so much more down to earth than that, and it is making me like them as more than just these figure heads. It is also really funny sometimes. So, I have been loving getting to watch it! I am only 6 seasons in at this point but still. Honestly, if you liked it, Hayu has been fun for me.

Dance Moms:

Who doesn’t love Dance Moms? I for sure do, this meant I got Hayu specifically to watch Dance Moms start to finish and it doesn’t disappoint. Those kids are so talented it still blows me away and the drama doesn’t get old. I don’t know what it is but this year Dance Moms really got me again. I do however, feel truly terrible for the kids who were on it, growing up in that environment, so I hope it was as contrived as some say.

If you want a post on Dance Moms in 2021 comment down below or let me know on socials and I’ll be happy to!

The 100:

This is the year the 100 really clicked for me, I’ve obviously seen it previously but never past season 3 until this year. And truly I have watched the 100 so many times this year. So look forward to some more posts about it next year! I will admit I am still mainly sticking to my comfort seasons (1 and 2) on a loop but still, I’ve been watching it pretty consistently all year.

Here’s my the 100 post if you missed it;

https://simplymythoughts.blog/2020/09/26/my-problem-with-the-100/

How to Get Away With Murder:

I was loving this one too, as a serial re-watcher I watched a lot of HTGAWM because it is so easy to watch while doing other things. I love putting this on while I do my uni work or catch up on notes. Especially with the 5th season only going up on Netflix this year there was lots to rewatch!

Upper Middle Bogan:

What a classic. I honestly for years have judged Upper Middle Bogan based on it’s poster but after finally giving it a go I am entirely obsessed. I can’t explain it but it had that same quirky comedy vibe but in Australia, I feel like it is as close as we are going to get to something like The Office in Australia ( sorry Rostered On). Or, maybe it’s closer to these next two shows but in Australia and that just makes it great. I love a funny true Aussie show because, man some of the stuff here is strange.

Kim’s Convenience:

I seriously don’t know what to tell you about this but I’ve seen all of it and I love it. It is such a strange show but I find it so funny and enjoyable to watch.

Schitt’s Creek:

Much like the last two, I just can’t explain it but its amazing. I really put off Schitt’s Creek for a while until I really watched it and realized how good it is, for a show about a family of rich, selfish and not down to earth people, it is really funny, special mention to this scene;

Credit to owner of the video

But more than that, you see these characters grow so much as people, finding out who they actually are and what they want, a family who didn’t know each other at all became so incredibly close they can hardly bare the thought of not being together. It is just super heartwarming and so well done.

So, there are the shows I binged the most during 2020, I got a lot of watch time done clearly and this blog has helped me with that! It has also given me the ability to watch endless tv shows whilst feeling somewhat productive so thanks everyone who reads for helping me rationalise this to myself. And Also, just another huge thank you to everyone who has followed, liked, commented or read any of my posts this year, it means so much to me to be able to explain my feelings about these shows and express myself in this space. So, I will be back in 2021 for another post!

Happy New Year everyone!

Don’t forget to subscribe, follow my socials and like, share or comment if you enjoyed this post. Feel free to tell me about 2020 for you;

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Is ‘On Pointe’ the new ‘Cheer’?

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I’m sure we all remember ‘Cheer’ from last year, the docuseries following an American college cheer team in their fight for victory in the national cheer comp. Or even ‘Cheer Squad’ which also came out in 2019 but appeared to garner less of a response. ‘Cheer Squad’ was also a docuseries following a cheer team however they were a Canadian cheer team who competed competitively. If you didn’t check out ‘Cheer Squad’ I highly recommend it.

Anyway, the point being, everyone was talking about ‘Cheer’ and loving it last year. This brought so much light to the general public on the complexity of competitive cheer in showing the athletes as, well, athletes. It also gave a really close look into a lot of the teams personal lives and struggles which made you feel their pain and their happiness. Got me all emotional to be honest!

Biggest questions I have: Netflix Christmas edition

Movies, Uncategorized

I decided I would finally post holiday related post so I thought I’d let y’all know about the things which have confused me most about the Netflix Christmas releases. So here goes;

Why can’t I watch the Christmas movies all year round?

It’s like Netflix is trying to stop me getting my fill viewing pleasure from it. Every year they make us wait until they decide to put up the holiday titles again, but you know what, sometimes I just want to watch The Holiday, why are they trying to stop me. And also, surely they would keep up the Netflix original holiday titles in case people want to watch them, in order to make more money on them?

Where is the diversity in holiday celebration films?

Come on Netflix, you can do better than this!

Christmas Inheritance:

I absolutely cannot deal with the fact that the snow in this movie is like bubbly soap. Seriously the whole time it looks like they are standing around in soap and I just can’t. Full disclosure this isn’t a Netflix original but, they always put this one up.

The Knight Before Christmas:

He believes he is a Knight, fine maybe she thinks he has like a memory problem associated with her hitting him with a car, but this man believes for the entire film that he is a Knight and Vanessa Hudgens just, ignores it. Like it isn’t a problem for her that be believes he is a knight and acts as a knight. He wears his armour and swings his sword around. A legitimate weapon and she lets him stay with her. That just doesn’t track for me.

Also, he says the whole movie he needs to get back to see his brother become a Knight then literally doesn’t see it and leaves again. His brother says find love or something and he just leaves. Couldn’t he have waited til after the ceremony?

Holidate:

I actually really enjoyed this movie, I don’t know about everyone else but, what’s wrong for me is, Emma Roberts wants a holidate so that her family will lay off her and stop bringing up her finding a man. However, she tells them all from the start that he is a holidate which really doesn’t stop the, her family wanting her to bring home a boyfriend. It only works if she doesn’t tell them that they aren’t dating and they believe they are dating. So, I don’t understand.

Why are all these famous actors just showing up in Netflix Christmas movies now?

I had hardly seen Vanessa Hudgens acting in years (except for the Second Act) before she decided to do 2 Christmas movies in 1 year, both for Netflix. However, that totaled to 3 characters in those 2 movies. Now this year with Princess Switch 2 she is apparently playing 3 different characters. As if they weren’t strange enough before. I’m just wondering why did she take these roles?

Bonnie from The Vampire Diaries. She was on Vampire Diaries for 8 years, a show which was so successful they made 2 well running spin offs. Now, she films Christmas movies.

So, I know there’s a lot about Emma Roberts image which may have impacted her career, but she is very famous and has been a successful actress my entire life which begs the question, why she chose to do Holidate.

Moreover, Christmas Inheritance came out after The 100 started so I just find it random that Clarke from the 100 went out for a terrible Christmas movie.

Kiernan Shipka had the same thing appearing in Let it Snow last year. She had already had a long filmography career including her starring role in The Chilling Tales of Sabrina. Then she did this movie and I really think it was a flop.

I just want to know how Netflix has made this happen.

Let it Snow:

She says the whole time that she isn’t interested in the guy just because he is famous, but it is an absolute lie. She talks to this random stranger, finds out he is famous then it is okay to spend the entire day with this random guy and even bring him home after to meet her mum. But it’s totally not because he’s famous.

The movie also had the random woman with a tinfoil hat and made a big deal about it then never told us why, so felt very pointless to me. Why make that a detail if she isn’t going to reveal anything? Tell me why?

Happy Holidays everyone, hope you enjoyed. Let me know your favourite Christmas films or biggest questions in the comments down below.

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My biggest television pet peeves…

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I think it’s probably pretty clear by now that I watch a lot of TV. Hence my having my own dedicated blog. But, there are a multitude of consistent things used in TV shows which really annoy me. So, here is my list of my biggest pet peeves with examples from just a few shows. Hope you enjoy!

You can tell that they almost never fill coffee cups or mugs…

Just fill the coffee cup with water so it’s weighted correctly. That’s it. It is so obvious when the cup is empty cause they practically throw them around because it’s so light. It makes me so angry. Is that just me? It’s like they put the lid on a takeaway cup and think I can’t tell it’s empty.

Women wearing heels all the time!

For instance, women wearing stilettos to high school everyday. That is incredibly unrealistic. Even in superhero shows and crime shows the women have heels on. HEALS ARE NOT EASY TO RUN IN SO I DON’T BELIEVE YOU. Don’t bring young women up in a world which tells us we need to be wearing high heels everywhere to be successful and beautiful, or even just that we should be. I’m talking to you Pretty Little Liars and Gossip Girl.

I don’t know about you but; if I was in a role which I may need to chase someone (i.e. super hero, police officer, doctor) I don’t think my choice of shoe would be heeled. Maybe that’s just me…

Continuity problems:

For example, How I Met Your Mother didn’t decide that Robin was Canadian until the second season – then they decided she was a Canadian teen pop sensation but she still has issues with her dad having wanted a son in the later seasons and was apparently a tomboy.

Arrow: Now, I never caught up on Arrow so I haven’t finished it to see how they explain this but, Oliver Queen gets trapped on a deserted island, only he doesn’t because it isn’t deserted. But also, there is no one there 5 years later when he is rescued. But also, he goes back to Sterling City for a hot second, and he spends a lot of time in China trying to deal with a bio-weapon. And I’m sure a lot of other stuff. Before he somehow has to go back to the island, sit around there alone growing a beard and setting up his little signal fire, then finally get rescued to go back home. I recognise they probably explain this somehow but it really infuriated me to watch him do all these things not even on the island during the 5 years he was presumed dead. INCLUDING going back to Sterling City and seeing Thea!

Casting way out of the real age range:

We constantly see in Hollywood they cast way above the age they are portraying especially for teens and young adults. This really just skews children and teen’s ideas of how they are supposed to look at a certain age when most of the time those playing 15/16 year old kids are in their mid 20’s. Why can’t we just cast close to the age of the character?

Recasting:

I understand there can be a need to recast actors in the industry because actors choose not to come back or what not but it can be really jarring as a viewer. For example, after several seasons watching Jake T. Austin in ‘The Fosters’ (on Stan), they recast him with Noah Centineo. Jake played that character for years then they just put Noah in and hoped no one would care that much. Especially when it is hard to really play the character the exact same way a different actor did. This same thing happens in Pretty Little Liars where they recast Jason after he made several appearances. It may sometimes be unavoidable but it is still really jarring as a viewer.

We so often see people in shows having super private conversations which cannot be heard by others, happen in rooms full of people!

For instance, the Liars chat about ‘A’ constantly at school and parties and what not, do they really think they are being secretive. Aria constantly talks about Ezra at school when he is a teacher there. The Keating 5 just talk about murder all the time in front of so many people. Yes, none of these people are being spoken to but, people can hear your conversation even if they aren’t trying to listen. I just feel like you wouldn’t realistically talk about having murdered people in public.

Trying to be super sneaky and hidden whilst also shinning a torch everywhere telling everyone where you are…

This happens so often in horror and crime related shows. It really grinds my gears when people are trying to hide from something or corner them and they shine a flashlight down the entire hallway. I understand needing to see but it is really not hidden. If I was hiding from the Police in a dark house with the lights off, the Police shining their torch all around would signal me to where they are in order to continue hiding.

“Slow Burn”:

When a show doesn’t have and interesting beginning or they have to do heaps of exposition. For instance, I tried watching ‘The Witcher’ and only made it 1 episode in because, well, it was boring. Not much really happened in the first episode whilst at the same time they were trying to throw so much information at the audience to set the scene. I personally (and I know many won’t agree) would have preferred if they had done some sort of intro scene or narration to set up the world we are in, like in Avatar the Last Airbender or Vampire Academy, The 100, etc. Sometimes narrative exposition is annoying but if the show is going to throw lots of lore and information about supernatural beings and whatnot, I find it kind of annoying not to. I felt the same in The Haunting of Bly Manor and several other shows. Moral being, your pilot needs to be interesting and exciting but also easy to follow. I don’t want to struggle to understand and interpret what is going on because I won’t finish the show.

Changing your title song part way through the show:

I have seen many shows which have done this and just randomly switched songs or moved to a different version of the same song and I just cant stand it. By the time they change the song I’m already so used to the sound of it that every time after that, when I hear the different version of the song, it puts me off. So, thanks Veronica Mars specifically for this one.

Title sequences that don’t fit:

I feel like some shows make a title sequence before they really realize what the vibe of the show is going to be and the title scene just doesn’t fit. For instance, Pretty Little Liars, I love Pretty Little Liars but I will never understand why they made the title sequence as it was, the colouring wasn’t the same, the song didn’t feel like the right tone for the show, all of it feels off to me.

credit to owner of video

Similarly, Grey’s Anatomy; I also love Grey’s however, when you go back to the early seasons it is really off putting seeing the Grey’s title sequence as it, for me at least, doesn’t fit the show. The title sequence they put in makes Grey’s look like it is far more sexual than it is, yes there are a lot of relationships and drama in Grey’s but there is also a hell of a lot of medicine and the title scene, if I hadn’t seen the show first, would have made me not want to watch the show because of the message and vibe it gives off.

She’s the only girl who doesn’t throw herself at me, so I like her…

What a tired storyline which is really quite disgusting when you think about it. Let’s consider just recently, the entire premise of the Kissing Booth was he liked her because everyone else wanted him, gross! This also kind of perpetuates that most girls will just throw themselves at an attractive man which is just disrespectful. Complex characters please!

One best friend has always loved the other – then they date…

I really hate this one too. Just think of a better plot because if one friend has always loved the other, and the other never saw them that way then why do they deserve to suddenly realize how great their friend is, why didn’t they notice before.

And obviously we can’t forget;

Main Character syndrome…

But, I’ll spare y’all from hearing this one again, if you want to know more about this one check out my post here:

Now, I’m sure that isn’t all the pet peeves I have but it’s all I could think of for this post. Please comment yours down below and whether any of mine made it on to your list! I’d love if you checked out some or my other posts of my socials down below:

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Let’s figure out why ‘The Haunting of Bly Manor’ sucked…

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Okay, so I finally got around to watching Bly Manor and I know I’m late to the game but hey. Anyway, my main theme is disappointment. I loved Hill House, I thought it was great honestly and I’ve have re-watched Hill House multiple times. But, for me at least, Bly Manor just didn’t meet expectations.

So I’ll just go over what I thought was so great about Hill House!

  • There was always things going on, ghosts or what not. There was always something new and interesting happening so you weren’t quickly bored by watching. We also can’t forget the hidden ghosts in the background!
  • The flashbacks were directly related to those in it and their flashbacks were connected.
  • Character development: I think by the end of the show the character development was so apparent and it was so well-rounded. You couldn’t deny that Theo came into her own and accepted her abilities and stopped hiding from them, she allowed herself to find closeness. Luke worked so hard on his sobriety, the other siblings found some faith in honesty and everyone came to terms with their childhood.
  • Everything had a purpose; the people who worked at hill house, their daughter, the ghosts, there was no wasted time. For example, showing the cats dying was a clear way to present Shirley’s fascination with death and therefore her career.

  • The ending: I think the ending of Hill House is perfect, seeing Steven reconnect with his wife and start a family, their father giving his life to save his kids a second time but ending up with the love of his life, Luke reaching his two years sobriety made me cry. And also, while the staff at Hill House were not integral to the story, I became attached to them in those little moments and when they had discovered their child had died, pleading to be able to stay with her, to the point when her and her husband ultimately die in Hill House together and reunite with their family. Gives me chills just thinking about it. Theo overcoming her life long fear of closeness and her powers to let someone in and let herself be who she is. Such an emotional rollercoaster which I think perfectly rounded up the stories. Although, I must note that some don’t believe this was the true ending but I choose to believe that is how it happened.

However, I was let down by Bly Manor…

I haven’t heard much about Bly Manor and maybe that is just because I hadn’t watched it but when I watched the first 3 and a half episodes and I was seriously bored. It was draining to watch the show for me and I feel like nothing happened. I hate slow burn, this is something you will learn about me through many of my posts. I cannot believe how little happened in the first 4 episodes of Bly Manor.

I feel as though setting the entire show inside of someone telling a story is lazy and instantly let me down. The friends I watched it with also felt this. In Hill House as things moved forward there was a specific point that they were getting to, everyone was getting to the point when they found out their sister had died, then flashing back to events in their lives which shaped them. We weren’t just hearing it about it and all this basic stuff.

I should know who the narrator is, I watched 3 episodes of the show and don’t know who the narrator was in relation to the story. Why would I care about the narrator if they don’t tell me straight away who it is, especially when she is telling me about other peoples lives. I know some people did guess who the narrator was but her accent is different in the story vs. when it is being told and I honestly didn’t care the decipher who the narrator was because I was so uninterested in the “story” I just wanted to see the events play out.

I also just couldn’t get past the accents, they couldn’t have just set it in America? Picked an American haunting? Hired British people to play the roles? It was so distracting to me especially when using actors whom we have all heard speak in Hill House in their regular accents or in ‘You’.

I also kind of felt like I was watching the movie ‘The Boy’ if anyone has seen it. Because, they shrouded the main girl (who is a nanny) in mystery of what/who she is running away from. She even had run away to England to be a nanny, just like The Boy. She arrived and it was a giant old British home, similar again and there were no ‘parents’ around in either. There were however others who worked there. I don’t know if anyone else felt like this but I seriously felt like I was watching that movie, however it was going so much slower than that movie. Let me know if you felt this connection yourself? It obviously isn’t perfect but it reminded me of that.

I wasn’t given a reason to care about all the past characters; in Hill House we cared because they were a family, their sister had died and we were learning about their hard childhood and their connections to each other up until the point she had died. But, in Bly Manor, I don’t really care who the previous au pair was, I needed to care before I saw her story. I don’t particularly care about the man who “stole all the money”, because he wasn’t related in any way to the main girl and he also wasn’t around until the very end and even then he didn’t have much impact. They also waited too long (in my opinion) to show the Dani’s story, I feel like I needed to feel some emotional attachment far earlier in the show, they could have sprinkled her story in as opposed to throwing a lot of it in at once, 4 episodes in. Or just done her story in the first or second episode. I understand keeping the mystery behind the ghost and such around, that would have been interesting, if I knew anything about her or her story.

Also, Dani has been followed by the ghost of her fiancé for years, that’s cool, wish it mattered! The whole first half of the show she’s all worried about him following her and thinking he is going to do something to her but it literally didn’t matter. It didn’t come to anything. Sure, maybe that is why Dani can see the ghosts at Bly and others can’t however, that isn’t explicitly explained. And they just kind of forgot about her fiance after she was hanging out with him outside. So, unless I missed something, he didn’t need to be there. What a waste of time.

Also, let’s get back to the premise of the story, she is telling a story at a rehearsal dinner, but really it is Flora’s rehearsal dinner. Okay fine, I’m still irritated that she was telling a story to begin with I would’ve preferred them structure it differently but whatever. BUT, she tells the story with details she couldn’t possibly know. The woman in the lake and her sister’s story, the gardener she had no way of knowing. It happened so long ago and by the time the gardener started to work there, the lady had already lost her face. So, it just doesn’t work for me. She had absolutely no way of knowing the lady in the lake’s story. She also couldn’t possibly know certain things which happened to the other people, Dani, sure but not Mrs. Grose or Miles. Not to mention her accent changed entirely from being the narrator to when she worked at Bly making me, once again unable to connect them.

Also, some of the characters who I would have liked to see events in their past, we didn’t and instead we saw dumb stuff like the little boy jumping out of a tree or the ghosts stories.

And finally, the ending. I know some people liked the ending but I really didn’t. I don’t feel like I needed to watch the whole thing for Dani to just die anyway because she basically gave herself to the lake. What a wonderful ending? We watch her start to live a life, plagued with Bly until she just gives in and dies. I would have preferred it just end after they didn’t all get killed that last night at Bly but that’s just me. Even a cliffhanger could have been interesting ending with her being both Dani and the lady in the lake.

I know this was basically a whole list of just problems with Bly but I will give them credit for the way they had Mrs. Grose never eat anything. It was so subtle that it added a bit of mystery but without being so overt that you had to notice. Little details like that make a show for me and they are what made Hill House, so I did think that was good. I was honestly more interested for the first few episodes in why she never eats than I was in the ghosts or children.

Also, I think Mrs. Grose being dead the whole time was well done, she was acting strangely the whole time but she was also always around and doing her job, she appeared alive and for her to not know herself that she was a ghost is so interesting to me. I think of all the parts of the show, she was executed the best.

All that said, The Haunting of Bly Manor is okay, it isn’t amazing and was definitely a let down for me especially since I enjoyed Hill House so much. I feel like they could have easily restructured the season, added some more actual scares (because it just wasn’t scary) and it would have been a lot better. But I had to force myself to finish it in order to write this so I hope you enjoyed.

Thanks as always for reading, please like or share if you enjoyed this post. Also, don’t forget you can sign up to get emailed when I post at the bottom of the page or check out my Facebook: Simply My Thoughts Blog and Instagram: @simplymythoughts_blog