I’ve been keeping it cool and cosy lately because truly I don’t have the mental capacity for anything else. Since my birthday I’ve bought two hot water bottles and can be permanently found wrapped in blankets on the couch. As such I’ve been bingeing an awful lot of stuff in a effort to add comfort and joy to my life.
Here are a few shows – and a film – I’ve enjoyed lately.
Sharing is caring, after all.
The Undoing (2020)
Ugh. I smashed this in a day while completing boring reports for work – and I loved every minute. Therapist Grace Fraser (Nicole Kidman) leads the quintessential picture perfect life. A gorgeous home, a loving son and doting doctor husband, Jonathan (Hugh Grant). Until one day, following the horrific murder of a casual acquaintance, her life quite literally implodes overnight. But how connected is she to the death really?
Well this one kept me guessing to the end and I flip flopped by the minute on who I thought dunnit – and texted Helen throughout with my thoughts. I had every man, woman and their dog pegged at one point. It’s very gripping and stunning to look at – and Grant in particular brings a real charisma to his character. I love seeing him in non-bumbling romantic lead roles.
The Queen’s Gambit (2020)
Orphaned at the tender age of nine, prodigious introvert Beth Harmon discovers and masters the game of chess in 1960s USA. But child stardom comes at a price.
This seems to be the show du jour – and I’m fully onboard. I haven’t quite finished it – and I do feel it dragged in the last episode I saw but overall, this is a stunning period piece which genuinely glamorises the game of chess and invests you in the outcome, which is no mean feat.
I have a huge crush on Anya Taylor-Joy and her costumes are out of this world. But at the heart it’s also a really touching story of loss and escaping the harsh realities of a shitty world.
Ps. The deeper Beth Harmon sinks into oblivion (drink and drugs, yo), the better she looks. How is this fair?!
Dash & Lily (2020)
A whirlwind holiday romance builds as cynical Dash and optimistic Lily trade dares, dreams and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations all across New York City.
This is just a cute one to pop on if you need your cockles warmed. It’s also prettily festive and perfect for right now, especially if you’re struggling to get into a Christmas mood. Midori Francis who plays Lily is so adorable and following her across New York city is a joy, regardless of whether she’ll finally meet Dash (Austin Abrams from Euphoria).
Stage Mother (2020)
A conservative church choir director inherits her late son’s San Francisco drag club.
This film annoyed me in some ways but if you choose to take it for what it is, it’s a lot of camp fun and very sweet. Jacki Weaver is Maybelline Metcalf, a very conservative lady estranged from her gay son, drag queen Rickey (Eldon Thiele). When Rickey accidentally overdoses and dies, Maybelline leaves to attend his funeral in San Fran, very much against her husband’s wishes. Here she learns all about the life he led in the ten years she hadn’t spoken to him. With heart-warming results.
It’s very straight CIS white woman saviour time up in this joint but it means well and I can assure you that I got a lump in my throat a few times. Lucy Liu (but not my girl Drew) lights up my life as troubled single-mother Sienna and although the final number is a bit too cringey even for my taste, it was fitting.
This might have worked better as a show, honestly because I’d like to see more of the cast and follow some of their personal arcs.