This year, my friend Amanda had an amazing year, arguably her best year yet. After a lengthy struggle with infertility, she, her husband and her son welcomed triplets. (I dare you to peruse snippets of this journey on her Facebook page and not chuckle or shed a tear.) The road to delivery, as is par for the course with most multiple pregnancies, meant a lengthy dose of bed rest — hers was 10 solid weeks. Doctor’s orders: to gain weight and stay in bed. “I eat cheeseburgers and mouth-breathe like it’s my job,” I remember her telling me over the phone.
She was running out of shows to binge-watch during this time, so I told her I’d send her a list of my favorites. As a theatre graduate whose former career was that of auditioning actor in New York City and a lifelong lover of movies and TV shows, I fancy myself a connoisseur of all things “show.” I grew up watching old movies with my grandmother — I loved the magnetism between Spencer Tracey and Katherine Hepburn, the grace of Gene Kelly and the pizzazz of Esther William’s synchronized-swimming musicals. My mom took us to Blockbuster and Movie Gallery almost daily throughout the ’80s and ’90s. So, naturally, in the current heyday of online TV series, I’m like a kid in a candy shop. And with the word “binge-watch” making its 2003 debut in Merriam-Webster, I know I’m not alone.
So, I took it upon myself to shower Amanda with the gift of a lengthy email detailing my all-time favorite and definitely (in my humble opinion) binge-worthy shows. And now, fair SB reader, since the holiday hustle will soon come to an end, it’s time to slip into your own binge-watching, bed-rest haze. So here, I gift my wonderful list of binge-worthy shows upon YOU as well! Happy holidays and happy binge-watching!
Your Ultimate Binge-Watch Bible for the 2017 Holidays
Top Serious (more or less) Shows of All Time
- “Orphan Black“
- “Breaking Bad“
- “Game of Thrones“
- “The Wire“
- “Big Little Lies“
- “Black Mirror“
- “Stranger Things” & “Stranger Things 2” (now on Netflix)
- “Bloodline” (Seasons 1 & 2 — Season 3 lost me.)
- “Mr. Robot“
- “The OA“
- “True Detective” (The first one — I haven’t seen any follow-ups!)
- “Making a Murderer“
- “The Walking Dead“
Comedies & Comedic Dramas
- “Vice Principals” (HBO — funniest series I think I’ve ever watched! Best comedy of the year, hands down. And now I have to see “Eastbound and Down,” also created by and starring Danny McBride.)
- “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel“
- “GLOW” (Stands for “Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling.” The lead actress TOTALLY won my heart in this show!)
- “Mad Men“
- “Six Feet Under“
- “Mozart in the Jungle” (Romance & humor … great show!)
- “Friends from College“
- “Orange Is the New Black“
- “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt“
- “Impractical Jokers” (Belly laughs every time!)
Old-School Comedy You Can’t Beat
- “Freaks & Geeks” (Early Judd Apatow; anyone who’s been through puberty should see this.)
- “The Carol Burnett Show“
- “Key and Peele“
- “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia“
- “The Dean Martin Show” (Fascinating and wonderful!)
- “M*A*S*H” (In all fairness, it’s comedic drama.)
Random British Shows (because yes, I have a mild obsession)
- “The Crown” (Season 2 is out now!)
- “French & Saunders“
- “Absolutely Fabulous“
- “Downton Abbey“
- “The Tudors“
- “Broadchurch” & “Happy Valley” (Both are British murder mysteries & I can’t remember which is which!)
- “Fawlty Towers” (Old-school Brit sitcom starring John Cleese)
- “The IT Crowd” (SO funny!)
- “The Office” (The original British one)
- “The Mighty Boosh” (Very artsy/abstract, but very funny sketch comedy show)
Things I Started and Liked, But Never Finished
Next On My List …
EDITOR’S NOTE: If you get through all of the above, you’ll not only win a gold award for being a top binge-watcher, but you can also move on to these top recommendations from the rest of the StyleBlueprint team.
From Elizabeth Fox, StyleBlueprint Cofounder:
“Lonesome Dove” always delivers, and my daughter Lucy loves “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.” Also Zodiac is a 2-hour movie that is so good!
From Liza Graves, StyleBlueprint Cofounder:
“The Americans” is so good (95% rating on Rotten Tomatoes)! The final season comes out on FX in 2018, so it’s the perfect time to catch up and then be just as excited about the final season as I am!”
From Bailey Torkelson, SB Birmingham Client Success Representative:
I loved “Girlboss!” There’s only one season. It’s not appropriate for the entire family, but cute and fun to watch!
From Annie Reeves, SB Nashville General Assistant:
“The Newsroom,” “Master of None,” “Veep” and “Black Mirror” are some of my favorites, but they’re all relatively old. “Riverdale” is great for some very terrible high school drama based on the Archie comics.
From Megan Casey, SB Director of Marketing:
“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” “New Girl,” “Mindhunter,” “Grace and Frankie,” “The Standups,” “Black Mirror,” “American Horror Story,” “Fuller House,” “How To Get Away With Murder,” “13 Reasons Why,” “Gypsy,” “The Fall,” “Dexter,” “The People vs. OJ Simpson” and “Prison Break”
From Martha Dickerson, SB Memphis Client Success Representative:
I, like everyone and their mother, am absolutely OBSESSED with “The Crown.” I saw it was on last year’s list, but I would argue that Season 2 is even better than the first. The other binge-worthy show I love is “The Man in the High Castle.” It’s an alternate history about what the world would have been like if the Axis powers had won. Season 3 is premiering in January, so it’s a good time for people to get all caught up!
Happy binge-watching — enjoy these lazy winter days!
Still want more? Check out our previous years’ holiday watch lists: