To all those celebrating today, Merry Christmas!
This week's roundup is the final one of 2020 and I can't believe it. I used to write about every show and movie I watched individually, but once we went into lockdown in March, it was clear we were all streaming much, much more content. I hope you've found these helpful over the past nine months and that they've led you to discover things you loved. If you'd like to revisit any of the previous lists, you can find all of them on my TV recaps page.
Before we dive into this week's picks, here are a few things to look forward to in January:
- Tuesday, January 19 - Seasons one - nine of How I Met Your Mother will become available on Amazon Prime. I used to love this show and it might be time for a re-watch. "Have you met Ted?"
- Thursday, January 21 - Call My Agent returns to Netflix with season four. This French show is about a group of talent agents in Paris and their very eccentric clients.
- Friday, January 22 - Back in July 2019 Netflix released a reality competition show called Blown Away featuring glass blowers. Stay with me! While I was skeptical at first, watching these artists create stunning works in a limited amount of time was nothing short of incredible. In a few weeks, the show will be back with season two.
I did a lot more streaming this week, so coming at you with five recommendations today.
1. Home for Christmas, Season 2 (Netflix) - I adore this show. I binged season one and as soon as I heard there would be a season two, I waited eagerly! The six new episodes were released last Friday and I loved this new round even more than the first!
When we are reunited with Johanne, she has a new boyfriend. She's also learned that her parents are considering separating, and in the wake of that, she's decided to host the whole clan for Christmas.
There's family drama, new romances, and so much holiday cheer. It will make you want to book a trip to Norway! I'd also like to have one of those sled / scooter things Johanne uses to ride around her idyllic town.
The show is originally Norwegian, so you can watch with subtitles. I was able to watch it dubbed in English, so check if you can adjust your Netflix settings to allow you do that.
I love this new batch of episodes so much that I may re-watch them.
2. A Teacher (FX on Hulu) - A few of the podcasts I listen to recommended this show on Hulu called A Teacher. Kate Mara stars as Claire, a young, high school English teacher who has an affair with one of her students.
The boy's name is Eric and his whole life turns upside down as he lies to everyone around him in order to keep meeting up with her.
We see Eric's entire senior year of high school and his first year of college as he attempts to move on from this relationship. We also watch Claire suffer the consequences after their clandestine relationship becomes public.
I found myself completely gripped by this show and hitting "next episode" each time the credits would start to roll.
There are 10 episodes total, nine of which are currently available on Hulu. Episode 10 will be released on Tuesday, 12/29.
3. Excuse Me, I Love You (Netflix) - Music documentaries have become increasingly popular this year (Taylor Swift, Shawn Mendes) and the newest one comes from pop princess Ariana Grande. I was excited to watch this because I hoped it would bring fans behind the scenes of her life on tour.
In the end, the movie is really a live concert, with about 15 minutes of back stage and rehearsal footage. I guess the Shawn Mendes documentary spoiled me with candid interviews, giving me higher hopes for this one.
I did still enjoy it, but I don't think you need to sit down and watch this. Put it on as background music while you wrap presents, paint your nails or clean the house.
4. New Girl (Netflix) - I used to watch New Girl each week back when it aired live on FOX. I wound up giving up on it when Jess got a British boyfriend (I can't even remember what season that was).
I recently decided to revisit it because I needed something light to watch before bed. I started at the very beginning with season one and I've been laughing through every episode.
There are seven seasons, so if you want to get really immersed in a show, there's plenty here to keep you busy!
5. Runaway Bride (Netflix) - I was overjoyed when I saw that one of my favorite rom-coms was added to Netflix! Runaway Bride co-stars Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. Roberts plays Maggie, a woman who always gets cold feet on her wedding day, and Gere plays Ike, a reporter who has arrived in her small town to cover her infamous habit.
These two have undeniable chemistry (which we all know from Pretty Woman) and this movie celebrates that relationship. It's one of my all-time favorites.
There you have it! This week's picks. If you are searching for some holiday classics to watch today and into the weekend, here are my top five favorites and where you can find them:
- Home Alone - available for free on Disney+ or to rent for $3.99 on Amazon Prime
- Elf - available to rent for $3.99 on Amazon Prime
- The Holiday - available to rent for $3.99 on Amazon Prime
- Love Actually - available to rent for $3.99 on Amazon Prime
- While You Were Sleeping - available for free on Disney+ and available to rent for $3.99 on Amazon Prime
*Images courtesy of Unsplash, Netflix, Netflix Life, Entertainment Weekly, Netflix, Hello Flo and Empire.