Comfort Watch – End of 2016.

Dear ladies and gents,

can we all agree that 2016 sucked? On a scale from 1 to 10, where 1 would be mildly unpleasant and 10 would be rocking in the corner popping xanax, I’d say 2016 was an 11?

John Oliver is right.

I cry/laughed through this episode. Enough said.

If this year taught us anything it’s that things can always get worse. But let’s hope 2017 is kinder to us all. In the meantime let’s huddle up and try to make it through these last weeks of 2016. And we all know what that means – comfort TV. It’s very big in my house, together with comfort food and comfort cakes.

Grand Designs

OMG Grand Designs! It hosted by Kevin McCloud and airs on Channel 4. It’s about rich people who have a bit too much time and money on their hands. So they decide that they want to build these huge ass tree houses, rebuild castles, live in water towers or whathaveyou. A few months down the road they are usually gazillion pounds in debt and living in a manky trailer on the property (and sometimes the wife is also pregnant). Then once Grand Designs do a follow up, the husband is all – oh we did it and he’s showing off the house and the wife is standing next to him, guzzling down wine, giving him the side eye being all bish please. At any rate – you get the gist, rich people doing silly things.

The Great British Bake Off

This year’s Bake Off was the last year of the Bake Off as we know it. As you are probably aware the show was sold to Channel 4 (as they said on Popbitch – Channel 4 paid Ł25 million for a tent and a few ovens. Which you know boggles the mind). Marry Berry, Sue and Mel are staying with the BBC and Paul Hollywood isn’t. But if you are new to the Bake Off, there are 7 seasons to enjoy. Warm, cozy, funny and with tons of cake. What could be better?

Planet Earth

Well technically it’s Planet Earth II. But you know, whatever. Hosted by sir David Attenborough it is everyone’s favorite nature documentary series. Visually it’s stunning. Simply stunning. High definition and all that jazz. Plus you learn tons. It’s not all smooth sailing though, it’s nature after all. So there might be some scenes of animals being horrible to each other. Like someone gets eaten. Or strangled. Or something. Just a warning in advance (I’m thinking of your stress levels). Other than that – well worth the watch.

Gogglebox

It’s people watching TV and talking sh*t. I know. I KNOW! But watch one episode, I’m sure you’ll enjoy it. If not, you can come here and call me a silly cow.

Supernatural

I have watched Supernatural for 12 years now. 12 years!!! And despite the blood and the gore, it has become a comfort watch for me. See, in Supernatural you know who the bad guys are. And the Winchesters are trying to save the world. Time and time again. Even when the odds are stacked against them. Which is all the freaking time. They just don’t give up. And you have to admire that.

Sitcoms

Good sitcoms are hard to fine. So hard to fine. How else can we explain the success of Two and a Half Men? Jesus. It’s like wherever you go in the world, if you switch the TV on, one of the channels will have Two and a Half Men on. Like CSI: Miami. Only CSI: Miami is funnier. At any rate, the sitcoms I have watched and enjoyed of late – Fresh Off The Boat. Black-ish. The Goldbergs. Almost any old UK sitcom will do nicely too.

So tell me – what is you go-to comfort watch?

If you need some distraction…

Dear ladies and gents,

I have ODed on news of late. Stuff that has been happening in my own country, across the Europe and world in general makes me think the world is imploding.

So this would be me watching the news:

kingsspeech

Hey, I never said I was not vulgar. But yeah.

I’m not saying to stop watching the news (that’s just irresponsible, we need to be informed. It’s mandatory that we are informed. Look what happens when people take things at face value. Dimwits get away with shit, that’s what. UGH I’ll stop now or I’ll get a case of the stabbies again).

So we need a distraction. Good heavens do we need a distraction.

If you like noir…

hinterland

Hinterland – the original title of the series is Y Gwyll (it was produced by BBC Cymru Wales). It stars Richard Harrington as DCI Tom Mathias who moves to Aberystwyth (west coast of Wales) to take on a new job. He is dark and brooding and lives in a camper van and is great at his job. So you know, the regular noir kinda stuff. The good news is that I’m kinda late with this one (it premiered in 2013) so there are 9 episodes altogether to catch up on. Again great stuff if you like noir.

If you like crime…

new-blood

New Blood – I was surprised how much I liked New Blood. Written by Anthony Horowitz (the dude wrote a number of episodes of Midsomer Murders, Foyle’s War, Collision, Injustice) this is a crime drama about Arash Sayyad (played by Ben Tavassoli) and Stefan Kowolski (played by Mark Strepan). Arash works for the police force, while Stefan works for the Serious Fraud Office. Two get thrown together on a complicated case involving a pharma company. This is not high brow stuff, it’s a buddy crime drama, but I liked it all the same. Also? ALL the London porn.

If you like gentle comedies…

mum

Mum – written by Stefan Golaszewski Mum is about Cathy (played by Lesley Manville), a recently widowed woman who is coming to terms with her grief after the death of her husband. The series follows her and her family over the course of a year. And now you are like – why you peddling this sad sh*t, we had enough sad sh*t?! It’s not, I swear. It’s subtle and funny and warm. Just trust me – you’ll love it.

An oldie, but goodie…

yourangmlord

You Rang M’Lord – if you haven’t seen this comedy written by Jimmy Perry and David Croft – OMG do! Seriously. I watched it ages ago and then revisited over the last few weeks. It’s brilliant. Then again Jimmy Perry and David Croft gave us Dad’s Army and Hi-De-Hi. The comedy is set in 1920s London and it is about the servants working for Lord Meldrum and the contrast between their lives and the lives of the upper crust people they serve. It’s funny and observant and shows how it all started to unravel back in the 20s.

Vera

Dear ladies and gents,

this here is Vera.

vera

Image via ITV.com

DCI Vera Stanhope to be precise. She is a detective with the Northumberland & City Police. Vera is produced by ITV and premiered back in 2011. It based on the series of books written by Ann Cleeves (who also wrote Shetland).

Now I’ve been binge watching Vera for the past few weeks (I finished with Daredevil and needed to binge watch something, okay?) There are many reasons to like Vera.

It’s a solid crime drama, the series is shot beautifully, the characters are complex and interesting and then there is the fabulous Brenda Blethyn (if you haven’t seen Secrets and Lies or Little Voice go, do it immediately! I mean, come on!)

I know it is a series about crime and murder and whathaveyou, but it’s a total comfort watch for me.

But what I like the best (THE BEST!) about it?

Vera above is not between 25 and 35 (although if you know anything about anything a lot (A LOT) of actresses and actors regularly shave off a few years so even those that claim they are perpetually 25 are not really).

Vera doesn’t have TV hair.

Vera is great at her f**king job.

Vera can be a pain in the arse.

Vera doesn’t suffer fools gladly.

I tried to think when was the last time I saw ANYTHING on US TV that had an older main female character? Harry’s Law. With Kathy Bates. And that got cancelled because it “skewed older”. They cancelled a show with OSCAR WINNER Kathy Bates because it skewed older. Harry’s Law btw pulled between 7 and 11 million people per episode.

really

Because everyone over the age of 35 belongs to an old people’s home really. Women especially.

remick-head-explosion-o

So watch Vera. I promise you’ll like it. And God bless UK TV because Vera there? Has been renewed for another season.

The Night Manager

Dear ladies and gents,

have you seen the Night Manager? You should. It’s really really good.

Based on the novel written by John le Carré the Night Manager is produced by BBC and AMC. It is about a former soldier Jonathan Pine (played by Hiddles). Jonathan gets recruited by an intelligence officer Angela Burr (played brilliantly by Olivia Coleman) to infiltrate the inner circle of one Richard Onslow Roper (played by Hugh Laurie). Now this Roper character is icky. Kinda creepy and sh*t. Angela calls him “the worst man in the world”. Don’t know that I would necessarily agree with that sentiment. Make no mistake, he IS bad, but honestly? There are politicians that are far worse. *cough*

At any rate – Jonathan goes deep undercover in order to gain Roper’s trust all the while trying to avoid alerting the intelligence community as to what he is doing. Because obvs Roper has the intelligence guys in his back pocket (goes to prove my point there are far worse people than some creepy arms dealer. Politicians namely. It’s the hypocrisy and the corruption that makes me shout obscenities at the tv on regular basis).

So tl; dr – the Night Manager is a snazzy looking crime thriller.

Hiddles is great (can I just say how refreshing it is to see him be all doom and gloom and sh*t and not farting rainbows for a change?)*, Olivia Coleman is absolutely superb and Hugh Laurie is obvs solid as ever. The pacing is a bit slow, but that’s AMC for you. Overall definitely worth the watch.

Which brings me to a single thing that has been bugging me. I’ll preface this to say I can be a shallow cow. Nothing to be proud of, but we’ve been hanging out for a while so I might as well be honest with you.

Please look at the image below:

Image via AMC

What the ever loving… lemme try again… what in the world… no. WHY are those pants?

They are giving me the vapors. And not in the good way. You’d think “the worst man in the world” would be able to shop at better places than Marks and Spencer’s clearance rack. Although I suspect even the kindliest M&S sales assistant would take one look at those pants and be all like

And before you tell me off for being a shallow bish just look at that abomination and tell me you don’t think those pants are ugly. Hugh Laurie is a fine looking gentleman and even he can’t make them work. These are not the pants of an arms dealer. These are pants of an eccentric old person who hikes them up all.the.time. Or that guy off Gogglebox. So yes, just… f*ck no.

*That said – if you need cheering up, watch this. This will never not make me laugh.