Ready, Set, Watch!
Written by Alexandru Badea
2016 may be over in a few weeks, but endings often mean new beginnings. Well, probably not for everyone, but series lovers are going crazy this fall/winter, as the binge watching season has just begun. If you still don’t know what I’m talking about, let me explain: usually at the beginning of fall, new TV series or new seasons of existing ones are being premiered. So, if you don’t know what’s on this autumn and this winter, we got you covered!
As we mentioned series which aired this summer, let’s stick to them first. Our top recommendation is by far Netflix’s Stranger Things, which was released this July and has taken the world by storm. On the night of November 6, 1983 the 12-year Old Will Byers vanishes on his way home. His mother, Joyce, together with his best friends, Dustin, Mike, and Lucas, and the sheriff search desperately for Will, but to no avail. The three boys discover a mysterious girl, nicknamed Eleven, who, even though doesn’t talk too much, claims to know their best friend’s location. But in order to get Will, they must confront terrifying forces. And while I do want to tell you more about the astounding show, I do not want to spoil you. So if you want to find out what happened to Will, the boys and Eleven, you had better head over to Netflix’s website and in 8 hours, after watching the 8-episode first season, you’ll have all the answers you need.
The series has been incredibly praised and has a Metascore of 76, a review score of 95% on Rotten Tomatoes and has held the crown for the most popular TV show on IMDb since its release. And don’t be afraid, Netflix renewed it for a second season, which is due to premiere in 2017.
Stranger Things is just one of the new TV series of the summer, along with HBO’s The Night Of and Freeform’s Guilt, both of which debuted in July. The series are very familiar, only the main characters are of opposite sex. In Guilt, Grace Atwood, a young American student, wakes up in London after a party to find out that her roommate and best friend, Molly Ryan, is dead, Grace becoming the main suspect. On the other hand, in The Night Of, the main character is again a college student, named Nasir Khan, who steals his father’s taxi and hooks up with a woman. When waking up during the night, Nasir finds the woman dead, stabbed 32 times, but doesn’t remember killing her, and just as in Guilt, he becomes the prime suspect. However, in Guilt, the plot thickens as Molly had a very complicated life and a list of numerous enemies.
The Night Of is not HBO’s only new show. Westworld premiered at the beginning of October and I was immediately blown away by the pilot. Westworld is the remake of the 1973 eponymous film and is about a dark augmented reality amusement park for wealthy adults, who can do whatever they want. The other people from the park are robots, or so-called “hosts”, who dub the role as gunslingers, brothel madams and ranchers’ daughters, while everything is set in the wild west.
Amazon’s Good Girls Revolt is set to premiere at the beginning of November and tackles the rising of the feminist movement in the US during the 1960s and is inspired by true events. The protagonists of the series is a group of women working at the News of the Week magazine (a fictional name for the magazine with a similar name, which inspired the show), who start a movement to allow women the right to be hired as editors, as back then only men were hired as editors. The show is based upon the Lynn Povich’s eponymous book.
But perhaps the most anticipated series of 2016 was Netflix’s The Crown, Netflix’s most expensive series, with a budget of over $130 Million, and the most expensive TV series ever made. The drama focuses on Queen Elizabeth II as a 25-year old newlywed, as she accents the throne, after her father’s sudden death. While the British Empire is in decline after World War II and the British people don’t have hope in the new queen, Elizabeth is faced with a series of challenges, both personal and political.
The series is expected to span over six seasons and 60 episodes. The first season hasn’t been released yet, but I can tell you one thing: it will be breathtaking, if it is just as good as the trailer. And while talking about British royalties, ITV’s new drama Victoria has a similar plot to The Crown, but this time, it follows the accession to the throne of the 18-year old Queen Victoria. It’s definitely worth watching, as a preparation to Netflix’s drama.
However, fall doesn’t mark just new series, but new seasons of returning ones. And this list is incredibly long, but we’ve showcased just some of the most important and some of the most expected ones. The classic Modern Family is back for an eighth season to follow the lives of the Dunphy, Delgado and Tucker-Prichett families. Scream’s second season will finally come to an end with their 13th, Halloween episode, and Mr. Robot’s second season also came out this summer.
ABC’s thrilling series Quantico is finally back with a second season and if you don’t know what happened in the first one, let me give you a brief summary: FBI’s top agent Alex Parrish is found at the crime scene at the US’ biggest terrorist attack since 9/11 and is charged guilty.
As she escapes the FBI custody, she tries to uncover the mystery of who bombed the Grand Central terminal. But I had better let you find out yourself what happened to Alex and what awaits her in the second season.
ABC has also renewed Once Upon A Time for a sixth season, and while the previous seasons are hard to describe, try to imagine all the fairytales you read in your childhood, squished into one stunning show. The only thing I can tell you is that the Evil Queen is back and will be a sensational season, as the evil Regina has brought help from the dark side.
Continuing to the third show ABC has released this fall, How to Get Away with Murder’s third season is just as messy as the previous two. Annalise Keating is once again faced with a death, possible murder, and it’s much harder for her to cover up her previous mistakes, while also protecting her favourite students.
And speaking about death and murders, don’t scream: Fox’s Scream Queens is finally back and it is genius! And when I say genius, I mean genius. It’s one of the best series out there if you like mystery and comedy. While the first season of Scream Queens focused on the Kappa Kappa Tau sorority from the Wallace University, where a serial killer, dressed as the Red Devils mascot, targets and kills many sorority members and some other students, the second season is set in a clinic for incurable diseases, another serial killer emerges, this time dressed as a green monster, called the Green Meanie. Now, don’t get me wrong, this series is anything but scary. Okay, not quite. The show is breathtaking, thrilling and quite scary. But all in a fun way. It’s a comedy after all and was produced by the successful people behind Glee and American Horror Story. So, if you haven’t watched it already, please do it now. Trust me, you won’t regret it!
American Horror Story is also back with season six, called Roanoke, referring to the so-called “lost colony”. This year, the creators designed the season like those Discovery Channel “inspired by true events” shows, where the people in question would tell their story and other actors would reconstruct the action. Amazon’s The Man in the High Castle is coming back on December 16, just in time for Christmas with a spectacular second season, so once again, clear you schedule for the day and be prepared for something more phenomenal than you’ve ever seen.
So, if you didn’t know which show to watch this fall/winter, we got you covered. Just sign up for Netflix or Hulu (or use Popcorn Time — just saying) and start enjoying all these spectacular series. It’s worth it, trust me. And if you don’t remember which episodes you’ve watched and which not, download TVShow Time and add all your series there. TVShow Time is an app, somewhat like a social network for series lovers, crafted to monitor, count and remind you of the episodes watched and of the upcoming ones. Moreover, it tells you how much time you spent watching series. Mine is 1 day and 25 days. Can you beat me?
This article was featured in our 8th issue.