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The Rock Staff Presents: Christmas Break Bingewatching

It’s almost my favorite time of the year. Not Christmas, but rather the week in between Christmas and New Years when there’s nothing to do but kick back, hang out, and relax. For me this has come to mean spending the cold days in my heated home and binge watching a TV show. If you’re anything like me then hopefully The Rock’s show recommendations can help guide you through the eventual doldrums of winter break.

Fargo” – FX/Hulu  

“FX’s Fargo is my favorite show on television. Based on the hit Coen Brothers movie from the 90s, Fargo is a dark comedy true crime anthology series set in the frozen tundras of Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The accents are hokey, the acting is superb, and the violence, while gratuitous, is almost comical. Fargo is an anthology series, however there are subtle connections between the two seasons so it is still recommended that one watch them in order. Each season is an easily bingeable 10 episodes and I simply cannot recommend it enough.” – Paul Shuler ‘19

Atlanta” – FX original series

“For a show with only one season out, Atlanta hooked me from pilot episode. The show is created and starred by Donald Glover, who is just simply a really talented and hilarious person. Focused on life of Atlanta rappers and people of color, each episode provides a different angle of the hip-hop life that people rarely know but is just too real. Atlanta is not like your common sitcoms, but a show that actually raises racial questions for the audience and makes them think while laughing. The pace of the show is pretty slow, but at the same time makes you feel like 20 minutes are way too short.” – Siqi Wang ‘19

“Westworld” – HBO

“You know that show everyone’s been telling you to watch for the past month and a half? The one about futuristic robot cowboys or something that your friends can’t stop talking about? Westworld without a doubt lives up to any and all hype you’ve heard about it and if you haven’t seen it yet, make it your top priority over break. Lock yourself in your room, ignore your family, skip Christmas, whatever you need to do. The ends justify the means. If you’re on the fence about it for whatever reason, maybe you think it’s too sci-fi or you just hate good television, do yourself a favor and watch the first episode, then get back to me and we can talk about what a fool you were for not getting into the show 5 weeks ago. It’s that good. And remember, as mind blowing as the show is in the first couple of episodes…keep watching, because it only gets better.” – Alex Ricciardelli ‘18

The West Wing”- Netflix

The West Wing is simply brilliant- after only watching the first half of season 1, I already knew that it would number among my favorite shows of all time. I still haven’t finished it on Netflix- but that distinction hasn’t changed in the slightest. It’s uplifting, it’s funny, and the characters are unforgettable; not to mention, it’s often extremely poignant, with relevance even today, 10 years after the show ended. The show also practically invented the “walk and talk”- thanks for that, Aaron Sorkin (did I mention he wrote this? Yeah, it’s that good). If you need a positive picture of the United States government in the wake of the election- look no further than this masterpiece.”- Emmett Walsh ‘18

Glitch” – Netflix

“Normally Sci Fi-ish stuff isn’t my style, but my roommate got me hooked on this one. It’s a really interesting premise with people coming back from the dead in this small Australian town, and it weirdly enough doesn’t feel as ‘out there’ as it sounds. The characters are super interesting, and it’s generally just really well written. Good choice if you have commitment issues like me since there’s only six 50-minute episodes.” – Grace Rice ‘18

“Channel Zero: Candle Cove” – Syfy

“My roommates and I LOVE scary movies, and but we didn’t feel like committing to a movie one night because we wanted to go to bed at a reasonable hour. We stumbled onto “Channel Zero”… and suddenly it’s 3am, we had binge watched the first five episodes, and I made everyone turn on every light in the suite because I was freaked out and didn’t want to go to bed in the dark. It doesn’t try to startle or shock you like a lot of movies, it’s just extremely creepy, and it builds up as each episode goes on. I’ve yet to watch the final episode, but I expect it to be just as good as the rest.” – Saidhbhe Berry ‘17

The League” – Netflix

“I watch stupid tv shows. I like funny things that make me laugh. Television is twenty minutes for me to not think. This show is hilarious, if you are into crude humor. The League covers the misadventures of lifelong friends and their uber-competitive fantasy football league. I have to reiterate though, do not judge my own intellect on the substance of this tv show. Then you will think I am very stupid. And while I am obviously dumb, I am sure as Hell not stupid.” – Matt McCarthy ‘19

Archer” – FX/Netflix

“Look, nobody ever said that all television had to be intelligent and meaningful. Every show doesn’t need some deep-seeded question of life or moral dilemma. In fact, Archer is the exact opposite of all of that. It’s a mockery of everything that real TV and film, particularly anything spy or crime related, stands for. It details the story of Sterling Mallory Archer, the self-proclaimed ‘greatest secret agent in the world’ (and rightfully so, dude’s an unintentional genius). The show plays on the most glaring of humanity’s flaws, and habits, particularly through incredulous amounts of cynicism, using any and every mocking tone possible. It’s a show where you can sit down for 20 minutes or 2 hours and just laugh because it’s clever without seemingly trying to be. It’s just great, so watch it and great ready to enter the Danger Zone.” – Korey Ryan ‘18

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