the final stretch

Manila, 30 September—I'd like to recommend two things we watched on Netflix: animated movie Next Genand limited series Maniac. I'm a sucker for media where malfunctioning technology intersects with malfunctioning human beings, and these two are perfect materials for exploring the space where tech meets intense human feelings like loneliness and grief.

REQUISITE SPOILER ALERT
First off, I can't rave enough about how Next Gen is a story about a girl and a robot. We rarely get girls and robots in the same story without the girl being too sexy, Transformers style. Think Big Hero 6 but the protag is a girl with anger issues, because her robot-obsessed mother constantly ignores her. The main villain here  launches much-awaited multi-tasking robots in an event that looks a lot like an iPhone launch and the parallels instantly drew me in. Also: Explosions! Robots! Girls standing up to bullies with baseball bats! Also, a robot that understands dog language. Honestly, what's not to love?   

Trailer: Next Gen (2018) is now on Netflix

REQUISITE SPOILER ALERT
Binged the whole ten-episode "limited series" format of Maniac over a couple of days. It's kind of like if Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind had a baby with Black Mirror and Stranger Things. Stellar performance from Emma Stone (I like this better than La La Land, and that says a lot about La La Land), but watch this for Jonah Hill, who is a revelation to me as schizophrenic Owen Milgrim. Together, Owen and Annie (Stone) join a pharmaceutical trial for a drug that promises to cure their mental illness. Trippy like fuck, hella confusing at some points, and a downright messy in the others. Quite a lovely ride, and, for all its bleakness, that was such a gorgeous ending. 

Maniac's ten-episode first and only season is streaming on Netflix.

LAUV ft Julia Michaels -
There's no way 

h/t Ana Roa, thanks for the rec!
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