Manila, 27 December—How did you unwind this year? For us, it was Netflix. People usually say there are a bajillion better things to do instead of binge-watching anything on TV, and while we've had our share of binge-regrets (sigh, The Alienist and Alias Grace), we found that Netflix's constantly growing library of media available on demand has been a treasure trove of excellent storytelling. As a fan of stories, we quite enjoyed them. Sharing some that made 2018 bearable and entertaining. We hope they made your lists, too.
SERIES RECAP 2018: In order of appearance, as in the last yearender
Black Mirror Season 4 (January). Oh man, this was how we opened 2018, and looking back, how apt right? All equally bleak episodes considered, my favorite ep is Hang the DJ, which is this season's San Junipero.
One Day At A Time (February). I adore this family so, so much. I love how it manages to touch on a wide range of issues—from race to sexuality to feminism and misogyny, to the war in Afghanistan and mental health. What a blessing this show has been.
Altered Carbon (February). Came for Dichen Lachman, stayed for the premise. Imagine a world where you can just load your consciousness into a new body—and live forever? Intriguing concept, action-packed execution. Also, Dichen Lachman.
Sense8 Seasons 1 and 2 (June). We were late to this party, but WOW what a party. Surreal and lovely and tender and action-packed in all the right places. The sets were magnificent and the actors we goshdarned amazing. Made me wish I had my own cluster.
Hannah Gadsby's Nanette (July). This year's hardest watch is also this year's most important one. In this, Gadsby deconstructs comedy and how it has failed queer comedians like her. We began watching not knowing what to expect and came out of it with more questions than answers—all for the better, I think.
Queer Eye Season 1 (July). I liked this reboot so much better than the first one. I think this group is so much more... grounded, and in touch with today's issues, and on the whole very, very kind. I have a hard time pinning down a favorite: Maybe JVN. Lovely.
Tig Notaro: Happy to Be Here (July). Two words: Indigo Girls. This was such a riot. We watched primarily to balance the heaviness we felt off "Nanette" and oh man. Tig Notaro's final gag is so damn good, and we're not even Indigo Girls fans. Haha.
OITNB Season 6 (July). My favorite inmates at Litchfield came back for the series' second to the last season, and I'll be the first to admit this season felt a bit flat due to the lack of a compelling Big Bad. Nevertheless, the girls pull through with an entertaining season.
Insatiable (August). Oh man, where do I begin about this show. I thought about putting this on the regret-bingepile, but I just couldn't; it was so damn entertaining. Full disclosure: This was sold to me as, "Uy parang Lipgloss!" so yeah. SOLD. NO REGRETS.
Maniac (September). Any series that would put Emma Stone and Jonah Hill together would surely turn some heads, and it did ours. This felt like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind had a baby with Black Mirror and Stranger Things. I like this Emma Stone better than the Emma Stone in La La Land, and that says a lot about La La Land. Jonah Hill is a revelation. Together, their characters Owen and Annie 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.
Salt Fat Acid Heat (November). Samin Nosrat travels all over the world to demonstrate how four core factors decide the fate of a dish. I'm not a cook, but I truly enjoyed this. Entertaining and informative. Watch while eating LOL.
The Haunting of Hill House (November). I'm not one to voluntarily subject myself to horror shows, but I am glad I gave Hill House a chance. Watched it twice this year—a second time with siblings over the Christmas break—and finally understood the other parts I had survived with closed eyes haha.
She-Ra and the Princesses of Power (December). I'm a fan of the original She-Ra, an icon from my early childhood, so I approached this reboot with caution, only to find that there was truly no reason to worry: The reboot is amazing and contemporary and updated. Adora is the hero today's young girls deserve. I am glad they have her, and Glimmer and Bow, and everyone else.
Supergirl Season 3 (December). I'm five thousand years late to the Sanvers break-up party, but I'm happy I'm finally onboard. I'm not as... unhappy, per se, that Alex and Maggie had to go their separate ways; I'm just happy no one is dying, period. Also, in that brief time they managed to tackle a lot of important issues. I'm glad.
The Good Place (year-long). I have never recovered from the Season 1 finale twist, and it only gets better. This wonderful bunch is motherforking amazeballs. We just watched the current season's mid-season finale, and oh my god, Janet.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine (year-long). Speaking of fantastic ensembles, you can't get any better than Brooklyn Nine-Nine. The latest season had Rosa's bisexual coming out moment, which we thought was so important. For a show full of cops, it's not so bad.
Killing Eve (BBC). This year's best performances, hands down. Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer are cat and mouse in this spy series that isn't on Netflix. Who's the cat and who's the mouse, though? Nailbiting and inexplicably queer and sexy until the last frame. Can't wait for Season 2!
Manifest (NBC). Oh jeez, this was a surprise. A flight encounters turbulence and when it lands, they discover that they have been missing for five years. It's an irresistible premise.
Rec your favorites!
Anything we missed this year? What were you obsessed with this year? What are you looking forward to in 2019? Let's yell about TV together :)