Life after ‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘Stranger Things’

Pop Quiz :

From the Game Of Thrones—Cersei kisses Tyene Sand with what Poison on her lips?

From Stranger Things 2—Who was the founder of the AV Club?

From Mindhunter—Debbie drives the VW Beetle, which real life serial killer used to drive the same model?

(answers at the end of the article)

If you answered all the above questions correctly, then congratulations. You are among the legion of fans who have made the word ‘Binge’ the coolest contemporary mode of spending the weekend away. If you find any of your friends behaving reclusive and abnegate his group responsibilities of going out, well, you have found another member of the “Binge till the eyes Singe” cult group.

Better content quality and a plethora of options to choose from, makes us clamor for the gadgets at our disposal immediately after crashing on the sofa after a hectic day. The reason I started with that mini quiz was to ascertain if this article holds any value for you. We all know the buzz created by the universally acclaimed TV series going around, the Game Of Thrones and the likes. For those who have gobbled up those top names like those Demo-Dogs gorging on some Bob meat (apologies for the graphic image I must have inadvertently created in your mind), this article is for you. Here is a list of few other series which you can give a look in. These are new ones, mostly launched during H2 of 2017, so you can catch up pretty soon.

SMILF—

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Well, first of all, lower your expectations. Contrary to what you might assume it is, this is a hard hitting, almost bordering on uncomfortable story about a single mother who is struggling to raise her son and make something of her fledgling acting career. Frankie Shaw is the lead and director and she takes no time to introduce us to the situation her character finds herself in. A failed marriage and loneliness haunt her and makes the audience feel her plight as well as root for her when she goes on an audition or tries to woo the neighborhood Basketball hottie.

I happened to watch the Bollywood movie ‘Tumhaari Sulu’ recently and this series has similarity in its tonality and struggle and the uplift through perseverance of both the lead characters. While Sulu is a housewife with a loving husband and a sluggish life, Bridgette has bigger challenges in front of her. First of those being providing for her small family of two.

ROOM 104—

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This series is Chicken Popcorn with sauce! 22-25 minutes run time of each episode and a different storyline every time. You can start anywhere and end anywhere. Irrespective of the fact that you finish all the episodes or watch a couple, you will realize how the Room 104 of a unassuming motel weaves each story with enigma and mystery. I particularly enjoyed episodes 5 and 6, titled “ The Internet” and “Voyeurs” respectively.

“The Internet” revolves around an Indian writer trying desperately to teach his mother how to use his laptop to send him a document he urgently requires. The stultifyingly mundane quickly turns into a discussion about origins and frustrations hidden over years.

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“Voyeurs” is experimental beauty. With no dialogues and a ballet throughout, this episode revolves around a old maid who reminisces her past and her struggle as an escort, as the memories hurt, but she dances till those memories are as tired as her body.

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GIFTED—

At the turn of the century, Marvel made a bold yet ambitious move to create cinematic universes where its huge repertoire of superheroes will fight crime/save the earth, basically do superhero things. In 2000 they came out with X-Men with an entourage of known faces and a movie replete with powerful meta-creatures and high octane action sequences. When Marvel first announced itself on the Big screen it created universes for us fans to relive our childhood, at the same time giving the characters the right amount of gravitas and juxtaposing action with relatable stories and likable A-List stars to pull in the audience. Since the release if the first X-Men movie, Marvel has launched individual superhero stories, made a cinematic universe where the various superheroes converge to save the day. From 2000 to 2017 it has delivered more than 20 superhero movies which have made them millions. Still, Marvel hasn’t touched the same kind of success on TV as they have on the big screen. A perfect time for a few younger X-Men to show up on our TV screens and immediately drop us into a race against the government and humans and self-exploration.

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Do not expect any depth in story telling or character development of any notable order. But rest assured, you will have fun. And you will connect with the family forced to become fugitives after the children reveal themselves as meta-humans accidentally and the father cannot but do what any father would do in such a situation.

TVF Bachelors Season 2—

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This series returns for its second season after a highly successful first season which boasted of a stellar star cast which includes the superstar content creator Bhuvam Bam (from BB ke Vines fame). Although BB does not return, he is suitably replaced here by the supremely talented Jeetendra Kumar, TVF’s resident actor par excellence. The thing about Jeetu is that he has a tremendous likeability factor and coupled with his acting prowess, makes any series more than watchable. TVF has been a prolific content creator in India and I have been a huge fan of their work. So right from the announcement of season 2 to watching the first episode I did not wait even a second longer to watch it devotedly. Notification Squad, you see!

The first episode is a spoof of the hit “Chak De India” and Jeetu portrays a comical yet honest version of Shah Rukh Khan’s role. The episode focuses on the struggle for Jobs after studies which is all too real and may touch a nerve or two with the viewers. But along with the nerve it will touch your funny bones too as it is hilarious, a staple for any content coming from TVF. It has already racked up two million views. Hope the second episode keeps the flag flying high for these indigenous creators.

The answers to the questions asked above, in the same order—

  • The Long Farewell
  • Bob
  • Ted Bundy

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