Tuesday, February 28th

I’m in a Trump Slump

This post is part of my ongoing relationship with Netflix as a Stream Team partner.

Oh, hi. Thanks for coming back here to talk about media stuffs even though I’ve been an absentee blogger lately. Like many, I’ve felt battered by the constant waves of horrific news and had a hard time getting motivated to work on creative pursuits outside of my job. I’m not saying things are better now, but I’m slowly getting my mojo back. Maybe I’m just getting used to how terrible things are.

Seriously though, it’s almost March. Can we get this impeachment process started already?

Luckily, we still have Netflix to keep our minds entertained. I can’t wait for the new seasons of my current favorites, Love and Master of None. In the meantime, I’ve watched a mix of good and bad things. So let’s get gossipy and talk about the bad ones! In fact, I bailed on all of these.

Offspring

Offspring TV Show

Offspring is an Australian dramedy that ran since 2010, was canceled, and is being resurrected this year. It was quite popular. The story is interesting enough, the characters showed depth and promise in the pilot. And yet…I can’t bring myself to watch more. Maybe I’ll change my mind later and revisit it. But for now I’m taking it off my list.

No Tomorrow

No Tomorrow TV show

I’m not sure what it is that turned me off about No Tomorrow. The premise is this: two good-looking people meet at the farmer’s market. He’s a crackpot free spirit who is trying to get through a bucket list of adventures before the apocalypse. She’s along for the ride because he’s hot and she’s bored. It’s a CW series and I’m just not into it.

Sensitive Skin

Sensitive Skin TV Show

I’ve written about Sensitive Skin before and complained about one particular character that ruined the first season for me. Even without this character, I couldn’t tolerate the second season. I love Kim Cattrall, but lordie, I hate this HBO Canada show. It’s stylish but that’s about it.

Magic Mike

Magic Mike

I know, I know. I shouldn’t have assumed Magic Mike was going to be a great film. And I didn’t! Obviously this movie caused a big sensation when it came out in 2012, yet I waited until a few days ago to watch it. I resisted easily because I do not like Channing Tatum. And I only watched it now because Louis CK did a bit about it when I saw him last month. I didn’t think it was going to be phenomenal or anything. But it might be the very worst movie I’ve ever seen. I couldn’t get through it in one sitting. Awful.

Do you watch Netflix series with a partner? Check out this funny video they made about sneaking episodes on the sly.

What have you watched lately? I want to know it all, the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Monday, January 2nd

The End of the World As We Know It, or Happy 2017.

Middle finger

This post is part of my ongoing relationship with Netflix as a Stream Team partner.

A new year is always a time of hope, starting fresh, rebirth. Even though the changing of a date doesn’t really change everything, it’s nice that so many of us are on board with these traditions. I always look forward to a new year, but this time I feel robbed of my enthusiasm.

As 2016 progressed and gained a reputation for being cursed, particularly with a tidal wave of beloved celebrities passing, there seemed to be a consensus that we’d be better off when the year ended. Except that we won’t be. Not in the United States at least, where we’ve willingly elected a racist, stupid, narcissistic piece of shit to be our next president. I admit that I never even entertained the notion that this was an actual possibility so I was stunned when the unthinkable happened. A tried and true Hillary Clinton fan, I thought Trump was her ideal opponent. Because who would vote for such a joke of a human? And yet, here we are.

I’m depressed not just for our future and that we are going to regress 50 years in a short amount of time, but that humanity itself seems to be going backward. We’re getting stupider, less empathetic, more divided. I’m scared and sad and I feel powerless. My coping mechanism is to bury my head in the sand and stop paying attention to the news. It’s the opposite of what I should be doing. I hope to turn it around and do my part to keep our country from slipping into the darkest regions of hell. But I’m not ready just yet.

I can’t let myself be too depressed when this is my daily reality:

Shower

I have the best family life. My little family at home and all my family in New Jersey and elsewhere…it’s all great. I’m extremely lucky and I know how good I have it. I want to protect it. I want Violet’s generation to grow up in a good world. I want my own generation to thrive. I want my parents generation to have their best years ahead of them, and not have everything they worked for go up in flames. So…yeah. 2017 scares me.

Hope Outdoor Gallery, Austin Texas

Airplane snuggles

Glasses

Family

Aside from letting a mad man destroy the world, there are some things to look forward to in 2017. I turn the big four-oh in less than two weeks. And this year we finally get the new Guardians of the Galaxy movie. (And a bunch of other cool pop culture stuff.) In August we’ll be captivated by the Great American Eclipse. So, it won’t be a total wash.


There are some Netflix shows to look forward to as well.

I am really excited for the second seasons of Love and Master of None. After meeting Paul Rust at a party at SXSW, I’m especially invested in Love. 

Love on Netflix

Master of None

Season 4 of Orange is the New Black gutted me so I’m eagerly anticipating the next season this summer. And of course, my beloved BoJack Horseman which is one of my favorite shows of all time.

Orange is the New Black

BoJack Horseman

This post feels incomplete if I don’t address the losses of 2016. I felt notably heartsick over Sharon Jones, who I’ve loved for a long time. I saw Miss Sharon Jones! when the Austin Film Society ran it and I felt even closer to her. She was my favorite live performer. I can’t believe that era is over.

I shed tears over David Bowie. And the news about George Michael hasn’t quite sunk in. I listened to him for my entire adult life and about half of my childhood. Wham’s Freedom was on my very first mixtape (that I made myself on a cassette, holding my boombox up to record MTV.) Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1 was among my first CDs when I only had a few. I listened to it thousands and thousands of times and I still consider it to be a masterpiece. I chose Kissing a Fool as the song for my wedding party to dance to at my reception. I’d always hoped he’d find his way out of the darkness and make more music. What a shame.

Garry Shandling was also someone I loved and I’ll continue my tradition of watching The Larry Sanders Show annually. Talk about genius ahead of his time.

The hardest part of 2016 is something that I will carry with me forever. The deaths of two close friends changed how I feel about life and I’m still working to process them. The circumstances were different, one a suicide and one a baffling accident. I loved both and am unable to shake the sadness I feel about losing them. I find myself crying at random times when I think of either one and the holidays were particularly difficult. I dissolved into tears thinking about their families leading up to Thanksgiving and Christmas. I know grief must run a course and eventually I won’t feel it so sharply, but all these months later, it still grips me tightly.

Life is precious. And that’s what I’m carrying into 2017. I hope to make the most of it.

Friday, November 25th

Where You Lead, I Will Follow

GIlmore Girls

This post is part of my ongoing relationship with Netflix as a Stream Team partner.

It’s Thanksgiving weekend! But for many the real reason to celebrate is the anticipated arrival of Lorelai and Rory. After all these years we are going back to Stars Hollow with Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life. Are you a Gilmore Girls fan? Will you be watching?

I have a feeling many of my friends will have binged the whole thing before this post even goes live, so don’t ruin it for me. No tweeting the plot!


We had a good month and a really great Thanksgiving. Professionally, I’m working on something I really like for a couple months. Violet had to switch schools to one that was able to accommodate our busier schedule. It’s a little closer to home and they provide meals, which means she’s getting to try more foods. She’s far from an adventurous eater but we’re working on it.

Work View, downtown Austin

Denver Zoo

We went to Denver last month for a family trip and got to see what it was like traveling with a young toddler on a plane. It was not awesome. But it was worth it to spend precious time with family. Violet trick-of-treated at the Denver Zoo and we enjoyed the city and loved getting away for a few days.

Vote

Imp

We spent Thanksgiving eating seafood and sesame noodles and the perfect chocolate pie. It was nice to forget about the election results and the frightening state of our country for a few hours. I’m lucky that I get to focus on my sweet baby during these troubling times.

Thanksgiving

Chocolate Pie, from The Pioneer Woman

Now we’re full steam ahead till the holidays. I’m looking forward to getting a Christmas tree and taking Violet to see the lights and Santa and all that. See you next month for another Stream Team post!

Friday, October 28th

Halloween Things

This post is part of my ongoing relationship with Netflix as a Stream Team partner.

I love this time of year! Halloween is one of my favorite holidays and I’m crazy about costumes, pumpkins, and even candy corn. I’ve thrown many Halloween parties in my day, although it’ll likely be a few years before we’re throwing big grown-up bashes again. For now, we’re enjoying the holiday with our little strawberry and finding the spooky in the everyday.

Little Strawberry


As Netflix continues to add more and more things we want to see, our watch list grows exponentially. Here’s what we’ve watched lately:

Mascots

Mascots on Netflix

I was eagerly awaiting Mascots and it did not disappoint. I love all of Christopher Guest’s mockumentaries and was excited that Zach Woods joined Guest regulars Jane Lynch, Parker Posey, Fred Willard, and Ed Begley, Jr. If I had a dream dinner party, these are the people I would invite. I’ll be watching this one again soon.

Tallulah

Tallulah on Netflix

I put off watching Tallulah because I thought it was going to be really sad. When I finally got around to viewing it I was pleasantly surprised that it wasn’t quite as heavy as the trailer made it seem. Ellen Page and Allison Janney reunited for the first time since Juno and both are tremendously talented and likable actresses. It’s a deep story that plucks at your sympathies.

No Men Beyond This Point

No Men Beyond This Point

Another mockumentary, No Men Beyond This Point is less enjoyable than Mascots. In fact, it stinks. But the subject matter was interesting enough to get me to watch it. In a world where men are no longer needed to procreate, women take over everything. The dwindling community of men either take to the woods or are employed as mannies. It’s a clever idea executed in the most boring, un-funny way possible.

Justin Timberlake + The Tennessee Kids

Justin Timberlake + The Tennessee Kids

I’m an unabashed Justin Timberlake fan. If you’re like me you’ll be happy to see that they filmed the last show of his most recent tour. I didn’t get to see this tour in person and now I know what I missed.

What have you been watching lately? Here’s a Stream and Scream Guide to help you with your Netflix watching all Halloween weekend.

Netflix Stream and Scream Guide

Saturday, October 1st

Binge Watching

This post is part of my ongoing relationship with Netflix as a Stream Team partner.

Sunset Drive

Another busy month in our household. Chris changed jobs and I started looking for a full time job again. Violet’s having a blast at school and we’re enjoying the camera access to her classroom. I check in and watch her eat lunch, settle in for a nap, or just toddle around with her classmates. They are all so cute and tiny!

We were able to get away to the coast for a weekend. It was our first time at Port Aransas and Corpus Christi and Violet’s first time in the ocean. We loved the charm of the Texas coast and we’ll definitely head back as soon as we can.

In her first official modeling gig, Violet had a photo shoot for an upcoming book by my talented friend Mary Makes Good. It was a fun day of outfit changes and baby wrangling. I’ll be sharing links when the book publishes and you can also pick up a copy of her gorgeous natural beauty book here.

Photo Shoot


And here’s a glimpse into our Netflix watching of late:

Limitless

Limitless TV show

I didn’t watch Limitless when it was on CBS but I binged through it on Netflix. It’s an offshoot of the movie and Bradley Cooper does make appearances, although the likable Jake McDorman carries the show. Really, it’s just another FBI crime show. But it’s smartly written and the complex story is gripping. It sucked me right in. There are rumors that they are shopping it around for another network to pick it up, as it was canceled after the first season. Fingers crossed that Netflix takes it!

Everything Before Us

Everything Before Us

My weird pick for the month is Everything Before Us. Now I’m not saying it’s great, because it’s not. But it was compelling enough to leave me thinking about it for a few days. It’s a story about love, with two couples of different ages, living in a world where relationships contribute to emotional intelligence scores that carry as much weight as credit scores and criminal records. Breakups can lead to loss of jobs and social status, so if you’re bad at love you’re also bad at life.

The Get Down

The Get Down

I’m not finished The Get Down yet, mostly because it’s way too long. It’s a colorful telling of the birth of hiphop and is part musical, part kung fu, and part coming of age story about talented teenagers looking to make leave their creative mark on the world. I was hoping to really fall in love with this and maybe I still will, but so far it feels a bit self indulgent.

Have you seen The Get Down? Do I need to stick it out?

The big Netflix news is that they are now streaming Disney movies. They already have Tarzan, The Finest Hours, Holes, Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl, Mulan II, and Robin Hood.

Monday, August 29th

Living the Stream

This post is part of my ongoing relationship with Netflix as a Stream Team partner.

It’s back to school season and kids everywhere are crying or excited. Growing up by the beach, I lived for summer and was filled with dread at the impending start of each school year. Even thought I liked school, I never wanted summer to end. Living in Texas though, means that the end of summer break means an eventual respite from the heat, so I look forward to autumn. Of course, I’m not in school. But guess who is starting school soon?

Serious Playtime

That’s right! Violet has her first day of preschool this week in a Spanish immersion program where she’ll also receive Mandarin lessons. Plus she’ll make friends, learn new songs, and wear a cute little uniform. I’m nervous and excited for her. This is uncharted territory for both of us and already the supply list was more difficult to tackle than I anticipated. I mean, a nap mat vs. a “regular” mat? I needed to buy both and didn’t know what either was. Turns out a nap mat is this cute little sleeping roll thing and Violet took to hers immediately.

Nap mat

Also, she turned one year old this month! We celebrated with friends and pizza and toys and presents. She was a happy girl and my friend Foodie is the New Forty captured this adorable shot at Pinthouse Pizza.

Birthday girl


So here’s what we’ve been watching recently:

Stranger Things

Stranger Things

Obviously I’m starting this list with Stranger Things. If your friends aren’t all talking about it then you need new friends. Just kidding. They’re probably just talking about it behind your back. Anyway, believe the hype. This series is a creepy 80s miracle that is so well done. Goonies meets X-Files meets Winona Ryder comeback. While shows like Modern Family might have you thinking otherwise, Stranger Things is proof that fantastic child actors exist.

Spotlight

Spotlight

I was so excited to see that Netflix added the Academy Award winning Best Picture and it did not disappoint. It’s the brilliantly told story of the remarkable journalism that led to cracking the heinous within the Catholic church. You know what I’m talking about. A serious cast and serious writing did justice to the sensitive subject matter. I love a good journalism movie. Time to rewatch another of my old favorites, Shattered Glass.

Internet FamousInternet Famous

I watched Internet Famous twice, because I thought it was good enough to watch again with Chris. A mockumentary about a handful of YouTube stars, anyone who’s familiar with at least one crazy online famous personality will get a kick out of this. Very funny.

David Cross: Making America Great Again

Ugh. I love David Cross and I agree with his politics, but this was a piece of crap. I never thought his stand up was that good and I prefer to watch him in things that others write, but as I had a press pass for this show (filmed in Austin) and didn’t make it, I wanted to see what I missed. And it turned out that I missed nothing but an insufferable night of ranting about politics. Which might be excusable if it was funny, but it was NOT.

What are you watching lately on Netflix?

Friday, July 29th

Hot and Streamy

This post is part of my ongoing relationship with Netflix as a Stream Team partner.

July was a good month. Violet celebrated her last official month of infancy by eating (and rejecting) many new foods, growing two and a half teeth, skinny dipping, playing peek-a-boo, and giving lots of wet kisses and snuggles. She grabs my iPhone and holds it up to her ear like she’s talking and can be bribed back to sanity with peanut butter during fussy times. Every single day is wonderful. Look at those chubby arms!

Fish Cake

Barbecue giggles

Swinging

Skinny dipping


 

So here’s what we’ve been watching lately:

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

ANDATORY CREDIT; NO ARCHIVE; NO SALES; NORTH AMERICAN USE ONLY Crazy Ex-Girlfriend -- "Josh Just Happens to Live Here!" -- Image CEG101_0022 -- Pictured: Rachel Bloom as Rebecca Bunch -- Photo: Eddy Chen/The CW -- �© 2015 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

At first I thought the campy comedy might be too silly for me, but by the second episode I was completely hooked on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and am now a Rachel Bloom fan for life. The musical numbers are brilliant and elevate the simple story to something special. The cast is an off-beat, charismatic gang of weirdos, other than Josh, the main love interest. Josh is boring, but the show is anything but.

Fun fact: Rachel Bloom and Broad City’s Ilana Glazer were once roommates.

Degrassi: Next Class

Degrassi Next Class

I’ll let you in on a little secret: I’m a huge Degrassi nerd. Excepting the original run in the 80s, I’m well versed on all things Degrassi and can speak with authority on all characters and storylines from about 15 seasons of the show. The show stays current, and this new class is all about social media and fluid sexuality. Boldly tackling serious topics, this season gets into racism, cultural appropriation, and mental health. The current cast has few standout actors, most are quite terrible, but some cameos from former students make it worth the watch. (Sorry, no Drake!)

2 Days in New York

An NYC indie starring Chris Rock and is half in French? I loved this 2012 movie and am so glad I randomly stumbled upon it. I thought about it for a few days after seeing it. Man. Chris Rock is so great. I might need to watch Top Five again. I need to go back and watch the first one, 2 Days in Paris, which starred Adam Goldberg alongside Julie Delpy.

 

BoJack Horseman

BoJack Horseman

I haven’t finished the third season of BoJack Horseman yet because I like to take my time and savor it. This is one of my favorite shows of all time. I’m a sucker for the easter eggs and bottomless pool of actors they get to voice the human and animal characters. It kind of reminds me of The Simpsons (way back when it was good) and how each episode pushed the envelope little further. The animated series is hilarious, but also so sad and dark. It might be Will Arnett’s best work and is a nod to his own demons.

What have you been watching? What do I need to add to my list?

Thursday, June 30th

Summer Streaming

This post is part of my ongoing relationship with Netflix as a Stream Team partner

Are we really at the end of June? Each day feels long as Violet is into everything and my time seems to be spent chasing her around and cleaning up messes. And yet, it’s all moving too quickly and I’m cherishing each moment. We’re racing towards the end of her first year and I’m not ready to leave each adorable phase.

But Chris and I are loving every moment. Chasing her, watching tiny little teeth emerge, and seeing the world through innocent eyes makes everything feel exciting.

Violet

Violet

Violet

Violet


So what have we watched lately?

Orange is the New Black

Orange-is-the-New-Black-S4

The no-brainer, of course, is Orange is the New Black. In preparation for the fourth season I re-watched the third, which was not my favorite, but was more enjoyable the second time around. And the show picks up right where it left off. My thoughts on season four are this: OITNB is one of finest shows I’ve ever watched. The writing, the acting (with a few exceptions) and the emotional draw are so strong that I’m in awe. The newest season might be the best one so far. It’ll break your heart over and over. I am very attached to so many of these characters. Even Piper.

Hateship Loveship

I don’t know how Kristen Wiig has had the time to do so many little movies, but I feel like I’m always watching them. The most recent one I’ve seen is Hateship Loveship. I didn’t particularly love it, to be honest, but it’s interesting and short enough to watch, particularly if you are a Wiig fan. She can play a pathetic weirdo like no other.

Murder, She Wrote

Murder-She-Wrote

A friend told me she was watching Murder, She Wrote and got me curious. So I’m slowly working my way through them. It’s outdated, but that’s part of the appeal. Angela Lansbury has so much charm and the seaside Maine town where her character, Jessica Fletcher, lives and solves mysteries is equally as charming. This series is a who’s who of recognizable actors looking much, much younger. I suggest you youngins make a drinking game out of it.

What are you watching lately? What do I need to add to my list?

Tuesday, June 21st

ATX Television Festival Season 5

If you were in downtown Austin recently and happened upon lots of recognizable TV stars, you weren’t the only one. Despite this being the fifth year of the ATX Television Festival, it still feels somewhat under the radar for an Austin event. People always seem surprised when they see people like Mae Whitman or Scott Wolf wandering around, yet those of us who hit the festival every year know that it’s customary to run into many famous faces.

Royal Pains featuring Mark Feuerstein, Henry Winkler, and Paulo Costanzo

The thing I love the most about the festival is that it isn’t oversold. It feels intimate and accessible. It’s a small conference for TV insiders and passionate fans, and everyone feels lucky to be there, from the badge-holders to the volunteers, to the TV stars. After all, Austin knows how to show guests a good time and people are more than happy to visit. Industry people and fans alike seem equally happy to geek out over the love of TV.

Royal Pains Paulo Costanzo and Brooke D'Orsay

I spent the weekend conducting interviews, watching panels, screenings, and soaking it all in. I was especially happy to attend a panel for Royal Pains, which is a guilty pleasure of mine. The final season is about to air and we were treated to an early screening of their musical episode, which was hilarious and campy. The cast and creators were pretty open, discussing everything from the medical terminology in the dialogue to the evolution of their characters. If fans of the show are wondering whether they will ever see Hank settle down with a woman, this final season may not wrap everything up in a neat bow. They revealed that all previous attempts to match up Hank had been rejected by the audience. No one is good enough for our Hank!

Royal Pains Reshma Shetty and Ben Shenkman

It’s an unwritten rule of the festival that everyone needs to be cool and not swarm the stars. I don’t ask for autographs or photos with celebs and unless it’s an official interview I tend to shy away from attempting conversation. If I’m honest, there have been a few people that I’ve wanted to gush over that I’ve run into at the festival or other events. H. Jon Benjamin comes to mind, along with Megan Mullally, Adam Scott, and Uzo Aduba. This year my big fan crush goes to Ben Feldman.

Ben Feldman

Ben’s been a number of shows I love: Drop Dead Diva, Mad Men, Silicon Valley, and NBC’s Superstore, which was just renewed for a second season. The cast of Superstore was in Austin to talk about the show and I was one of the lucky few who got to interview them.

Superstore panel at ATX Television Festival

If you haven’t seen the show, it’s a smart workplace sitcom with a lot of heart. Producer and writer Justin Spitzer is known for another little workplace comedy that you may have heard of called The Office. So I have high hopes for this show and really enjoyed the first season. In addition to Ben Feldman, America Ferrera, and Kids in the Hall’s Mark McKinney, the cast is filled with talented actors who make up a motley crew of blue collar workers in a Walmart-type store called Cloud 9.

Superstore

America and Ben made the observation that blue collar comedies have fallen out of favor in recent years, replaced by shows that focus on fantasy, rather than reality. The entire cast spoke about working in on a set that looks exactly like a store and how they were forbidden from taking any of the real-life products. The pilot was actually shot in a real Kmart, with the cast and crew filming through the night. The experience inspired the episode All-Nighter, where they are locked in the store overnight.

Superstore

If you want to watch (or re-watch) the first season it’s available on the NBC website.

Superstore

Another show that was getting a lot of buzz at the festival is Pitch, which premieres on FOX on September 22nd. It’s the (fictional, obviously) story of the first woman to play MLB. Kylie Bunbury plays Ginny, the talented pitcher who joins the San Diego Padres. Mark-Paul Gosselaar plays catcher Mike Wilson and he and Kylie spoke candidly about their physical training for their roles. Hers was more physically intense, while Gosselaar joked that his training mostly consisted of growing a beard that his wife hates.

Pitch on FOX, starring Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Kylie Bunbury

Despite my lack of interest in sports, I do think baseball is the most tolerable and I’ve never seen a baseball movie I didn’t like. So I’m definitely going to be watching this series in the fall. Check out the trailer for yourself. This show is great.

Did you miss the ATX Television Festival this year? Badges are already on sale for 2017. See you next year!

Sunday, May 29th

There’s an Ep for That

This post is part of my ongoing relationship with Netflix as a Stream Team partner.

We’re at the end of May and in the midst of a long-awaited holiday weekend. Last year Chris’ had to go into the office on Memorial Day. We were still unpacking and doing major renovation in the new house, plus I was in my third trimester. It was a real bummer.

So having that extra day off right now feels positively glorious! We still have some work to accomplish, but our projects are of the small variety: yard work, laundry, cleaning. But we can balance that with some fun, along with grateful reflection on the many who gave their lives for our country. It’s good to have a day to feel patriotic during a gross election year. Is there anything worse than a presidential campaign? Ugh.

Violet is really on the move these days! She’s unbelievably fast at crawling, gleefully using our shiny concrete floors to her benefit. We’re having so much fun with the walker, too, and I think she’ll be walking unassisted before we know it.

Baby girl wearing pink tutu

Smiling baby wearing Run DMC onesie and red pants

A photo posted by Kristin Sheppard (@madbettyatx) on


Now let’s talk Netflix! As most network TV shows are done for the season, I expect many of you will be increasing your steaming. I’d love to hear your recommendations on what to watch. Here’s what we’ve been watching lately:

Lady Dynamite

Lady Dynamite on Netflix

Maria Bamford is one of those likable yet polarizing comedians. She’s intelligent, funny, weird…but it’s her voice that many people can’t get past. Lady Dynamite acknowledges this by incorporating it into a storyline, along with her many other hangups like insecurity, bad decision-making, and severe Bipolar II disorder. I’ve watched the ranking of this show fall steady, but I give it a solid four stars. It almost crosses the line into being completely ridiculous, but doesn’t annoy me in the least. And it’s worth checking out for the cameos alone.

Grace and Frankie

Speaking of annoying, I’m slogging through the second season of Grace and Frankie at a snail’s pace. It’s a gorgeous show to watch and full of actors I love, but somehow…I just don’t like it. Am I alone here?

Promised Land

Matt Damon in Promised Land

Although it’s from 2012, Gus Van Sant’s Promised Land was new to me. It’s a fairly uncomplicated and well-told story of a small town divided on the subject of fracking. Matt Damon carries the movie, supported by the wonderful Frances McDormand, John Krasinski, and Rosemarie DeWitt.

Chelsea

Chelsea Handler

Chelsea Handler seems to be able to do whatever she wants. I was not much of a fan of hers until I read a few of her books, which showcases her deadpan snark and intelligent humor maybe more so than her TV persona does. Her documentary series Chelsea Does was somewhat enjoyable and Chelsea the talk show feels like an extension of that in bite-size pieces. Netflix releases three new episodes a week, which is a new approach to their streaming TV shows.