Quaranthings: 5 feel-good Netflix shows to keep the quarantine blues at bay
By Jimcy Labio
As we soldier on to the second half of 2020 and Hong Kong heads into August with a third wave that has yet to cease, more stringent social distancing measures have taken effect. Most - if not all - entertainment venues have been shut down and public gatherings have been limited to only two people, which have left Hongkongers little option in choosing how to while away the hours.
Luckily, a Netflix party of one (or two) is always a good route for unwinding and entertainment-- just in time for your upcoming free day. Recent additions by the platform, including new season installments and movie sequels, also means more shows to binge watch. To speed up your hunt for a feel-good flick to make your week, here are some of DotDotNews’ must-watch Netflix shows to kickstart your August!
1. Umbrella Academy Season 2
This popular comic book adaptation just dropped its long-awaited second season on July 31st-- and coming from someone who just binged watched the entire series in two days, this epic second installment will surely not disappoint. Currently 8th in Hong Kong’s Top 10, The Umbrella Academy follows billionaire eccentric Sir Reginald Hargreeves’ adopted superhero children, who must band together and save the world from an impending apocalypse. Fun fact: the author of the original comic book is My Chemical Romance’s frontman Gerard Way, so you can imagine that this isn’t your typical superhero plot!
2. The Babysitters Club
While this series might come across as a kid’s show off the bat, it actually deals with quite a few societal themes and issues brought to the level of a younger generation’s perspective. Quirky and lighthearted, the show is a modernized adaptation of a novel series by Ann M. Martin which follows a group of friends who start their own homegrown babysitting business. It’s a pre-teen story reminiscent of the good old days and the cusp between childhood and adolescence, with story arcs that will make you root for each member of the Babysitters Club - definitely checks every box of “feel-good.”
3. Indian Matchmaking
If you’re a fan of reality dating shows such as “Love is Blind,” this may be an interesting pick for your list. Indian Matchmaking gives a unique, insider look on arranged marriages and matchmaking in India, one of the country’s long-standing traditions. It follows Matchmaker Sima Taparia as she connects and guides clients residing in the US and India to finding the perfect life partner. The story shows an in-depth take on the process of choosing a life partner, the intricate ties and influence of family in marriage decisions, and how controversial stereotypes on some Indian customs are addressed. The selected personalities and their families each have unique stories to tell, and the eligible partners - a.k.a. biodatas - are also equally intriguing. Overall, the show offers an immersive experience of Indian culture in the language of love.
4. The Kissing Booth 2
Fell for Noah Flynn & Elle Evans in 2018’s the Kissing Booth? Their story comes back to the small screen as Netflix premiered its sequel last July 24th with a mysterious new love triangle. Number 5 in Hong Kong’s top 10, the movie follows the couple yet again as they try to navigate their relationship while Noah settles into college life and Elle enters senior year of high school with best friend Lee Flynn, with a friendship rule looming over her head - Rule #19: Always go to the same school as your bestie. It has a good amount of funny/quirky moments, life-after-highschool musings, and explosive Dance Dance Mania routines.
5. Was it Love?
A Netflix recommendation list isn’t complete without a rom-com K-Drama. Was it Love? currently sits second in Hong Kong’s top 10, right after K-Drama “It’s Okay Not to be Okay.” The show stars Song Ji Hyo who plays Noh Ae Jeong, a successful single mom with a teen daughter. A fateful day arrives and this little family’s life is turned upside down as four men walk into Ae Jeong’s life at the same time, making her rediscover love and herself along the way. If you’re after that warm, fuzzy feeling while watching episode after episode, this will definitely not disappoint. The show is currently on its first season and still ongoing, with new episodes dropping every week.
Time to get that microwave popcorn going and say goodbye to your quarantine blues! Any other Netflix shows you’d like to recommend? Say it in the comments!
Jimcy tells stories of "Home Kong" in the eyes of a non-local. Outside the 9-5, she can be found exploring with friends, trying something artsy, or randomly bopping to a tune.