By Jerrica Kuan; Edited by Katerina Theocharous

Hello, fellow meddies! A whole new school year has begun, and after 2020, who else is excited to return to campus? (Shoutout to the international students like me who are still stuck overseas and waiting for that day to arrive 😢). Nevertheless, our 2021 Publications team has plenty of content to share to make your new year at university a lot more exciting!

For our first 2021 article, we’ve prepared a review of all the great TV shows and movies that kept our team sane throughout 2020 – something we are sure many of you will relate to. Get to know how our team survived lockdown, and what new shows you may want to pick up over the next holidays…or the next time you’re looking to procrastinate (I see you, you’re valid).

  1. Bridgerton
Netflix (2020)

One of the first few shows that popped up in our brainstorming sessions (and a personal recommendation) is the latest period drama, Bridgerton. A romcom set in 19th century London, Bridgerton features both the enemies-to-lovers and the fake dating trope between its two leads, and is very much a “hype show” that took the internet by storm over the summer. I mean, who wouldn’t love the beautiful scenes that Bridgerton creates, from the luxurious balls and incredibly composed music to the inherent romanticism of dancing with someone and falling in love? The story may be cliché, but the settings make up for it with gorgeous environments, lighting, and orchestral music. 

A fair warning to younger viewers, this show can sometimes get steamy with an R21 rating (in Singapore at least). Watch this at your own risk in your room with headphones!

  1. The Mandalorian
Disney (2019-2020)

From our lovely editor Katerina comes a recommendation re the new Star Wars series, The Mandalorian. A lone bounty hunter makes an impulsive decision to save a child he was meant to capture – but the child, or Baby Yoda as nicknamed by the internet, turns out to be a lot more powerful than he looks, and our bounty hunter ends up on the run from shady figures intent on using him for evil. The show is brilliantly told, revealing more and more mysteries with time, and it’s also incredible to watch the familial bond forming between the two protagonists. Definitely a must-see for Star Wars fans and anyone who is a sucker for the jaded-old-man-adopts-small-feisty-child trope (The Last of Us and Walking Dead video game fans, looking at you). Baby Yoda’s antics are too sweet to go unwatched!

Unfortunately, this show is on Disney+, not on Netflix. Regardless, a show worth watching, if you can find access to it!

  1. The Office
Netflix (2005-2013)

Our local eclectic/memelord Sajid has announced that The Office has arrived on Netflix (Australia) and wow, this show has been a treasure trove of memes. A mock sitcom involving office employees of a fictional company, this show revolves around the everyday life of the office and the hilarity that ensues. Anyone who has done admin will understand the boredom of work and the urge to jump around couches yelling ‘Parkour’. While the script of the show is hilarious, the actors are the ones that really nail it, ensuring a fun re-watch. Michael Scott and John Krasinki memes are widespread, and you may have seen them around without realising that this is the show they’re from.

A highly recommended binge for laughs!

  1. Avatar: The Last Airbender/The Legend of Korra
Nickelodeon Animation Studios (2005-2008, 2012-2014)

Our great Editor-in-Chief Ryo has recommended two great cartoons from our childhood, Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra. Re-watching these shows is worth it for the nostalgia alone, but it also brings out more nuanced views of the world of Aang/Korra and highlights just how incredibly intricate these worlds are. In The Last Airbender, the group of young teenagers set out on a quest to stop the war and the ruthless Fire Nation, with many intense moments that are masterfully portrayed; Aang discovering his mentor’s corpse and the genocide of his people, the government fascism and brainwashing in Ba Sing Se, Zuko’s scarring, and even Azula’s mental breakdown. The Legend of Korra, though relatively recent, still holds a candle to Aang with its themes of trauma and healing. For a cartoon to cover so many mature themes, these shows deserve the re-watch, and are easily available on Netflix for viewing.

  1. Other recommendations

Lastly, these are the few more shows that were highly recommended by members of our team that are worth checking out:

  • Kim’s Convenience (Netflix)

A sitcom about the Kims, a Korean Canadian family running a convenience store. A comedy that hits close to the Asian heart with its themes of tradition and culture, and the family drama that ensues between the Kims and their estranged son, Jung. 

  • Queen’s Gambit (Netflix)

A coming-of-age period drama set in the 1960s about a chess prodigy and her rise to fame. The themes of addiction and trauma are well-written, and the music is also incredibly composed. Anya Taylor-Joy plays the main character beautifully.

  • Bump (Stan)

A series set in Australia about an ambitious teenager who unexpectedly falls pregnant and the drama between her family and her boyfriend’s. Anyone interested in BGDA should give this a watch, this is relevant to your scenarios!

  • How I Met Your Mother (Netflix)

The classic sitcom combines the romantic tension between a group of friends with hilarious jokes and drama, with the usual love triangle involved. Though the ending may be disappointing to some, the show is still recommended!

  • Soul (Disney+)

A Disney movie about a man grappling with his recent death trying to return to the mortal world. The portrayal of morality and purpose in life is very thought-provoking, not to mention the animation is simply stunning. 

We hope this has provided some insight on the Publications team, and perhaps some new shows to binge! Look out for more posts from us, be it art, memes or writing pieces – we have so much in store for you guys to see 😊 Stay keen and safe, everyone!

Much love from Publications Subcomm 2021 ♥

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