Our Weekend of Netflix

This Martin Luther King Jr. weekend definitely had its moments. We celebrated my father-in-law’s birthday at a favorite restaurant, enjoyed a Sunday afternoon spaghetti lunch at my sister-in-law’s house, and attended a Knights of Columbus roast beef dinner at church. But there was something we did more this weekend than eat – we watched Netflix!

The long weekend and bitter cold temperatures (it dipped into the 20s) proved conducive to sitting on the couch and binge watching a variety of shows. Lucky for us, the mixed bag of entertainment we watched was great across the board. In my latest blog post, I wanted to list and recommend the five pieces of programming we watched this weekend.

“You” – Be prepared for a crazy ride because the cunningness and manipulation of “You” will blow your mind. Although we started this series a little over a week ago, we finished it up at the start of the weekend. The show tells the story of a psychopath who stalks a love interest with modern digital means, seemingly always one step ahead of those who suspect something. But throughout the series, you are always asking yourself, is Joe the only sick individual? In fact, this question had Sid and I in a heated debate as we drove home from dinner on Friday night. Although I hated how the first (and only) season ended, I would recommend it to other people my age and younger.

The series “You” will take you for a ride!

“Fyre” – Over the course of the same week, both Hulu and Netflix released documentaries about the failed Fyre Music Festival in 2017. Because we only have Netflix, we watched that version, but I heard the Hulu offering is excellent as well. The Fyre Music Festival was supposed to be a first-of-its-kind luxurious musical entertainment event on an exotic, beautiful private island. Top talent was supposed to converge on the tropical paradise and festival-goers were promised a weekend they would never forget. Well, in retrospect, the people who attended the festival were indeed given a weekend they would never forget…just for all the wrong reasons. This documentary filled our Saturday morning as we watched intently about what happens when fraud, bad luck, and poor planning surround a major event.

In the mood for a good scam? Watch “Fyre”.

“Riverdale” – I know this series is on cable television, but Sidney got me watching it from the first episode of the first season and I am somewhat hooked! I usually don’t watch dramas that take place in a high school setting but this one has my attention. It reminds me of “13 Reasons Why” (another high school drama I made an exception for) but with a better cast. We got a long way to go to get caught up with the series but for the time being I am enjoying watching the crazy events unfold in Riverdale.

I am starting to get hooked on “Riverdale.”

“Abducted in Plain Sight” – Talk about a documentary that will have you shaking your head saying how could this happen? “Abducted in Plain Sight” is a 90-minute documentary that tells the story of a 12-year-old girl who was abducted by an obsessed family friend…twice. The film explains how the neighbor was able to manipulate and blackmail the parents of the girl,allowing him to execute and get away with such heinous acts. How did he blackmail the parents, you ask? Go ahead, just watch the documentary.

“Abducted in Plain Sight” is a story you won’t believe.

“The Upside” – Okay, this is not a Netflix selection, but I thought I would still share it. Last night, for the first time in a very long time, Sid and I were able to go out by ourselves for a couple hours. We went to the theater and watched “The Upside,” a film about a parolee in desperate need of work. He ends up landing a well-paying job taking care of an extremely rich man who is confined to a wheelchair. The two individuals are polar opposites but they manage to click and help each other out. In my opinion, it is Kevin Hart’s best performance of his career (he plays the parolee) and the story will make you walk out of the theater with a smile on your face. It lacks true adversity needed to be a great film, but it sure was nice to get out of the house and enjoy a movie.

Kevin Hart gives a great performance in “The Upside.”


Well, I guess we need to get back to watching “Riverdale.” If there is anything else we should be watching on Netflix, please let us know! Don’t Blink.

Content With Netflix

On Sunday, I read an article explaining that the world of streaming television will become much more “complicated” in 2019. By the end of the year, Disney and WarnerMedia will both launch streaming services. Each version will contain numerous titles, including classic movies.

In other words, Netflix better watch out.

Netflix is more than enough for me.

After taking a couple days to digest this news, I still don’t know if it is a good thing or not. You see, I can barely handle Netflix. I am so overwhelmed each time I try to select something to watch that I don’t know what I would do if presented with even more choices. These new services are supposed to be a little cheaper than Netflix while at the same time boasting libraries that will intrigue just about any viewer.

Of course my initial reaction is that I would never opt for an additional streaming service to use alongside Netflix. Like I said above, I wouldn’t want to put myself in a position of navigating through two different streaming providers when all I wanted to do was quickly decide a movie to watch on a Saturday night. But, according to the article, these new streaming services might receive the rights to some of Netflix’s titles, allowing Disney and WarnerMedia to yank popular shows from its established competitor to use on their own platforms.

What if it became necessary to purchase another streaming package solely because of one or two shows? I would like to think that I could resist the temptation but I can’t say that with 100% certainty. After all, I am not the only television watcher in the house.

I guess it is just one of those things where you don’t know what you are missing until you have it. Think about it this way: If you only knew that Coca-Cola existed, you would be content, right? The soft drink giant makes more than enough different types of soda to please any taste. But consider this…what if one day, you entered a convenient store and saw a Pepsi product soda fountain stocked with 12 different choices? What would your existence be like after you sampled Mt. Dew? Chances are, you would now need two soft drink companies in your life.

I really hope it isn’t this way with the new streaming products that will soon be with us. At this time, I am perfectly content with Netflix. Then again, I was perfectly content with cable at one time too. Don’t Blink.

Why You Need To Watch “Wild, Wild Country”

Not since “Making A Murderer” has a documentary series been so well-done and so engaging. But I don’t need to tell you that. Watch a morning show or read an entertainment magazine and you will encounter rave reviews for “Wild, Wild Country.” It is currently the trendy thing to watch…with good reason.

It is worth your time to watch “Wild, Wild Country.”

Before I delve into why people can’t get enough of it, I did want to offer my personal assessment on the series. Watching the six episodes over six consecutive nights, I became more and more intrigued as I worked my way through it. The documentary tells a gripping tale of contrasting cultures in a sleepy Oregon town. The citizens of Antelope went to bed one night and woke up the next day to find that eccentric new neighbors had moved nearby. These newcomers brought a way of life completely different from that of the conservative longtime residents.

You will be blown away by the Rajneeshees.

A culture war ensued.

As someone who is fascinated by these sociological power struggles, I couldn’t keep my eye off the screen. The Rajneeshees transplanted to Oregon from India, introducing a lifestyle that would make any average townsperson blush. They were passionate and they were extreme. Learning about their beliefs and observing their motivation was very interesting to me.

“Wild, Wild Country” is definitely a bit bizarre.

But aside from the culture clash, I was drawn in by the storytelling aspect. The documentary creators used a combination of honest and revealing interviews combined with vivid and shocking archived footage to tell a wild tale. The interviews were conducted with key people, both Rajneeshees and individuals who opposed the Rajneeshees, to give both sides of the story. The accounts by these complex people, many who you will get to know really well, are given to the backdrop of both beautiful and shocking video.

For me, the ultimate part of “Wild, Wild County,” topping both the culture battle and the effective storytelling, is the portrayal of the person who started it all…the Bhagwan (aka Rajneesh or Osho). There is just something intriguing about a “guru” with a long beard, a fragile demeanor, and a taste for Rolls Royces. Looking like he was at least 100 years old, I couldn’t get enough of the guy. From how he attracted thousands of followers to how he went years without speaking to how he made a crazy last minute attempt to evade authorities – it was fascinating.

This guy (the Bhagwan) is really something else.

Why do people not interested in sociological themes, filmmaking, and bearded old dudes like “Wild, Wild Country”? I would say because it has everything.

It has mystery, sex, conflict, eastern world mysticism, greed, betrayal, and all the other things that people enjoy. What took place was nothing short of outrageous and we all like to see a good trainwreck every now and then. It has something for everyone and is structured in a way meant for easy, structured watching.

I highly recommend “Wild, Wild Country.” It will surely pose questions and make you think. If you care to do so, I would be more than happy to entertain your thoughts about the documentary. Give it a try! Don’t Blink.