Ranking my top television shows of 2018 on Netflix: Binge-watching throughout the year!

Greetings TV Fans!  While I have not gotten a chance to binge-watch every show on Netflix, I did have time to catch up on quite a few series from 2018 while I anxiously wait for new episodes to return.  While some old favorites of mine didn’t quite make the cut with their new seasons, other new series pleasantly surprised me.  Netflix has done a good job of successfully providing me with the binge-watching we all crave once in a while with its lineup.  Who am I kidding…all the time! 

My top television shows streaming on Netflix for 2018 are:

5. 13 Reasons Why (season 2)

4. Orange Is the New Black (season 6)

3. Ozark (season 2)

2. The Haunting of Hill House

1. Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

While I am a devoted fan to 13 Reasons Why and OITNB, I was absolutely loving Netflix’s addition of some horror television series this past year.  The Haunting of Hill House was not loved by all, but I thought that it combined the perfect amount of bone-chilling moments with heartwarming ones.  My absolute favorite series on Netflix for the past year has to go to Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, which was deliciously dark with just the right amount of Riverdale pop mixed in.  I was also impressed with Ozark season 2, which had me hooked even more than season 1!

Honorable mentions:

Daredevil (season 3)

Tidelands

While nothing will compare to season 1 of Daredevil for me, I was impressed with season 3.  While it was slow moving in the beginning, it really picked up steam halfway through and allowed us to finally explore Karen Page’s character further, while also introducing us to a formidable villain.  Tidelands is your new guilty pleasure.  Trust me.  Sure, it may be filled with unnecessary fluff, but it’s the perfect weekend escape if you are looking for something light, sexy, and fun!

Disappointments:

Jessica Jones (season 2)

Insatiable

I absolutely loved the first season of Jessica Jones and I was very disappointed with season 2.  The entire season was slow moving for me and I am not sure if I can continue watching for season 3, but I will try and give it a chance.  I was also so excited to watch Insatiable, especially because I am a huge Alyssa Milano fan, but I found that the plot was all over the place.  The show had the potential to become a new cult classic, but it almost seemed unsure of its direction.  I will give season 2 a chance, but I’m looking for something that actually captures the dark humor that I crave.

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own comments and thoughts about your favorite television shows on Netflix from 2018.  Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

**I would love it if you would take a moment to check out my Whizbuzz Book page via the link below for everything you need to know about my new book, The Search for Alice, including my author bio page and links to my website and social media sites!  Thank you!

My Whizbuzz Book Page

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe.  Thanks for your support!

I am so excited to announce that my book, The Search for Alice, is now available!  If you enjoy fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery, then this might be the book for you or someone you know!  Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well.  I hope you enjoy!

When Kallie Bennett, a jaded teenage girl plagued by her alcoholic mother and her peers molded out of sheer bubble gum perfection, chases after Alice in Wonderland herself, she ends up lost in her own version of Wonderland, which forces her to face her utmost fears and introduces her to familiar characters with a dark twist. Among these characters is Ches, a gorgeous vampire with a conflicted conscience, who becomes Kallie’s guide and blossoming love interest. She also crosses paths with Queen Hartley, a manipulative witch who has the power to strip away one’s memories and imagination, which brings a bone chilling new meaning to “off with their heads.” In The Search for Alice, Kallie starts to realize that her Wonderland is just as frightening as her own reality and that she cannot always run away from her problems. She must figure out a way to defeat Queen Hartley and return home before it is too late, but she soon learns that escaping Wonderland means leaving Ches behind forever.

Want to read more?  You can click the link directly below for a free preview.  Thanks for your support!

Free Instant Preview of The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice Cover

 

 

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Ranking the top 5 moments from “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” season 1 episode 11: “A Midwinter’s Tale”

Happy Saturday TV fans!  After watching Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina season 1 episode 11, we were reminded that ‘Tis the Season for seances during the witching hour.  While we all have our own traditions during the holidays, the Spellman family wished us a “Happy Solstice” and asked that “Satan bless us everyone.”  Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch yet.  In episode 11, “Chapter Eleven:  A Midwinter’s Tale,” the Spellman family prepares for the “Winter Solstice,” but Sabrina has a few magical ideas of her own.  Meanwhile, Susie gets in a bit of trouble during her holiday job and Aunt Zelda is preoccupied with baby Leticia.  My top 5 moments from Chilling Adventures of Sabrina season 1 episode 11 holiday special are:

5

“Christmas is the best time for ghost stories.”

In the beginning of the episode, we learn a bit about some of the Spellman family traditions during the holidays, which center around burning a “Yule Log,” which is meant to ward off evil spirits during the solstice.  It is very important that the “Yule Log” fire does not go out or the Spellman family will be vulnerable to many magical threats.  Sabrina recognizes that things are very different this year, but she can’t help missing her parents during this time, as she looks at a photo ornament of them that is very dear to her heart.  Sabrina remembers that she crossed paths with her mother in limbo and is desperate to find a way to help her, but perhaps this isn’t the best night to do so.

4

“Too soon or too weird?”

Sabrina is determined to contact her mother with a seance, recognizing that the veil thins between the living and the dead during the solstice.  After Ambrose turns down her request, Sabrina goes to see Miss Wardwell, who initially seems willing to help Sabrina, but recognizes that she will need to run some interference to prevent Sabrina from going down the wrong path.  Sabrina tries to include her mortal friends, but they are not really too excited about participating in the seance.  Sabrina does not take “no” for an answer; however, as she recruits Prudence and her sisters to assist with the ritual.  It seems like everything is working perfectly when the spirit of Diana Spellman appears before them, but other magical beings begin to break through the veil as well, which threatens everyone in the Spellman home.

3

“Is this what it’s like being a witch?”

During all the commotion at the Spellman residence, we also learn that Susie has gone missing when her Santa Claus boss, Mr. Bartel, tries to turn her into a wax figure for his creepy collection.  We learn that Bartel is actually a demon, but Sabrina and her aunts are ready to help save the day, as they enlist the help of Gryla, who is a demon that gathers the lost souls of children.  It looks like Susie will be OK and everything is back to normal for now, but I think she will be researching her next job opportunity with a little bit more care next time.

2

“Please don’t ever do that again.  Use magic.”

During the episode, we also get a Harvina moment, as Sabrina tries to make amends with Harvey by giving him an enchanted pencil set.  Harvey later gives the gift back to Sabrina and explains that he doesn’t want her to use magic anymore with him.  Sabrina clearly cares about Harvey a lot, but she also recognizes that he may not be ready or willing to walk down the path of night with her.  I’m still hoping that these two can work things out; however, because they are absolutely adorable together.

1

“Mom…you’re beautiful.”

In a heartwarming moment, Sabrina gets a very brief moment with her mother and confides in her about Harvey and some of her doubts and fears.  Her mom helps her quite a bit, even though she cannot stay for very long, but it looks like Sabrina will cherish this brief encounter forever.  Sabrina’s mother was mortal and understands all too well what it means to walk down the path of night, but Sabrina may need to experience this for herself, as her path may be different.  At the end of the episode, Zelda decides to bring baby Leticia to Desmelda to keep her safe, which leaves us with some more unanswered questions.  Is Desmelda a friend or foe?  What will Miss Wardwell do next?  Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the holiday special.  I appreciated that the show took the time to celebrate with our favorite characters, while continuing the plot as well to get us ready for new episodes on April 5th 2019.  Stay tuned!

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Chilling Adventures of Sabrina in the comments section below.  Happy viewing!

**I would love it if you would take a moment to check out my Whizbuzz Book page via the link below for everything you need to know about my new book, The Search for Alice, including my author bio page and links to my website and social media sites!  Thank you!

My Whizbuzz Book Page

Stay up to date on upcoming premieres of horror TV series @ 12nightsofhorror.com/horror-series-coming-soon

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe.  Thanks for your support!

I am so excited to announce that my book, The Search for Alice, is now available!  If you enjoy fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery, then this might be the book for you or someone you know!  Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well.  I hope you enjoy!

When Kallie Bennett, a jaded teenage girl plagued by her alcoholic mother and her peers molded out of sheer bubble gum perfection, chases after Alice in Wonderland herself, she ends up lost in her own version of Wonderland, which forces her to face her utmost fears and introduces her to familiar characters with a dark twist. Among these characters is Ches, a gorgeous vampire with a conflicted conscience, who becomes Kallie’s guide and blossoming love interest. She also crosses paths with Queen Hartley, a manipulative witch who has the power to strip away one’s memories and imagination, which brings a bone chilling new meaning to “off with their heads.” In The Search for Alice, Kallie starts to realize that her Wonderland is just as frightening as her own reality and that she cannot always run away from her problems. She must figure out a way to defeat Queen Hartley and return home before it is too late, but she soon learns that escaping Wonderland means leaving Ches behind forever.

Want to read more?  You can click the link directly below for a free preview.  Thanks for your support!

Free Instant Preview of The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice Cover

5 Spoiler Free Reasons why you should watch “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” on Netflix: A Binge-Worthy Treat That Is Everything You Crave”

“What’s the point of being a witch if I can’t help the ones I love?”  An excellent question for sure, as half-mortal Sabrina Spellman learns that being a witch is not all fun and games.  If you had the choice to be a witch or a mortal, what would you choose?  Would you continue on your normal path or would you choose the path of night?  The Netflix series is based on the Archie Comics series, which was also the inspiration for the sitcom, Sabrina the Teenage Witch (1996-2003).  While the sitcom was a fun and lighter take on Sabrina’s adventures, the Netflix series is a much darker approach.  The show features 10 episodes and they are all currently streaming on Netflix as of October 26th 2018.  After watching all of the episodes in one weekend, I can tell you that I absolutely adored this series.  Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is the perfect portion of Riverdale bubble gum pop dipped in delicious darkness.  It is absolutely enchanting and I highly recommend it.  Please note that major spoilers have been left out for your convenience.  My top 5 reasons to check out Chilling Adventures of Sabrina are: 

5

This show tackles real issues. 

Welcome to Greendale.  While the town is known for its spooky and Halloween-like atmosphere, it is also near Riverdale and it should be noted that these two series do connect.  If you are a Riverdale fan like me, you will be pleasantly surprised with a few mentions and connections along the way.  Even though the town has a lot of dark and mystical things going on, the series also sheds some light on some important issues.  Sabrina and her friends witness and deal with sexual harassment and bullying, reminding us that there are some real life horrors happening along with the supernatural ones.  The show does a good job of making us aware of these important issues and promoting female empowerment, while seamlessly continuing on with the plot.

4

The supporting characters.

It is sometimes difficult for the supporting cast to step into the spotlight, especially when there is a strong lead capturing our attention.  However, I was delighted by a lot of the supporting cast.  I give standout performances to Lucy Davis (Hilda Spellman), Chance Perdomo (Ambrose Spellman), Tati Gabrielle (Prudence), Michelle Gomez (Miss Wardwell), and Miranda Otto (Zelda Spellman).  These characters all complimented Sabrina so well and I could really see a true connection among the Spellman family.  You will be delighted by all of them.

3

Episodes 5, 8, and 9.

While all of the episodes were fast paced and fun, these three were on a completely different level.  I will not spoil anything for you, but I would definitely recommend giving these three episodes your undivided attention.  Episode 5 provided me with some Buffy the Vampire Slayer nostalgia and episodes 8 and 9 were shocking and dark, pulling the story in a twisted direction and further developing the character of Sabrina.  These episodes are not predictable and they will have you on the edge of your seat.  Enjoy the ride!

2

Sabrina Spellman.

Played by Kiernan Shipka, Sabrina is a strong female protagonist who you can truly root for.  Kiernan is absolutely enchanting and she really captured the essence of the character.  Sabrina makes mistakes along the way, but that is part of her charm.  She’s flawed, but she has so much inner strength and loyalty to her friends and family.  Sabrina always tries to do what is right to protect the ones she loves.  She sort of reminds me of a mix between Riverdale’s Betty Cooper and Harry Potter’s Hermione Granger.  She is a fast learner and is willing to go against authority to try and keep her moral compass intact.  Sabrina is not afraid to stand up for what she believes in and she is constantly challenging everyone, reminding us that she is not just a powerful witch, but a powerful and amazing woman.

1

A worthy series about witches.

It’s not always easy to provide the audience with a true representation of witchcraft.  There is always the allure of having magical powers and casting spells, but there needs to be a balance as well.  Shows like Charmed and American Horror Story:  Coven were able to capture this along with movies like The Craft.  Chilling Adventures of Sabrina tackles everything from truth spells to resurrection ones and reminds us about “personal gain” and real consequences.  While it may seem glamorous to be a witch, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina reminds us that it’s not always this simple.  Sabrina is trying to find her own identity as a person, but also has to deal with making a choice between her mortal life and her destiny to become a witch.  It’s a decision that weighs on Sabrina for quite some time and she begins to understand that magic cannot always solve everything.  While the show will provide you with some fun magical moments, it also reveals the darkness and sacrifice that comes with it.  Overall, I was truly impressed with this show and I cannot wait until season 2.  I absolutely recommend this spellbinding series to everyone.  Ready to watch?

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own theories and thoughts on Chilling Adventures of Sabrina in the comments section below.  Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

**I would love it if you would take a moment to check out my Whizbuzz Book page via the link below for everything you need to know about my new book, The Search for Alice, including my author bio page and links to my website and social media sites!  Thank you!

My Whizbuzz Book Page

Stay up to date on upcoming premieres of horror TV series @ 12nightsofhorror.com/horror-series-coming-soon

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe.  Thanks for your support!

I am so excited to announce that my book, The Search for Alice, is now available!  If you enjoy fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery, then this might be the book for you or someone you know!  Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well.  I hope you enjoy!

When Kallie Bennett, a jaded teenage girl plagued by her alcoholic mother and her peers molded out of sheer bubble gum perfection, chases after Alice in Wonderland herself, she ends up lost in her own version of Wonderland, which forces her to face her utmost fears and introduces her to familiar characters with a dark twist. Among these characters is Ches, a gorgeous vampire with a conflicted conscience, who becomes Kallie’s guide and blossoming love interest. She also crosses paths with Queen Hartley, a manipulative witch who has the power to strip away one’s memories and imagination, which brings a bone chilling new meaning to “off with their heads.” In The Search for Alice, Kallie starts to realize that her Wonderland is just as frightening as her own reality and that she cannot always run away from her problems. She must figure out a way to defeat Queen Hartley and return home before it is too late, but she soon learns that escaping Wonderland means leaving Ches behind forever.

Want to read more?  You can click the link directly below for a free preview.  Thanks for your support!

Free Instant Preview of The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice Cover

5 Spoiler Free Reasons why you should watch “The Haunting of Hill House” on Netflix: A Worthy Horror Series filled with Bone-Chilling Moments

“I am home.”  But what if you share your home with ghosts and spirits?  I’m not talking about Casper here, but potentially dangerous and manipulative spirits that can haunt you for the rest of your life.  The Netflix series is based on the book by Shirley Jackson, which was also the inspiration for the film, The Haunting.  There were two versions of the film in 1963 and in 1999 as well.  The Netflix series follows a family who grew up at Hill House and flashes between the past and the present, unraveling the mysteries there.  Each member of the Crain family encounters something different, but they are all connected to the house in one way or another.  They desperately try to overcome their terrifying and traumatic past, as new obstacles and threats continue to surface in their present.

The show features 10 episodes and they are all currently streaming on Netflix as of October 12th 2018.  After watching all of the episodes in one weekend, I can tell you that the series was a pleasant surprise.  There were absolutely terrifying moments that will have you going to sleep with the lights on for weeks to come and other moments that were so incredibly heartwarming and unpredictable.  The show somehow successfully blends family drama in with genuine horror, giving me almost a Brothers and Sisters vibe, while continuing to provide me with frightening moments.  The acting is absolutely incredible and the writing and dialogue is somehow poetic, luring you in to Hill House completely.  Please note that major spoilers have been left out for your convenience.  My top 5 reasons to check out The Haunting of Hill House are: 

5

This show is genuinely scary. 

I’m not talking about the typical jump scares that almost seem unnecessary and essentially become predictable, as you can almost count down to the next moment that is meant to make you pop out of your seat.  The scares on this show are not forced and they seamlessly connect with the rest of the plot, which make them that much more terrifying in my opinion.  You may have nightmares about “The Bent-Neck Lady” like me, but the show will continue to provide you with worthy bone-chilling moments up until the very end.  I found myself needing to watch the show with all the lights on, even during the day.  It’s seriously that scary and even if you don’t scare easily, you will appreciate the way these terrifying moments emerge.

4

Something different.

While some fans have been apprehensive about the series following a different plot, this works to the show’s advantage.  It allows us to be presented with an entirely unique mystery in familiar territory and branches out further to form its own identity, separate from the novel and the films.  If you are looking for just another remake of the films, this is not the show for you, but I would encourage you to give it a try anyway because it is well worth the watch.

3

Episodes 3, 5, and 9.

While all of the episodes were brilliantly done, these three were absolutely incredible.  I will not spoil anything for you, but I would definitely recommend giving these three episodes your undivided attention.  While important plot points are learned during these three episodes, there is something so incredibly magnetic about them.  I found myself completely lost in the story during these three episodes in particular, unaware of anything else going on around me.  That’s how good they are.  Make sure you have your popcorn ready in advance!

2

The cast.

I was initially overwhelmed by the large size of the Crain Family.  We meet Hugh and Olivia Crain, played by Timothy Hutton and Carla Gugino, and their children:  Steven, Shirley, Theo, Luke, and Nell.  The show flashes back between past and present quite frequently and everyone in the cast was absolutely terrific.  I give standout performances to Carla Gugino, Kate Siegel (older Theo), and Elizabeth Reaser (older Shirley), but truly everyone was amazing.  You really believed that they were all family and found yourself connected to each and every one of them as the episodes continued.

1

The family drama works.

Part of what made me enjoy this show so much was the fact that I was completely connected to the characters.  I wasn’t willing to part with any character and I found myself rooting for them more than I normally would when watching a horror film.  The show does an excellent job of combining the terrifying and unexplained moments with the horror we deal with in everyday life.  I’m talking about unspeakable crimes that are committed, grief that we need to endure, addiction, and guilt that will eat us up from the inside if we let it.  The show seamlessly blends the supernatural horrors with these very real ones, connecting us that much more to the characters and the story.  While I initially thought that perhaps the show might have been better suited as a film, I quickly realized that this is not the case.  You would lose out on the connection to these characters and the mystery unravels in perfect tempo, leading up to a satisfying crescendo at the end.  While the series is not your average horror movie, it elevates to something more powerful and resonating.  You won’t be disappointed.  Ready to watch?

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own theories and thoughts on The Haunting of Hill House in the comments section below.  Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

**I would love it if you would take a moment to check out my Whizbuzz Book page via the link below for everything you need to know about my new book, The Search for Alice, including my author bio page and links to my website and social media sites!  Thank you!

My Whizbuzz Book Page

Stay up to date on upcoming premieres of horror TV series @ 12nightsofhorror.com/horror-series-coming-soon

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe.  Thanks for your support!

I am so excited to announce that my book, The Search for Alice, is now available!  If you enjoy fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery, then this might be the book for you or someone you know!  Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well.  I hope you enjoy!

When Kallie Bennett, a jaded teenage girl plagued by her alcoholic mother and her peers molded out of sheer bubble gum perfection, chases after Alice in Wonderland herself, she ends up lost in her own version of Wonderland, which forces her to face her utmost fears and introduces her to familiar characters with a dark twist. Among these characters is Ches, a gorgeous vampire with a conflicted conscience, who becomes Kallie’s guide and blossoming love interest. She also crosses paths with Queen Hartley, a manipulative witch who has the power to strip away one’s memories and imagination, which brings a bone chilling new meaning to “off with their heads.” In The Search for Alice, Kallie starts to realize that her Wonderland is just as frightening as her own reality and that she cannot always run away from her problems. She must figure out a way to defeat Queen Hartley and return home before it is too late, but she soon learns that escaping Wonderland means leaving Ches behind forever.

Want to read more?  You can click the link directly below for a free preview.  Thanks for your support!

Free Instant Preview of The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice is available here!

The Search for Alice Cover

Ranking my top 5 Horror TV Shows: “Well good news I found a piece of pie with no blood on it. Anybody want a bite?”

Greetings TV Fans!  With all of the excitement centered on the release of the trailer for the upcoming Halloween film, I started to really think about some of my favorite horror films of all time and then I realized that there are quite a few TV shows that fit the bill as well.  Whether you enjoy campy horror, slasher suspense, or zombies galore, horror TV shows have been around for quite a while and still stand the test of time.  For today, I am going to be ranking my absolute favorite horror TV shows.  Please note that for this list I have decided not to include TV shows that overlap in fantasy, supernatural, and sci-fi.  For example, shows like Supernatural, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Charmed, and True Blood will not be included because I think they have so many other layers with elements of horror.  That being said, if you have read my blog before, you know that I am a huge fan of these shows, but I wanted the chance to let some other horror TV shows take the spotlight.   Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch any of the series below yet. My top 5 horror TV shows are:

5

Slasher

I recently got the chance to binge-watch the first two seasons of Slasher on Netflix and I have to say that the show pulled me in right away.  If you are a fan of slasher films like Scream, this is the show for you.  The first season centers around the character, Sarah who finds herself caught in the middle of a series of murders that are very similar to the murder of her own parents.  The opening episode is beyond terrifying featuring the killer, The Executioner, who will give you nightmares for sure.  The second season follows a completely different story-line and has more of an Agatha Christie type feel, as we learn about a group of friends who were responsible for killing a girl many years ago and try to put together the missing pieces when they later return.  Each season brings different elements to the table, but has a healthy dose of gore, mystery, and twists that are not that easy to guess, which is refreshing.

4

Scream Queens

I am a huge fan of campy horror and I thoroughly enjoy films like Shaun of the Dead, Tucker and Dale vs. Evil, The Evil Dead franchise, and The Cabin in the Woods.  I think there is something to be said about the perfect blend of horror and comedy that is just pure genius.  Even though Scream Queens only lasted two seasons, this show had me laughing out loud and screaming whenever the Red Devil made an appearance.  The show follows a sorority who is targeted by the killer, but I have to say that Niecy Nash playing the security guard, Denise is the absolute best part of the show.  While you may think you have seen a million movies like this before, Scream Queens really delivers and I was beyond disappointed when the show was cancelled.

3

Bates Motel

Have you ever wondered what turned Norman Bates into the infamous killer in Psycho?  Bates Motel gave us the chance to really dive into the dark and creepy world of Norman Bates.  The show is a prequel and we get a glimpse into Norman’s life as a teenager.  The acting on this show is outstanding and the characters really draw you in, as you almost feel sympathy for Norman as you see the events that lead to his breakdown.  The show has an eerie and mysterious feel, drawing the viewer in seamlessly.  While we don’t see as much blood and gore in this particular show, Norman’s actions are bone-chilling and beyond creepy, which scare us in an entirely different way.  When Norman dresses up as his mother, it’s scary how he is able to emulate her mannerisms and words to perfection.  While the show answers many questions from Psycho, it also does a great job of paving its own identity, causing you to be on the edge of your seat at all times, never knowing what to truly expect from the Bates family.

2

Ash vs Evil Dead

Ash vs Evil Dead is another show that is the epitome of campy horror.  Bruce Campbell is a genius and I have been a fan of the Evil Dead franchise for a long time.  The show gave fans the chance to fall in love with Ash Williams, or “Ashy Slashy,” all over again, accepting that the only person who can stand in the way of evil is not afraid to deliver a well thought out pun just before destroying a deadite in grotesque and creative ways.  The show also allows fans to get to know the Ghost Beaters, Kelly and Pablo, who team up with Ash against the she-devil, Ruby, played by the absolutely fabulous Lucy Lawless.  The show recently aired its series finale, but provided fans with three seasons of fun, gore, comedy, and great music.  You are seriously missing out if you do not check this show out.  “Groovy.”   

Some honorable mentions before revealing my number one pick are:

  • Scream
  • It
  • Are You Afraid of the Dark?
  • Twin Peaks
  • The Twilight Zone
  • Goosebumps
  • The Strain
  • Hannibal
  • The Walking Dead franchise

 

1

American Horror Story

It should be no surprise that my favorite horror TV show is FX’s American Horror Story.  The show is created by Ryan Murphy and does an amazing job of covering every element of horror.  Each season features a different premise with a new type of evil never lurking too far away.  While each season is unique in its own way, my absolute favorites are Coven, Hotel, and Murder House.  The show is not afraid to test boundaries and will have you on the edge of your seat the entire time.  There have been some moments on the show that have been so frightening that I was not able to sleep without seeing Twisty the Clown appear in my nightmares.  The show does a great job of bringing one’s fears to the surface, but it also really looks into the darkness that exists within society as well, which really elevates the show.  The most recent season focused on a cult, proving that humanity can be just as capable of performing evil as spirits and vampires.  I was also very intrigued by the comparison of each season to a circle of hell from Dante’s Inferno Dante’s journey through each circle exposes him to different types of sin and evil that exist in the world and within society, which adds even more complexity to American Horror Story.  I am beyond excited to see what the next season brings and what sins it will explore next.

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to share some of your own thoughts and comments on your favorite horror TV shows. 

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

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13 Reasons Why you should watch “13 Reasons Why” Season 2

If you’re a devoted television fan like me, then I’m sure you have heard of the Netflix show, 13 Reasons Why.  Last year I spent an entire day binge-watching the first season and I have to say that it had me laughing, crying, and shocked more than I thought possible.  I do recommend that you read the warnings before each episode, as some of the content can be emotionally disturbing.  Having said that, the characters on this show are so real and it’s hard not to connect to their stories and dive into their world.  Our hearts break for some characters and we find ourselves angry at others, but we learn that “everyone affects everyone” in some way or another and it’s up to us to decide how we are going to behave and who we are going to become in the process.  It may be difficult to step out of a label or an expectation, but doing the right thing and supporting the people around us is so much more important.  While season 1 focuses primarily on Hannah Baker’s story, season 2 gives us the chance to see what happened from other perspectives, as unlikely heroes emerge and second chances are presented.  Please note major spoilers are ahead.  My top 13 reasons to check out 13 Reasons Why season 2 are: 

 

13

Clay gets a tattoo.

In the beginning of season 2, Clay is still with Skye and we learn that it has been 5 months since Hannah committed suicide.  Clay decides to get a semicolon tattoo, but ends up passing out.  As a result, he has a “fucking comma.”  Skye has emotional problems of her own and ends up moving away, but is an important influence on Clay’s life.  At the end of the season, Clay returns to finish the tattoo.  The semicolon symbol is important, representing another way to continue a sentence, rather than end it simply with a period.  This can be true about a sentence, a story, and about one’s life.  Selena Gomez and several of the actors on 13 Reasons Why have gotten the same tattoo and have discussed its message and significance.  The tattoo marks the beginning of Clay’s new journey, as he tries to deal with his life without Hannah.  No one said it would be easy, but Clay is ready to move on.

12

“There’s always another side to every story.”

Part of what makes season 2 so great is that we get to see what happened from different perspectives.  In season 1, everything we learned was mostly through Hannah’s eyes.  However, season 2 allows us to explore more of that story and understand how her suicide has truly impacted those around her.  For example, we learn that Zach actually had a summer romance with Hannah and had real and true feelings for her.

11

Clay is still seeing Hannah.

It’s hard not to root for Clay and want the very best for him.  Clay’s world is still falling apart, even though he has tried to move on.  He begins seeing Hannah and even has full conversations with her throughout season 2.  Clay clearly understands that Hannah is gone, but his loneliness is sometimes too much to handle and it seems to bring him some sort of comfort to talk out loud to her.  While this allows us to see more of Hannah Baker, the real emphasis here is on Clay and him trying to make sense of his life and figure out a healthy way to move on and still get justice for Hannah.

10

“Feeling the pain and facing it.  That takes courage.”

Hannah’s mother, Mrs. Baker is dealing with quite a lot.  Her daughter is gone, her husband is filing for divorce, and she is consumed by the trial against the school.  It’s difficult to sit through the trial as some witnesses tell a truth that is difficult to hear, while others completely lie.  Later on we learn that Hannah was responsible for bullying a girl at her old school.  Hannah wasn’t perfect, but Mrs. Baker’s love for her is unconditional and like Clay, she desperately wants justice for her daughter.  Mrs. Baker does have a second chance to make things right, as she becomes an important influence for both Jessica and Alex.  While Mrs. Baker may not have been able to save Hannah, she has the opportunity here to make a real difference with two kids in pain.

9

Alex puts the pieces back together.

At the end of season 1, Alex shot himself in the head, but did survive.  It’s difficult for him to walk and he has lost huge chunks of his memory, but he is determined to put the pieces back together.  He even listens to the tapes again, which eventually Clay leaks out to everyone anonymously so that they can learn what truly happened.  In episode 11, a huge fight breaks out and Alex begins to remember things, like Monty’s part in all of this.  He refuses to sit by on the sidelines and becomes a character you can truly relate to.

8

“Love as infinity.”

In one of my favorite moments of season 2, Clay and Hannah are lying on the floor and looking up at the ceiling.  They discuss the concept of infinity and how to understand it and Hannah suggests that “maybe that’s how we understand it.  Love that goes on forever.”  In this moment, it’s like the entire world has stopped and it’s just Clay and Hannah.  Clay’s love for Hannah is beautiful and transcendent.  This is a memory he can always hold on to forever, suggesting that her words are actually spot on.

7

Unlikely heroes step forward.

Characters like Mr. Porter, Justin, and Zach all get second chances in season 2.  Mr. Porter breaks down in court and even though he did everything he could according to policy, he feels like he could have done more.  He ultimately loses his job, but his words are important and he tries to make a difference in as many lives as he can.  While he feels like he let Hannah down, he has a second chance to make it right.  Justin has been living on the streets and Clay finds him and lets him stay at his house secretly.  Justin has an addiction to heroin and has been dealing with quite a lot, but he is able to do the right thing and tell the court and the police what he saw Bryce do to Jessica.  While Justin has consequences of his own because of his involvement, he is willing to do the right thing and become someone to be proud of.  When Clay tells Justin that his family wants to adopt him, it looks like he can finally get the second chance he deserves.  Now he just needs to kick that nasty drug habit.  Zach is another character who becomes an unlikely hero.  Even when he was with Hannah, he was a coward and allowed Bryce and the others to make fun of her.  Zach finally breaks out of this and stands against Bryce.  In the huge fight in episode 11, he finally picks a side.  Zach is an important character because he reminds us that sometimes it’s easier to do nothing and stay quiet, but taking a stand takes real courage and can shape us into who we are meant to be.

6

“Some people will still blame others.”

While many of the characters are trying to pick up the pieces and move on, poor Tyler is having a rough go at it.  While it’s easy to dislike Bryce who refuses to believe that he is wrong, a character like Monty can be even more dangerous.  Monty’s actions are cruel and disturbing.  In a graphic sexual assault, Monty does the unthinkable to Tyler.  The rape scene in the bathroom is extremely difficult to watch.  Tyler is traumatized and is looking to take revenge against his classmates as a result of this.  Even though unlikely heroes have emerged, there are still bullies and villains present, refusing to take a hard look in the mirror to see what they have done.  Bryce and Monty have destroyed lives with their actions.  But will they ever truly try to make amends?

5

Justice for Jessica.

Jessica is having a very difficult time coping and is unable to name Bryce throughout most of season 2.  After Justin comes forward, Jessica is able to finally file a police report.  Even though Bryce gets off with 3 months probation, she no longer needs to hide from the truth.  Jessica learns how to live her life without being defined by something that happened to her and to step forward for those who can’t.  For example, Chloe has the opportunity to speak out against Bryce and can’t go through with it.  However, Chloe has another problem to deal with, as she confides in Jessica that she is pregnant.  Jessica is also able to get justice for Hannah in this moment as well, who never got the chance to speak out against Bryce.  Even though the trial ends with ruling in favor of the school, what happened to Hannah is not to be forgotten.  Jessica’s justice is also extremely important.

4

“I can love you and still let you go.”

Earlier in season 2, Skye leaves and says these words to Clay.  They are beautiful and meaningful and later when Clay speaks at Hannah’s service, he applies them to his love for Hannah.  The service allows everyone to finally say goodbye to Hannah and cherish her memory.  Clay’s eulogy is so real and heartbreaking.  While he will never forget Hannah, he is ready to move on with his life.

3

“The Night we Met.”

In the season 2 finale, Clay and everyone are at the school dance.  “The Night we Met” song comes on again, which is the song he danced with Hannah to.  Clay’s emotions begin overwhelming him and Tony immediately goes to find him when he hears the song.  In a beautiful moment, Tony and all of his friends surround Clay and sway back and forth to the music.  All of these characters have come together to be there for Clay.  He is no longer alone and these characters are now linked forever.  In season 1, they were all brought together by terrible secrets, but in season 2 they are brought together to honor Hannah and to support each other no matter what comes their way.

2

“What do we do?  Do we look the other way or do we help them?”

When Clay discovers that Tyler is on his way to the school with an assault rifle, everyone suggests that they call the police and get out of there.  Clay refuses to run away, however.  He knows that Hannah would want him to step in and help.  It’s never too late and Clay risks his life trying to tell Tyler this.  Tony gets Tyler out of there in the nick of time, while Clay is left standing outside holding the gun.  In this moment, Clay is beyond courageous, but he has a lot to explain once the police show up.

1

“But no matter how many reasons there might be why, there are always more why not.”

This is probably the most significant moment for me.  Mrs. Baker finds Hannah’s list of reasons and discovers that she made a list of reasons why not.  Clay and “Helmet” are on there, which reveals how important he truly was to Hannah.  Mrs. Baker tries to tell him that she left so many reasons out and that there are always more reasons why not, reminding us that living is what’s important.  Clay and the other characters are ready to finally start living.  The tragic moments are always going to happen and we can’t always control that, but we can control what we do afterwards.  It’s what makes us who we are; who we can still become.

 I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own theories and thoughts on 13 Reasons Why in the comments section below.  Thanks for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe.  Thanks for your support!

Ranking the top 5 moments from “The 100” season 5 episode 1: “Who am I now?”

Happy Wednesday TV fans!  “May we meet again.”  I am beyond excited for the return of one of my absolute favorite shows on television right now: The 100. While the CW typically has The 100 premiere mid-season, it seemed like we had to wait extra long this year for the season premiere, but the wait is finally over.  If you have not yet watched this brilliant and addicting show, I highly recommend that you binge-watch it on Netflix as soon as possible.  It’s reminds me of a mix between Lost and Lord of the Flies with some teen angst and drama sprinkled in.  At the end of season 4, “Praimfaya” was about to arrive, which is otherwise known as the “Death Wave.”  While many of our favorite characters made it to an underground bunker for shelter, Clarke and her friends were running out of time and hatched a plan to launch themselves back into space.  Only Clarke was not able to get on the rocket in time and it launched without her.  While it seemed like Clarke had sacrificed herself to save her friends and was about to die from radiation exposure, the night blood injected into her veins kicked into high gear, healing her from the damage.

So now that you’re all caught up, let’s begin with season 5.   Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch the latest episode yet.  In last night’s season premiere episode, “Eden,” we learn about Clarke’s journey on her own beginning 42 days after “Praimfaya” has struck.  Clarke is alone and desperately trying to survive, but it seems like the odds are against her.  After failing to reach her mother in the bunker, Clarke decides to try and find some sort of life still existing, but her faith is tested over and over again.  Meanwhile, Bellamy and the others have been living on “The Ark” up in space, but have been trying to get back to earth and realize that they are not alone up there after spotting another ship.  My top 5 moments from The 100 season 5 episode 1 are:

5

“I’ve been by myself now for two months but this is the first time I feel alone.”

42 days after “Praimfaya” struck, we finally get to see Clarke who has miraculously survived.  Her first thought is to try and reach the bunker so she can be reunited with her mother, but she finds that it is buried so far beneath the surface, that she would never be able to get to it.  Clarke decides to journey out across the earth, desperately hoping to find some sign of life still present.  Clarke is barely able to rest, as every moment is focused on surviving.  Clarke proves to be very resourceful as her survival skills are put to the test, but the loneliness and emptiness inside her begins to creep in.  Clarke tries talking to Bellamy and her friends on “The Ark” on a radio, knowing full well that they will never hear her, but it’s the only thing she has left to cling to.

4

“Who am I now?”

Clarke begins to lose hope after she collapses in a barren field, waking up to a bird picking at her body.  She begs the bird to show her where it lives, but it flies away from her, leaving her alone once again.  Clarke hits her breaking point and screams out, “You think you can kill me?  Have at it…I’ve lost everything.  I’ve got nothing left.”  Up until this point, Clarke has buried her fear and loneliness as much as possible, but it has all come screaming to the surface now, refusing to let go.  Clarke’s emotions overwhelm her, as the harsh reality that she may die alone sets in.  Clarke picks up her gun and begins to make the conscious decision to end her life and this misery, when the bird suddenly circles around her again.  Clarke’s faith is healed, even if just for a moment, but it’s enough to get her up and running after it.  Clarke discovers a beautiful valley filled with lush trees and vegetation.  It’s like the “Death Wave” had missed it entirely.  Clarke thanks the bird and then mechanically kills it, as the survivor in her is back and ready to stay strong.

3

Life on “The Ark.”

About 6 years after “Praimfaya,” we finally get to see Bellamy and the others up on “The Ark.”  While it seems like everyone is alive and well, drama is never too far behind.  After all, these few characters have been trapped with one another for quite some time.  We learn that Murphy and Emori are no longer together and Bellamy is now with Echo, which has Bellarke fans everywhere screaming with disapproval.  That absolutely includes me.  While many things have changed, these characters have worked together as a team as much as possible and spot the green on the earth, which inspires the hope that it is survivable once again.  After they spot another ship and a transport ship, they realize that they have the opportunity to get back down to earth.  While we know that it’s only a matter of time before they reach earth again and reunite with Clarke, they have been living in a bubble for quite some time now, sheltered from society.  Will they be able to adapt to life on earth again?  How will Bellamy react once he sees that Clarke is alive?

2

The last two people on earth.

After discovering the valley, Clarke finds another survivor.  She is just a child, but has clearly only survived because of her own night blood.   The girl doesn’t trust Clarke and she traps her and wounds her, fleeing from her in fear.  Clarke doesn’t give up on her, however; and even keeps her sense of humor intact when she says, “Last two people on earth and one of them happens to be the child from hell.”  Clarke sketches a picture of the little girl and leaves it for her, which is the first step toward gaining her trust.  When we flash to 6 years later, Clarke is living with the little girl, Madi and the two are inseparable.  They have a mother-daughter like bond and Clarke has even taught her how to speak in English.  While they wonder if anyone will ever come back, Clarke shares all of her past stories with Madi and tells her about her family, friends, and love.  The two appear to have a precious and beautiful bond that cannot be broken.  Their simple and quiet life is interrupted, however; when a “prisoner ship” lands by the valley.

1

New arrivals to earth.

After the prisoner ship lands, new characters emerge who also spotted the green from space and took a chance that it was their own version of “Eden.”  One of the new characters is played by the beautiful and brilliant Ivana Milicevic from Banshee.  While the other prisoners seem to be just going with the flow, she appears to be smart and aware of her surroundings, which could make her an ally or a dangerous new threat.  Friend or foe?  While we are not sure just yet, Clarke is not about to take any chances.  After Madi shoots one of the prisoners to protect Clarke, Madi begs Clarke to spare the other one’s life since he tried to help her.  Clarke tells her that “there are no good guys” and ends his life without a moment’s hesitation.  Meanwhile, we get a quick glimpse at Octavia in the bunker, ruling some kind of underground fight club, which reminds us that these new prisoners are not the only people on the ground that Clarke needs to worry about.  While we will need to wait for everyone to be reunited, it’s clear that this season will be jam-packed with drama, adventure, and edge of your seat moments.  Stay tuned!

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own theories and thoughts on The 100 in the comments section below.  Happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl