Spoiler-Free Review of “Teenage Bounty Hunters” on Netflix: Addicting In All The Right Ways

**This is a spoiler-free review so feel free to read on!**

“What if we become the best Bounty Hunters in Atlanta?”

Teenage Bounty Hunters is a new series from executive producer Jenji Kohan (Weeds, Orange Is the New Black). The show premiered on August 14th 2020, featuring 10 episodes available to stream now (approximately 45-50 minutes in length). The show stars Maddie Phillips, Anjelica Bette Fellini, Kadeem Hardison, and Virginia Williams.

Teenage Bounty Hunters introduces us to twin sisters, Sterling and Blair, who are accidentally mistaken for bounty hunters when they run down a “skip” with their dad’s car. They start to realize that they are actually quite skilled at the job, giving them a new sense of purpose, as they are guided by their new mentor, Bowser.

Here is the trailer:

Teenage Bounty Hunters doesn’t hold anything back, as it immediately jumps into a raunchy, darker humor with lots of action and drama too. The show is a good mix of Veronica Mars and Saved! while also paving the way for its own identity.

But, does Teenage Bounty Hunters do enough to become your next worthy binge-watch? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Teenage Bounty Hunters Netflix 1
Images courtesy of Netflix

Out of this world performances.

“Twin swear!” Seriously, these two are beyond fantastic. You immediately believe that they are sisters and are completely invested in everything that gets thrown their way. I love when they embrace their bad-ass side while chasing down “skips,” but there is also a vulnerability to them. They are growing up and carrying a lot of baggage too, but they are real, believable, and hilarious!

Teenage Bounty Hunters Netflix 2
Images courtesy of Netflix

Laugh out loud funny and super entertaining.

The show nails the darker, raunchy humor and then some. It’s been a while since I have actually laughed out loud at a show and this show delivers! Sure, some of the humor may be a little over the top and could come down to preference, but it just works effortlessly.

The chase scenes involving the “skips” are the best part of the show and we get to witness some pretty spectacular skills from the Wesley sisters. More please!

Teenage Bounty Hunters Netflix 3
Images courtesy of Netflix

Great chemistry and rapport between characters.

Bowser is basically the Giles (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) or Keith Mars (Veronica Mars) we have been searching for. He takes the girls under his wing, but certainly has to put up with a lot to get them ready for each job while dealing with a lot of teenage drama that he did not sign up for.

But when it comes down to it, there is something really genuine and sweet about this relationship and it was one of the best parts of the show.

The Cons:

Teenage Bounty Hunters Netflix 4
Images courtesy of Netflix

The religious undertones are a little overwhelming.

I personally didn’t mind them and they gave me some Saved! nostalgia, but they may be a deal breaker for some. Sometimes the religious references felt forced and out of place, but they didn’t turn me off to the show completely. I get what the show was trying to do and accepted that, but it was a little heavy at times.

So am I in or out?

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Images courtesy of Netflix

I’m in 100 percent! I had high hopes for this series and it did not let me down! As soon as I started watching it, I couldn’t stop. It is the perfect binge-watch to get you through the weekend and I recommend that you move it to the top of your list. I am officially obsessed with this show!

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Teenage Bounty Hunters in the comments section below. Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

PLAY BY THE RULES…STAY ALIVE…

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A harmless night of fun turns deadly for six college friends but the game has only just begun. Take a mystery thrill ride right from your own living room. Dash and Seek is out now! I hope you enjoy!

READ IF YOU DARE…

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Spoiler-Free Review of “Nancy Drew” Series Premiere on the CW: “Maybe more horror and less mystery?”

**This is a spoiler-free review so feel free to read on!**

“Mysteries were everywhere and I loved solving them.”

Your favorite amateur sleuth is getting her own show, but it seems like this Nancy Drew is darker and more mature, but can she measure up to the competition?  The series premiere of Nancy Drew aired on the CW on October 9th 2019.  The show will run weekly episodes and it comes on directly after Riverdale.  Know your audience, right?

The show stars Kennedy McMann, Tunji Kasim, Leah Lewis, and Scott Wolf.  Nancy Drew makes reference to how she started solving mysteries at a young age, paying tribute to the book series character we all know and love.  However, after tragically losing her mother, Nancy Drew is all grown up and it seems like she wants to stay away from mysteries and ghosts, but it doesn’t look like they are ready to let her go just yet.

Nancy Drew has a lot of competition, especially since other shows like Riverdale, Veronica Mars, and Stranger Things all have a captivating female lead who likes to solve mysteries, but where does that leave the girl who started it all?  Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Nancy Drew CW Premiere 1
Images courtesy of The CW

True respect for the original character.

Nancy Drew was the first book series I fell in love with and I lost myself in the mysteries again and again.  I have seen several movie interpretations and I appreciate that this show is trying to do something different, but I also respected the clever Easter eggs thrown into the mix, including our girl Nancy investigating with the infamous flashlight.

Some potential for the new Scoobies.

I am still sorting out who is who and I’m not sure how I feel about Nancy’s friends just yet, but I like that they all want to help out.  I always loved “The Scoobies” on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, reminding us that you don’t have to be the obvious hero to make a difference and save the day, so I think this could be the start of something really fun and nostalgic.

The supernatural horror elements are genuinely scary!

If you know anything about Nancy Drew, you know that even though you get your fair share of ghostly mysteries, there is always some kind of rational explanation to bring us back to the real world.  Even this Nancy reminds us in the beginning of the show that she doesn’t believe in ghosts and yet there is this very real ghost story going on, which has captured my full attention.

I expected this show to be more focused on teenage drama with mystery sprinkled in, but I was genuinely surprised by the supernatural horror aspect and I think this might be something that can help Nancy Drew create a voice of its own separate from RiverdaleChilling Adventures of Sabrina comes to mind, but so far they are doing much better with that deliciously dark component, but that doesn’t mean that Nancy Drew can’t step up to the plate too.  More horror please!

The Cons:

Nancy Drew CW Premiere 2
Images courtesy of The CW

I can’t get a real read on Nancy yet.

Part of the reason why I like characters like Betty Cooper, Veronica Mars, and Nancy Wheeler is that they channel Nancy Drew while having this magnetic spark that really draws you in to their character.  I’m missing something with Nancy Drew so far and while I get that she is dealing with her grief and seems closed off, I haven’t connected with her at all yet and that could be a problem.  I’m only one episode in so I hope to get some more layers soon, but I want to ignite a fire within Nancy as soon as possible.

Forcing a ship.

Part of the way I fall in love with a ship, is that I see the progression of their relationship that leads to some epic moment between them that cannot be ignored.  We dive into this relationship between Nancy and Nick (Ned Nickerson) and I just don’t feel the chemistry yet.  I want to see some real moments between them leading up to something, rather than these bits and pieces that are being forced upon me.

The actual mystery is just kind of blah…

A dead body shows up and Nancy Drew is on the case, but there is nothing really unique or special about the murder and Nancy’s process to discover the clues seems very by the numbers and uninspiring.  That being said, the mystery surrounding this ghost story and her parents might be the real winner, but I still want Nancy to surprise me and invest me in her other mysteries.  Maybe she should call Betty Cooper up for some advice on this…

So am I in or out? 

Nancy Drew CW Premiere 3
Images courtesy of The CW

As of right now, it’s about 50/50 for me.  The show isn’t necessarily bad, but there’s nothing that magnetic or special about it just yet.  I feel like right now it is in the shadow of its competition and it needs to do something spectacular to pave its own way.  Maybe that’s the horror element I mentioned earlier, which has a lot of chilling potential. 

I plan on giving the show another two episodes to really get a feel for it, but I’m hoping for some kind of a spark here.  Out of every new Fall show premiering, this is the show I was really looking forward to and perhaps I set my expectations too high, but I’m keeping an open mind for now.

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Nancy Drew in the comments section below.  Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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**Do you love television shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Once Upon a Time, Lost, Charmed, The Vampire Diaries, and Supernatural?  Do you enjoy dark fantasy, fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery?  Then you may like my book series, Dreaming of Wonderland…available on Amazon!  Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well.  I really hope you enjoy!

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My performance of the week ending 7/20/19 on TV goes to…

Kristen Bell as Veronica Mars on Hulu’s Veronica Mars season 4.  I have been a huge fan of Kristen Bell since the very start of the Veronica Mars series and the show still has a secure spot in my top 5 series of all time.  I was so disappointed when the show ended after three seasons, but was pleased when fans finally got to see the movie and I have been counting the days until the release of season 4 on Hulu, which surprise….it’s out a week early!!!!! What???!!!!

I’m so glad I finished my re-watch of the series early so that I can binge-watch all weekend and I have to say that Kristen Bell is still as charming as ever.  Veronica Mars may have more of a mature feel now, but that makes sense since we aren’t in high school anymore.  Veronica still sticks to her roots, challenging authority, taking chances, and speaking her mind, which brings quite a few laughs along the way.  She may be a marshmallow now, but she is also quite the bad-ass and I am having so much fun watching the new season.  **Please note spoilers have been left out for your convenience so feel free to read on!

One of the reasons why I love Veronica Mars so much as a character is because she is far from perfect.  Sure, she tends to be the one to solve the case and she often notices clues before the local Sheriff’s office, but she is also guarded with major trust issues, which can get in the way of some of her friendships and relationships.  Veronica has a supporting father, some great friendships, and an amazing boyfriend, but she tends to do things on her own. 

Some of my favorite moments with her are when she lets that guard down and is finally vulnerable, revealing her doubts and insecurities.  I connect with her so much and my heart has broken along with hers over the years.  Through it all, Veronica Mars continues to stay true to herself, reminding us that our purpose is sometimes right in front of us.

What’s next for Veronica Mars?  We’ll have to wait and see, but I’m wondering if a season 5 is possible?  The premise of the show allows a new case or mystery to set the scene and I have been loving the fun cameos and nostalgia sprinkled in across season 4. I’ll always be a Veronica Mars fan for life and Kristen Bell’s performance is real, inspiring, and super fun too!  If you haven’t seen the show yet, all of the episodes (seasons 1-4) are now streaming on Hulu and you can watch the movie on HBO GO/Now.  That’s all for now Marshmallows!  Enjoy the binge-watch!

Stay tuned for a recognized performance on TV each week!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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Have a performance on TV that you think is simply outstanding? Feel free to contact me with your nomination for the week by Friday at midnight! 

**Do you love television shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Once Upon a Time, Lost, Charmed, The Vampire Diaries, and Supernatural?  Do you enjoy dark fantasy, fairy-tale retellings, paranormal romance, horror, and mystery?  Then you may like my book series, Dreaming of Wonderland…available on Amazon!  Thank you for taking the time to check it out and I appreciate any feedback as well.  I really hope you enjoy!

The Dreaming of Wonderland Book Series is available here!

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Ranking my top 5 One True Pairings on Television: Ships that will make you Swoon

Happy Valentine’s Day TV fans!  When it comes to defining what makes a OTP (one true pairing) on television, what comes to mind?  Is it the passionate and fiery moments between these two characters or is it more about an everlasting love that stands the test of time?  Whether it involves sacrifice and heartbreak or compromise and understanding, there are some couples on television who truly encompass the essence of love.

It’s rare to find that happy ending that we read about in fairy-tales, but these OTPs are not for lack of trying.  Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch any of these series yet.  Please also note that sitcoms were not included for today’s list.  My top 5 One True Pairings on television are:

5

Veronica & Logan from Veronica Mars.

Veronica and Logan 2 14

Logan: “I thought our story was epic, you know you and me?”

Veronica:  “Epic how?”

Logan:  “Spanning years and continents.  Lives ruined, bloodshed.  EPIC…”

Although Veronica Mars only lasted for three seasons, it still gave fans plenty of time to ship Veronica and Logan.  While the beginning of the series focuses on her feelings for her former love, Duncan, Veronica also seems to initially despise Logan.  On the surface, Logan is selfish and cruel, refusing to apologize for his actions.  When Veronica and Logan team up later on in season one, you cannot deny the sparks flying between these two.  Logan lets his guard down for Veronica and they fall in love with each other.

These two do not ride off into the sunset, however; as they are in for their fair share of ups and downs.  At the end of the season one cliffhanger, fans are not sure who is on the other side of the door for Veronica when she says, “I was hoping it would be you.”  Once season 2 premieres, we learn that it was Logan waiting for her on the other end, but she is now dating Duncan to make things even more complicated.  Even when Veronica and Logan are not together, Logan clearly cares about Veronica more than anyone else.  He constantly proves his love for her and defends her honor, not caring about the consequences.

While Logan may initially lack the stability that Veronica ultimately needs, his love for her is unchanging.  At the end of the series, Logan and Veronica are not back together, leaving fans disappointed.  However, when the Veronica Mars film was released years later, Veronica and Logan finally got the happy ending they deserved.  It was worth the wait!

4

Piper & Leo from Charmed.

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“Leo, you are the best thing that has ever happened to me.  I was afraid that you were too good to be true, that maybe I didn’t deserve someone so pure and beautiful and loving as you are…Leo I was born to love you and I always will.”

At the beginning of the Charmed series, the blossoming relationship between Piper and Leo is delightful and real.  Piper’s sister, Phoebe even initially competes with her to win Leo’s affection, but it’s always been clear where Leo’s heart lies.  As Piper’s white lighter, it is forbidden for them to be together, but they cannot deny their connection.  Piper and Leo have been through so much together and Leo is even ripped away from her by the elders during their first attempt at a wedding.

Ultimately, Piper and Leo are meant for each other.  However, they go through quite a lot on the way and are tested constantly.  Piper and Leo have two beautiful sons, Wyatt and Chris, and form a beautiful family together, constantly trying to keep this priority above all others.  While Piper is known for her quick temper, Leo balances her out and always keeps her calm.  When they are apart, it’s truly heartbreaking, as fans recognize the selfless love these two have for one another.

Piper and Leo do get their happy ending and keep their friendship and love strong in the process.  There is something so believable and undeniable between Piper and Leo, still holding the test of time and reminding us what true love is all about.

3

Emma & Hook from Once Upon a Time.

Hook and Emma 2 14

When I win your heart, Emma, and I will win it. It will not be because of any trickery. It will be because you want me. 

When the devilishly handsome Captain Hook sailed into our hearts on OUAT, he initially was out for revenge.  While Hook innocently flirted with Emma from the start, his love for her allowed him to grow as a character and to learn from his wicked past.  Hook was always used to taking the easy way out and making decisions based on how well it suited him.

Emma changed this perspective, however; proving that he could be a selfless man.  When Hook realized his strong feelings for Emma, he even backed down and explained that she should be with Neal so that Henry could have his family all together.  Hook truly loved Emma at this point, but was willing to sacrifice this so that she could find happiness.  Later, when they did end up together, Emma’s power became too great and evil corrupted her heart.  The only thing that could bring her back to goodness was Hook’s love for her.

Emma and Hook had one of the most beautiful relationships on television and their wedding at the end of season 6 was touching and heart-warming.  Hook’s love for Emma transformed him from a villain into a hero one can be proud of, who will never stop fighting for the one he loves.  Now that’s a fairy-tale ending!

2

Buffy & Angel from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

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Angel:  “This isn’t some fairy-tale.  When I kiss you…you don’t wake up from a deep sleep and live happily ever after.”

Buffy:  “No, when you kiss me, I wanna die.”

This list would not be complete without including Buffy and Angel.  Known as the vampire cursed with a soul, Angel is initially used to being on his own, lurking in the shadows and staying clear of human connections.  When he crosses paths with Buffy, he realizes that he has a chance to turn his destiny around and do some good.  However, he falls in love with her along the way.

Buffy and Angel’s love is touching and romantic initially, making fans everywhere swoon this ship.  When Buffy and Angel consummate their love, he experiences a moment of true happiness and the curse is broken, freeing his soul in the process.  As a result of this, Angelus is released, the pure vampire killer with no remorse or guilt and he begins torturing Buffy and her friends.  Buffy is completely heart-broken but she proves her strength when she goes up against Angel, knowing that she must defeat him to protect the world.  She recognizes that the good man she came to know and love is gone, leaving only a shell of a monster behind.  After Buffy sacrifices Angel, he returns from Hell with his soul intact but their relationship is so complicated and shattered at this point.  They love each other but they know that they can’t get too close because of the consequences.

They try out being friends and the villainous vampire, Spike even points out that they can never be friends because their love for one another is messy and passionate.  At the end of season 3, Buffy and Angel part ways as Angel leaves the show for his spin-off, but not before he shows up at her prom to dance with her one last time, reminding her that he will always be there for her.

Although Buffy and Angel do not end up together and have other relationships along the way, they both recognize how much they truly care for one another.  They have a love that transcends romance, understanding that even though they are apart; they are always together on some level.

Some honorable mentions before revealing my favorite OTP are:

  • Blair & Chuck from Gossip Girl
  • Brenda & Dylan from Beverly Hills, 90210
  • Michael & Sara from Prison Break
  • Maggie & Glenn from The Walking Dead
  • Octavia & Lincoln from the 100
  • Piper & Alex from Orange is the New Black
  • Kev & V from Shameless
  • Ian & Mickey from Shameless
  • Seth & Summer from The OC
  • Damon & Elena from The Vampire Diaries
  • Phoebe & Cole from Charmed
  • Buffy & Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer
  • Desmond & Penny from Lost
  • Sawyer & Juliet from Lost
  • Mike & Susan from Desperate Housewives
  • Tara & Willow from Buffy the Vampire Slayer
  • Clarke and Lexa from The 100
  • Sookie & Eric from True Blood
  • Nathan & Haley from One Tree Hill
  • Alice & Robin from Once Upon a Time
  • Cheryl & Toni from Riverdale

1

Sun & Jin from Lost.

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“I was going to leave you.  I was going to get away…but you made me change my mind.”

My all-time favorite OTP has to go to Sun & Jin from Lost.  For me, Sun and Jin have a love that is very different from other characters on television.  This is mostly because their love is the most real.  Their love isn’t perfect and there are times where they do temporarily give up on one another and forget about why they fell in love in the first place.  But this is what makes their love so important.  Real love isn’t out of a fairy-tale; although I’m sure we would like it to be.  Real love is about compromise and accepting that we will make mistakes along the way.

Sun has an affair with another man and even contemplates leaving Jin and running away at the airport.  However, Jin shows her that he is holding a small white flower, just like when they first met and she changes her mind.  It breaks Jin’s heart when he finds out that Sun speaks English, representing another lie she kept from him for so long.   Both Sun and Jin are looking to prove themselves to the other, only to later realize that their love is enough.  The fact that they are able to forgive each other for mistakes they made before, shows the viewer what true love is all about.  Sun and Jin truly find themselves together as a couple and learn to love each other more than they thought possible.

After they are separated numerous times, they are finally reunited, not realizing that it will be short-lived.  Right after they are reunited, Sun gets pinned under metal in the sinking submarine and Jin is unable to free her.  Sun demands that he go and save himself, but Jin won’t leave her.  He will never leave her again.  Their death is one of the saddest for me to watch on television and the image of them holding hands under water as they take their last breaths, proves that they will never be apart again.

I hope you enjoyed my list and feel free to post your own comments and thoughts about some of your favorite OTPs on television.  Thanks for reading!  Happy Valentine’s Day!

**Don’t miss out on My Bloody Valentine’s Week book promotion for The Search for Alice!  It will be on sale for 99 cents from 2/11/19-2/17-19 and free with Kindle Unlimited! 

The Search for Alice is available here!

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Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

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Ranking the top 5 TV female characters who give Nancy Drew a run for her money: Solving one mystery at a time

Happy Saturday TV Fans!  I hope you are having a fabulous weekend full of shopping and binge-watching.  For today’s topic, I am going to be ranking the top 5 TV female characters who give Nancy Drew a run for her money.  Do you ever wonder how some of these characters solve the mystery in the nick of time while maintaining their grades, high school drama, and keeping up with the latest fashion trends?

For today’s ranking, I am only looking at female amateur sleuths.  If they work for any type of federal/government agency, they are not included since they are considered professionals.

My top 5 TV female characters who give Nancy Drew a run for her money are:

5

Dr. Joan Watson from CBS’s Elementary

While the original Dr. Watson from the classic Sherlock Holmes series is male, Lucy Liu proves that gender need not apply in order to have the smarts and wit to keep up with Sherlock Holmes himself.

While Dr. Watson does eventually consult with the police, she started off her career as a doctor and then shifted to helping others through addiction.  Even before Sherlock mentored her and taught her the ways of being a detective, her compassion for others and attention to detail made her a force to be reckoned with.

Joan is even able to get through to Sherlock and break through his shield of bottled emotions to help him cope with his own issues.  Through every test and case, Dr. Joan Watson proves to be a worthy partner of Sherlock’s and is capable of solving the mysteries on her own if needed.  But we love to see these two working together for sure.

4

Nancy Wheeler from Netflix’s Stranger Things

While a lot of the series centers on Nancy’s younger brother and his friends dealing with the threat of the upside down world, Nancy steps into the lime light herself to reveal that she is more than a stereotypical teenage girl.  When her best friend, Barb, vanishes, she is devastated but refuses to just accept it.

Nancy will stop at nothing to find out the truth about what happened to her and to make things right.  She finds herself in the middle of a love triangle, dealing with conflicting feelings for both Steve and Jonathan, but puts that on the back burner initially so that she can focus on the mystery at hand.

3

Betty Cooper from the CW’s Riverdale

Betty is pure of heart and has enough bounce in her blonde ponytail to bring school spirit to anyone even remotely close to her.  But that’s not what makes her so intriguing on Riverdale.  While she is concerned with doing the right thing and her image is close to perfection, Betty has some serious skills as an amateur sleuth and other characters on the show have even referred to her as Nancy Drew jokingly.

Unfortunately for Nancy Drew, she didn’t live in a world filled with technology at one’s finger tips and Betty uses this to her advantage.  She puts her family and friends above everything else and is great at analyzing the missing pieces of the puzzle to bring the truth to light.

2

Hanna, Aria, Spencer, and Emily from Pretty Little Liars

While “A” has been revealed and the show is over, we can’t forget about the constant twists and turns these girls had to face.  The beginning of the series opens with their friend Alison’s supposed death and the girls are left to pick up the pieces and figure out what happened to her.

The fun doesn’t stop here; however, as someone going by the name “A” is after them and putting them through hell.  The girls don’t give in so easily, as they work together as a team to bring down “A” and figure out the mystery at hand.  Individually, each character has their own strengths, but together they are an unstoppable force and their bond and friendship keeps them from breaking along the way.

1

Veronica Mars from Veronica Mars

Following in the shadow of her father who is a private detective, Veronica is a high-school student who works closely with him and shows that she has just as much talent and a real knack for the business.  Her best friend was murdered and the series begins with her trying to figure out who did it by piecing together the evidence.

During this, she also takes on cases at school on behalf of her friends and classmates.  What’s so great about Veronica is that you almost forget she is a teenage girl.  Her wit and humor is hilarious and you find yourself rooting for her with each new case coming her way.

Veronica was once popular, but is now considered an outsider at school, but this doesn’t stop her from helping others and making a statement against bullies and other threats along the way.

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post some of your own favorites below.  Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl