Seen on Netflix

· Culture, Illustration

For years I resisted the call of Netflix, I was too afraid to be caught in the spiral of binge watching and of letting my social life dwindle (SPOILER ALERT : Netflix isn’t responsible for my non-existing social life these past 2 months) but since end of december, with the cosy Christmas atmosphere, I decided to give it a go and subscribed.

And I don’t regret it! (especially during the lockdown period!) Especially since it didn’t really infringe on my other activites (I watch it during the evenings or a bit on the week-end, instead of the boring/anxiety-inducing programs of the traditional telly). I am almost up to date on my “series” culture (although I still have a lot of things to watch … cult series included, but I’m not losing hope!) but above all, I found tailored programs for my culinary and getaway tastes.

So here is my list of what I have watched up to now (I might enrich it as time goes by) (=do not hesitate to share your recommendations in the comments!) Maybe you’ll be inspired if you are looking for new things to watch …. or know what to avoid! (that being said, I’m a “make-your-own-opinion” type of person… you never know, we don’t all like the same things!)

 

Japan and Asia

I listed everything I watched that has something to do with Asia, with a strong Japan prevalence, you know me!

 

QUEER EYE : WE’RE IN JAPAN!

1st series I saw on Japan : I just loved the kindness, empathy, tolerance and warmth of this Queer Team that helps japanese people take back their life, be it in terms of looks, self-esteem or decoration. Some tears might be shed and emotions had in in the Land of the Rising Sun.

 

TERRACE HOUSE

Terrace House “Tokyo 2019-2020”

 

This japanese reality show was my (not so secret) indulgence for the beginning of 2020 and the beginning of the lockdown period. I discovered the seasons backwards, and started off with Tokyo 2019-2020 (which is still ongoing) and then followed with Opening new doors 2018, Boys and girls in the city 2015-2016 and finished with Hawaii Aloha State 2016-2017, the only available seasons on Netflix (I’m really rooting for the other seasons to be added to the catalogue).

My Instagram Stories and post are already stock full of debriefs, but to sum it up, if you are a fan of Japan, of japanese culture, and if you like analysing human behavior, following pretty romances (and drooling in front of all the japanese food), this is a show for you.

Terrace House “Opening New Doors 2018” with my favorite cute couple <3 (Credit photo : Sam Byford)

 

My favorite season is Opening New Doors (up to the end of part 3, the rest wasn’t really interesting to me afterwards) for the super cute side of the couple in question and the cozy feel of the place (a chalet in the mountains). If I go back to Japan at some point, I’ll be making a stop in Karuizawa for sure!

I also liked the end of the Tokyo 2019-2020 season, with the apparition of a very charismatic, talented and funny italian candidate : Peppe! The one I liked the least was Hawaii Aloha State because the japanese culture really took a backseat, but it was fun to watch anyway.

 

MIDNIGHT DINER : TOKYO STORIES

I watched the 1st episode and wasn’t really convinced by the rythm and the story, even though theoretically, all the ingredients were there (japanese food, intimate restaurant …) and it’s an adaptation of the “Midnight Diner” japanese manga (which is apparently very good). Maybe I should give it another go, but the mixed reviews aren’t really helping in motivating me…

 

KINGDOM

I was pretty intrigued by the 1st episode, that took place in an old Korean kingdom, with a terrifying zombie invasion, but I watched the following episodes with a distracted eye, and followed the series more through the eyes of my S.O, who was much more assiduous than I and who didn’t want to wait for me to watch the rest (=I had an illustration order to finish : I did sit through the episodes, but wasn’t really focused).

My S.O loved it, and I did very much enjoy the beautiful images (didn’t quite follow the scenario though, haha). Anyway, sorry for this poor quality review! But I did have to mentione it because it is worth it if you give it your whole focus.

 

STREET FOOD ASIA

A documentary that gets your mouth watering, and that explores different street food specialties in Asia. From Bangkok to Seoul, passing through Osaka, strong and often very touching personalities share their stories with us around plates of staple street food.

 

The series

The Sex Education bus scene <3

 

I didn’t start everything that is on my Netflix list, because I find a series does require some attention and committment to finish, but here is what I’ve watched so far :

 

SEX EDUCATION

Huge favorite even though at the beginning I thought that with a title like that it would be a bit stupid, with American Pie level humour. Of course, sex is at the heart of the series, but it’s talked about in a smart way, openly and with a sincerity and sensibility in the characters that makes you love it and be impatient about season 3 coming out. The story takes place in a small english town, so extra points for the british touch!

 

STRANGER THINGS

I had heard so much about this series, it may have been one of the main reasons I subscribed! And I wasn’t disappointed … (except maybe for season 2, that I found less interesting) ; the young actors are absolutely brilliant, Winona Ryder is awesome, and the 80s atmosphere is perfect for those of us who might be a bit nostalgic. I am a bit curious about what season 4 will bring, I’m afraid they may not be able to reinvent themselves.

 

HOLLYWOOD

Mini-series of 7 episodes, that you can easily watch over a weekend. Realized by Ryan Murphy (who is also behind Glee : that I haven’t watched yet = I’m telling you, I’m behind on a lot of series, but I’m working hard on catching up!), it takes place in the 40s in the USA and the scenario paints the hollywood movie world in a more or less glamorous way, that could probably be compared to our actual world. An interesting and pleasant watch that brings up a lot of questions on homophobia, accepting one another, bullying and the power given to women.

 

FARGO

I bought the DVD set last year because Ewan Mc Gregor is in the 3rd season (fan attitude!). I had seen seasons 1 and 2 (and liked season 1 better, with a Martin Freeman that I found absolutely disconcerting!) and I’m currently watching season 3 with a double dose of Ewan, who is brilliant (I may not be totally objective). Each season can be watched independently because the intrigue is different, but it is often a question of murders and police affairs in the heart of Minnesota.

 

The Movies

Train to Busan

 

I really have a lot to catch up on movie-wise (for example, I still haven’t seen Matrix! Yikes!) but here is what I watched lately.

 

GET OUT

I hadn’t managed to see it when it got out in the theaters, and I’m happy I could see it here : I loved the plot and was totally taken by the stressful/uncomfortable atmosphere of this white american family that meets their black son-in-law for the first time. The message is even more clear with this chilling scenario.

 

TRAIN TO BUSAN

Korean movie about (once more) a zombie invasion : the scenario could be transposed to what we are currently living with the covid-19 pandemic … Apart from the stressful side of the story, it’s interesting to analyse the different behaviors of the characters, and watch some moving scenes. This movie really stuck with me.

 

ROM COMS

I really like this genre : I’m pretty romantic, but even if I am a great audience for the “Christmas TV movie” type, I still have a threshold to what I can tolerate in terms of silly and inane!

 

TO ALL THE BOYS 1 & 2

Following all the good reviews I read about these 2 teen movies, I watched both, but was very much disappointed! Even if the visual approach is rather dynamic, neither the Lara Jean and Peter couple nor the epistolary intrigue resonated with me. I found the characters rather dull and uncharismatic, and even if I am aware that this genre isn’t really about realism, everything seemed fake and overdone. Anyway, I just don’t get it.

 

THE KISSING BOOTH

On the contrary, this was a great surprise! This is what I call a good romcom! Even if the characters are teens and that I found the story to be unbelievable on a number of issues (Noah’s violence or Lee’s possessiveness are quite disturbing), I was taken by this refreshing and funny californian story, that I thoroughly enjoyed!

There’s rythm, and a certain playfulness brought by the main character Elle, a sweet complicity with her best friend Lee and a physical chemistry with Noah (the actors Joey King and Jacob Elordi were an item in real life, proof that it really works, hehe!). The end was unexpected, and had a nice message. A Kissing Booth 2 is apparently in the works : not sure it will be as good as the 1st, but I’m still eager to watch it! Butterflies in the stomach guaranteed here.

 

LOVE WEDDING REPEAT

Another disappointment. I don’t often really advise against a movie, but nothing works in this remake of the french movie “Plan de Table” (that I didn’t see, but it seems it is much better than this one). I was expecting more of Sam Claflin (who played in Love, Rosie with Lily Collins, or was known for his more charismatic role as Finnick in Hunger Games) but I found it boring and really fought to make it to the end of this wedding day. There must be people who love this movie, but which planet do they come from?

 

SHOWS AND DOCUMENTARIES

The world’s most extraordinary homes

Netflix shows and documentaries are generally of a great aesthetic, which I really appreciate.

 

SALT FAT ACID HEAT

We follow Samrin Nosrat (Chef and culinary author) that details the 4 aspects of taste in food in exploring different parts of the world (amongst which Japan!) : you can feel her passion overflowing when she talks about food or when she is cooking : it’s inspiring and appetizing!

 

THE WORLD’S MOST EXTRAORDINARY HOMES

Here we explore the world’s most beautiful homes with actress Caroline Quentin and architect Piers Taylor. Their british duo works perfectly during the visit of these clearly extraordinary homes, in osmosis with nature and the environning constraints. The decoration is often to my taste and it’s all very dreamy.

 

TINY HOUSE NATION

Tiny mobile homes are very in at the moment, and they, along with minimalism are the theme of this series. I am a great fan of the cabin/lodge state of mind, and I love it! All the realisations are not to my taste, but they do put things in perspective in terms of how much we actually need to be happy (ah yes! maybe one of those things are a good architect and good workers!!)

 

MISS AMERICANA

I’m not a huge Taylor Swift fan (I do like her songs though) and I wanted to know more about her personnality, that I find a bit too smooth and victimizing. The documentary does show her in a very favorable light, but it allows (even if it does feel very controlled) to see what is going on behind the scenes for this american popstar.

My opinion of Taylor Swift didn’t change much after having seen this show : still a bit victimizing (sometimes rightly so), very control freak, but what you can’t put in doubt is her work ethic and her qualities as a musician. The true fans will appreciate. (English translation by Marine)

 

Photo credits : Netflix
Illustration credits : Tokyobanhbao

25 Comments

  1. Reply

    Ay

    S’il y a bien une série à voir sur la nourriture japonaise (les desserts plus précisément) c’est Kantaro: The Sweet Tooth Salaryman ! Complètement déjanté mais le salaryman addict de gourmandises, nous emmène déguster les spécialités de vrais enseignes Tokyoites ! J’ai fait un petit détour dans quelques unes d’entre elles en janvier dernier et un vrai délice ! Je te conseille à 200%

    • Reply

      Tokyobanhbao

      ahhh ça me dit quelque chose ! Je me demande si ça ne traîne pas quelque part dans ma longue liste de choses à voir 🙂 Merci pour le rappel et la recommandation ! J’espère me pencher vite dessus ! <3

  2. Reply

    Léa

    S’il y a une série que je devais recommander sur Netflix, c’est Sense8, qui m’a complètement retournée à mon premier visionnage (j’en suis actuellement à mon 3eme ahah). Je n’ai jamais vu rien de tel, le projet est hyper ambitieux (tourné aux 4 coins du monde, ce qui lui a coûté sa longévité auprès de Netflix d’ailleurs) et les rapports humains sont montrés de la plus belle des manières. Malgré le côté science fiction, je n’ai jamais ressenti un tel lien avec les personnages d’une série. Tu l’auras compris, je la recommande grandement !

  3. Reply

    Annie

    OOOOOOOOOH je te conseille VIVEMENT ANNE WITH AN E !!! je ne l’avais pas dans mes recommandations netflix (car avec pleins de zombies mdr) et je l’ai découvert sur un blog, et j’ai a-do-ré et je me dit que ça te plairait aussi !! c’est le remake de Anne la maison aux pignons verts 🙂 (ou le bonheur au bout du chemin de M6). C’est beau, zero waste, féminin et féministe, j’ai adoré l’ambiance.

    Pour All the boys, j’étais pas trop à fond dans le 1, mais ça me dit quand même de voir le 2. J’ai adoré la jolie chambre de l’héroïne dans le 1, en bleu avec les papillons <3

    Après, au niveau "culture de série", il y a Breaking bad sur Netflix et sa suite Better Call Saul qui ont toutes les deux gagné beaucoup de prix. Et House of Cards aussi qui avait fait un grand effet lors de ses deux premières saisons et qui était la première série de toute à être sortie EN ENTIER d'un coup.

    Merci pour ces petites reviews (même celle en carton mdr). Je jongle avec Amazon Prime (inclus dans l'abonnement prime de livraison gratuite) dont les films sont de qualités aussi. Mais je trouve que la navigation de amazon prime est moins bien que netflix.

    • Reply

      Cleo

      Bonsoir,

      Merci pour ces idées de visionnage! Alors, ce n’est pas récent mais si comme comédie romantique sympa il y a Home for christmas. Qui ne reinvente pas le genre mais qui est vraiment sympa – et qui se passe en Norvège. On regarde en ce moment Ozark, et on aime aussi Black mirror. Chaque episode est comme un film de 1h, donc tu peux les voir indépendamment et les univers et histoires changent totalement d’un épisode a l’autre. Permet de s’interroger sur notre rapport aux technologies.
      Bonne soirée!

    • Reply

      Tokyobanhbao

      @Annie : Merci pour cette reco ! Je note ! Et pour All the boys, ravie de voir que tu as pu trouver ton compte niveau déco car je n’y ai pas été sensible (décidément ! ^^)

      @Cleo : Ahh home for Christmas on me l’avait recommandé à Noël donc je me le garde sous le coude pour novembre décembre, à visionner avec un bon thé de Noël et des biscuits 🙂 et Black mirror et Ozark, je note ! merci !

  4. Reply

    Mister Lapin

    Le documentaire/émission de télé qui nous a enthousiasmé sur Netflix c’est japanese style originator. On apprend plein de choses sur le Japon, sa nourriture, son artisanat. Notre fille a adoré aussi à tel point qu’on a tout regardé deux fois haha.

  5. Reply

    Pascal

    Perso en terme de Japon et de nourriture je te conseille Samouraï Gourmet : sur le parcours attendrissant et gustatif d’un jeune retraité japonais qui découvre que sa passion est la nourriture et l’idéal samouraï. C’est un voyage pour les yeux, le cœur et les papilles

    • Reply

      Tokyobanhbao

      Je l’ai mis sur ma liste de choses à voir sur netflix : tu confortes donc que j’ai eu raison de le placer ici 🙂 merci !

  6. Reply

    Claire

    Il y a un très grand catalogue de séries coréennes chez Netflix. J’ai adoré adoré “Crash Landing on you”!
    Parmi d’autres séries excellentes: the good place, brooklyn 99, crazy ex girlfriend, the crown.

    • Reply

      Tokyobanhbao

      ahhh oui j’ai vu ça ! rien qu’en séries coréennes j’ai de quoi m’occuper pour un moment ! Merci à toi (The crown est aussi dans ma to-watch)

  7. Reply

    Päivi

    Bonjour 🙂
    Je laisse peu de commentaires mais je voulais juste dire que …,Midnight Diner, un énorme coup de coeur pour moi. Une série excellente, peut-être un peu lente (c’est aussi une de ses qualités) mais tellement attachante et sympathique ! J’insisterai un peu tout de même.
    Et aussi et forcément la déjà mentionnée Japanese style originator. Si seulement on avait accès à plus d’épisodes !
    Sans parler évidemment de toutes les saisons de Chef’s table et notamment de l’épisode avec la chef coréenne Jeong Kwan (sûrement déjà vu).

    • Reply

      Tokyobanhbao

      Hello ! merci de sortir de l’ombre : je vais essayer d’insister lorsque j’aurai un moment … et il me selble que j’avais repéré Chef’s table 🙂 merci !

  8. Reply

    Ana

    Bah moi j’ai bien aimé « Love Wedding Repeat » J’ai pas trouve ça trop long.
    Dernièrement j’ai regardé la série Summertime sur Netflix et j’ai bien aimé, c’est une teen série italienne, les personnages sont attachants et ça donne envie d’être en été, good vibes!

    • Reply

      Tokyobanhbao

      Ah tant mieux pour toi ! haha ! Mais hormis le fait que j’ai trouvé ça long c’est surtout que je n’ai trouvé aucune alchimie entre les différents personnages (voire même, gênants pour certains Cf. le monsieur en kilt ) En tous cas j’ai trouvé LA personne qui a aimé ce film hehe ! 😉 et merci pour la reco !

  9. Reply

    Ana

    Mes deux recommendations par catégorie 🙂
    Films :
    – The Platform (film Espagnol abordant un sujet assez…. hmmm regarde la bande annonce )
    – Captain Fantastic (Film feel good mais deep à la Into The Wild avec avec un père de famille qui élève dans la nature tous ces enfants)

    Documentaires :
    – Our Planet and Blue Planet. Idéal à mettre en fond si tu bosses ou cuisine… que de belles images !
    – The Down Wall, si tu aimes l’escalade, ou pas ! Perso j’ai adoré rebondissement incroyable pour cette histoire vraie !

    Série :
    – Sense 8
    – Dark (surtout si tu as aimé Stranger Things)

    • Reply

      Tokyobanhbao

      Merci pour ces recommandations bien classées et ordonnées ! ^^ The platform je l’avais noté dans ma liste à voir : j’attends que la méteo se gâte pour être dans l’ambiance 🙂

  10. Reply

    Adèle

    Comédies romantiques américaines : She is the man, Sixteen Candles
    Drame romantique chinois : Us & them
    Séries : The Get Down, Godless, Unorthodox

  11. Reply

    Véronique

    La série : “Dead to me” se laisse voir également. J’ai beaucoup aimé “Hollywood”. Merci pour ce post 🙂 Excellente soirée

  12. Reply

    Nadine

    The Kissing Booth ne m’a jamais donné envie (je ne sais pas pourquoi, j’épluche le catalogue netflix de comédies romantiques…). Vu ta reco, j’ai fait le pas hier soir de la regarder et j’ai adoré ! C’est exactement le genre d’histoire que j’aurais pu fantasmer durant mon adolescence ! Du coup merci pour le tips et surtout, hésite pas à refaire des récaps comme ça!

    • Reply

      Tokyobanhbao

      ahhh je suis super contente de t’avoir recommandé un film qui t’a plu ! vraiment pour moi je n’y croyais pas trop non plus mais tous les bons ingrédients sont là pour une bonne petite comédie romantique ! le 2eme opus sort fin juillet ! 🙂

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