Staying in? Meet your new boxset addictions
Looking for your next boxset obsession? Well, grab the remote because you’re in the right place. There’s so much brilliant telly around at the moment and a huge proportion of it comes courtesy of Netflix and Amazon prime (Life before streaming sites? Nope, don’t remember that). But there’s also some great BBC dramas in there too.
The Stranger, Netflix
Richard Armitage (who you might remember as smouldering MI5 agent Lucas North in Spooks) plays a dad who’s got it all – loving wife, two lovely sons and an idyllic family life. Everything changes, however, when a mysterious stranger in a bar tells him a secret about his wife. This compelling 8-part British adaptation of Harlan Coben’s novel reveals a dark conspiracy at work.
Homeland, Channel 4
The American spy thriller television drama series starring the fabulous Claire Danes is in its final season. I missed the last few seasons because I got bored of it, but this season is absolutely brilliant. It’s truly riveting but it may not be the kind of ‘escapism’ you’re after if you don’t want to watch anything that’s too heavy. Carrie’s colleague, Saul has been sent to take charge of peace negotiations with the Taliban but Kabul is full of warlords, mercenaries, zealots and spies and calls on Carrie for help. Just as you think the peace talks are going well, tragedy strikes in ways you cannot imagine.
After two brilliant seasons, Ozark is set to return to our screens for a third series later this month (Fri 27 March). So there’s still time to binge watch 1 and 2 in preparation if you missed out first time. The story follows the Byrdes, an ordinary family who are forced to flee to the Ozarks after a money laundering operation in Chicago goes wrong. It’s been compared to Breaking Bad, so you won’t be surprised to discover that things start to get complicated very quickly, and they find themselves up to their ears in dodgy dealings. Jason Bateman and Laura Linney star.
Jack Ryan, Amazon Prime
Starring the tall, dark and dreamy John Krasinski, the American drama is based on author Tom Clancy’s best-selling books featuring his character of Jack Ryan. The thriller centers on Ryan as an up-and-coming CIA analyst. He is thrust into a dangerous field assignment for the first time and uncovers a pattern in terrorist communication. That launches him into the middle of a dangerous gambit with a new breed of terrorism that threatens destruction on a global scale. There’s two seasons to get through and trust me when I say, they are thrilling!
.The Split, BBC iPlayer
Not exactly new, but if you haven’t yet seen The Split – you’re in for a treat. Even better, there are two series to get stuck into. Starring Nicola Walker, Stephen Mangan and Deborah Findlay, it follows the trials and tribulations of the Defoes, a family of leading female divorce lawyers. It’s got everything – marriage, affairs, divorce and babies. Keep a tissue box handy.
Love is Blind, Netflix
Word of warning: this series is highly addictive! It’s an American dating show where participants aren’t allowed to clap eyes on their potential partner – instead they chat and build a rapport while separated by a screen. And then they get engaged… before they’ve even met face-to-face. Will anyone go through with the wedding? Will people literally do anything to get on telly? Yes it’s nuts, no we can’t stop watching.
I’ve always hated the idea of cheerleading: the girls relegated to the sideline, looking cute, while the boys do the serious business of sport? Yuck. Well, how wrong was I – this documentary series follows America’s most accomplished college cheerleading squad. There are both boys and girls on the team, and it’s a competitive sport in its own right. These are astonishingly focused athletes. If you’ve got a sporty child, it’s an inspiring one to watch together.