What's Worth the Binge-Watch

By Georgina Ustik

I know, I know, it’s incredibly unfair of me to write this as we are heading into the new semester at a galloping speed. (Relatively) well-rested and fresh-faced after the winter break, I have a solid month of TV binge-watching under my belt. Here are the shows worth the 5-hour marathon, perfect for in-between classes and Sundays.

Jane the Virgin

    If you have not watched this show yet, then I’m sure you’ve heard about it. Based on a 2002 Venezuelan telenovela, Juana la Virgen, this show centers around Jane, played by the beautiful and talented Gina Rodriguez. In the first episode, Jane gets pregnant. But she’s a virgin. No, this isn’t divine intervention…more like carelessness that leads to awkward family drama… and, you know, a baby. Set in Miami, this show follows the drama of unexpected pregnancy, family, and love mixed with a little bit of cultural difference, as well as religion and murder. The characters are gorgeous and hilarious, making this ridiculously funny show the perfect thing to end your day with. The third season just started, guys, so get on this one as soon as possible!

Peaky Blinders

    This show blew me away. A Netflix-original based in post-WWI Birmingham, England, this gangster drama chronicles the Shelby family as members of the Peaky Blinders Gang as they take control of the city through illegal gambling, robbery and murder. But Peaky Blinders is about more than crime. The Shelby family is a tight-knit gang who have to deal with the IRA, gypsies, and  Communists, not to mention an interfering Winston Churchill who has sent in a new Chief Inspector from Belfast to clean the town up. The gangsters, all newly survived veterans from WWI, are now being hunted by their country for whom they won freedom, plus having to deal with the ramifications of lives lost and PTSD. There is also a beautiful love-story buried in there, but for those looking for something light and romantic, stick to Jane the Virgin because this one is a little darker.

War & Peace

    I’ve just started this BBC show myself, but so far, it’s definitely lived up to the glowing reviews. Keep in mind, however, that I am an inevitable sucker for period dramas and dramatic love stories. It’s like a disease… I’ve seen the Keira Knightley Pride and Prejudice at least seven thousand times. Based on the classic Russian novel by Tolstoy, the story is set in early 19th century Russia. However, this show is lighter, and certainly shorter, than the novel seeing as the TV adaptation has the ability to skip over the original’s philosophizing and rambling. This show is also visually gorgeous, which is never a bad thing. The costumes and interior scenes are stunning. Ever seen the Winter Palace? I certainly don’t mind looking at that for a few minutes. If you, like me, loved Downton Abbey but had to stop after they pulled a Shonda Rhimes and killed everyone whom you hold dear, then give this one a try.

Now, I need to get back to Netflix. Happy watching!