crazy ex-girlfriend

My Top TV Shows of the Decade

Hello and welcome to another Memeow Blog post! I noticed a lot of people were doing end of decade lists so I thought I do my own.

Let’s go!

10. Game of Thrones – I know, I know! This one will probably end up on most people’s lists but theres no denying its impact on pop culture. I like many others was not such a fan of the latter seasons but the earlier seasons were enough to land it a place on this list for me. Also DRAGONS!!! The show often kept you on your toes not knowing who to trust, who to root for and having to accept that even the most popular character could be killed (brutal) This taking no prisoners approach would pave the for other tv shows to follow suit.

9. Orphan Black – TATIANA MASLANY – how just how??? I’m still amazed at how many characters this actress was able to pull off for this series! A gripping thriller focusing on mystery surrounding clones all played by Tatiana Maslany. A few times in the show a character pretends to be another clone but you can still tell that it is the other character despite them looking identical.

8. Steven Universe – An animation about a young boy and his 3 mother’s, Crystal Gems! The Crystal Gems (Garnet, Amethyst and Pearl) are aliens that have lived on earth for many years, Steven is a gem/human hybrid. Steven’s mother Rose Quartz (former leader of the crystal gems) gave up her physical form so Steven could be born. Garnet, Amethyst and Pearl all act as matriarchal figures to Steven giving him life lessons while also going on various wacky adventures. The show has fantastic amount of world building and lore throughout with tiny details inserted into even the earlier episodes. The show has some lovely representation for LGBTQ+ people with one of the best examples involving Garnet, who *SPOILER* we later found out is a fusion of two gems Ruby and Sapphire two female presenting characters. Fusions are when two or more gems fuse to become a stronger gem, gems that are more compatible can stay fused longer. This makes Garnet a fusion made from true love, awwww cute!

7. Orange Is The New Black – This hilarious and emotional prison dramedy gave some good representation for women of different ethnicities, races and sexualities as well as highlight very real issues in America. The show concluded this year with a fantastic final series which showed the realities of immigrants in the living in an ICE detention centre. Interwoven with flashbacks throughout, the series fleshed out its characters with pre-prison back stories. With many iconic storylines and episodes like “the chicken” this show really left an imprint on the TV landscape.

6. Schitt’s Creek – a rich family falls down on their luck and has to move a not so pleasant town. A show that could have easily been something completely different based on the premise is perfefctly crafted by the writers. giving all of the characters heart and personality. All of the characters in show have something to bring to the table, with my favourite being Moira Rose – a dramatic divaish washed up actress with a delightfully odd/enchanting transatlantic accent! I also particularly like the main same sex relationship which was perfectly crafted over the 3rd and 4th seasons.

5. The Good Place – This afterlife comedy from the creator of Brooklyn 99 and Parks and Recreation, really shook up the comedy genre with its twists and turns. The season 1 finale twist really impressed me as the show the went into very different direction to what I was expecting. This kind of show also demonstrates how we as an audience are tired of shows dragging on storylines for seasons. If this show premiered in the 90s you could imagine them spinning out he Eleanor doesn’t belong in the Good place storyline until the final episode!

4. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend – A musical dramedy with great songs, characters and a realistic portrayal of mental illness. I stumbled upon this gem on Netflix after hearing a few positive things on the web about it. The show was highly praised on the internet for the song “Getting Bi”, as Bisexual representation is sparse on mainstream television, to have a whole song dedicated to the subject was a great win for representation. Rachel Bloom does a fantastic job of portraying main character Rebecca who we eventually find out has Borderline Personality Disorder which the show handles with care. Oh and the songs are absolutely brilliant! You can read my previous Crazy Ex Post here!

3. Stranger Things – A show perfectly crafted from an amalgamation of 80s movies, tropes and nostalgia. this sci-fi series has been a massive breakout show for Netflix and with the general pining in our society for 80s media its not hard to see why! The first season alone for me was one of my favourite seasons of the decade, second was kinda meh but the 3rd season put it back on track for me.

2. American Horror Story – Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk’s Horror anthology series has been running for 9 seasons with themes ranging from Coven’s, Asylums, Haunted Houses and most recently a summer camp. I love the campiness of the show which has spun off various memes with the most popular being “Surprise Bitch!”. The show is not for the feint at heart which I guess goes with the territory of a horror show! My favourite seasons of the show have to be Asylum and Coven but I love seeing what the writers have cooked up annually. With the anthology format the show remains fresh with some connections to past seasons but constant changing of the setting.

1. The OA – The mark of a good show to me is the ability to stay with you long after you’ve viewed it, I do find myself thinking about the show quite regularly. (I’m not obsessed I promise!) The show asked you to believe in impossible things, to leave your mind open to what you are about to witness. Parallel universes, psychic octopi and synchronised dance moves all feature and it completely works. A Weird/crazy/epic show full of hope, which Netflix sadly decided to cancel as they seem to care more about gaining new subscribers than retaining old ones. Especially disappointing after S2’s mind bending, awesome meta ending. I believe one day we will get a conclusion to this brilliant show, we’ve just got to keep our door open! – Also BBA played by Phyllis Smith is a delight <3

OA and Old Night

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MemeowMix – Pride Playlist

As it’s Pride Month I thought I would celebrate by creating my own pride themed playlist, Welcome to Memeow Mix: Pride Edition!

1. Lady Gaga – Born This Way – No Pride playlist could be complete without some Gaga! An iconic self acceptance song which name checks the LGBTQ community. I also love Gaga’s idea of self reinvention, you can be “re-born” over and over again.
2. Janelle Monáe – Make Me Feel – A catchy prince inspired tune, which touches on pansexuality.
3. Troye Sivan – Bloom – a fun pop song about “Flowers” according to Sivan (I don’t think it’s really about flowers)
4. Tegan and Sara – Closer – a fun pop song from twin sisters Tegan and Sara.
5.Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Cast – Gettin’ Bi (Feat. Pete Gardner) – I had to include this one! This song is from the musical/comedy/drama show Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and does a very good job of dispelling some of misconceptions of bisexuality!
6.Taylor Swift – You Need To Calm Down – Swift shows her allyship to the LGBTQ community in this new song, telling the bigots they “need to calm down” and that their is “sunshine on the street at the parade, but you would rather be in the dark ages”. Swift also shouts out LGBTQ charity ‘Glaad’ this has a led to influx of donations to the charity, which is nice to hear!
7. Sarah Bareilles – Brave – Sara Bareilles was inspired to write this song about a friend of hers that was struggling to come out.
8. Hayley Kiyoko – Girls Like Girls – A track about a girl stealing a girl from a guy! (It’s a new spin on the formula!)
9.Mary Lambert – She Keeps Me Warm – Lambert was featured on 2012 song ‘Same Love’ by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, ‘She Keeps Me Warm’ builds a new song around Lambert’s ‘Same Love’ hook.
10. Troye Sivan (Feat. Betty Who) – Heaven – Another Troye song! Here Troye sings about trying to reconcile religious belief with his sexuality.
11. Calum Scott – No Matter What – A lovely song about coming out and finding acceptance.
12. Kacey Musgraves – Rainbow – This is such a beautiful song and I love the message, also reminds me slightly of Jessie’s song ‘She Loved Me from ‘Toy Story 2’. Oh no! I think I have something in my eye…

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Well Rebecca, you’ve done it now! – A Love Letter to Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

*Contains some Spoilers for the series*

Since the musical comedy/drama Crazy Ex-Girlfriend concluded last week, I felt I had to write a love letter to this lovely, quirky, awesome, amazing show.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend stars Rachel Bloom (co-creator of the show with Aline Brosh McKenna) as lawyer ‘Rebecca Bunch’ unhappy with her life in New York decides after a chance encounter with her ex-boyfriend ‘Josh Chan’ (Vincent Rodriquez III) to move to West Covina, California. “It happens to be where Josh lives but thats not why she’s here!” to quote the season 1 theme song, As soon as Rebecca arrives in West Covina appropriately with the first song of the series ‘West Covina’, her world instantly looks a lot brighter compared to the dull, muted colours of New York! Long story short Rebecca quickly finds a new job at West Covina law firm ‘Whitefeather Associates’ ran by the loveable but awkward ‘Darryl Whitefeather’ (Pete Gardener) , it is here she also meets her future frenemy/bestie Paula Proctor (Donna Lynne Champlin). Without giving too much away for people who have not yet seen the show, much of the first season is about Rebecca trying to win back the affections of her ex, while denying that he was the real reason she moved to West Covina!

“I’ve never seen a pretzel this big! 🥨”

The first thing I love about this show is that it subverts a lot of tropes, the main one being the title of the show, Rebecca does suffer with mental health issues but she is a 3-dimensional character who is not just lazily written off as being ‘Crazy’. The show approaches the topic of mental illness extremely well not just passing it off as some silly joke like other show’s might, they handle the topic with the delicacy it deserves. I’ve often found with a lot of films/TV shows which portray characters suffering from mental illness the characters often ‘cure’ their depression etc by the end of the story, where as Crazy Ex follows the more realistic approach, that mental health is something that you need to work at, there is no magical ‘I’m cured!’ moment. The fact that Rachel Bloom and Aline Brosh McKenna consulted a panel of doctors to make sure they wrote an accurate diagnosis for Rebecca reveals how much love and care is put into the show.

To cope with the stress in her life Rebecca has developed an interesting coping mechanism, she imagines certain moments in her life as musical numbers. The musical numbers are all original songs written for show and encompass a vast array of musical genres from Broadway,EDM,Pop,Hip-Hop and more! (I honestly think there is something for almost everyone’s musical taste) ‘You Stupid Bitch’, ‘Dream Ghost’ and We’ll Never Have Problems Again’ being some of my favourite songs from the series (I’ll have to do a top 10 post at some point!)

“We’ll Never Have Problems Again!”

Another think I really like about the show is it’s diverse cast, there are characters of various ethnicities and members of the LGBTQ community within the main cast. its refreshing to see ‘Josh Chan’ an Asian-American as the lead ‘heartthrob’ who Rebecca moves across the country for. Darryl’s story arc, where he discovers his bisexuality is another example of something often not seen on TV. Shows are often criticised for writing characters that don’t want to identify as bisexual, with Darryl this is completely subverted, there is even a song, ‘Gettin’ Bi’ which perfectly deconstructs the popular misconceptions of bisexuality to an 80’s inspired tune.

Heather played by Vella Lovell is another stand out character for me, her snarky, sarcastic delivery is always on point. I especially love Heather’s Anti-High School Musical-esque number “The Moment is Me” which she sings after graduating college, which is an example of classic Heather at her best!

I love the quotability of the show, “that was super rando!” is now very much part of my vocabulary! My partner and I often find ourselves quoting ‘We’ll Never Have Problems Again” when we encounter couples in the honeymoon phase and my best friend and I often end up singing “I Have Friends”. The way that all of these songs and quotable moments have stuck with me, convey what a special show Crazy Ex-Girlfriend was/is and I look forward to re-visiting the show many times in future!

(The whole series of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is available on Netflix)

PS I have recently booked tickets for Rachel Bloom’s London show (IM SO EXCITED!!)

PPS since this is a Memeow Blog post after all…

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