While it remains true that I’m a throwback, a curmudgeonly oldster who lives a disturbing amount of his time in the past, adverse to change and seriously un-hip to the latest trends in fashion, music and technology, I still surprise myself, on occasion, by moving away from my comfort zone to try out a new television or streaming series.
The underlying conceit of my 10-Lists is that they are a collection—a list, if you will—of ten things. Not always a Top-10 or a ranked list; sometimes just ten things that I’ve collected in various nooks and crannies of my mind.
Since a similar list I posted back in early April, I have watched (or have begun watching) the first (sometimes only) seasons of the following ten series. I just noticed that eight of the ten are available on Netflix.
Bosch: Legacy (Freevee)
This is the Freevee continuation (perhaps “spinoff” would be more exact) of the Prime Video series Bosch, based upon the novels of Michael Connelly. I’ve written about my enjoyment of the Amazon series. While Harry’s professional law enforcement career has ended prior to the start of this series, he continues as a private investigator. Bosch’s daughter Maddie is in this one, too, which is a plus, as is lawyer Honey Chandler. Some of the other regulars from the old series make guest appearances and new characters are introduced. I enjoyed this first season and will continue to watch.
The Lincoln Lawyer (Netflix)
No secrets here. I watched this because I enjoyed Bosch, and this was also based upon Michael Connelly’s fiction. While I enjoyed this season, which I watched with my wife, I’m not really familiar with Mickey Haller yet—or at least I wasn’t prior to watching this season. I’ve never read any of the novels Haller is featured in. In many ways, this feels like a diluted version of Bosch, with a few of the same tropes and similar situations. I didn’t enjoy it as much as I did the other series either, although it was mostly a pleasant way to pass the time. It felt like too many side- and subplots were shoehorned into the season. I spent part of my time watching just confused, unsure of which story thread I was seeing. However, a second season is coming, according to Netflix. I’ll give that one a chance as well.
Ms. Marvel (Disney +)
The MCU continues to diversify its cast of superheroes with the live-action introduction of Kamala Khan, a Muslim teenager from Jersey City, NJ, who assumes the name Ms. Marvel. A refreshing, youthful change of pace in a show that sometimes seems more Disney than Marvel. I’m still percolating over my review of this show, but I can give you one spoiler: I didn’t hate it.
Van Helsing (SyFy/Netflix)
I am already into the second season of this SyFy series. This post-apocalyptic vampire drama about the one woman who just might be the key to saving everyone has moments of greatness. I’m still constructing my review of Season 1, but since I’m forging ahead with the second season, you already know some of what I’m thinking.
Inside Job (Netflix)
An animated series that would have you believe that every conspiracy theory you’ve ever heard is somewhat true. Lizard people, politicians replaced with androids, sex colonies on the moon. It’s all there. There is a bit of a Rick & Morty vibe, and this show is ridiculous, absurd and occasionally funny. A second season is coming on Netflix, and I’ll probably be watching.
Paradise PD (Netflix)
I watched the first three seasons of this animated series, which is available on Netflix. It features brutal, in-your-face humor, often vulgar and inappropriate, but it sometimes made me laugh out loud. There’s still something missing here, though. Somehow, I don’t care about any of the characters on the show, because each is a horrible person (even Bullet the police dog) in their own way. A fourth season is supposed to come out in December. At the moment, I’m on the fence about watching it. Oh, you know I probably will watch it, but I’m not sure that I really want to.
The first three seasons of this series were on A & E. The last three were on Netflix. It was the streaming giant who kept telling me I should watch this one, which is based on a mystery fiction series that I’ve never heard of, let alone read. I finally relented and began watching it, but mainly because Katee Sackhoff is in it. Lou Diamond Phillips is a part of the show as well, playing a Native American once again, making Filipino Americans everywhere proud. The real standout performer, to me, is Australian actor Robert Taylor, who plays Wyoming sheriff Walt Longmire with a throwback, man-of-few-words, Western-hero panache that has to be seen to be appreciated. I’m only halfway through Season 1, but know I’ll watch it all.
Cowboy Bebop: the anime series
I arrived at the anime series in a typically convoluted fashion. Netflix offered the first season of a live-action version of the show, and then promptly cancelled it. I haven’t watched the Netflix series yet, but after I added it to my TBW list, the anime series was suggested to me as well. While I’ve watched some anime in the past, I would not consider myself to be an aficianado. Something in the show’s aesthetic in the previews intrigued me, as well as the musical score, so I took a flyer on it. I’m maybe a third of the way through the series’ twenty-six episodes and I’m hooked.
Wu Assassins (Netflix)
Netflix really gets me sometimes. I’m a sucker for kung fu fantasy movies and television shows, the more fantastical the better. I’m three episodes deep into this 2019 one-season offering, and know that there is also a Netflix original movie from 2022—Fistful of Vengeance—that continues the story. The premise: an Asian-American chef is actually the Chosen One who is granted the power of a thousand monks in order to keep the mystical Wu powers out of the wrong hands. You know, typical martial arts movie stuff. I like it.
Brand New Cherry Flavor (Netflix)
Sometimes Netflix nags me until I relent. This one is an American horror drama about a young woman, played by Rosa Salazar, who comes to Hollywood intent upon directing her own movie. There are typical Hollywood shenanigans and betrayals, and then atypical horror-fantasy elements that give this limited series a David Lynch/American Horror Story vibe. So far, I’ve watched only the first of eight episodes. I’m not convinced that I’m the target audience for this series, but I think I can stick with it for seven more episodes.
That’s all for now. My TBW list grows daily, because the search for that “next good show” is a noble one. Like the lottery, you can’t win if you don’t play.