I was gifted with a beta access code for the game Aftercharge. After looking at the instructions, it seems that it was for three players. I reached out, got a few additional codes, and gave them to Quinzel and her husband so we could play together. Imagine mine (and her) surprise when we realized that we couldn’t play as a unit and that it was luck of the draw when we played.
Aftercharge is a first person shooter. You either play as a Workonic or a Enforcer
Quinzel and I decided to chat after playing. Here is our dialogue.
Leslie: Straight off the bat, I’d rather play as an Enforcer rather than a Workonic. I get to shoot things. Um, that sounds sort of sociopathic.
Quinzel: Yeah, on that note I'm fairly certain the Workonics are the good guys and the Enforcers are the bad guys. I think I chose the dark side here..
L: I didn’t see it as good guys vs. bad guys. The enforcers needed the power to live, the Workonics...didn’t like the power? Wanted it destroyed? It didn’t make much sense to me why they were trying to blow up my power sources. That’s what they got shot.
Q: Idk, I think the Workonics were some punk asses. All I could do as a Workonics is hide, and then beg one of my friends to bring me back to life. It's a hard sell to play the game as a Workonic. Both me and my husband felt the Workonics needed something...extra? The Enforcers are where it’s at.
L: Maybe if we had a backstory on why they were trying to tap out the power sources and why the Enforcers were trying to kill them. That said, I did not do too bad as a Workonic. Check the score yo:
I am really good at running around like a maniac and hiding. That is my sole goal of life. Please don’t notice me. I am in my corner kicking ass and taking names.
Q: But...but...shields! Like, I could just put up shields and it's
all good! I also loved the enforcers had that tracking device on their guns. Make it a little more panic??? To see a Workonic pop up. My kind of fear <3
L: I would see the tracker go off and like clockwork, I would start flailing. My gun would be all over the place like it could see through their invisibility. I really need to work on my steadiness. Even though this was a beta, I did not have any glitches at all. The only issue I had was waiting a little bit for the game engine to match me up with a team. Even then, I let it run for about two minutes, ran to get a drink, and by the time I got back, I was matched up. I was playing on PC. What about you?
Q: Oh man it was the opposite for me. Super duper glitchy. Kinda like Vanellope in Wreck-It Ralph? I was like( OOOO!! I'm on the roof now!! Annnd back on the floor. One thing I enjoyed even through the glitches was the graphics. Very well done! What do you think?
L: I think I am used to college student gaming programmers. I figured this was going to be amaturish in its designs. But no. This was a really pretty game. I did enjoy the graphics. I was cracking up however at the one woman Enforcer. The way she was drawn, I could instantly tell she was a woman, and it wasn’t her...body, it was more the way she was moving. I don’t know how to describe it.
Like, take a look at her:
I guess she is kind of curvy. I don’t know. Also, while I was looking, there are actually two female Enforcers. Here is the other:
They both seem feminine to me. Maybe I am just being silly, I don’t know.
Q: I meannn, Huntress and Tinker give it away for me. I am glad at them not having overt feminine features (super small waist, big boobs, lack of armor) so I will give them that. But I agree, I could kind of tell by the way they moved...when I spent a lot of time hiding as a Workonic 😂
L: What, you mean bra armor with midriff bared and mini skirts with shin guards don’t do it for you armor-wise? /sarcasm
Q: Mmm, yes bare skin is so battle ready. Skin is the new helmets, ya know?
Getting off topic a little, sorry. I'll just ask, would you buy this game?
L: For me to buy this game, there are a couple of things that need to happen. 1) I need to be able to pull together a team myself. Choose my people and all of that jazz. I don’t like playing with unknowns if I can help it and that is the main reason I dragged you and your hub a dub in to play this with me. 2) While not a requirement, I would absolutely LOVE IT if I could choose which side I am playing for. However, I can see them not making that an option. If you think of Fortnite for example, you don’t get to choose which side you are playing on in the Battle Royale. However, in Fortnite, you do have the option of grouping up with people that you know. What about you?
Q: I personally need the Workonics to have just one more feature. Yes, it can be done winning as a Workonic, as you proved, but there needs to be more. Enforcers has guns, trackers, shields, and an energy force that doesn't rely on someone else reviving them. So I need Workonics to match that. As far as random groupings, I had a couple of 10 year olds yelling at me, which reminded me why I like to pick my groups too. Let me compete and yell at my friends why they didn't revive me. It'll create memories for a lifetime 😂 With those two things added, yeah, I'll buy it. It seems like it could be a wang dang doodle of a good time.
L: So it’s settled, two girl gamer thumbs up. I am not sure when Aftercharge will be out of non beta and for everyone’s consumption, but it is something you should take a look at. Oh! One more thing before I go. You guys remember in the 90s, if you were in high school, you would have that one friend that would do the squat “prison pose?” One of the characters on this game does that when they are lining up your matches. BUY THIS GAME BASED ENTIRELY ON THAT IF YOU WANT TO AND NO ONE HERE WOULD JUDGE YOU! BY NO ONE HERE, I MEAN ME, LESLIE.
Q: I'll judge you with a high five. That's expert decision making right there
L: It’s like that time my friend’s brother made his first paycheck and then spent the entire 200 dollar paycheck on Faygo.
Once Upon A Deadpool is here just in time for Christmas. As told by your favorite man-in-red, the entire plot from Deadpool 2 is read to Fred Savage, who is duct taped to a bed.
And what, might you ask, did this Christmas-y rendition teach me?
To never EVER allow them to make Deadpool a PG-13 movie.
Once Upon A Deadpool might have lacked the F-word but, starting now, I'm not gonna.
First, you should know that Once Upon A Deadpool is literally Deadpool 2 with, like, DVD commentary alongside Fred Savage.
I could forgive that. After all, who doesn't need more Deadpool in their lives? Who doesn't need a movie with a Christmas-y title that has nothing to do with the actual holiday? Let's be honest, sometimes ya just need a break.
But whoever the FUCK thought it was a good idea to sit through a Deadpool movie with limited cursing and blurred out asses has got to be out of their fucking mind.
Adult humor is Deadpool. I didn't spend my week working 40+ hours for a paycheck to spend it on a Deadpool movie with BLEEPS! You gotta be *bleep*ing kidding me.
I am begging anyone in power. Anyone who has any hand in this. You wouldn't order a BLT and be satisfied if they left out the bacon. Don't take the bacon out of Deadpool. DO. NOT. EVER make it PG-13
PG-13 Deadpool Sucks *bleep*. Go See It Anyway
Once you get past the bleeps, Russell telling everyone to "freak off" instead of "fuck off", and even a blurred out baby Deadpool ass, this damn movie redeems itself.
You gotta wait until the very end. The final, final end credits scene
That's right, Excelsior! Right in the feels.
There's an earlier bit you should watch for. In Deadpool 2 when Domino flies over the city in a parachute, there's a Stan Lee mural. In Once Upon A Deadpool, this scene happens but on the Stan Lee mural, there's a small R.I.P. on it.
Think that was it? Grab your tissues folks
We get some funny outtakes of Stan Lee, doing his normal Marvel cameo for the film. Then he begins talking about the creation of Deadpool. The screen fills with images of a very happy Stan Lee.
The last thing you see before the screen fades to black?
One word: Excelsior
Now That I Can't Stop Crying, Should I See It, Quinzel?
For the final, final post-credit scene? Yes
For the PG-13 rating? Absolutely not. I will riot if they ever do this again
What did you guys think of Deadpool 2Once Upon A Deadpool? Do you like the idea of Deadpool potentially being a PG-13 movie? Feel free to be wrong in the comments section below.
CW: NSFW content including talks of masturbation and female anatomy. I also say the f-word because, well, I felt it was f#cking appropriate considering the subject manner
Geeky Sex Toys was kind enough to send me the toy in exchange for an honest review. In short, they were like, "masturbate with our product and talk about it openly and honestly." You can see why I couldn't turn that down.
I'm going to be straightforward for a second.
Sex is healthy. Masturbation is healthy. Neither is gross or shameful.
Now that you are fully aware of my thoughts beforehand, you'll understand how un-shy (new word, I'm calling it) I am when it comes to sex toys.
But g e e k y sex toys?? You have my complete attention.
One look around the Geeky Sex Toys site and it will have you geeking out from head to...yeah, that too. Emma and Josh, founders of Geeky Sex Toys are in Brisbane, Austraila. They create, design, and make all of their toys BY HAND.
The Dildek is, obviously, from the Doctor Screw collection. Modeled after the famous Daleks, I promise you it won't kill you. This one comes in two colors: black and gold. And it comes in 2 sizes: large and small. The one I received and pictured above is a small
Foreplay and First Impressions
Upon opening the box, I was quite impressed. Their handiwork is pretty amazing honestly!
You know how you might see a toy at a bachelorette party that seems really cool, but actually seeing it you realize its just plastic crap? With something as cool as Doctor Who, I expected it might be lacking in quality and using the fandom to make up for it
I was proven wrong right on the spot.
So now that I know that it LOOKS good, my next thought is to see how long it would stay that way. I felt like it was time to put this thing through a series of non-masturbation tests. These tests were mainly me throwing it as far as I could across the room, shaking it as hard as I could, and smacking it upside a couple different surfaces in my home.
The most awesome thing I discovered while playing around with the durability of this toy is that the bottom is actually a suction so that you can ride it, no partner needed. I tested this by slapping it on my kitchen floor and kicking it a little with my foot to see if it would stay. It did.
I also noticed with all this shaking and throwing that it did not create any tears in the silicone. Damn, this amazing grade of silicone! Damn, this amazing craftmanship! It's really hanging in there!
Now that I have hazed the shit out of it, it's time to get down to business.
Fuck and Fuckability by Quinzel Austen
(Sorry, Jane Austen)
After being quite impressed with how well it handled several stress tests (ok, I was mainly having fun) I needed to know about the Dildek's level of fuckability because...well, that's the whole reason I bought it, right?
As I stated earlier in the review the Dildek comes in two sizes, large and small. While there's no shame in having dildos that are Hulk-sized, I was a bit intimidated by a large, so I requested a small.
Now, small does not mean slim. When I saw the size of this toy, I was *still* intimidated. Like all of that needs to go in...all of me? So if you are into slimmer sex toys, lube up.
Also, if you have small hands like me, you may benefit from a small instead of a large. It was only a slight challenge to hold on to. The bumpy texture definitely assists with having a good grip, even with lube applied. However, closer to the end is a wider base, so a little difficult to get a real good grip in. But, as an alternative, there is an option to use the base on a flat surface and ride, hands-free.
Size aside, this silicone feels great. I'd say it's skin-like, but I don't know if I've ever felt skin this good. It's perfectly smooth enough to move outside and inside of a vagina that makes you kind of forget that you're masturbating with a fandom toy
Another nice thing about the Dildek is the bumpy textures. If you can get it just right, it makes great for clitoral stimulation. For me, it was easier to achieve by hand than by riding, since the bumps are closer to the bottom of the base.
The biggest challenge with the Dildek? Trying to stop making Doctor Who references during sex, but maybe you do this anyway *guilty*
Would I Recommend?
The quality of this toy is beyond impressive. It's durable, flexible, and downright cute.
I will level with you and tell you that Geeky Sex Toys will cost you a pretty penny, but they are so worth the money.
10/10 would recommend you save up your coin and buy from them
10/10 would cum again 😉
Have any of you bought anything from Geeky Sex Toys? What did you think? Does this review make you want to buy from them? Have any questions for me? Drop a comment below and I'll answer!
My name is Leslie and I had a miscarriage. This is not my first miscarriage, this is my 4th. You know how they tell you that things get easier the more you do them or the more they happen? That is a lie. This never gets easier. The disappointment gets harder and more painful.
I’ve had a miscarriage and not a lot of people know. A lot of people will continue not to know because I am not advertising the blog post at all. But I need to write it. Someone may find it and find it therapeutic.
I found out I was pregnant the day before I was set to go on a cruise. We were excited and scared. As I have said I have miscarried before. But you know what? I made it through. I made it an entire week on that cruise with no issues, no pain.
Two weeks after I got home I started bleeding. With the scant amount of blood, the doctors weren’t worried. The baby was measuring younger than they thought it should, was I sure of the exact date of my last period? Yes I am sure. I track it like whoa. Hmm. The bleeding is scant, and we see a heartbeat, bleeding sometimes happens. About half the women who bleed lose their baby. Guess what? I am in that half now.
The world doesn’t stop spinning when you miscarry. You still have work, you still have people you may need to take care of. Life is still there, even when your mind isn’t. You feel guilty for leaning on your partner who is going through this loss as well. Who is hurting as well but would never tell you because they feel your hurt is greater than theirs.
Because I have had a baby at one point, my clothes started to get snug quicker than the first time. I excitedly ordered maternity clothes. I took them back today. They were unopened, unused. The look in the cashier’s eye said it all. I looked a wreck. She knew why I was returning. She wanted to empathize. I just wanted to leave. I wanted to run out of this store proudly displaying tank tops with cutesy sayings about being pregnant. I just wanted to go. I knew it would be like this going in there. I didn’t want to go in there, but Destination Maternity has some shitty policies about returning clothes. It was either that or pay even more shipping to ship it back.
My name is Leslie. I have had a miscarriage. It doesn’t get easier. It gets harder. I’m hurting, but I am doing the best I can.
If you haven't noticed, I am a full-fledged adult (I know, shocking!). And honestly I enjoyed it as much, if not more, than the kiddos.
Here's 5 reasons why your grown @$$ will love it too:
Gaming and Internet References Galore
This movie has all the gaming nostalgia that Wreck-It Ralph had. Now, we see references to all the things we know and love about the internet. It would be a fun game to see who can find the most logos.
Cosplay You Say?
A Geeky Girl can't really walk away from a good movie without finding a new cosplay and this one is no different. Yesss (and yes, her name is Yesss) would be the dopest cosplay ever. I mean just look at this ensemble.
This Movie Passes Bechdel Test
Two women talk to each other about something other than a man. Good job Disney!
The Cameo We All Need Right Now
There's a short cameo of a person that would really put a smile to your face. You need this cameo, trust me.
Can you spot it?
Disney Princesses Steal The Show
After much controversy over Tiana's hair, we knew the Disney Princesses would be in the film. But man, I was glad to see them in it. As someone who grew up watching these gals, it was quite amuzing to see them interact with each other.
I would not be surprised if Disney sold that pajama set. I'd give it my coins.
Tiana's hair upgrade was *meh* but whatever at least they actually included her, amiright?
Have you seen Ralph Breaks the Internet? What did you think of Tiana's hair uh, I mean the movie? Sound off in the comments section below.
***This review has spoilers: Proceed with caution***
Let's Start Here: The Book vs. The Movie
I’m going to be real with you: you will not be disappointed. Yes, there are many book-to-movie adaptations gone wrong. They will leave you confused and heartbroken.
This movie is not one of them.
Obviously, no movie can keep EVERYTHING from the book because, well, we would be there for 6 hours (not that I’d mind). However, I believe they did a great job with knowing what to cut, and new scenes staying in line with the overall focus of the book.
Kudos to you, George Tillman, Jr.
This Movie is NOT Trauma Porn
And it could have easily been. One thing I noted was the “quiet storm” that was King (why, Falcon, WHY!!). We didn’t need to see him beating the almighty hell out of Seven to know that this dude was fucking it up for anyone who crossed him. You didn’t even need to read the book to know that he definitely beat Seven’s mom after they left.
There are MANY scenes that could have been shot just for shock value, and I’m so grateful that they went for realism instead. Don’t get me wrong, you will need several boxes of tissues. But it’s not set out to shock, disturb, or disgust you. It’s set out to tell the real-life experiences that Black people face every day.
Maverick Carter is the Father We All Need In Our Lives
Russell Hornsby did a stellar job as Big Mav. I’m thinking this is going to be a separate blog post, but if you can gain anything from Big Mav, its never judge a book by its cover.
He entered donned in tattoos (no teardrops, however) and a past that involved gangs, drugs, and imprisonment. This man was the glue that held his family together. Some things to note about him:
In his most stressful moment, when the cops pushed him up against the glass, he never once screamed at his family
He encouraged Starr to “let it out” and used his traumatic experiences to give her just what she needed
He was always kind and affectionate to their mother, even when they disagreed
Think you can say that about King? How about Bill Cosby? (Don’t start, Quinzel)
I Definitely Wanted To Go 'Elevator Solange' on Hailey
I can guarantee that every black girl has gone through that level of gaslighting with a white friend. And usually confronting them on their bullshit, ends with them in tears, so you end up comforting them.
I was worried about seeing Hailey onscreen because the book version made me SOOOO angry. I read the whole "pretend like it's a piece of fried chicken, Starr" part as really aggressive. But in the movie, she had that clueless look on her face that's all too familiar. That look where you ALMOST believed that she really didn't mean any of what she said. However, both in the book and the movie, there were plenty of hints that Hailey knew exactly what she was doing, she was just really great at deflecting.
And you know what? I liked that! It gave the audience a chance to understand Starr's frustration. I also appreciate the realness of them never making up. Same as the book, but seeing it on screen was great because there are just some people who aren't gonna get it and you really do have to just move on.
Again, more realness than I expected to see onscreen. More kudos
Sekani, Your Name Means Joy
I want you to take a close look at this picture. Look really hard at the young boy. And I want you to ask yourself one question.
Could you kill him?
From the start of this movie, you can clearly see why his name means joy. His bright smile and high pitched laugh were enough to make your heart melt. Watching the scene with Mav and the cops is even more painful with seeing Sekani crying. Your heart will break for this sweet little boy.
The ending, while it didn't occur in the book, was arguably the most important scene in the movie. It brings full circle to The Hate U Give and what it means. Literal gasps filled the theater as Sekani pointed the gun and said: "get away from my daddy!"
In a flash, we could see what happens next, the cops kill this poor little boy before a bullet even leaves the gun. A mother watches her son's last breath. And the news doesn't depict anything about him that we already know. They won't discuss his smile, his laughter, the fact that he still can't aim in the toilet. People will shake their heads in judgment thinking nothing of a seven-year-old's death and criticize him for holding a gun in the first place. In those short moments, the audience all saw this happening. I could even hear sobs from a rush of tears. Thankfully, Starr shielded him and none of that happened.
But my mind immediately went to Tamir Rice. That baby is no longer here.
When tragedy strikes, people deflect any way they can, often making the victim as less human as they can. So if you watched that scene and cried, you need to know that none of this is really fiction.
Don't even get me started on Lyric. If you read the book, you can understand that that poor baby saw A LOT of fucked up stuff. And what about her? How will the hate that she's given fuck everybody? That's what The Hate U Give is all about.
The Hate U Give is a book, but truthfully, nothing we saw was fiction. You can't walk away from the theater with any kind of relief that this isn't our current reality.
Angie Thomas wrote the book that inspired this movie. She used her voice and it's already making a huge impact.
Seriously, just consider this my hate list. *grabs gasoline for the fire*
I love reading. I love writing. I'm ok with some books. Meaning, I'm not going to throw your book up against the wall if I feel it's mediocre because maybe someone loves it. Maybe it's just not for me. Maybe another person would...
But let me just interrupt myself to tell you, this is not the case with these books. I hate em. I'm not nice about it. And who wants to be cold this winter? Not me. Throw them in a fire.
Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment by Steve Harvey
I'm throwing this in first to get the fire going. Get it going real good. Yes, that's it. Burn, baby, burn.
Ok, Steve, you want me to wait 90 days to have sex, cool. Ok, we're together now. You want me to never withhold sex..I? WHAT DO YOU WANT, STEVE HARVEY??
It drove me up a wall to read page after page of how men can be sexually free because it's just in their nature but I dare not even give off a whiff of sexuality or I will never find love. This was a manual on crossing your legs, never cussing, and never being anything less than lady like. In return, you'll bear children to a guy who feels like it's not a "man's job" to change a diaper. Hooray??
Basically, the book is not only an archaic way of how a woman should be, but you're also literally getting relationship advice from someone who has cheated on his own wife, so yeah.
Bared to You by Sylvia Day
Now, this isn't going in the fire because of bad writing. Close to the same premise of that other fake bondage book, it's actually not written badly at all. Seriously, no shade to Sylvia Day.
But all the shade to the main character, Gideon Cross. Because if you don't GET YOURSELF TO A GODDAMN THERAPIST, YOU HAVE ALL THIS MONEY YOU CAN AFFORD TO- ok woosah, Quinzel, just throw it in. *fire roars*
50 Shades of...anything
Oh, this fire is getting warm and toasty. I'd tell you more about why I hate these books, but after three tries, I couldn't get past page 20. Consider me and E.L. James to be rivals. One on the Evil side, and the other on the Ok, I'm Evil But Not THAT Evil side.
TW: The following article discusses sexual trauma, abuse, and assault from a victims perspective. While it does not give details, it does go in depth on an emotional level and may be triggering for some. Proceed with caution
This week has been, for lack of a better word, trying for survivors of sexual abuse, misconduct, and harassment. I'd throw some statistics here, but chances are if you're reading this, you've been a victim at some point. Stats can only account for those who come forward. It doesn't account for those suffering in silence at every Bill Cosby or Harvey Weinstein water cooler talk at the office.
While you can usually plug in your earphones and drown them out while you work (guilty), there's just one Facebook post that I can't seem to get away from.
Ah, a nice little meme. A way for your friends to show solidarity with you. A chance to have someone not only believe you, but take action.
So...why do I not feel great about this pic being shared?
First Of All, This Should've Been Done A Long Time Ago
It should not take a meme. It should not take a high profile court case. It should not take several high profile court cases.
Because some of y'all knew. But felt I was too drunk. Felt my "no" wasn't clear enough. Felt it didn't count because we were dating. Felt I was sleeping around anyway.
So don't pretend you're my ally now.
So This Is Awkward, My Abuser is Your Significant Other or Family Member
There's a level of pain seeing someone on your friends list, cuddled up, smiling with your abuser. Your abuser has friends, your abuser gets engaged, your abuser has kids.
But what's even more painful is seeing that partner post that. Maybe you don't even realize they are together until you look through their profile. But it it remains: do I tell the truth? Do i risk being called a liar? What is that going to do for my healing?
Sending A Name, Just A Name, No Details, Could Make Me Relive My Trauma
Because that name is ruined for me now. That name is forever printed in my head surrounded by fear, anger, hurt, and confusion (gaslighting is a bitch!).
I can't type that name, because it's at the very top of an unstable tower and typing that name would be the final structure to have it all come crashing down.
There's so much fear of being called a liar, of you wanting to press for details, and also that I just may never stop crying after typing that name.
I just need you to know. It hurts.
Ok, So What Should We Do Instead?
You need ction. A meme is a passive gesture. Anyone can share a meme. But what do you plan to do after you get that name? Are you really going to block them? Are you going to confront them? Cut them out of your life?
You gotta have the uncomfortable yet authentic conversations with your friends. If you want to know if you're connected to an abuser, gain peoples trust. No one will open up to you unless they trust you first. Talk with your friends. Look out for your friends. Intervene when you see something that isn't ok.
*Forrest Gump voice* And that's all I have to say about that.
I'm not what you would call a casual nerd. Not even close. No, I'm the obsessive type who will absolutely consume a piece of media at an unholy speed. It took me a month to get through seven seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I finished the entirety of Angel (five seasons) in a week, and when I got to the finale I almost threw things at my television because IT CAN'T END THERE. (It doesn't, but I don't read a lot of graphic novels.)
So obviously, I am no stranger to binge-watching. When I have the time, I will build a nest on the couch or in my bed and I will absolutely devour whatever show has caught my fancy. At this point, some of them I've binged on several times.
But I'm always looking for new recommendations of shows to watch, and I am sure plenty of you are looking for new shows, too! So here's my first list of absolutely binge-worthy shows on Netflix right now. Grab some snacks, load up on the caffeine, (please take a shower) and get ready to ride the feels.
(P.S., I'm skipping the obvious ones such as Queer Eye, Nailed It!, Supernatural and Sherlock. Come see what rabbit holes I've fallen down recently instead!)
1. Fantastically Funny: Disenchantment
Disenchantment is the latest show by Matt Groening, the creator of Futurama (and The Simpsons). Disenchantment is the story of Tiabeanie (aka Bean), a princess who doesn't quite have a handle on...well anything except her mug of ale. She makes up for it by cavorting around, drinking, stirring up trouble, and generally trying to live life on her terms while being egged on by her own personal demon.
This show is a lot more plot-driven than Futurama, and less parodying the fantasy genre as I'd hoped (and come on, there's no shortage of parody material -- even if you ignore the obvious ones like Game of Thrones). The first season is good, but I really hope it can grow to be as good as Futurama was, with a perfect mix of humor and story. And maybe a lot more parody.
Seasons on Netflix: 1
New Episodes Coming: Yep!
2. Space Cats and Magic Aliens: Voltron: Legendary Defender
I vaguely remember Voltron as a kid. And by vaguely I mean I know it existed and I definitely watched an episode or two at some point. Did I love it? Obviously given my lack of recall, no. But the new series, a Netflix original, is REALLY good. I was casually watching it as background noise, then got to the end of season two, thought, "HOLY SHIT," and immediately went back and rewatched the first two seasons. The premise is pretty simple: 5 people from Earth suddenly find themselves as the pilots of five magical space lions who combine to form a mystical warrior who must defend the universe against the evil Galra empire, with the guidance of an alien princess.
Voltron is absolutely character-driven, so you're going to have to forgive the plot holes and the silly filler episodes. What I love about about the show is the way the characters do grow and mature and learn over time. Their relationships with each other evolve, too. The show isn't about any one character with everyone else being in a supporting role. Even Coran gets his moments to shine, and each paladin has their own story arcs that help you discover who they are.
All of that said, Voltron's showrunners have come under fire with accusations of queerbaiting in season 7, specifically use of the "Bury Your Gays" trope. The showrunners have acknowledged that it was a problem and apologized, but it's up to you whether you want to sit through that arc.
Seasons on Netflix: 7
New Episodes Coming: Yes (but only 1)
3. Feel-Good Fluff: Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir
Sometimes I need pure, simple fluff. Like, toe-curling, squee-inducing, diabeetus-giving sugar. And that's exactly what this show is all about. We've got high school super heroes, secret crushes, bratty classmate rivals, a cheesy big bad and a moralistic villain of the week. But despite all of that, Miraculous Ladybug has heart. It is sweet and thoughtful and uplifting. You will genuinely feel for these characters, especially Adrien/Cat Noir. But Marinette (Ladybug), Alya, Nino, and the rest of the cast all have their moments to shine.
The first season of Miraculous Ladybug doesn't have a lot of plot or character advancement, because it's very focused on the villain of the week. But the hints are greatness are there, so tantalizingly close! And I am happy to say that season 2 delivers on a more satisfying, multi-episode plot with some major reveals. Season 3 is due to drop some time in 2018, and I'm already screaming about it because what I thought was going to be perpetual fluff is building toward something really, really great.
Seasons on Netflix: 2
Episodes: 51 (Plus 1 Christmas Special)
New Episodes Coming: YES!
4. Amazing Adventures: Trollhunters
Trollhunters is one of those shows that popped up in my Netflix recommendations and I shrugged it off. "Maybe later," I thought. Fortunately, my roommate's boyfriend was all too happy to introduce me to the show, and it didn't take much to get me hooked. It might sound a little bit odd to hear that this children's show is the creation of Guillermo Del Toro, but at its heart this show is all about a human discovering a world of monsters, which definitely sounds like a Del Toro kind of thing. Trollhunters is one of those lovely shows where plot and characters are equally well done. The world-building is beautiful and the writers play with some of the common teen-superhero/vigilante tropes in interesting ways. And while the show has its dark moments, it's very hopeful and uplifting and even fluffy at moments. I was absolutely dismayed to find out that the third season was the finale for Trollhunters, but we'll be revisiting the world in two spin-off series, 3 Below and Wizards. I'm going to guess we'll see some crossover between the three, but since the main hero, Jim Lake, won't be the protagonist of all three, I'm still going to whine hopelessly and pitifully that my fave isn't center stage.
Seasons on Netflix: 3
New Episodes Coming: 2 spin-offs incoming
5. Beautiful Badassery: Black Lightning
After the CW opted to pull all its shows from Hulu in favor of its own free, ad-supported streaming at, the network also cut a deal with Netflix to stream the full seasons a week after the finale. Which means it's REALLY easy to get caught up on any of the CW shows. But rather than put yourself through 6 seasons of Arrow, skip over to Black Lightning, which is easily the best show the CW has ever done.
It's not JUST that Black Lightning is all about a black superhero. It's not even that it's a show with a predominantly black cast. Both of these are hella awesome things. But Black Lightning doesn't pull its punches when talking about racial and social issues, either. I'm talking everything from gang violence and police brutality and to the very real threat that black activists face when they protest. And to see that, for the first time, was incredible -- and heartbreaking at the same time. And mixed in with all these complicated topics we've got an amazing story and an amazing cast of characters.
At some point we're probably going to see Black Lightning cross over with the Arrowverse, and I for one am looking forward to Jefferson Pierce tearing Oliver Queen a new one. But for now, the CW and the showrunners are happy to let Black Lightning stand independent of the reason of the Arrowverse.
Seasons on Netflix: 1
New Episodes Coming: Yes
6. Outrageous Antics : Grace & Frankie
I don't really like sitcoms. Secondhand embarrassment makes me cringe and want to leave the room or hide behind a couch. But I made an exception for Grace & Frankie, because well, it was different. (And maybe because I still love The Golden Girls, which was one of the formative shows of my youth.) The premise is pretty simple: Two women in their 70s find their perfectly-planned lives falling apart when their husbands leave them for each other. It sounds interesting, but the reality turns out to be so much better -- because it's not just about these two women and their ex-husbands.
It's about the entire blended family, with all their quirks and complicated relationships. Grace and Frankie's slow, grudging friendship makes me feel a bit warm and fuzzy inside. But I also love these glimpses into the lives of Bud, Coyote, Mallory and Brianna, who exist as more than just the children who occasionally make an appearance at their parents' homes and react to the news. Grace & Frankie is hilarious at times -- the situations that the titular characters find themselves in are a source of endless laughter. But the show also has just the right amount of heart, too.
New Episodes Coming: Yes
7. Magic & Music: Galavant
Fantasy television is hard to do -- and for me, almost impossible to take seriously even when I like it. Fortunately, Galavant doesn't even try. Instead, it's a low-budget musical fantasy adventure meant to keep people tuned in to ABC during the winter break. And oh what a magnificent spectacle it is. Alan Menken (who did the scores for The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, and Beauty and the Beast, among many other works) handles the music, so clearly the showrunners had their priorities in order as far as budget goes.
The plot is pretty straightforward: it's the story of epic hero Galavant, who after being jilted by the love of his life gets suckered into a quest to help a princess reclaim her kingdom from the evil king who stole his love. Galavant plays with the standard fantasy and adventure tropes beautifully. So you might know where the plot is going, but you'll enjoy getting there. Plus, the show breaks the fourth wall pretty regularly with snarky commentary. The "fantasy" in season 1 is pretty low-key, but it becomes much more obvious in season 2.
The thing I love most about Galavant is that the whole crew clearly knew what they were doing. Take the costuming: There's plenty of period accurate costuming (with repeated mentions to the time period), and so when characters deviate it's obvious that it's intentional rather than a group of designers going "ooh but this looks cool!" without knowing a single thing about medieval fashion. And yeah, there's plotholes for miles and things that clearly don't make sense, but you get the feeling that it's all intentionally glossed over rather than the writers not knowing what they're doing. I mean, to be able to properly parody something you have to intimately understand it to begin with, right?
And then there's the music. The songs in Galavant are clearly riffs on all sorts of musicals, including Les Mis, Grease, and West Side Story, to name a few. The songs are just as cheeky as the rest of the show, and incredibly catchy. Plus, with Weird Al and Kylie Minogue making appearances, the songs are delightfully varied.
I'm really sad that Galavant didn't get more than 2 seasons, but overall they're pretty satisfying and always good for a laugh.
New Episodes Coming: Alas, no. =/
8. Superb Storytelling: The Dragon Prince
I absolutely LOVED Avatar: The Last Airbender and its sequel, The Legend of Korra. So when the writers from the show team up for a new series on Netflix, you can sign me right up! I was a little bit skeptical of the hype insisting that The Dragon Prince could be the next Avatar. That's giving this new show an awful lot to live up to, and if you go in expecting to see something that's immediately as wonderful and delightful, you might be a bit disappointed. But if you push all of that hype out of your mind and focus on the show itself, it's really easy to start to love it.
The premise isn't exactly unique. A long time ago, humans and magical races (read: dragons and elves) lived together peacefully and learned how to use magic. Then the foolish humans learned how to use dark magic. The other races, fearing this new evil, drove all the humans out of their lands. Fast forward a couple hundred years and humans are still using magic (including dark magic) and waging war on the elves and dragons. The humans kill the king of the dragons and destroy his egg. In retaliation, a band of elves set out to kill the king and his son and heir. Things don't go as planned, and one of the assassins teams up with the king's two children to try to make peace between all the peoples. Meanwhile, there's a war going on and political scheming -- and what seems like something potentially much darker.
Despite the somewhat unoriginal story, I absolutely love the characters. Rayla, Callum, and Ezran are all incredible in their own right. They all have their strengths and weaknesses and flaws and insecurities, and it works. You might not think that Ezran, the youngest character, could avoid the plot-trap of being the burdensome child who needs protection. But somehow, he does. He's absolutely the heart of the trio and I am 100% here for that. And the themes these characters deal with -- justice, loyalty, sacrifice. While Avatar started off lighthearted and got darker as the show progressed, The Dragon Prince has higher stakes from the get-go.
And the best bit? The Dragon Prince isn't mucking about with representation. From the get-go we have people of color in the show -- and in positions of power and importance. I'm still waiting to see if we'll get black elves (my fingers are crossed!), but just from the little bit of the world we've seen, I don't think we'll have to worry about "token" diversity. There's even a character who's mute and communicates with sign language. And it's just just...accepted, no tragic backstory needed, no exposition, nothing.
While The Dragon Prince is relying somewhat on some conventional fantasy tropes, I'm really, REALLY excited about it. The worldbuilding and storytelling are absolutely stunning. It's easy to see that there is so much potential there.
New Episodes Coming: There'd better be! But no official word yet.
What are your favorite binge-worthy shows on Netflix? Have you watched any of these? Leave me a comment and let me know what you think!
WizardFest is just around the corner, and it's got me thinking about Harry Potter quotes that have stuck with me the most. Swearing I'm up to no good is a great quote for my fun life, but there are some Harry Potter quotes that have healed me like no other.
So, if you're considering going to WizardFest, or if you're wanting to throw a WizardFest in the comfort of your own reading nook, take a second to re-live these quotes with me. Feel free to use these yourself 🙂
"It Matters Not What Someone Is Born, But What They Grow Up To Be"
"It Does Not Do To Dwell On Dreams And Forget To Live"
"Numbing the Pain For A While Will Make It Worse When You Finally Feel It"*
*i feel kinda called out*
"It Is Our Choices, Harry, That Show What We Truly Are, Far More Than Our Abilities."
Tell me your favorite Harry Potter quotes that got you through tough times. Then treat yourself by going to WizardFest 😉