By James Gallagher.
What a world we live in huh? The pedo priests are throwing millions of dollars at their defence attorneys while our politicians are still up for sale to the highest bidder.
So for the rest of us, there’s letters from the tax office, increased living expenses and avocado toast. Thoughts and prayers people, thoughts and prayers.
If you're anything like me, these happenings are likely to drive you straight to the nearest pub and once the booze fuelled charisma has worn off, what’s left to wash the hangover away?
It’s Netflix and chill, whether that ‘chill’ means what it’s meme’d to or the more accurate version of us trying to tap-out from the shit-show for a few measly few hours, I’ve compiled the perfect hangover list of Netflix series that might help to take your mind off the madness for a moment.
This charming British comedy doesn’t seem like much to begin with but it’s an absolute joy to watch. Written by and starring Mackenzie Crook (‘Gareth’ from the U.K. version of The Office) and featuring Toby Jones in a rare comedic role, this is an endearing series about two metal detectors (Detectorists, they’ll tell you) and their unremarkable adventures searching for riches of the past. As they navigate the trials of a life lived a world-away from the ritz and glitz of the big smoke, this Netflix series will have you laughing in the most heart warming way possible.
The British countryside and quiet serenity sets the pace in this series as these two mid-life mates search for the big haul and impart their ordinary wisdom and wit upon their friends in the Danebury Metal Detecting Club. This is the perfect series for the worst of hangovers. The characters are so endearing you just want to hug them and the total banality of small-town life in this series is the perfect tempo for those slower days in bed.
As Andy (Crook) and Lance (Jones) while away their spare time searching for that elusive haul we’re treated to one of the most on-point portrayals of life for the rest of us. This isn’t fast-moving, blink and you’ll miss it storylines or rapid-fire barbs, it's so real it hurts and the nuance of the dialogue hits you right in the feels. It’s part comedy, part real-life drama and if Toby Jones as Lance isn’t one of the most loveable performances you could ever hope for, you can count more than just a hangover amongst your problems.
Flipping the script right out of the gates is Toast of London, a Netflix series built for those who prefer a bit more pace and absurd hilarity to their comedy.
About the only thing this show has in common with Detectorists is that they both won BAFTAs for their lead-actors. Where Detectorists is subtle, quiet and unassuming, Toast of London is just, well, bat-shit crazy.
It stars Matt Berry as Steven Toast, a divorced British actor who was once-upon-a-time successful but now lives with his eccentric housemate and pays the rent in grim voiceover jobs while waiting for his big break. This is surreal comedy at its finest, the world of Steven Toast is jarring at first, but the alliteration-heavy script is whip-smart and Toast’s enunciation and delivery makes this must-watch comedy. It’s completely bonkers and if you’ve fried half your brain cells the night before, you might find yourself struggling to keep up, but this is worth every minute.
Throw in a cracking selection of support characters (the names alone will have you scoffing) and you’ve got yourself a show that will make you want to announce all of your feels really, really loudly. There’s rumours of a fourth series on the way so we could be seeing more of Toast, Clem Fandango and Ray fucking Purchase in the not-too distant future.
From the mind of Bill Burr comes F is for Family, probably one of the more honest depictions of life in the 70’s that no-one from that era would probably care to admit. It centres on Frank Murphy, a foul-mouthed veteran and his family as they traverse through an era when drinking, misogyny and rock n’ roll ruled the world.
This is not the series to watch if your partner is trying to get some sleep or you’re feeling a little tender - it’s loud and yelling is how half the characters get their point across. As far as comedy goes this sitcom is spot-on, there’s no real star of the show and a star-studded cast of actors bring this thing to life - Sam Rockwell as a coked-out Matthew McConaughey-ish radio host steals nearly every scene he’s in).
There’s plenty of great adult-animated comedy on Netflix at the moment but this one may have fallen through the cracks and it deserves a watch. If you like your Big Mouth, Archer or BoJack Horsemen you’ll love F is for Family, and if you haven’t caught any of the aforementioned they’re just as worthy of your time.
This is an easy one. If you haven’t already copped this seminal comedy series you’ve either been in hiding or as ignorant as the idiots that inhabit this California-based comedy.
It’s the story of a well-to-do family thrust into chaos due to their own stupidity and greed and is without a doubt, one of the best-written comedies of the past two decades. Fourth season aside, (seriously did they cast a Portia De Rossi wax museum reject in her place?) this show is razor-sharp and gets ever-better with each re-watch. This should be the comedy that all others are measured by and its baffling they only got to three seasons before being cancelled in its prime (There’s an epic rant from actor David Cross somewhere on the internet which sums it up that's well worth a look). Yes, this is old news but if there’s ever a comedy worth watching or diving back in to, Arrested Development is it. Far ahead of its time, this is pure comedy gold.
Well there you go. That should be roughly 1-2 straight months of Netflix binge viewing to completely cloak yourself from the outside world. Things may not have improved out here by the time you re-emerge but at least you’ll have a couple of extra laughter wrinkles when you do.