After spending the weekend in a Benadryl/Mucinex fog, I thought I’d share a round up of what I finished on the AppleTV the past few days.

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You (Netflix)

Now, I originally started this series on Lifetime in the fall when it premiered. However, I lost track 3 episodes in. I kept hearing people mention it over the past couple of weeks and thought what better time to binge through? It did not disappoint. I can’t wait for the follow up season (whenever that may be).

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Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes (Netflix)

Another series that did not disappoint. I went in knowing the basic amount of Ted Bundy history, but I knew I’d be hooked to this in depth take on his terror in the 70’s. To hear his own take on his crimes was interesting, but can you believe someone actually married that freak? And can you believe Zac Efron is playing him in the upcoming biopic? I mean, I’ll go see it. But it’s going to ruin that beautiful man for me.

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Fyre Fraud (Hulu) vs Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened (Netflix)

Ok. Watch the Netflix documentary first. It gives more detail that the Hulu one misses. Plus, I didn’t know anything about this before watching. So, seeing Billy McFarland try to get through that interview in the Hulu special without throwing up on himself was entertaining by itself. I’m left with a lot of questions though. 1. Who would pay that much money for that? 2. Were these employees of his in a cult? Was he their leader? Do they need Leah Remini to save them? 3. How is Ja Rule still a thing? I’ll be interested to hear more opinions on this.

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Making a Murderer: Part 2

Ok, this is a bit of a spoiler alert. If you watched season 1 but haven’t started (or finished) season 2, skip to the podcasts below. When I watched season 1, I had a fishy feeling about Bobby Dassey. When they shared the timeline of events that day, I knew something was wrong with the fact that Bobby vanished as soon as Teresa Halbach left the property. I don’t think that Scott Tadych had anything to do with it, but Bobby’s demented self did.

And let’s talk about Kathleen Zellner for a minute. She is something else. That hair, those nails, her lack of emotion. Maybe I’ve been watching too much of season 3 of American Horror Story, but she would make a perfect Supreme.

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Bear Brook

I stumbled upon this podcast yesterday when driving back and forth from Baton Rouge. I keep starting and stopping podcasts that just don’t keep me hanging on. This one seems like it will do the trick. It follows a double murder that is found by a couple of kids playing around in the woods back in the 1980s.

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Voodoo City

This one is just a treat for all of those looking for some trick in time for Halloween. The stories are quick and shed some light on New Orleans legends. Give it a listen!

So, I’m into cults. Not in a way that suggests I want to or would join one, but I like to know why these people are able to be brainwashed in joining groups that take all of their money, their time, and families. Well, if I think about it, maybe online shopping is a type of cult. It takes all of my money. Anyway, here are a couple of cult-themed resources I’ve come across lately.

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Cults of Our Lives

This podcast covers a new cult each week in 30-minute spurts. I personally have learned so much, but sometimes, the girls get off track and the sound quality isn’t top notch for both hosts. However, listening to this each week during my trek around the states of Louisiana and Mississippi led me to my next obsession — Patty Hearst and the SLA.

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The Radical Story of Patty Hearst

Ok. Did she or didn’t she? Was she or wasn’t she? Personally? I think she was full blown in that cult from the beginning.

Long story short. An heiress to media millions gets “kidnapped” by a smaller (but violent)     cult, the Symbionese Liberation Army, held “hostage” for months while releasing tapes to  her family through the media about ransoms and needs of the group, only to show up on security footage of a bank robbery holding a machine gun of sorts. If you watch all the way through the docuseries, you’ll see just how into it this rich bitch gets. Crazy people.

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This may be a bit of a spoiler post, but I’ll try not to give anything away. To be honest, it’s not as if there is much to give away this season.

I’ve been an avid follower of all things Netflix, including almost all of its original series, since the beginning. However, this season of Orange is the New Black was plain disappointing. You would think a group of misfit prisoners would lead to some really good story lines in gen. pop. in Max. No, we were just given regular old Piper complaining, Red worrying herself to death, and some drug addictions. What’s new, Litchfield? I miss several of the characters that didn’t follow to Max and that died last season. It’s just not the same. I will more than likely stick around for the next one since the finale was so so. You’ll see when you get there.

 

Ok. It’s just been me and Netflix binging the past couple of weekends; and I found 2 crime shows that (one) I’d never heard of, strangely enough, and (two) they are both based on real events. Now, they kind of help each other out a little in my opinion, so be sure to watch them in this order.

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Mindhunter

First things first, this is based on the finding of the term “serial killer” by a special division of the FBI. What I like about this show is that it really shows a difference in the FBI before and after this division formed and started working. It also makes you think differently about crime. Just give it a watch.

Plus, David Fincher is connected to this project, which for all of you out there that took Dr. Hays’ film class in college (I took it in both undergrad and graduate school) you’ll see the style connections.

Bonus. Season 2 is in the works right now.

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Manhunt: Unabomber

Again, this should be watched after Mindhunter because they roughly reference that division of the FBI with no explanation. So knowing that background helps develop the plot and show a little bit.

Now, this show was perfect for me for 2 major reasons. One, I like learning about true crime events that happened in my lifetime but was too young to be aware of. I find that interesting, and I usually spend hours Googling the offender or crime long after I’ve watched whatever documentary has sparked my interest. Second, it studies the English language. This was like sitting in a strange version of Dr. Sarcone’s History of the English Language course, and I. Loved. Every. Minute. Of. It.

I had no idea what or who the Unabomber was. I was familiar with the name, but that’s about it. So coming across this series was exactly what I needed to learn more. I kind of wish that the series would develop more into other seasons that dive into the “manhunt” of other true crime criminals. I would be on the edge of my seat waiting for those to be bingeable.

I’m not sure if you’ve been keeping up with the Netflix original movies lately, but they are killing it with new content this summer. I love to spend my weekends binging all kinds of Netflix original series, but this weekend I went for the Netflix original movies. Unlike the Disney Channel original movies of my childhood and teen years, these aren’t sappy and G (sometimes PG) rated. These are a little scandalous with a side of the “F” word. Enjoy.

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Brain on Fire

Based on a true story, this one has me worried now every time I have a brain “freeze” or headache. It really brings a new light on getting second, third, and possibly fourth opinions when you know something just isn’t right going on inside of you. Give it a watch and know that you are not one of the thousands that suffer from this rare autoimmune disease.

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Ibiza

I don’t know if I liked this because of Vanessa Bayer or because I just don’t see how they went so long without showers and sleep at their age. I feel like if I went on this trip, I would have to cry “uncle” a couple of hours in because they just don’t give up. They get shit faced each day and night without naps or sleeping in. They get on planes non stop and ride around in what looks like un-airconditioned cars while hungover or coming off of a high. I’m not sure I ever saw one of them brush their teeth. My point is I was amazed at how much I kept willing on this behavior scene after scene in order to find this mythical DJ.

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Set It Up

This one is a good old fashioned rom com with an update. The update to the plot being that online dating and “ghosting” are both referenced in this one versus blind date set ups and such. I really liked this one because of the realistic characters of the over-bearing bosses and the over-qualified assistants. Plus, who doesn’t love it when the two characters who hate each other in the beginning (SPOILER) fall in love at the end? I mean, who didn’t see that coming from the first second of the trailer?

I’ve been on the war path with Netflix and Hulu lately. I’m running out of series and finding myself diving deeper and deeper into the black whole of crime documentaries. I’ll be able to apply for a job as a profiler if I don’t take a break and find something light and funny to watch for a while.

However, here are a few good ones that I think you should add to your queue if you’re looking.

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Evil Genius (Netflix)

This one is dark. It’s about a crime back in the early 2000s involving a neck-brace bomb and a pizza guy. Trust me and watch it as soon as possible and then follow up with an episode or two of something like Sex and the City or replay the Royal Wedding from this past weekend. It will help lighten the mood.

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Marcia Clark Investigates The First 48 (A&E App)

What I liked about this show is that it went hand-in-hand with my previous binge experience of all things O.J. Simpson a couple of years ago. When the first season of American Crime Story: The People vs. O.J. Simpson came out, I found myself devouring that miniseries and them eating up each and every documentary about The Juice that I could find. So, when I saw that the Marcia Clark was gearing up for her own series, I knew I would be hooked … and I was. Between the Casey Anthony story and the Billionaire Boys Club, I learned a good bit about crimes I heard referenced in news and other shows over the years. Give it a watch and see if you can solve these (mostly) unsolved mysteries.

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The Handmaid’s Tale (Hulu)

This show is unbelievable. I was counting down the days for season 2 after binging through season 1 in about a week. Wow. All I can say is wow. I have been nauseous, horrified, pissed off, and peeking between my fingers through the majority of season 2 and we are 5 episodes in. I appreciate the slower release so I can’t go through them all in a day’s time; however, by the time each episode ends, I’m mentally drained but I could take the beating of another few episodes just to find out what the hell is going to happen to June/Offred.

Ok. Let’s be honest. I’m currently preparing for the BIG royal wedding watching event of the year tomorrow morning. I’ll be rising and shining well before sunrise and flipping between E! and HBO to watch the big event. I will be curled up with the Beagles and a cup of tea.

However, if you want to jazz up your viewing party, try these delectable cucumber sandwiches that we had last weekend for the Mother’s Day Tea. They are pretty tasty and fit for a queen or princess or your own royal highness still in pajamas.

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Cucumber Sandwiches

2 cucumbers, thinly sliced

1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened

6 tablespoons sour cream

1 2-ounce package dry ranch dressing mix

1 loaf white bread

1/2 stick butter, softened

Lightly salt cucumber slices and put on a paper towel to drain. With a mixer, beat cream cheese, sour cream, and ranch dressing mix until combined. With rolling pin, lightly roll bread slices. Cut bread into rounds with 2-inch round cookie cutter. Spread each round with a thin layer of butter (to keep bread from becoming soggy), then with cream cheese mixture. Place a cucumber slice on each bread round and garnish with fresh dill.

 

It’s a sad day in my world. Fixer Upper’s series finale airs, and I just don’t know what I’m going to do. I’ve been a faithful follower from the beginning and was actually tipped off on the series long before it showed up on HGTV. A producer for High Noon Entertainment was doing some research in Natchez after recently finding and signing the Waco power couple to their series. She told us to be on the look out for it; and sure enough, there they were on prime-time design TV. Ever since, I’ve been glued to every episode, followed Jo’s blog, read her magazine cover to cover, and been a regular shopper on their e-commerce site for Magnolia Market. I guess I’ll just have to venture to Waco soon and get a full sensory overload at the Silos and the new diner, Magnolia Table. Who’s going with me?

In the mean time, my owner fixer upper project is moving right along. With the plumbing finishing up and the new can lights installed last week, we are moving quickly through the shiplapping process. Our version of shiplap isn’t the typical type you see on the show, however. I’m on a budget remember and can’t afford the tongue-and-groove version you can buy new at the hardware store or the antiqued version you can find from pickers. What we do is very simple, and I applaud ole Paulie for coming up with this solution. We simply use a router tool to create a “faux” tongue-and-groove effect on the edges of each board. When butted together and nailed in place, you get the same exact look for less. After a couple of layers of Kilz and another couple of layers of “New York City Winter” by Valspar, we have shiplap!

I also strongly believe that this is not a fad that will go out of style anytime soon; but I’m sure when I’m dead, gone, and the newest owner has moved in, my shiplap and subway tiles may be history. So, I left a couple of hate notes under the shiplap and backer board for those idiots of the future.

I’ve been binging again. I mean, it’s all for research for blog posts. Right? Either way, I’m finding some really good stuff on and off TV.

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Waco (Paramount Network App)

I think I’ve mentioned that I’m a fan of cult anything. Not that I want to be in a cult, start a cult, or have been in a cult; but you have to admit that it’s really interesting how people can be brainwashed to leave their families, give up all of their money, and live on compounds (especially those without running water). My co-workers suggested I try Paramount Network’s 6-part miniseries about the tragedy in Waco, Texas.

First of all, it was amazing. I was hooked from the first few minutes. It never dragged and the whole time I was wondering how they would fit this into 6 episodes. I mean, you have to watch it for several reasons, but the main one is that this has a Culkin brother in it. Like Kevin McCalister’s younger brother. Those are some strong genes by the way.

Second, ever since finishing the series over a rainy weekend, I have had Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire” playing over and over in my head. I think you will see it for yourself. Those religious folks may have had some strange ideals, practices, and were stock piling guns like end times were headed their way; but all of that tear gas started that blaze.

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Divorce (HBOGo App)

Luckily, there are two seasons of this SJP show for you to binge. The episodes are short. The love triangles are entertaining. I think Robert wasn’t supposed to live in New York. I think that Frances is fantastic and giving me all of the suburban Carrie Bradshaw feels that I need in my life right now. And Molly Shannon! She’s fantastic and like a grown-up version of Mary Katherine Gallagher.

This show may not be for everyone, but I love it. Just give a couple of episodes a try and you’ll be watching for Mr. Big and hoping for an encounter with Aidan.

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Here and Now (HBOGo App)

This is a weird one. It looks at mental illness, race issues, and some pretty deep family problems. It’s new and only a few episodes in, but I think that it’s worth the wait to see what happens next. I’m kind of in love with the dad character, which is played by Tim Robbins. He calls it like it is and takes no bull shit. I’m also happy to see Grey’s Anatomy’s Dr. Stephanie Edwards again. She is so different here, and I love it.

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The Handmaid’s Tale (Hulu)

Now here is a show to binge. I waited to start this one until right before the release of season 2. I finished season 1 in about three days. I thought from the previews and images online that it was set in the past. Hell no! It’s a post-apocalyptic type of society that takes place after the second “American Civil War.” It’s like a blend of The Scarlet Letter and The Hunger Games.

Here is a cult for you. These religious freaks are a special kind of messed up. Their crazy practices and beliefs made me root for the army of handmaids trying to take back the country one “no” at a time. You have to watch this one. Season 2 comes out on April 25. I’ll be glued to the TV again.

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Santa Clarita Diet (Netflix)

I love this show. It’s like The Walking Dead and Dexter had a comedic and sarcastic baby. The way the husband handles his newly un-dead wife is exactly what I want in a man. Understanding. Calming. Always ready to discard of a body. (Just kidding. Sort of.) The first season went by in a day for me. They are 30-minute episodes that are quick witted and leave you hanging to see who she kills (and eats) next.

Season 2 comes out on THIS FRIDAY, March 23; and I’m sure I’ll have it finished before Saturday is over.