My Favorite Things: Suburban Zombies, Creepy Video Games, Feminist Sci-Fi, and More Love for The Good Place

They might not be raindrops on roses or whiskers on kittens, but that doesn’t mean that we love them any less. Welcome back to My Favorite Things, a weekly column where we gab about the greatest in geek. This week, we’ve spotlighted several exciting new, and upcoming releases. This includes a fantastic horror comedy series, a binge-worthy (and speculative!) sitcom, the latest trailer for what’s sure to be an award winning show, and the latest installment in the Resident Evil franchise. Read on for more!


Nu’s Favorite Thing is… Santa Clarita Diet!

My favorite thing this month is the Netflix series Santa Clarita Diet. This horror comedy features Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant as Sheila and Joel, a married couple working as realtors and living an idealistic suburban life with their teenage daughter until Sheila turns into a zombie. As a fan of Barrymore and Olyphant, I was excited to watch this series, and I ended up watching all 10 episodes in a day. Each episode is only 30 minutes, so it’s totally doable. Even if you don’t think you’ll like seeing Barrymore snacking on bloody body parts, the dark humor makes this stand-out from your usual, grim zombie shows like The Walking Dead. It also spends time with the family as they try to deal with Sheila’s sudden urge to eat human flesh (there are plenty of sentimental moments), which I appreciate. Keep an eye out on some special guest stars! The finale does end on a cliffhanger, so I’m hoping we hear about a second season soon!

 

J.L.’s Favorite Thing is… The Good Place!

Last week, Editor-in-Chic Shara asked me for a quick favor. She needed someone to review her The Good Place review before it went live. While I’d heard of the show, I’m not really one for comedy sitcoms, so I didn’t know much about it. Shara’s post didn’t spoil anything I hadn’t already learned from promo spots, but the palpable excitement in her post finally encouraged me to check it out.

I binged the entire 13-episode first season run in less than 24 hours.

For a sitcom, I was incredibly impressed by both the clever humor and the excellent character development. I’m not sure how I would do watching week to week, but this was truly binge-worthy fare if you’ve got a random evening and some frozen yogurt to kill. The twist ending left me with harsher language than “What the fork?” and I can’t wait to see what comes next. Here’s hoping the next season maintains the same momentum.

 

Nicole’s Favorite Thing is… Resident Evil: Biohazard!

For some reason I’ve gotten into horror lately. I’ve read And the Trees Crept In and then The Deep — not something I normally do. Maybe it’s because I’ve been watching a lot of people play Resident Evil 7. I don’t usually play scary games myself, and I’m don’t exactly have extra funds for a brand new $60 game. But I love to watch people play them.

I don’t know much about the franchise aside from the first game’s incident in Raccoon City. But I’ve come to understand that Resident Evil 7 was different in a lot of ways, while doing throwbacks to past games with its puzzles, gun choices, and ammo drops. You’re once again making your way through a creepy house — this time populated by an insane family and with creatures called “molded,” who are ready to rip you to shreds. The atmosphere is constantly tense; you never know what’s going to jump out of the dark to try and kill you. Turning corners can be a nightmare, and nothing ever really seems to die (I’m not an expert, but I’m always surprised how people forget the necessity of headshots).

It’s a great-looking game that doesn’t rely on blatant jump scares to freak the player out. Rather, you’ll be moving down a corridor hoping you’ll be okay and find another box of shotgun shells or health, when you’ll turn a corner and bump right into a walking monstrosity. Or those moments when you’re being hunted by the family’s patriarch, Jack, and one of his home-made, very spiky, and very deadly weapons.

While I was surprised at how short the game felt, it’s effective in what it does, and easily lends itself to multiple playthroughs. Though as with any scary game, watching someone play for the first time is always the best.

 

Kelly’s Favorite Thing is…The Handmaid’s Tale trailer!

The words “feminist dystopia” would not normally make me say, “That sounds like riveting entertainment,” but I am very excited that Hulu is adapting Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale for television. The book is one of the most frightening dystopias that I have ever read. Dead people can’t turn into zombies, vampires aren’t real, and aliens have never invaded, but the idea of an extremist conservative religious group taking over the government and stripping all rights away from women? That seems terrifyingly possible and has in fact, happened in reality outside of the Western world. I feel like I am the only person in America who didn’t like Mad Men, but I still respect Elizabeth Moss’ capabilities as an actress and I’m thrilled by her casting as Offred. In just under thirty seconds, the trailer provides much to tantalize those of us who have read the book and intrigue those who haven’t read. We learn that Offred’s real name is forbidden. We get the impression that handmaids are broodmares for wealthy, powerful men. The look of terror on Alexis Bledel’s face when her mouth is gagged and the look of defiant hate on Moss’ face when she’s wearing the blue dress with her hair down convey volumes. It’s clear that something immense has been lost. When Joseph Fiennes says, “We only wanted to make the world better” and “Better never means better for everyone,” it sends chills down my spine. Considering the amazing source material and the unbelievably talented cast, I will be shocked if this show isn’t incredible and award-winning.


Any thoughts on the selections above? Let us know in the comments below.

3 Comments

  • Shara White February 27, 2017 at 11:30 pm

    Yeah, so we’re re-watching The Good Place, because after that finale, you kind of HAVE to.

    Also, really wanting to watch Santa Clara Diet. Not because I’m in lust with Timothy Olyphant or anything, no, not at all….. *goes back to her Justified BluRays*

    Reply
  • Kelly McCarty February 28, 2017 at 1:38 am

    I also started watching The Good Place because of Shara’s review. I’m up to episode six.I’m enjoying it but I don’t feel like it’s quite living up to the promise of the zany, hiliarious first episode. I even don’t even understand why I love Kristin Bell, because usually actresses that try too hard to be adorable and quirky get on my nerves (I hate Zooey Deschanel), but I do.

    Reply
    • Shara White February 28, 2017 at 11:05 pm

      I really look forward to your thoughts on THE GOOD PLACE when you’re done with it!

      Reply

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