The history of television is a social one. While films are a form of entertainment derived from still photography and painting, the development of television series evolved from radio serials and shows broadcast over the airwaves! The way in which families or groups of friends used to gather around their radios to tune into the latest episode of a serial drama, comedy, or weekly variety show informed the routine and sociable way in which television, in its time, developed into a staple event of our social lives that carries through to this day. Remember the weekly catch up around the water cooler after the latest Game of Thrones episode had aired?
That said, there are some shows that are better to watch totally on your own. Here is a brief list of some of the new series that are best enjoyed solo.
1. Derry Girls
This excellent show follows a group of teenagers in Northern Ireland in the 1990s as they navigate friendship, early relationships, and The Troubles. It’s full of laughs and super quick-witted.
The funny content of this excellent series makes it a great one to watch on your own. If you have a laptop for streaming that you can easily rewind to hear the joke you just missed because you were laughing too hard.
2. After Life
Those familiar with Ricky Gervais may start watching his latest series After Life expecting another cringy comedy set in the workplace. They would be very wrong. This beautiful but heart-wrenching story follows a man who has recently lost his wife to cancer and is trying to find reasons to keep living.
Unless you are very familiar with the person you want to watch this with, it is probably best to binge it alone. That way, you’ll get all of your crying out in one go.
3. Anatomy of a Scandal
This gripping new drama series set in London follows the wife of an MP as her husband is accused of assault by one of his staff. The series spends a long time exploring the fine line between consent and non-consent and puts into question the amount of power a woman has to say no.
Although there is plenty to discuss if you do watch this with friends (the odd moments of surrealism, for example, or the beautiful décor of the homes of the characters), the subject matter is so controversial that you might be better off watching it alone.
4. Squid Game
Squid Game was a sensation in 2021, and rightly so. With lockdowns continuing around the world, we were all drawn to the show that pitted classes against each other. If you somehow missed out on watching it last year, it’s the perfect show to watch on your own. That way, you don’t have to be guided by someone else’s tolerance for tension. If you can handle it, you can keep watching, and if you can’t, you can take a break.