WRITTEN BY ALLANAH LANGSTAFF
Confession: I’ve been having a summer romance with ITV2’s Love Island. For those on the outside, it may seem like a tawdry reality series banking on backstabbing, sex and hot bods in a state of undress to draw in an audience. However, the series’ enduring popularity has proven that it takes so much more than that to keep viewers switching on six nights a week for eight weeks. My Love Island Addicts WhatsApp group have shared over 1000 messages; I have people I’ve not been in touch with for years in getting in touch just to have someone to talk to about it; I have the app installed on my phone to vote for my favourite couple. The series has explored feminism, body image, masculinity, anxiety and been unapologetic about having a good time.
But now it’s over. So instead of being a total melt and mugging myself off, here are the shows I’ll be watching to fill the void.
Game of Thrones | Sky Atlantic | Mondays | 2am & 9pm
Summer is over. Winter is Coming. We are one week in to what promises to the most epic series to date of the on screen adaption of A Song of Ice and Fire. Thankfully, living in Edinburgh means you don’t have to feel bad about shutting the curtains in July to get the full atmospheric effect of George R R Martin’s world brought to the small screen.
Shark Week | Discovery | Begins Sunday 23rd July
Shark week is probably one of the biggest events of the year in Natural History programming. This year Michael Phelps is racing a Great White Shark on Monday 24th July. Enough said.
According to TV critics this is a series you aren’t supposed to admit liking. Look, I get it, the titular character Sophia, based on Nasty Gal’s Sophia Amoruso, is a total jerk. And it is quite hard to root for a character and their business having read the unflattering depictions of its real life inspiration. That being said, I’m enjoying it as one of those shows you stick on in the background. Britt Robertson gives a great performance, it’s stacked with early 2000s pop culture nostalgia and it’s set in San Francisco which makes me extra forgiving of even more terrible shows and films. See movie The Sweetest Thing.
Top of the Lake | BBC2 | Thursdays | 9pm
For those of you mourning the end of The Handmaid’s Tale this coming Sunday you have a few more weeks of watching Elizabeth Moss on the small screen. The follow up to the 2013 series returns this week with what is being billed as an incredible performance from Nicole Kidman. No subscription required.
Ozark | Netflix
Comparisons are already being drawn to Breaking Bad for it’s ‘family man turns to wrong side of the law’ storyline as Jason Bateman’s financial advisor character turns money launderer for a drug cartel in the back woods of Missouri. I haven’t seen an episode yet but the trailer hooked me in with the moody colour palette and presence of Laura Linney. Another one to watch with the curtains closed.
What else will you be watching?