Review: TV show hot takes


Jon Anders Wiken

Source: Jon Anders Wiken

Briana Melguizo-Szarf, iNews class reporter

It’s a rainy day, all your friends are busy and you don’t feel like going outside. You open up your computer or turn on the TV and look for a new TV show or fun movie. You give up after about 10 minutes of searching, and conclude that there’s nothing interesting to watch.

Don’t stress yet! This article has got you covered.

I did all the watching and reviewing for you. After watching the first few episodes of TV shows loved in the iSchool student community, I’ve come up with a collection of reviews perfect for when you have nothing to watch.

So, go ahead, take out a pen and some paper and take some notes!

Gilmore Girls and Space Force

Castle Bloodgood, a freshman at the iSchool, shared that her favorite shows are Gilmore Girls and Space Force. 

Before I went out and watched the first couple episodes of Gilmore Girls I heard from Castle about her favorite parts of the show. Castle said she likes Gilmore Girls because, “It’s timeless, the characters have good outfits and the love interests are cute!”

So, I went home and watched the first 4 episodes because they weren’t too long. Each episode durated around 45 minutes and according to Chicago Tribune, Gilmore Girls has 7 seasons and 153 episodes, so if you’re planning on watching through the whole thing, you’re in for the long haul.  

From the short amount of the series I was able to watch, I can conclude that the show has quite the cozy feel, and it’s perfect to watch with a (Lorelai Gilmore approved) cup of coffee during the colder seasons. 

When talking about the other shows on her must watch list, Castle explains that she also loves Space Force. She enjoys the show mostly because of Steve Carrell, who plays the main character in the show, Gen. Mark Naird. She explains “He is actually a god, the show is funny overall and there are good topical political references. For example, parodies of Donald Trump and AOC.”

I put these claims to the test and started watching. I had less time on my hands the night I watched this so I only got to the first episode. Space force episodes range from 27-36 minutes and the series has 1 season and 10 episodes. After finishing episode one, “The Launch”, my hot take is that while it made me laugh a couple times, it was not as funny as Castle made it seem. However, the casting was amazing. From Steve Carrell to John Malkovich and Lisa Kudrow, the actors in Space Force did not disappoint. 

So, if these peak your interest, you can find both Space Force and Gilmore Girls on Netflix. But be prepared to binge!


Spencer, a freshman at the iSchool, is a big fan of the Netflix drama series; Shameless. Before starting the show, just know that, once again, you’re in for the long haul. The 11 season show requires a lot of time and dedication to finish. Spencer shares that he likes the show because there’s “a lot of interesting, in depth concepts” and though “some of the characters are ***holes he likes most of them.”

After going home and watching the first 3 episodes, I agree with Spencer on this one. Some of the characters are funny and interesting but others are a little…questionable. 

Personally, this show didn’t get me hooked right away but I have a lot of friends that watch it/ have watched it and really enjoyed it. If you’re willing to have some patience with it I think the plot will unravel and the character development is worthwhile, at least from what Spencer and my other friends have told me.

Breaking Bad 

Kai Stone, sophomore here at the iSchool, shares that “Breaking Bad is [his] favorite show because it’s very intriguing and there are lots of plot-twists and it grabs the audience’s attention.” The 5 season show is available to watch on Netflix as well as Apple TV and Amazon prime. The first episode was released in 2008 and the last one was released in 2013. There are 62 episodes and each one lasts around 47 minutes. According to Show Nerds, it would take you around 61 hours to watch the series with no breaks.

The first episode of this crime-drama series was a whirlwind. There was so much going on at the beginning of the episode but as you began to understand what the series was about, things began to make more sense. Each character was introduced in a manner that perfectly matched their personality, which made the episode all the more enjoyable. To top things off, the filming was incredible. 

From all the shows that have been reviewed so far, I would consider Breaking Bad my top pick.

Gossip Girl

Gossip Girl, a Netflix classic. For Elyse Venturim, freshman at the iSchool, it also happens to be her favorite TV show. For Elyse, Gossip Girl is all about the humor and the “interesting plot” because “something bad always happens”, keeping the viewer entertained. She also shared that she liked how the series “show[ed] a lot about rich people.” 

Gossip girl consists of 121 episodes which range from 39 to 44 minutes and there are 6 seasons. This series stars Blake Lively, Leighton Meester, and Penn Badgley, just to name a few. 

As a person who has watched and finished Gossip Girl, I think it is a solid show but I wouldn’t say it’s in my top three. I have to disagree with Elyse on the humor part but I 100% agree on all the plot twists. Gossip Girl kept me hooked all 6 seasons and never got boring.

Peaky Blinders and The Last Dance

Starting off with Peaky Blinders, one of Domi Fabbri’s, junior at the iSchool, favorite TV shows. He explains he loves it because it’s “incredibly filmed and written”. However, proceed with caution because according to Domi, throughout the “first six episodes you will be asking yourself ‘what is going on?’” but “by the end of the first season, the series just keeps getting better.” 

There are only 30 episodes in total and they all last about an hour. This makes it the perfect show for people who don’t like to get too committed to TV shows. The 5 season series would take you about 23 hours to watch from the first episode to the thirtieth. 

Reporting live while watching Peaky Blinders and I am indeed very confused. I’m only 5 minutes in but I have no clue what’s going on. I am very impressed by the filming. So far, the show takes place in 1919 and the shots really capture that. Both the cinematography and the music is really what makes the series come to life.

Now a show that is quite the opposite of Peaky Blinders, The Last Dance.

The Last Dance is a documentary TV series about the “rise of superstar Michael Jordan and the 1990s Chicago Bulls” , says Netflix. The show has 1 season and 10 episodes total. The show was released April 19th of 2020.  

After finishing the first episode, these are my initial thoughts. As a person who isn’t very invested in basketball, what I watched from the series was surprisingly entertaining. The story-telling was very well directed and the music fit perfectly with the scenes. I really enjoyed watching and listening to the interviews with the Bulls players from both the 90s and the ones from present day.

Next time you turn on your TV or open your computer, staring blank-faced at Netflix and stumped on what to watch, take some advice from these reviews.