TV: Netflix picks

By
From the May 10, 2012 edition

Netflix has a wealth of television available through its streaming services. There is so much that at times it can be overwhelming to figure out what you should watch. That’s where my wealth of TV knowledge — and pathetic social life — can help. Here’s a few picks that may or may not be on your radar I wholeheartedly recommend.

“Arrested Development”

Netflix is giving new life to the beloved Fox comedy that aired 2003-2006 with 10 new episodes coming sometime in the near future. It’s the perfect excuse to re-watch the narcissistic mayhem conjured up by Bluths. What?! You haven’t watched “Arrested Development” yet? GO NOW! You can thank me later.

The Joss Whedon Collection

Did you see “The Avengers” last weekend? Considering it grossed over $200 million, most of you reading this are nodding yes. Anyway, if you saw it and thusly enjoyed it, the main reason is writer/director Joss Whedon. The way Whedon blends humor — buoyed by his signature snark — with emotive impact is second to none.

Netflix offers every series for which Whedon served as the main creative force — “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Angel,” “Firefly” (with accompanying feature film “Serenity”), “Dollhouse” and even “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog.” All are worth investing in — yes, even “Dollhouse” — as they offer fun action and whip-smart laughs to go with a heartfelt emotional core.

The Wonder Years

Anyone born during the early 1980s probably remembers watching Kevin (Fred Savage) pine for Winnie (Danica McKellar) during this coming-of-age tale set in the 1960s. And you’d probably like to engage in some nostalgia by re-watching it. Can’t seem to find it on DVD, huh?

Sadly, the awesome music from the series caused licensing issues, so the only place you can watch it is on streaming services (also Amazon Prime). Some of the music — including the theme song, Joe Cocker’s “With a little Help from My Friends” — has been modified, but it’s not particularly distracting.

Bob’s Burgers

Season 2 of this animated comedy is currently airing during Fox’s Sunday animation block, and it has quickly become one of the funniest shows on television. Season 1 is a little uneven with a so-so start, but by the time you get to “Sheesh! Cab, Bob” and “Art Crawl” — featuring some of the finest animal butt paintings ever — you’ll be hooked.