TV & CULTURE

My Lockdown Viewing Diary – What I’ve Watched During These Incredibly Long Months

August 10, 2020

Keely Tzoukos

Here we are again. Lockdown 2.0, as many are calling it.

For me, life in lockdown is replete with various mundanities: cooking (and inevitably re-cooking — a phenomenon that occurs when I cataclysmically screw up a dish and have to start all over again**), magazine puzzles (I’ve got my eye on a few of the prizes, so please join me in praying to the That’s Life gods!), and watching LOTS of TV.

I’ve blazed through a number of TV shows during my time in lockdown, and what good would all this binge-watching be, if I couldn’t share it with all of you? For that reason, I’ve cobbled together my viewing diary, an eclectic mix of programs that pinpoint the many vicissitudes of housebound life. Hopefully it inspires you with ways to get through another five weeks of lockdown!

1st April14th April – Bargain Hunt
BBC One - Bargain Hunt, Behind the scenes of Bargain Hunt series ...

In case my love of magazine puzzles didn’t have you convinced that I’m an 85-year-old woman stuck inside the body of a millennial; this surely will. Bargain Hunt is a British series that combines antiquing and high-stakes competition. Sure, the target demographic might be those aged 60+ (something that is abundantly clear from the preponderance of life insurance ads that are peppered throughout the program), but it’s a great deal of fun! It also made me feel more connected to my grandparents, as we would often text each other to discuss the results (my nan had very strong opinions).

20th April – 1st May – The Goldbergs

At the beginning of lockdown, I purchased the boxset of The Goldbergs. I remain convinced that was — and forever will be — the greatest investment of my life. The semi-autobiographical sitcom is set during the ’80s and follows protagonist Adam F. Goldberg and his crazy-yet-adorable family. The highlight of the series is Wendi McLendon-Covey (of Bridesmaids fame), who delivers a side-splittingly hilarious performance as Beverly, Adam’s overbearing (s)mother — a character that hits extremely close to home (love you, Mum!).

10th May – 24th May – The Big Bang Theory
The Big Bang Theory finale leaves two big questions unanswered

I want to make this clear: I think The Big Bang Theory is majorly overrated. I don’t find it that funny, the main characters aren’t that likeable, and the early seasons are overwhelmingly sexist. Despite this, the show provided great background noise for when I was completing my puzzles! I didn’t pay too much attention to the dialogue; instead, I immersed myself in the sound of the audience’s laughter, recalling a time when I, too, was in a roomful of people. 2019, please come back!

25th May – 1st June – Jeopardy
Jeopardy Trivia - 22 Jeopardy facts you probably don't know

After finishing my crosswords and sudokus, I turned to Jeopardy. I only answered a few questions correctly, one of which, serendipitously, was about The Goldbergs. Yet the thrill of knowledge-based competition, combined with the familiar format, made the show both exciting and sentimental — similar to watching old home movies.

15th June – 6th July – Keeping Up With the Kardashians

Clearly, as my previous blog posts have shown, I don’t associate with highbrow culture — in fact, I actively avoid it. Fittingly, the next staple in my lockdown TV diet was KUWTK. I began watching the series after bowing to pressure from my mum, but after viewing a couple of episodes, I was fascinated by it.

While it’s classified as a reality show, I think it’s more supernatural in nature: the family themselves are ostensibly otherworldly beings, blanketed by a degree of wealth, glamour and celebrity status that is alien to us mere mortals. The extreme wealth was (and always will be) irritating to behold, especially given current circumstances, but when other elements of the series shone through — the raw emotion, volcanically-hot drama and subversive critiques of celebrity culture — I started to gain a new perspective on the Kardashian-Jenner clan. That being said, I probably won’t revisit the series anytime soon.

13th July – 30th July – Gilmore Girls

In 2013, my mum and I embarked on an eight-week-long journey through the whip-smart, angsty and emotionally exhausting lives of the Gilmore girls. Seven years later, I decided to begin the series again. For me, watching the show (sans the excruciatingly dull revival episodes) was like eating apple pie — it provided a level of comfort and warmth that I desperately needed in these uncertain times.

5th August – now – Miranda
BBC One - Miranda, Series 1, Teacher

I’ve just started watching this series and… well… it’s absolutely bonkers. Miranda Hart plays the titular character, a bumbling and awkward thirtysomething who spends her nights holed up in her apartment with her “fruit friends” (a collection of oranges, bananas and apples, each adorned with googly eyes and facial hair made from pipe cleaners). It’s wacky but marvellous.

My list going forward: Stranger Things (I just got a new TV, so I’m using that as an excuse to re-watch Stranger Things for the umpteenth time), New Girl (I’ve heard and read good things about the series), The Block (I plan to only watch the final episode of each season). Gosh, I have a lot of time on my hands…

**Here’s a picture of the gargantuan scones I baked. They were simultaneously crumbly and doughy, and tasted suuuuuuuuuuuper floury.