9 Shows To Binge-Watch On Long Weekends

Long weekends are made for short trips to the beach or exploring the city. But sometimes you just want to lounge around the house and watch TV. Here are 5 TV shows you can watch in less than 72 hours.

Binge Long Weekends Concluded Shows -1

true detective

(noir) TRAILER HERE

Number of Episodes: 8 (One Season) [I know it’s still on-going but each season has a different story, time period, and characters]

Total Runtime: 7hrs 20mins (55 mins each episode)

For Fans of: Detective stories, Occult and Philosophy

When To Watch This: When you feel you just came from a routine week and you’re looking for something different.

Why You Should Watch This:

  • Premier acting from Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson
  • Had one of the most memorable characters in TV series for a while now
  • Tons and tons of parody videos like this, this, this and this
  • Alexa Daddario

legit

(dark comedy) TRAILER HERE

Number of Episodes: 26 (Two Seasons)

Total Runtime: 9hrs 30mins (22 mins each episode)

For Fans of: It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, Louie

When To Watch This: When you just came from a draining four-day work week

Why You Should Watch This:

  • It’s funny (in an offensive kind of way)
  • Poignant–they just don’t poke fun at PWDs, alcoholism and divorce

yami shibai

(horror)

Number of Episodes: 26 (Two seasons)

Total Runtime: 1hrs 44mins (4 mins each episode)

For Fans of: The Ring, Japanese Ghost Stories, Occult

When To Watch This: Deep into an overnight with your friends

Why You Should Watch This:

  • Storybook animation
  • Each episode was a stand-alone episode so you’ll get the jumps and scares immediately
  • And because of these:

king of the nerds (US)

(reality contest) TRAILER HERE

Number of Episodes: 24 (Three seasons) [Each season had a different set of contestants]

Total Runtime: 18hrs (45 mins each episode)

For Fans of: Survivor, Big Bang Theory and every possible nerd franchise

When To Watch This: While you’re eating, surfing the internet, hanging out with friends

Why You Should Watch This:

  • A very light TV show to watch
  • Varied contestants: gamers, astrophysicists, mathematicians, comic book nerds, trivia champions
  • Contests were based on your favorite nerd franchises: Kaiju battle, Millenium Falcon vs. The Enterprise debate, Harry Potter broom flying, zombie busting
  • And NERDVANA:
HOLY SH*T

FIREFLY (2002)

(Sci-fi/western) WATCH FAN-MADE TRAILER HERE

Number of Episodes: 14 (One Season)

Total Runtime: 10hrs 15mins (44 mins each episode)

For Fans of: Cowboy Bebop, Star Wars

When To Watch This: When you were supposed to have a beach daytrip but your friends flaked out

Why You Should Watch This:

  • Written and directed by Joss Whedon (the guy who directed the Avengers films)
  • Featured Richard Castle from Castle and Jessica Pearson of Suits
  • A cool future where people speak English AND curse in Mandarin

Binge Long Weekends Continuing Shows

 you’re the worst

(comedy) TRAILER HERE

Number of Episodes: 10 (One Season)

Total Runtime: 3hrs 40mins (22 mins each episode)

For Fans of: Knocked Up

When To Watch This: When you just came from a break-up and you don’t want to see all the lovey-dovey beats

Why You Should Watch This:

  • Chemistry between the two leads, Chris Geere and Aya Cash anchors the whole show together
  • Has a grounded view of dating
  • Features a parody character of Odd Future’s Tyler, The Creator

les revenants

(DRAMA) TRAILER HERE

Number of Episodes: 8 (One season)

Total Runtime: 7hrs 44mins (50-58 mins each episode)

For Fans of: The Walking Dead, Twin Peaks

When To Watch This: When you want to have a different take on “the dead are alive again!” premise

Why You Should Watch This:

  • Soundtrack by post-rock band Mogwai adds to the atmosphere of mystery
  • Has a US adaptation (The Returned)

the knick

(period medical drama) TRAILER HERE

Number of Episodes: 10 (One Season)

Total Runtime: 9hrs 40mins (58 mins each episode)

For Fans of: ER, House, blood, lots of blood

When To Watch This: After you had your lunch

Why You Should Watch This:

  • A fictionalized history of modern medicine like suction tubes, x-rays
  • It’s more than just the operating table: delves into race, drug abuse, reproductive and mental health issues
  • Features a tortured genius doctor
  • It’s really bloody

daredevil

(action) TRAILER HERE

Number of Episodes: 13 (One Season)

Total Runtime: 12hrs 47mins (48-59 mins each episode)

For Fans of: Arrow, Flash, Gotham

When To Watch This: When you want a Marvel TV show done right (sorry Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)

Why You Should Watch This:

  • Fleshed out story for each character, even the main villain
  • Fight scenes are brutal
  • Marvel is making an Avengers type of show called “The Defenders” composed of Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist and Luke Cage

HAPPY LONG WEEKEND!

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9 Shows To Binge-Watch On Long Weekends

PBB 737 Big Winner Rankings (as of July 4)

Ah yes…the newest season of Big Brother is  two weeks in. So much has already happened. A housemate just got evicted…loveteam split for the time being…talks about virginity…and execs summoned by the MTRCB. PBB is already firing on all cylinders!

We don’t know until when this season’s going to run (minimum of 7 weeks judging by what they announced), but I feel watching the teen housemates for 14 days is already sufficient basis to start running the PBB 737 Big Winner Rankings . So from now on, every two weeks I’ll be sharing my picks on who’re leading and lagging.

So where do I base the rankings?

  1. I used the five traits I’ve pointed out in my previous piece on determining a Big Winner
  2. Next, I evaluated each housemate on each of the five traits, assessing which traits are considered their strengths or points for improvement
    1. Evaluation is heavily-based on the PBB 737 Primetime show and some reactions on Twitter
  3. Rankings can still change week to week. So don’t fret if your favorite housemate is ranked low or gloat if ranked high.

PBB 737 Power Rankings

THE UPPER TIER (RANK 1 – 4)

These housemates had much exposure during the first two weeks, probably because they were quite active in the house. That’s why we have a better grasp of who they are and their odds in becoming the Big Winner.

  • Ryan, currently sits at the top spot. In his first two weeks, he has solidified his position as everyone’s friend. He’s close with the girls and well-comfortable with the boys. You’d often see him having heart-to-heart talks with housemates. He has also shown his talents in dancing and making people laugh. And most importantly, he has shared his backstory. We know that he’s still struggling to receive full acceptance from his mom. There’s nothing left that he can improve on. Having a loveteam inside the house will greatly help.
  • Ylona greatly reminds me of Lea Salonga. Talented, loud and expressive. Her talent is her biggest differentiator from the others. We know she can have a singing career in the future after demonstrating her prowess in the first weekly task. She has also racked up quite a following on Twitter because of her charming looks. Moreover, she’s made an effort in interacting with her fellow housemates. Language barrier be damned. And right now she’s trying her best to bring back Bailey and Barbie together. Knowing more about her story can help her move up to the number one spot.
  • Kenzo is at third because he has stepped up to the role of being the Kuya inside the house (along with Kyle). You’d often see him leading or actively participating in tasks and he tries to give advice Bailey and the other younger housemates. He’s good-looking enough to merit a guesting in Luv U. Spending time on his backstory might help viewers understand why he has such a tight bond with Bailey and the other boys.
  • For the last two weeks, Bailey has been the sun that PBB 737 revolves around. One way or another, he gets himself involved in all the big stuff so far. Bailey’s the first one to get a proper punishment from a violation, the first to be involved in multiple loveteams (BarLey, KenLey, RyLey and BaiLona), and one of the first to be nominated for eviction. Honestly, I feel Bailey could have placed higher if he stayed away from controversy. He has the looks, the talent and quite a following before entering the house. He’s sure to become a good ABS-CBN talent once he leaves the house, like Sam Milby. I fear he’s going to be a mainstay on the chopping block if he doesn’t improve on his relationships with his other housemates, especially after his big faux pas involving Barbie.

THE MIDDLE TIER (3-WAY TIE AT rank 5)

These housemates have proven to be integral members of the house but may still need more exposure for us to further examine their full character.

  • Kamille is dependable when it comes to housework but needs to be a more active participant in tasks. She used to be part of the G-Force dancers but didn’t even share her dancing skills in their first weekly task. And she can be slightly irritable with the smallest things like her small outburst with Ailah.
  • Kyle has accepted his position as one of the Kuyas in the house…just like Kenzo. He’s dependable in group tasks…just like Kenzo. In terms of talent? we’re unsure, but for now definitely not like Kenzo. In other words, Kyle occupies the same position as Kenzo. He needs to differentiate himself from the Astig Athlete if he wants to move up in rank. Maybe showing us more of his backstory can help?
  • Franco, with his many talents, is dependable in house chores and in weekly tasks. However, he’s passive when it comes to interacting with the other housemates. You don’t see him hugging it out with the boys nor see him hanging out with the girls. He tried to open up about having a crush on Ylona but Ylona put him down immediately. He needs to get close to the other housemates before they run out of people to nominate.

THE LOWER TIER (RANK 6 – 8)

These housemates are on the bottom rung because it seems they’ve remained lacked exposure. We know almost nothing about them aside from their assigned PBB moniker. We know Ailah’s a faithful daughter, but she still needs to work on her other relationships in the house. We know Zonia’s a blossoming beauty, but we hardly heard her speak! Big Brother had to appoint her as the weekly task leader to be a more active player in the game. We know Jimboy’s a rapper, but outside of that what else do we know about him? Good thing, there’s still 5 more weeks left. That’s ample time for them to share their stories.

SOME notES FROM the last two weeks

  • Seven out of the 11 housemates come from Luzon (four from Metro Manila). Two housemates from Visayas, and two international housemates. That’s just not a good representation at all.
  • I don’t know what a Kid Sunshine is, nor a Totoy Smiley
  • Is Zonia trying to do a Vickie Rushton? Lay low for the first weeks and wait for half of the housemates to get evicted before opening up?
  • On KenLey: I don’t get why people are isolating Kenzo and Bailey when you clearly see the boys always hugging out. Especially when they’re all hanging out at the boy’s bedroom. I agree with Funky Resident Psychologist Doc Randy that it’s just a case of very close bromance. Both Kenzo and Bailey are unico hijos and are more than excited to experience what it’s like to have brothers. It’s also funny how mainstream media is having a hard time dealing with the shipping culture of the internet.

Well that’s it for now. Expect to see an updated Big Winner Rankings after two weeks!

PBB 737 Big Winner Rankings (as of July 4)

QUICK SIP: The 4 Shows You Need To Look Out For This US Summer TV Season

After a lengthy and heavy first post, I want to balance it out with something lighter. After Game of Thrones finished its fifth season with a cliffhanger, you might be wondering what else can fill up that dragon-shaped cavity in your heart. In years past, we had to wait until September, the start of the US Fall season, to get quality shows. Luckily for us in this age, good TV doesn’t run out. I have here a shortlist of shows that you might consider watching in the next few months. All four are new shows that garnered much praise from critics. I’ve also added some references for comparison. Pop Philtre Summer Shows 1

CATASTROPHE

Current Metacritic rating: 83 (based on 16 reviews)

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 100 (based on 15 reviews)

Availability: All six episodes available in Amazon

Synopsis: Catastrophe has a simple plot: an American advertising executive (played by Rob Delaney) hooks up with an Irish school teacher (Sharon Horgan) at a bar during a business trip in London. Much to their shock, Sharon gets pregnant afterwards. They decide to keep the baby and Rob relocates to London where they try to coexist considering how they barely know each other.

Why it’s good: Catastrophe is unapologetic yet charming. It tries to capture the human experience and emotion of two adults bound to a predicament that they did not want. The story’s much like Seth Rogen and Katherine Heigl’s Knocked Up but with more humanity and less manchildren and bong smoking

Fun Fact: Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia of Star Wars fame) plays as Rob’s mom.

UNreal

Current Metacritic rating: 77 (based on 15 reviews)

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 97 (based on 29 reviews)

Availability: Four episodes aired in Lifetime

Synopsis: After a nervous breakdown on set, Rachel “The Dragon” Goldberg (Shiri Appleby) returns as assistant producer to a reality TV dating show called Everlasting (think of it as The Bachelor).

Why it’s good: UnREAL gives some real talk to the whole reality TV business. As one of the producers, Rachel must “produce” the drama in the show by manipulating contestants, by hook or by crook. And it’s amazing how far they go and how often they succeed. And in traditional soap opera fashion, every episode is not without a big confrontation that gets you glued.

Fun Fact: Shiri Appleby was one of the leads of the 90s teen drama show Roswell.

MR. ROBOT

Current Metacritic rating: 78 (based on 22 reviews)

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 96 (based on 25 reviews)

Availability: One episode aired in USA

Synopsis: No this doesn’t have anything to do with Styx. Elliot (Rami Malek) works as a programmer at a cyber-security agency by day, and a vigilante hacker by night. After thwarting a cyber attack to one of his company’s biggest clients, the eponymous Mr. Robot (Christian Slater) invites Elliot to join his group of cyber freedom fighters.

Why it’s good: Mr. Robot benefits much from the character of Elliot and Rami Malek’s performance. Elliot’s an anti-hero. He chooses to distance himself from today’s society, but at the same time, desires to uphold justice in the same society. His idealism and demeanor is reminiscent of Death Note’s Light Yagami. Malek, And boy does Malek able to convey this difference in his performance.

Fun Fact: The USA Network has so much confidence in the series that they’ve renewed it for a second season even before its premiere.

ANOTHER PERIOD

Current Metacritic rating: 68 (based on 12 reviews)

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 69 (based on 16 reviews)

Availability: One episode aired in Comedy Central

Synopsis: As its title implies, Another Period is set in the early 1900s that focuses on the lives of the Bellacourt family, mainly Lillian (Natasha Leggero) and Beatrice (Riki Lindhome) and their servants.

Why it’s good: Simply because Another Period pokes fun at period shows like Downton Abbey. It goes against the strict and formal treatment of period dramas that makes it refreshing. Something you can watch without the worry of using brain cells.

Fun Fact: Christina Hendricks of Mad Men fame plays as a new servant girl with a secret.

Stay tuned for more news and picks on TV shows in the coming months.

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QUICK SIP: The 4 Shows You Need To Look Out For This US Summer TV Season

The 2 Things You Need To Know To Be A PBB Big Winner

Pinoy Big Brother has been a phenomenon like no other in Philippine Pop Culture. Millions have watched and voted week to week, involving themselves in the day to day issues of the housemates. We saw heartfelt confessions,  cat fights ablaze, and love bloom. Not to mention, the occasional lice infestation. But more importantly, it has been a steady producer of ABS-CBN’s bankable talents namely Sam Milby, Kim Chiu, Gerald Anderson and Toni Gonzaga (her first big break after moving from GMA). Every season is met with thousands upon thousands of hopefuls wanting to change their life’s’ fortunes.

Winning PBB means so much more to us. It’s amazing how different Big Brother is perceived here compared to other countries. Other cultures see it as a voyeuristic late-night show, but for us Filipinos, it’s an opportunity of a lifetime. You get your fifteen minutes of fame, live in a decked out house/villa  AND a chance to win a hefty cash prize, a house, a scholarship, a kabuhayan showcase and an ABS-CBN talent contract!

But how does one become a Big Winner? Do you need to outwit, outplay and outlast? Or dream, believe, survive? If the show’s tagline can give us a hint, “Ang Teleserye ng Totoong Buhay”, does it mean that TRUTHFULNESS is the key in becoming a Big Winner? For seasons, PBB housemates have been throwing the N-word, “Nagpapakatotoo”, every chance they could. It is as if they’re telling the audience, “Guys, sinabi ko yung magic word. Pwedeng iboto ninyo na ako?” However, if you’ve noticed the housemates featured in this video, not one of them became a Big Winner. The Big Winner is still determined by the viewers. And without undergoing a philosophical discourse, determining the truth in a reality TV show while you sit on your sofa can be difficult. So what can we do?

We can start by looking at the profiles of all the Big Winners through the show’s eleven-season run. Using the comprehensive data from the wikipedia pages of Pinoy Big Brother (yes wikipedia is not the most reputable of sources but just look at the wealth of data there) and my understanding of percentages, we can somehow profile the Big Winner.

Please note that the results are INCONCLUSIVE. A sample size of 11 can establish patterns but it is NOT ENOUGH TO BE CONCLUSIVE. It’s like how people noticed the White Guy With Guitar trend of American Idol winners.

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It seems that being a young, female from Visayas can probably get you support from the audience. Three Big Winners (33% of all Big Winners) fit all three categories (Nene Tamayo, Kim Chiu and Myrtle Sarrosa) and have received an average of 41.40% of the votes during their respective finales.

What other nuggets can we get from the data?
  • Being young seems to be a key. Among all eleven, Keanna Reeves (36) is the only Big Winner above 25 years old. This is telling information considering that the age range for regular auditions is 18-35 years old.
  • Having a province can be an advantage. Out of all the Big Winners, Daniel Matsunaga (Makati City) is the only Big Winner hailing from NCR. And we all know he’s from Brazil. If you’re an aspiring housemate, use your father or mother’s home province. Regionalism is still significant in the country, use it to your advantage.
  • Out of all eleven seasons, the magic percentage of total votes to be a Big Winner is 33.7%. More than half of the Big Winners received more votes than the aforementioned number (Nene, Keanna, Bea Saw, Ejay Falcon, Slater Young and Myrtle)

Okay, but does that mean the Young Woman from Visayas always get through? Not really. Excluding the Celebrity Housemates, there were 15 other housemates that fit the Young Woman from Visayas profile, and nine of them got cut before reaching the finals.

We also have to look at the qualities of the housemate. Being a fan and relatively frequent viewer of the show, I’ve identified five key characteristics of a Big Winner. I attributed each characteristic to each Big Winner and counted the attributes that fit. Surprisingly, some trends came out. I’ll explain each characteristic afterwards

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Icon made by plainicon from http://www.flaticon.com
Icon made by freepik from http://www.flaticon.com

NAKAKABILIB panoorin

A Big Winner, at his/her most basic, must be able to get the viewer’s attention. They can be good-looking, funny or, like Kim Chiu, can turn into a pretzel. More often than not, these were the housemates that you already took note of starting from day one. Kim, the chinese cutie entered with all smiles. Melai Cantiveros, wide-eyed and amazed with the house. Daniel Matsunaga lying in the middle of the pool doing his best sleeping beauty impression while the sun was up.

These were the housemates with the most celebrity potential. Kim became a primetime telenovela talent. Melai just won Your Face Sounds Familiar. Bea inherited the Best Friend role in Star Cinema movies from Nikki Valdez. James Reid is currently part of popular loveteam with 3 hit movies and 2 albums under his belt.

MAY KONEK SA MANONOOD

More than just getting the viewers’ attention, Big Winners are able to maintain that attention. So much so that they can elicit a response from the viewer (like a tweet or an FB post).  What are these factors then? .

  • MABUTING HOUSEMATE: A Big Winner maintains a harmonious relationship with his/her fellow housemates. They’re considered as friendly authority figures inside the house and/or active participants in tasks. These are housemates that stay away from cat fights. Since they’re in such good terms with their housemates, they are rarely included in the list of nominees.

Being a good housemate touches on the Filipinos’ collectivistic attitude. Our inclination towards harmony and togetherness. We revere people who include the betterment of the many in mind. And we are wary of people who try to disrupt this harmony. Housemates who are perceived as “tamad”, “tahimik”or “nagsisimula ng gulo” are those who get nominated. How about the Big Winner? Big Winners only get nominated at an average of twice per season. Kim Chiu and Ejay Falcon maintained zero nominations during their stints in the house.

  • CAN RELATE ANG BACKSTORY: Looking at comments of people on the internet, they would often say that the Big Winners are those who usually come from low-income families and used their “paawa backstory” to win. If so, why did the likes of James Reid, Slater Young and Myrtle Sarrosa win? They came from well-enough families and yet people voted for them.

This goes back to what I was saying about having a connection with the audience. PBB Celebrity Edition 2 winner, Ruben Gonzaga, was a father who just wanted to provide a better future for his family. Ejay Falcon was a simple teen from the province who wanted to look for his biological parents.Slater lived in the shadows of his father and wanted to strike out on his own. These stories are not unique. These are stories that the viewers themselves may also experience. Hence, viewers root for housemates they can identify with.

  • Mayroong Ka-Love Team: It’s no secret that Filipinos are romantics. Nothing spices up a story any better than finding some form of love inside the house. Kimerald (Kim-Gerald) and Melason (Melai-Jason) are top of mind love teams that involved Big Winners. But what separates a Big Winner love team than Bruce-Wendy love team is that the Big Winner is usually the anchor of the love team. Kim decided between Gerald and Mikee Lee. And for Melason, it can be argued that the only reason her partner, Jason Francisco, was even part of the Big Four was because of his relationship with Melai.

Summarizing the three points, a Big Winner is able to create a bond with the viewer. This explains the “nagpapakatotoo” factor. A viewer feels that a housemate is “nagpapakatotoo” when the viewer finds commonalities with the housemate…the need to experience harmony, the want to be loved and/or the idea of having a story tell…these are the instances when the viewer is able to see the human side of the housemate.

summing it up

So what have I laid down:

  1. Chances seem higher if you’re a YOUNG, WOMAN from VISAYAS
  2. It seems a Big Winner should not just have entertainment value but also able to establish a human connection with the audience. something that can compel viewers to not only watch but also root for him/her.

In other words, a Big Winner is more or less just like Katniss Everdeen. It’s not enough you come from the poorest district, and be nifty with a bow. You also need a Peeta to ship with and a dress that can catch on fire.

POST SCRIPT: BASED ON THE ANALYSIS, WHO THEN IS THE ULTIMATE BIG WINNER?

Among all eleven housemates, Kim Chiu ticks almost all boxes:

  1. Fits the profile of the Young Woman from Visayas
  2. Had the charm and talent
  3. Never a part of the nominees list
  4. Had a strong love team

And this is also quite evident with the career she’s having after exiting the house. Arguably, she’s having the best showbiz career out of all the PBB Big Winners. Think of her as Kelly Clarkson, while Melai and James as David Cook and Kris Allen.

The 2 Things You Need To Know To Be A PBB Big Winner