Coronavirus in UAE: What to watch on Netflix, Prime while you are at home
What are you going to watch? Get the most out of being at home with these top streaming series.
By David Light
Published: Wed 18 Mar 2020, 5:13 PM
Last updated: Sat 21 Mar 2020, 12:09 PM
THE USUAL SPORTS leagues have been cancelled, the cinema and parks are shut and you're being encouraged to stay home. How are you going to fill the hours? Easily, is our thinking. Thankfully it is no longer 1840 and with the wizardry that is indoor lighting and WiFi, you are able to binge entertainment on a variety of platforms, halting only to sleep and push 'order now' on your food delivery app. What a time to be alive. In an effort to make this process even easier, we have scoured the main streaming services to highlight the best current series you are not going to want to miss during your period of self-isolation.
From the biggest and most popular streaming company we have to underline new/returning shows of which you have probably already read, but we feel are so good they need another push. Considering the crazy amount of choice on this platform, honing down three shows was a task, though we stand by these absolute gems for a touch of historic value, escapism and downright silliness in that order.
Narcos Mexico Season 2
We were sceptical when a spin-off from the lauded original Narcos was touted, although the acting dexterity and quality of performance displayed by lead Diego Luna from minute one of the Mexican version immediately set our minds at ease. Season 2 further delves into the narcotics boss' rise to the upper echelons of global politics while also bringing supporting stories to the fore including the brilliant side business plot helmed by actors Teresa Ruiz and Mayra Hermosillo.
Elite Season 3
Okay, this features high schoolers (although most of the actors are in their mid to late twenties) and it's completely in Spanish what with it being set in Madrid and all. It's raunchy, it's erratic and possesses high doses of immaturity, however for some reason Elite is really enjoyable. In what must be the unluckiest educational institution in the world, the series once again begins with a murder. The class of usual suspects (who never appear to graduate) are thrown into the spotlight as the story works back to find out who committed the crime. Go for the story, stay for the fantasy.
Love Is Blind
Rivalling Elite for the 'most ludicrous' crown and just about edging it, Love Is Blind is the reality dating show we never knew we wanted (and probably shouldn't). A truckload of Atlanta-based singles are bussed into two wings of a house, divided by gender. The men and women then meet in central pods for dates where they can talk but not see each other. At the end of 10 days, if they so desire, they are encouraged to get engaged. Out of the group, six pairs dove headfirst into the matrimonial challenge and we follow them all the way to their actual wedding day a mere month from leaving the pods...Can anyone say 'fireworks'?
We're newcomers to this provider but are impressed with the up-to-date, straight out of America shows with which they pepper their menu. It also hosts the entire Game Of Thrones back catalogue, which we still haven't touched, but it's only a matter of time. These are the three we are currently taking in.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine Season 7
An enduring favourite since it launched in 2013, this great ensemble sitcom provides characters with who you simply want to be in the company. The scenarios are becoming increasingly banal, yet you won't really care as each week Jake (Andy Samberg), Amy (Melissa Fumero), Terry (Terry Crews) and Rosa (Stephanie Beatriz) come together to make you laugh.
Curb Your Enthusiasm Season 10
Our Curb journey only began a few months ago when Wavo dropped into our lives. Since then 20 years of Larry David antics have been Hoovered up in a matter of weeks. Compressing two decades of shows into a short space of time allows us to confidently state the output's quality remains consistently high and amusing and each episode you notch up will definitely induce a rising number of poor impersonations around the dinner table. Pretty, pretty, good.
Come Dine With Me
If you want an answer as to why British people feel they are unique compared to the rest of the world, every bizarre insight into the way their minds work you have ever desired is on show in this stalwart of a programme. Take four or five oddballs from the 'burbs, who believe themselves to be gourmet chefs, and get them to cook for each other in their often modest homes over the course of a week. Throw a sarcastic narrator into the mix and, voila: peak UK weirdness. Delicious. Give this programme a Nobel Prize.
On Starzplay you can find more Arabic content and we love a locally-produced series. They're also quite keen on historically set stories, which ensures we return for more.
A six-part mini-series, which is already garnering international acclaim, in BC we are launched into the chaos of American-occupied Baghdad in 2003 and follow Iraqi ex-policeman Muhsin al-Khafaji (Waleed Zuaiter) who is battling to keep himself and his sick daughter, Mrouj (July Namir), safe. When he learns his estranged elder daughter Sawsan (Leem Lubany) is missing, Khafaji is forced into a desperate search to find her. He soon finds himself up against her enigmatic university tutor, Professor Zubeida Rashid (Clara Khoury) and discovers Sawsan and her two close friends Sanaa (Nora El Koussour) and Zahra (Maisa Abd Elhadi) have been leading a hidden life that's led them into great danger. Gripping.
Vikings Season 6
This is the final season of the surprise History Channel hit which has gone onto big things on Starzplay. The 20-episode last series is being aired in two parts, beginning with a two-hour premiere, and followed by eight episodes. The remaining 10 episodes will be available soon. This farewell picks up after "the battle between brothers" which left Bjorn victorious and a hero to the people who had been under the tyrannical rule of Ivar for so long. Meanwhile, Ivar, searching for a new path to separate him from his past, is seen traveling along The Silk Road eventually leading him to Russia. There, he meets his match in Prince Oleg (Danila Kozlovsky), a ruthless and unpredictable Russian ruler, who shocks even Ivar with his merciless actions.
The Spanish Princess
The are numerous royal epics with which to settle down, though none so historically rich as The Spanish Princess. Charting Catherine Of Aragon's journey to England to marry the future king, to whom she has been betrothed since childhood, the divisive figure attempts to fit into a foreign court and carve out a life for herself with next to no companions. This headstrong lead may just prosper.
AMAZON PRIME VIDEO
For the low monthly fee (bundled into your Prime membership), we can't think of a streaming portal which is better value for money, especially if Bollywood movies are your bag. The original series are also well-made and these are our picks.
Star Trek: Picard
We're unapologetic Trekkies and we don't care who knows it. How fanatic, you may ask? Well, does the fact we not only endured the entire run of Enterprise the first time it aired on terrestrial TV in the early noughties but were so glutton for punishment we went through it all again only last year answer your query? Thankfully Amazon's first foray into the Trek universe has been an unprecedented success. Bringing back Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) 26 years after Star Trek The Next Generation left our television screens has been a masterstroke. Picard and the eponymous series are darker, less idealistic and perhaps jaded, but still stand up for those in need.
There was a surprising mixed reception for this Al Pacino vehicle, though when you're dealing with a topic as serious as the aftermath of The Holocaust, you're bound to attract differences of opinion. On the whole we enjoyed this revenge-fantasy fuelled roller coaster ride comprising Nazi hunters tracking down escaped war criminals now living in '70s America. What it lacks in subtlety it makes up for with performances and an all-out condemnation of fascism and the evil it breeds.
James May: Our Man In Japan
It's a well-worn trope, but that's only because it is consistently successful. Take a bumbling English middle-aged presenter - in this case former Top Gear and current Grand Tour presenter, James May - put him in an unfamiliar, exotic nation and watch him explore in a constant atmosphere of misapprehension and wonder. It's brilliant. To his credit, May throws himself into every task with gusto and unearths a few off-the-beaten-track cultural gems, which have become increasingly difficult to find given the proliferation of social media travel shows/ accounts.
Come Dine With Me on Wavo
The Spanish Princess on Starzplay