November 16, 2020

What I've Watched | Cobra Kai, Emily in Paris, Dash & Lily

Available on Netflix and YouTube Premium
Cobra Kai

When I first started watching Cobra Kai on Netflix, I didn't realize it had already been out for years on YouTube Red so I didn't know anything about it aside from the core premise. It takes place 34 years (!!) after the first Karate Kid movie and sets up Johnny Lawrence to be the antihero and underdog of the series. We see his interpretation of those past events and how he's spiraled since. He's now in his 50s, works as a part-time handyman, divorced but still pining after his high school girlfriend, and estranged from his son Robby. On the flip side, Daniel LaRusso is the owner a successful car dealership and is happily married with two kids, Samantha and Anthony. His struggles are less apparent but it's clear he misses Mr. Miyagi deeply and that loss does affect him. When Johnny loses his part-time job, he decides to re-open Cobra Kai and enrolls his teenage neighbor Miguel to be his first student. This is the catalyst for the rivalry that will permeate the series. There's the obvious one between Johnny vs. Daniel but on a deeper, philosophical level there's also one between Cobra Kai and Miyagi-Do and how they teach their students. And then how those different students take those learnings to the real world. I had expected the series to be more comedic and slap-stick and don't get me wrong, it does have those moments (and I loved all the callbacks to original) but there's a lot of surprisingly moving scenes that delve into deeper issues. It actually got very serious at times and I was shocked by how invested I was in the series. I highly recommend it! But for the record, I am Team Miyagi-Do and Daniel LaRusso (but I do like Johnny too, for the most part).



Available on Netflix 
Emily in Paris

Emily in Paris is the most cringeworthy show I've watched this year (possibly ever) but I still watched the whole thing anyway because the one thing it got right was having Paris as the backdrop. The entire time I watched, I just felt nostalgic for my trip last year and got me thinking about how I'd like to go again. They really did choose beautiful locations to shoot at. But aside from that and the casting of Lily Collins, who is very charming in general, they got a whole lot wrong. Basically, Emily is an American who is given a last-minute opportunity to move to Paris to provide an American point of view to a French marketing firm. She doesn't speak the language but it also seemed like she didn't do any research before the trip. She came across so garish and almost ignorant. She didn't seem like a person who had it together at all so the fact she became an "influencer" after posting a couple mediocre photos with two word captions is totally ridiculous. In addition to that, the whole show depended on stereotypes which I found offensive. Particularly the way they played into the French ones and emphasized how they're so mean and exclusive. I've been to Paris twice and people have always been very nice to me. I just felt like they got the French, the romances, the dialogue, and everything so completely wrong to the point where I'd put half the episode on mute each time. I literally was just there for the view of Paris. And if I watch season 2, it will just be to see this beautiful city I miss dearly and no other reason why. 



Available on Netflix
Dash & Lily

This just came out on Netflix and since I had last Wednesday off, I decided to spent the latter half of my afternoon binge-watching this show and I can't say enough good things about it! It's based on the YA book, Dash & Lily's Book of Dares, which I read years ago and enjoyed. But the show? It's a million times better. If you love the holidays and want something that will make you feel good and smile, this is the show to watch. It's only 8 episodes long and each is under 30 mins so it's perfect to watch in one go. Lily has left a notebook at The Strand with a message and a dare for anyone who finds the notebook. Dash finds it and isn't exactly one to back down from a challenge and so begins a back and forth between the two as they communicate to each other via the notebook rather that to meet in person (but that does happen eventually). In a world of social media and texting, it was refreshing to watch these two teenagers open up and get to know one another through letters and by challenging each other to step outside their comfort zone. The whole show was just heartwarming and fun and made me miss New York so much. 


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