Paul McInnes : Every Christmas I treat myself to a viewing of the BBC’s acclaimed 1984 children’s series “The Box of Delights.” One of the best children’s shows of all time, it stars Devin Stanfield as schoolboy Kay Harker and legendary British actor Patrick Troughton as Cole Hawlings — a mysterious vagrant who draws Harker into a magical world of villains, evil wolves and fantasy. It’s still as thrilling to watch today and has one of the most memorable musical scores in television history.
Caroline Perrine: I didn’t expect to like “The End of the Fucking World” on Netflix. The show begins with the introductions of two teenagers: James, who believes he’s a psychopath; and Alyssa, who is generally rebellious but additionally becomes James’ target for his first murder. Both characters are easily dismissable and utterly unlikeable, yet by the end of this short series, you’ll find yourself deeply loving both of them. The show starts slow, but don’t let that turn you off — plod on and you’ll reach a point in which you can no longer turn away.
Julia Mascetti: On recommendation of a classmate, I started watching “Aggretsuko” as an anime that was easy to understand without subtitles. Retsuko is an adorable red panda-cum-25-year-old OL grappling with tedium, sexism and disrespect at work. By night she goes to a solo karaoke booth and screams out her frustrations to death metal. With an array of suited animals as cast, think “The Office” meets “Animal Farm” (Retsuko’s chauvinistic boss Ton is an actual pig) wrapped in cutesy packaging. Not only is “Aggretsuko” hilarious, it cleverly pokes fun at Japanese working culture and explores very real issues facing twenty-something women in the workplace. Ironic that “Aggretsuko” is a creation of Sanrio, creators of Hello Kitty and titan of kawaii capitalism. Soon enough viewers will tire of this tendency of Japanese corporations to create media that criticises the systems they perpetuate, but for now I’m happy to laugh and scream with Retsuko.
Angeli Rambukpota: As a 90s kid who grew up on Disney Channel classics such as “That’s So Raven” and “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody,” you could imagine my excitement when Netflix dropped the first season of “The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” back in October. Based on the comics of the same name, the series follows Sabrina Spellman, a half-witch, half-mortal teenage girl who at the age of 16 must decide between the mortal world or pledging allegiance to the Devil. Yes, the Devil. The witches in this show are literal Satanists.
While not quite the same as the cheery, coming-of-age Disney series “Sabrina the Teenage Witch,” this grim re-telling of the 90s hit show is equal parts sinister, campy, glam and downright bone-chilling. Plus, the show does a marvellous job of casting actors who actually look and act like real high schoolers.
Catch the “The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” Christmas special on December 14.