21 TV Shows and Movies That Got Me to 2021


Disclaimer: All of the movies and TV shows on this list were purely derived from my opinion.

TV shows:
“Jane the Virgin”– This has to be my favorite show of all time. It’s based on Spanish telenovelas which are notoriously dramatic, so trust me when I say that the twists of this show are insane. The first season alone boasts a love triangle, a crime lord, and a surprise pregnancy that rocks Jane’s world. Each season ends with a cliffhanger that leaves you wanting more immediately, but the ending of the show is memorable and sweet.
“You”– Some shows stop being good after season 1, but You is not a normal show. At the end of season 1 I couldn’t think of any way how the second season could continue, but I was so wrong. What makes You great is the characters, specifically the main character Joe Goldburg. Let’s get this straight: Joe is a terrible person. Joe is psychologically unhinged. But you love Joe. You root for Joe. What show’s main character is really the antagonist? On top of that, what show can make you root for the bad guy as hard as this one? This show should NOT go unwatched, so if you haven’t already, hop on Netflix and enjoy seasons 1 and 2 while we all wait for season 3.
“Stranger Things”– Ahhhhh Stranger Things. This will always be my favorite comfort show. Whenever I’m bored or I need a pick-me-up, this is my go-to show. Everyone knows about the 80’s awesomeness of this show, but I love the sci-fi aspects of the government conspiracy as well. The first season is definitely better than the 2nd or 3rd, but they’re all worth watching for the characters and storyline.
“New Girl”– This show is nostalgic for me personally because I watched it over a course of 3 years and it reminds me of super happy times. Jessica Day and her loftmates are a constant source of smiles and laughs as they get into the weirdest situations. If you’re a sucker for a love story then the connections between Cece and Schmidt and Jess and Nick are exactly what you need. There are even more loveable characters such as Winston “Winnie” the Bish, but since I highly recommend this show, I’ll let you discover them yourself! In addition, I should clarify that this is kind of a sitcom, but it doesn’t look like one the way it’s filmed.
“Criminal Minds”– I’ve been watching this show with my family for years. Sometimes I’ll find my family watching it and I’ll guess the episode solely based on my knowledge of the show and on Reid’s haircut. This is a must-watch if you love mystery, thrillers, and complex plots. Additionally, the characters are very lovable. There are a whopping 15 seasons total, but I truly believe they’re all great. Although, the later seasons undergo some pretty serious cast changes that I personally think alter the whole dynamic of the show. I think I would’ve enjoyed the new cast members more had the old ones not left, but once I got over it I was able to move on and attempt to finish the rest of the show. I’m on season 14 now.
“The Good Place”– THIS show. This show is definitely not for those who are looking for a dramatic Gossip Girl-esque story. This show is complex and deep and incredibly interesting. It’s about a woman who goes to “The Good Place” (heaven) when she thinks she deserves to go to “The Bad Place” (you get the idea). She then faces a moral decision as to whether or not she should come clean to the head of the neighborhood or forever enjoy the fate someone else was meant to have. Thankfully she has the help of her “soul mate” who is a philosophy expert who specializes in moral and ethical decisions. While this all sounds serious, it’s actually really funny and the characters are guaranteed to make you laugh. And if you love love, there is a super cute love story that doesn’t land too early or too late. I love this show.
“Survivor”– Since this is reality TV, it’s a little different than the other shows on the list. Survivor is a competition show where a group of around 30 people are sent to live in tribes on an island where they will compete in challenges for tribal and individual immunity as well as reward. The goal is to outwit, outplay, and outlast as the contestants try to be the last 2 or 3 standing in order to have a chance at the $1,000,000 prize. This show is incredibly interesting and intense. It began as a social experiment to see how individuals would act to win the million dollars. Maybe they will be sneaky and manipulative like two-time winner Tony Vlachos or maybe they’ll try to win the hearts of the jury by playing an honest and clean game like Yul Kwon. Once you pick your favorites it’s hard to see them lose in challenges or get voted out because you’re so emotionally attached to them. If I had to recommend any season (of which there are 40 and not all are that great) I would recommend the two on Netflix (20 and 28) as well as 13 (Cook Islands), 18 (Tocantins), and 25 (Philippines).
“Glee”– This one is definitely a guilty pleasure. Some seasons are better than others, and sometimes the characters make you super mad, but in the end, you learn to love the characters and their individual stories. If anything, you learn to laugh along with the ridiculous plots and definitely Sue Slyvester.
Any John Mulaney Special– Netflix has three John Mulaney specials and I love all three. I’ll play them in the background while I do work. His humor isn’t really for everyone, but if you want a good laugh I’d definitely recommend checking him out. He’s super funny and rarely vulgar. In other words, he’s kind of a hilarious sweetie pie.
“That 70s Show”– I didn’t finish this show after Topher Grace left, but what I did watch was awesome. This show is hilarious and it’s cool how it’s set in the 70s. Aside from the extremely catchy theme song, there is much to love about the characters and their relationships. I would definitely rewatch this show just for fun!
“The 100”– This is one of those shows that is only good for a season, maybe a season and a half. But the first season alone is why it’s on this list. The first season follows a group of 100 teenagers sent to reinhabit earth after nuclear war destroyed it. This is definitely my favorite post-apocalyptic show, but the second season felt cheesy. Regardless, I loved the characters and the plot of the first season and am seriously inclined to rewatch it as I write this.
“How I Met Your Mother”– I watched this show forever ago, but it still remains special in my heart. Yes, this show spends 7 seasons revealing how Ted met his wife, but those 7 seasons are packed with hilarious comedy following 5 friends. Barney is iconic, as are Marshall and Lily, as is Robin. I would highly recommend this show if you like sitcoms or need a funny show. I’ve never watched “Friends” because I think it’s a little annoying (but I’ve never watched it so don’t yell at me for thinking that) but this is definitely good for someone who likes “Friends” (I just think it’s way better).
“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”– I just started watching this show, so I can’t really give too much information on it, but I promise it’s hilarious and has the best characters. I feel comfortable recommending this show even though I haven’t finished the first season yet because I’ve watched “Bridgerton” and Netflix’s “Hollywood” recently and neither of them measure up to “Brooklynn Nine-Nine.” Both “Bridgerton” and “Hollywood” are wayyyyy too rated R, and while that can be okay in some regards, “Bridgerton” didn’t wow me in any other factor (I found the show annoying and historically inaccurate, but admittedly binge-worthy). “Hollywood” was more touching and meaningful, and I think it had a much better plot, but still not my favorite show ever. It was set in the 1950s so that definitely pulled me in. Actually, I do recommend watching “Hollywood” if you get the chance, so there’s a bonus TV recommendation for you!
“Queer Eye”– This is just a feel-good show. It’s funny, it’s inspiring, and it makes you want to give back to the people in your life. The cast is super funny and admirable, and it’s a good bit of reality TV that’s not akin to the Kardashian reality junk.

Harry Potter– This one’s kind of a no-brainer. These books and movies are superior to any other fictional series I’ve ever read. And even if you don’t have a nostalgic, childhood connection with them, you have to admit that the complexity of Voldemort’s rise and the lore behind the story is incredible–unmatched even. I’d say the first 3 books lean a little more towards kids books and movies (except for Prisoner of Azkaban, that movie will always be the best HP movie and no, I don’t take constructive criticism), but books/movies 4-7 are the most exciting and complex stories (except for Order of the Phoenix, sorry it’s just too long of a read, for little plot development). Long story short, don’t do yourself the disservice of living an entire lifetime without watching all of these movies.
Back to the Future– This is a movie that my dad showed me when I was a kid, and from then on I was hooked. I loved the plot of this movie. In retrospect, it doesn’t make a ton of sense with Doc and Marty being besties but also being at least 40 years apart in age. However, I’m willing to overlook those little details because I enjoy the rest of the movie SO much. The 1955 setting is so fun to watch as Marty desperately attempts to make his parents fall in love (so he can exist in 1985) all while trying to get his mom to stop having a crush on him. Ew. Anyways, this movie is odd and unique, and it’s a great watch. Just don’t watch Back to the Future 2 or 3 because those movies are absolute garbage.
It– As someone who never read the Stephen King novel, this movie was a true thriller the whole time. I had no idea what would happen. All I knew was that I wanted Bill to find his little brother Georgie after he had been abducted by a creepy clown monster. The end is pretty confusing, and I still can’t even tell you what exactly Pennywise is after watching the movie like 4 times. This movie is scary enough to be a horror film but it’s not that bad and it’s super funny. This is a great watch if you’re looking for a one-movie movie night, but there is a sequel. It’s not as good as the original (as most sequels tend to be), and I don’t think I could tell you much that happens in the movie (I literally can’t remember), but if you really like the first then feel free to jump back into the universe created by Stephen King.
Hot Air– So remember how I talked about “Criminal Minds?” Well, this movie has Matthew Gray Gubler in it (who plays Spencer Reid) and I’m only a little ashamed to say that he be really cute in this movie. Aside from that, the plot of this movie is great. A guy who is in lots of debt (if I’m remembering correctly) fakes his own death to escape to another country, but he is given a reason to stick around when he discovers his long lost son that he never met, the child of his old lover. I don’t want to spoil anymore because this movie is truly phenomenal and heart-warming. I definitely recommend this movie if you want a cutesy movie with a love story in it.
About Time– This is one I hesitate to put on this list because it’s a little rated R, and by that I mean it is actually rated R. I didn’t remember it being so vulgar until I sat down to show it to my mom and got super embarrassed. Regardless, if you can stomach swear words (more specifically British swear words) then I think you’d like this movie. It has the sweetest love story, and it stars Rachel McAdams. It’s about a guy who can turn back time to get things right, but how does he react when his meddling changes the things that were already right in his life??
Pride and Prejudice– This is so good. If you are like me and want to see an epic love story set in the 1800s but hated “Bridgeton,” WATCH THIS MOVIE. I can’t even describe to you the emotions you will feel during this love movie. The last scene gets me every time.
Nacho Libre– I don’t need to explain this one.