Best of Lists Smugglivus

Smugglivus 2016: Ana’s Best of the Rest (TV, Movies, Theatre)

In addition to reading and reviewing obscene amounts of books, we also obsess over multiple television shows, movies, video games, and all other manner of geekery. With that in mind, we needed to create ANOTHER list for our end of the year celebration. We give you our very own BEST OF THE REST (everything that isn’t a book).

As you know, I only read 60 books in 2016 and that dearth of time/head space has expanded into fewer TV shows and movies consumed as well. With that said, there was a lot that I loved last year.

Stranger Things:

Stranger Things

I was an 80s kid and this show spoke to my SOUL both in terms of visuals and shout outs to favourites like The Goonies but also how it reminded me how much I used to love Winona Ryder. Great acting, great kid characters, awesome action, lots of fun.

Luke Cage:


The show I had been waiting for since Jessica Jones aired in 2015, Luke Cage did not disappoint with its taut, contemporary storyline, amazing female characters and Luke Cage himself and his story arc.

Rogue One:


I went into this movie thinking I was prepared for anything because I fully expected the ending to be what it was given the history of the series and Rogue One’s placement in the continuity. BUT OH BOY. Did it hit me in the feels: this is a story about ordinary people being extraordinary heroes against all odds. I loved all characters and was distraught at the ending, even knowing it all.

Black Mirror:


A show about possible futures and the way that technology affects the worlds and us, this a mind-bending show that has undoubtedly a grim outlook of life and of humans. I liked it anyway because of its science fictional bent but I know it’s not a show for everybody.

BUT there was one episode in the latest season – San Junipero – that goes against the mold and has not only a happy ending but also a happy, romantic ending between two women. If you have to watch ONE episode of Black Mirror to see what’s all about, make it this one.


Black and British:


This may be one of the best, most eye opening, most important documentaries I have ever watched. Written and presented by Historian David Olusoga for the BBC, it documents the long – LONG – history of those who are black and British. It’s extraordinary and often harrowing, but always inspiring.



Beautiful, beautiful science fiction movie about aliens and humans, communicating and language. This is not that movie that, when aliens show up, humans immediately prepare to fight. Here, they prepare to understand. At the same time, this is a movie about understanding of time and of love. Did I say it’s beautiful? It’s so gorgeous it hurt.

It’s my favourite movie of the year.

Captain America – Civil War


Although I find the whole Civil War premise a bit dubious, this movie proved to be a better Avengers movie than the last Avengers movie. All the little moments between characters and the action scenes were pretty great but the movie was stolen by the Black Panther and – who would have thought – Spider-Man.



A young woman trying to make her life as a small entrepreneur in London while grieving for the loss of her best friend. This BBC show is as hilarious as it is uncomfortable and has the honour of featuring one of the most complicated, flawed female characters to ever appear on my screen.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child:


Ok, so the play is not perfect but nothing, NOTHING beats watching this veritable spectacle with your best friend and experiencing a live Harry Potter show. The actors made the play one billion times better than its script and for that, I will never forget it.

Crazy Ex Girlfriend:


Although this list is in no particular order, I did save my favourite for last. When Crazy Ex Girlfriend showed up on Netflix earlier this year, I saw the title and didn’t think it was something I would like. HUGE MISTAKE. BIG. It was Thea who told me to watch it and boy, do I love this show. It stars Rachel Bloom – of “Fuck Me, Ray Bradbury” fame – and she not only stars but is also executive producer, co-creator and writer.

The premise is simple: Rebecca is a super successful lawyer who is unhappy with her life when she bumps into a guy she had a fling with when they were 16. Cue to Rebecca moving to West Covina, California after Josh, followed by many embarrassing moments. Why is this show great? Among many things:

– It’s feminist as fuck
– It has tons of female friendships
– It has a super diverse cast both in terms of race and of LGBT characters
– It’s hilarious
– It has amazing musical numbers. Yes, every episode has at least 2 musical numbers where the characters suddenly burst into song. Think Ally Mcbeal but with original, caustic, pretty freaking awesome lyrics that go from calling out rape culture and sexism, to a guy coming out as bi.

These are some of my favourite songs so far, just to give a taste.

The Sexy Getting Ready Song:

Gettin’ Bi:

You Go First

This show is my favourite discovery of the year. PLEASE GO WATCH.


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