BURBS STAFF PICKS: Sunday Streaming Suggestions [Vol. 4]

Welcome to our fourth installment of Sunday Streaming Suggestions!

Writers Ralph James, Carter Ferryman, Evan Northrup, Jack Martin, and Evan Linden delivered another round of five classics to stream on your lazy Sunday:

The Boys (Amazon Prime)  When Hughie Campbell’s (Jack Quaid) girlfriend is literally ran through and killed by the world’s fastest superhero, A-Train, his world crumbles. After being courted by a mysterious man named Butcher (Karl Urban), Hughie is exposed to the extremely corrupt world of Supes and the company that controls them, Vought.  The Supes are led by Homelander, a Superman-like figure who, on the surface, appears to be the all-American symbol of hope. But as Hughie comes to discover, the Supes are in it for themselves, and have dire visions of the future.  Hughie and Butcher team-up up with Butcher’s old friends, Frenchie and Mother’s Milk, to take down the Supes who have taken so much from them. The show moves fast and refuses to hold back. It’s much darker than you’d expect from Seth Rogen executive produced show, but there are still comedic moments. For someone who tends to have trouble binging shows, The Boys proved no challenge. 

-Jack Martin

Dead to Me (Netflix) 

Welcome to subverting the suburbs- a master class taught by some of your favorite films and shows that take the seemingly perfect visage of green grass and white-picket-fence America and tear it open to reveal the rot underneath; works including American Beauty, Weeds, The Graduate, The Leftovers and the most recent addition, Dead to Me

Dead to Me stars Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini as two grief-stricken women living in rich, coastal California who immediately become friends after meeting at a support group. Their friendship is addictive, rivaling the on-screen chemistry of classic best friend movies like Step Brothers and Superbad, however, there's much more to the show than just character. The plot is like going down a winding mountain road, starting with predictable plot twists, then turning those plot twists in on themselves so many times that you want to just cover your eyes and scream at the driver to slow down. With only two ten-episode seasons currently out, and almost every episode ending with wild cliff hangers and revelations, Dead to Me is one of the most thrilling, binge-able, and compulsive shows on Netflix. 

-Evan Northrup

Shameless (Netflix, Showtime)

If you want to watch a show that makes you feel a little bit better about your life, look no further than Shameless.

The long-running Showtime dramedy follows the dysfunctional Gallagher family—South Side Chicago natives who live far below the poverty line, but somehow manage to scrape by. The family’s six children are raised by the eldest child Fiona (Emmy Rossum) as their parents Frank (William H. Macy) and Monica (Chloe Webb) are fly-by-night deadbeats who never fail to succumb to their battles with addiction and mental health. Fiona was forced to drop out of high school to raise her younger siblings Lip (Jeremy Allen White), Ian (Cameron Monaghan), Carl (Ethan Cutkosky), Debbie (Emma Kenney), and Liam after their parents split. The Gallaghers have a nearly familial bond with their next-door neighbors Kev (Steve Howey) and Veronica (Shanola Hampton) who happen to run the neighborhood bar that serves as a focal point in the show—The Alibi.

Shameless provides a raw and gripping view into what life looks like when you have to take any means necessary to get by. It has strong dramatic elements, but the show is boldly comedic. The show’s writers take some risks that pay off—namely the dark sense of humor and the purposeful lack of political correctness. Thanks to being a premium network show, there are no holds barred when it comes to censorship; half of the show could be passed off as a porno.

Ultimately, Shameless gives you a little taste of everything that you could want in both a comedy and a drama. The show is currently in its eleventh (and final) season with the first ten seasons available on Netflix, so it will keep you entertained for quite some time if you decide to give it a go.

-Evan Linden

Drive (2011) - Netflix

Driving sequences have become a staple in action films — this much I know is undeniable. Box office features like the Fast & Furious series, Baby Driver and Ford vs. Ferrari have experimented with the sound and camera technique needed to achieve these high-action moments in cinema.

Let’s get one thing straight. Your favorite driving scene’s favorite driving scene is this 2011 cult classic’s opening fifteen minutes. It sets an unwavering tone for a film that teeters on a tightrope between action movie and arthouse picture — a feat seldom replicated in Hollywood. Refn has complete control over his cast and setting — the shady underbelly of Los Angeles. Ryan Gosling is brilliant as the silent lead role, with truly important and compelling supporting performances from Bryan Cranston, Carey Mulligan, Oscar Isaac and Christina Hendricks. Ryan Gosling had his hands in this film, playing a key role in production and the eventual hiring of this film's true star: Nicolas Winding Refn.

Refn is a sound and camera guru of the highest order. Drive’s sound mixing is infinitely layered, yet all sonics fit comfortably into one space that — against all conceivable odds — feels quiet (I still do not understand how he mixed this film). If you’re craving a riveting tale of human emotion and fast cars — without the hollow, corny box-office shams starring Vin Diesel and The Rock — look no further.

-Carter Ferryman

The Silence of the Lambs (1991) - Netflix

There isn’t a better October movie than The Silence of the Lambs. It received five Academy Awards in 1992 for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Screenplay. The story details a young FBI trainee, Clarice Starling (Jodie Foster), dissecting a cannibalistic psychiatrist’s brain— who simultaneously rebuttals the subtle mental warfare with his own questioning— named Hannibal Lecter in order to track down a murderer with a unique technique. Lecter is one of the most memorable characters in movie history. He eats the screen alive in a similar fashion to Heath Ledger’s portrayal of the Joker in The Dark Knight. The grotesque film is the definition of a suspenseful thriller. If you want to get your Halloween season off to a hot start, there’s no better way to kick it off than with this classic movie.

-Ralph James