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Home   /   Who doesn’t love Hamilton? Overtime Recommends: our favourite comfort culture

I think it is fair to say that anybody who in the past year has not fallen down the rabbit holes of Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime or any other streaming site deserves a Nobel Peace Prize.

Whether it is books, movies, shows or music that has been your saving grace this lockdown, there is nothing quite like the escapism and comfort that these platforms can offer us in a time where some of us feel as if we are in a situation of which we cannot escape.

If, like me, you are coming to the end of your ‘to read’ or ‘to watch’ list, you’ll be sure to be looking for some recommendations. Here are my top five lockdown favourites that have got me through 2020/21, with a few suggestions from our Overtime readers too. 


1.  LOVE ON THE SPECTRUM (2019)

Series (Available on Netflix)

This Australian reality series is perfect for anybody who is looking for a heart-warming yet insightful watch that allows you to gain an insight into the challenge that is relationships and dating on the autistic spectrum. As somebody who enjoyed the British ‘Undateables’, I felt this Australian version offered the individuals more of a voice, allowing them to narrate their own stories and articulating their feelings.

2. ROOM (2010)

Novel

Despite being an avid book lover ever since I learnt to read, it was only when I began ‘Room’ at the beginning of December 2020 that I understood what it meant to not be able to put a book down. The novel (inspired by a real-life incident) follows the gripping tale of Jack and his ‘Ma’, who are held hostage in a singular room by their captor who abducted Jack’s mother before she gave birth. Written from the boy’s perspective, readers can expect a never-before-told account of how life feels without any knowledge of the outside world.

♦︎ READER’S CHOICE:

Megan Leader – The Vampire Diaries (2009-2017)

Series (Available on Netflix)

“I’ve watched the ‘Vampire Diaries’ so many times, so to rewatch it again in the first lockdown brought a little normality to these abnormal times.”

3. SING TO ME INSTEAD Ben Platt (2019)

Album (Available across streaming services)

Having been a big fan of Ben Platt since his award-winning debut in Dear Evan Hansen as the title role, I knew that this would be an album that I would enjoy but never quite got round to listening to it. However, I’m glad that lockdown gave me the opportunity to give it a try. Platt’s outstanding vocals and heartfelt lyrics are enough to bring a tear to the eye, outlining all the best (and some of the most heart-breaking) parts of love.

♦︎ READER’S CHOICE:

Jacob Thom – Friends (1994-2004)

Series (Available on Netflix)

“A cult classic, I love ‘Friends’ because it’s light-hearted and funny – two things we’ve all needed to get through this lockdown!”

4. HAMILTON (2020)

Movie (Available on Disney+)

As a self-confessed musical obsessive, the release of the live shot movie of this musical was something I had been anticipating for years, and this certainly did not disappoint. Written by Lin Manuel-Miranda who plays the title role, ‘Hamilton’ follows the life of American founding father Alexander Hamilton – entirely through rap. If you are looking for something a little different than what you may normally go for, I cannot recommend this showstopper enough. 

♦︎ READER’S CHOICE:

Madeleine Conrad – The Midnight Library (2020)

Novel

“It was amazing! It is a basically a book asking the question: ‘What if I had done it differently?’ It really opened my eyes about the choices you make in life, and not to regret any of them.”

5. MONTGOMERY RICKY Ricky Montgomery (2016)

Album (Available across streaming services)

Perhaps an embarrassing method of discovering an artist, Montgomery’s work came to my attention after hearing viral ‘Line Without A Hook’ on social media app Tik Tok. Since listening to the entirety of ‘Montgomery Ricky’, I can confirm that I am now completely hooked. Every word sung holds an emotion that cannot be put into words, with each song so cleverly written you can guarantee to find yourself in at least one of his lyrics. Whether you are searching for something upbeat or something a bit more moving, this album has got it all. 

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