Are Zombies the Most Overrated Trope on TV?

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There are roughly 47,000—oh, wait, a new Netflix Original just dropped; make that 47,001—TV shows and movies coming out each week. At Obsessed, we consider it our social duty to help you see the best and skip the rest.

We’ve already got a variety of in-depth, exclusive coverage on all of your streaming favorites and new releases, but sometimes what you’re looking for is a simple Do or Don’t. That’s why we created See/Skip, to tell you exactly what our writers think you should See and what you can Skip from the past week’s crowded entertainment landscape.

See: The Last of Us

The Last of Us is a triumph of a horror-thriller series. Stunning set pieces, an ultra-compelling story, and two unforgettable lead performances will change your mind about game-to-screen adaptations forever.

Here’s Nick Schager’s take:

“As heartbreakingly faithful as it is riveting and suspenseful, The Last of Us is a triumph that ends any further debate about the all-time best video game adaptation. Spearheaded by the acclaimed PlayStation title’s creator Neil Druckmann and Chernobyl’s Craig Mazin, and designed to satisfy fans and newbies alike, the series is a post-apocalyptic nightmare that, as with its source, is at once familiar and original, action-packed and mournful. Barring some Armageddon-grade calamity, it seems destined to be HBO’s next big blockbuster.

Fittingly, given its harsh settings, the series’ violence is sudden, brutal, and final, and its moments of joy are all the more poignant for being muted and brief. In this hellscape of fascists and fanatics, bombed-out cities, and barren plains, hope routinely breeds fear, both for one’s own safety and for the safety of others. More shattering still, those who’ve made it to the conclusion of Druckmann’s first game know that finding purpose and meaning (and, most valuable of all, family) can sometimes turn out to be a double-edged sword.”

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See: Velma

Velma is a delightfully silly, very grown-up origin story for everyone’s favorite (or least favorite) member of Mystery Inc. But the biggest mystery to solve here is just how so many punchlines can be packed into one half-hour episode.

Here’s Coleman Spilde’s take:

“Since 1969, the Mystery Inc. gang has tasked themselves with unmasking devious criminals dressed as ghostly specters. The Scooby-Doo franchise has spawned countless television and film iterations over the last 54 years, but rarely has it changed its core focus. The franchise has always been the most concerned with its two biggest stars, Scooby and Shaggy, and their three white friends who follow them around, yelling at them for eating comically large sandwiches when there are mysteries afoot.

So, when Velma Dinkley’s voiceover introduces her character to viewers in the latest franchise iteration, Velma—streaming Jan. 12 on HBO Max—any true Scooby fan should rejoice. Finally, someone had the brilliant idea to push for a series focusing on Mystery Inc.’s real ringleader, the smartest and most memeable of the entire bunch. No disrespect to Shaggy and Scooby, but there are only so many ‘Ruh-Roh’s and Scooby Snack jokes one can take before an eyelid goes into perma-twitch.

While we’re all stuck with prequel-itis these days, Velma manages to transcend the inherent eye-rolls that come with a reboot, delivering a fresh, winkingly silly take on Mystery Inc. The show is fast-paced and ridiculous; even when it dips with a joke that would’ve been funnier five years ago, there’s another right around the corner. Velma is the perfect example of how beloved franchises can—and should—adapt through time.”

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See: The Drop

The Drop—like all great comedies about horrible accidents made by miserable people—makes you laugh through gritted teeth while also feeling intensely grateful it didn’t happen to you.

Here’s Fletcher Peters’ take:

The Drop replicates the agitating buzzing of bratty rich people permeating television and film lately—with the shocking addition of a woman dropping a baby on its head and having a life crisis over the matter. Instead of taking issue with wealthy folks specifically, though, Hulu’s new satire prods at a more general cast of nuisances. The film feels like a neighboring exposé, criticizing anyone and everyone’s (but particularly Americans’) bad habit of disconnecting with the outside world—especially while visiting foreign lands.

The conversations surrounding friendship, parenting, love, and millennial hopelessness imbue the film with unflinching vulnerability and uncomfortable hilarity. None of the arguments the film makes are all that deep—parenting should be taken seriously; sometimes it’s OK for friends to drift apart; marriage is a tricky beast; white people owning a Mexican resort is very bad; a stable sex life can be hard to keep up after years together—but that’s perfectly fine. We’ve seen similarly fun, thrilling films like Glass Onion and The Menu get steeped in discourse, slammed for being too on-the-nose. The fact that The Drop doesn’t take itself too seriously should be a welcome revision of those films’ satirical approach.”

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See: The Traitors

The Traitors is a wild game of celebrity Mafia. Whoever had the idea to stack a loose-lipped Real Housewife of Beverly Hills, Ryan Lochte, and Alan Cumming in a Scottish mansion together should get a Kennedy Center honor.

Here’s Kyndall Cunningham’s take:

The Traitors, a new reality competition show now streaming on Peacock, could very well be some sort of commentary on the potentially dangerous human instinct to secondhand speculate. In the case of this show, at least, there’s a monetary incentive for the cast of competitors who assume the worst in each other based on how they talk or their lack of eye contact. (On the other hand, I got no compensation for trying to decipher whether Harry Styles and Chris Pine were feuding on the Don’t Worry Darling press tour last year.)

Here’s the premise: Imagine if you had all the money and resources to invite your friends to the Scottish Highlands for an elaborate, multi-day game of Mafia, with actor Alan Cumming there to give you instructions and dole out fancy Eyes Wide Shut cloaks for your crew. The Traitors is a deceit-based game where a bunch of reality stars and a few lay people—and Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte, for some inexplicable reason—are split into two groups and essentially have to kill (eliminate) each other before members of the opposing group make it to the end.

If Americans have good taste, The Traitors will hopefully be the next reality phenomenon to sweep the internet—and keep Peacock up and running, so I can have access to Bravo’s catalog forever. The series, which first launched in the Netherlands in 2021, has already seen success in the U.K. and Australia. Hopefully we’re in for 20 more seasons of this incredibly addictive spinoff.”

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