One thing to consider beyond what to watch is how you’re watching. In the Before Time, I was definitely bingeing straight through shows; I have watched, oh, 10 episodes of “Orphan Black” in a row and found the experience positive and exciting. But that’s because afterward I went outside. These days, I have been benefiting from more of a balanced-breakfast model of varying things up a bit — two episodes of a dark drama, then, I don’t know, some YouTube videos about roller coasters, then a vintage sitcom, then a contemporary sad-com, then a procedural. Do yourself a favor and program yourself a little variety. How about two episodes of “Rectify” (Netflix), a video about accents, a “Mary Tyler Moore” (Hulu), a “High Maintenance” (HBO) and an episode of “The Good Wife” (Amazon, CBS All Access or Hulu)? Or two episodes of “Wentworth” (Netflix), a video about making soap, a “Frasier” (Hulu, CBS All Access) a “BoJack Horseman” (Netflix) and one “My Life Is Murder” (Acorn)?
Given the economic devastation facing many folks, I also encourage you to seek out free options for your TV needs. The major streamers all offer free 30-day trials, and many smaller platforms are doing the same right now, including Acorn, Sundance Now, Showtime and CBS All Access. If you don’t have a TV but still want to watch something on network, try Puffer, a research project from Stanford. TV Line has a great roundup of other free options.
For very good reason, many of us are rationing household items and making do with less on every possible front. You don’t need to do this with TV, though. Believe me when I say: We are not going to run out of TV shows to love. Be safe, considerate and responsible on all other fronts, but let our best friend television be a fount of abundance.
What do I watch after “Unorthodox”? I watched all four episodes over the weekend. What is another mini series or series like it? — Debbie
You have two great options: “Deutschland 83” and “Shtisel”
“Deutschland 83” (available on Hulu, YouTube and Google Play) is about a young man in East Germany who gets recruited to go undercover in West Germany as part of a military operation. But he’s not some brilliant spy — he’s just a guy who looks like another guy, and so here he is. Like “Unorthodox,” it’s a coming-of-age story about escape, about relief and joy but also profound mourning for the child you didn’t get to be. The shows also share significant creative DNA: One of the executive producers for “Unorthodox,” Anna Winger, is also one of the creators of “Deutschland 83,” and the director of “Unorthodox,” Maria Schrader, is one of the show’s stars. (There are subsequent sequels, “Deutschland 86” and “Deutschland 89,” too.)