What's new on the Netflix and Amazon Prime menu

Netflix and Amazon Prime Video continue to beef up the menu faster than we can chew. When not adding old favourites like Transparent. Nikita Puri rounds up what’s new and wholly binge-worthy.

Alias Grace
Historical fiction on Netflix

I’d rather be a murderess than a murderer, if those were the only two choices,” says Grace Marks (played by Sarah Gadon), the remarkable protagonist of the six mini-series inspired by Margaret Atwood’s novel Alias Grace. The story of an immigrant maid accused of a double murder in 1843, we first meet Grace when she’s already served 15 years for the crime some feel she didn’t commit. As a young doctor comes to review Grace’s mind to ascertain if she’s worthy of a pardon, we are introduced to Atwood’s themes of class oppression and patriarchal norms which slowly simmer under Grace’s otherwise soft demeanour.  

Big Mouth
Animated comedy on Netflix

Think of the most awkward and embarrassing moments that mark the road to puberty and adulthood, and the edgy animated comedy Big Mouth has them all. As the young protagonists of the show step towards their teenage years, their hormones are personified by “monsters” who encourage them to make the choices they normally wouldn’t. While the characters are finely sketched and the story is as straightforward as possible, the show is a welcome breeze of freshness as it tackles the biological and behavioural changes during puberty. Despite the seemingly adorable monsters, this one’s strictly not for kids.  

The Grand Tour 
Motoring entertainment on Prime Video

After the success of Top Gear, the most-watched non-fiction show in the world, its former presenters Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May return for another round of a motoring television show on December 8. In a teaser released by Amazon, Hammond is seen in a horrific crash while driving the all-electric Rimac Concept One in Switzerland. As the tagline for the series says, “A second round of monkey business is just around the corner.”     

Crime drama on Netflix

If you’ve liked the quiet fortitude of characters like Clarice Starling in the Hannibal Lecter books and movie, you're going to love Mindhunter: Inside the FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit, the series set in the 1970s details how the Federal Bureau of Investigation incorporated psychology into its investigations. The story is largely driven forward by conversations as two agents move from jail to jail, interviewing criminals with a certain profile to help them understand the “why” behind their brutal crimes. The first season of the show also builds up to the coinage of the term “serial killer”.

Comedy drama on Netflix

The story of Ruth Wilder (Alison Brie), a struggling actor in Los Angeles in the 1980s, Glow is a fictional but deeply personal and touching account of women in the wrestling circuit. Facing steep budget shortages, a band of unlikely women is brought together for this reality-television show. They are promoted as the Gorgeous Ladies Of Wrestling, or Glow. Delightfully real and funny, the show is better than it sounds.

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