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6 Reasons To Get HBO

For many people, the incentive to get HBO is being able to watch Game of Thrones. Don’t get me wrong- this is the perfect incentive. However, some people need to be reassured that there will be more than one show awaiting them after the subscription is paid. HBO has some terrific shows on air of course, but HBO GO stores all completed series as well. Here are some great shows you can watch on HBO GO that Netflix fails to provide you with:

(Disclaimer: I will only be recommending shows I have seen.)

  1. Curb Your Enthusiasm

If you are a fan of laughing at awkward situations and immoral people, then you’ll love this show starring Larry David, one of the creators and writers of Seinfeld. Nobody violates social norms quite so ineloquently as Larry David.

 

2. Family Tree

I’m a huge fan of Chris O’Dowd’s. Many of you will recognize him him as the Irish cop from Bridesmaids. In this charming series, he plays a young man researching his family tree. This series is relatively short; you could watch it in its entirety in under four hours.

3. The Newsroom

This show follows journalists as they go about their work and relationships. I’ve only seen a few episodes but what I love about this show is that it uses real news stories. There is an episode about Gabrielle Giffords being shot and the BP oil spill. I think that does a tremendous job of getting the audience really invested because we are likely already familiar how these events were portrayed on the news and this shows us what kind of conversations and problems go on behind the scenes. 

4. Parade’s End

Benedict Cumberbatch is Christopher Tietjens, a man who, like most everyone else at the time, has his life shaken up during World War I. This series follows Tietjens’s complicated relationship with his wife and a suffragette. According to Cumberbatch, Tietjens was his favorite role.

5. Sex and the City

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An absolute classic, this show follows four best friends as they navigate dating in the wild and unpredictable jungle that is New York City. Carrie Bradshaw gives us a look into this life with her sex column, throwing in a life lesson here and there. The show recently celebrated its 18th anniversary. In honor of that, Entertainment Weekly shared this brilliant ranking of all the men Carrie Bradshaw finds herself involved with throughout the series.

6. True Blood

I refused to watch this show for the longest time for fear that it would be too much like Twilight (and also it looked super bizarre). I finally gave in a few weeks ago and watched the first episode. I was right; it was weird as hell, but I had to keep watching. This show is Twilight as it should have been/ Twilight on all sorts of drugs. This show wins the nonexistent award for having the most disturbing opening credits of any TV series.

Other popular shows include Extras starring Ricky Gervais, Girls starring Lena Dunham, and Veep starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

And if none of this convinces you, Game of Thrones has dragons.

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Such is life.

We live in what George R. R. Martin calls a world of grey. He describes this as the world in which people are not wholly good or bad but a mixture of both. George R. R. Martin was heavily influenced by Tolkien in many ways, but differed from him in this regard. In Tolkien’s works The Lord of the Rings, there are clear heroes and clear villains. Everyone reading these novels has a uniting hatred for Saruman and appreciation of Samwise Gamgee.

Now think about A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin. Sure, everyone seems to love Tyrion and hate Joffrey but that’s just because one is witty and the other is an ass. Ask most people their opinion of Sansa Stark or Jaime Lannister and you’ll certainly get varying answers. Why? Because we see them as they are, we see them at their most virtuous and we see them at their most vile. They are not exclusively one or the other. Your opinion of them as a whole depends entirely on which moments you choose to focus on. We are the same, albeit not to the same extremes.

 

Too often in life people see the bad a person does and dismiss the good as uncharacteristic. I like to see the good in people despite bad things they have done or questionable decisions they have made. I can recognize that people are largely good but are human, meaning they are allowed missteps. Sure, maybe I’m naive. Maybe my naiveté is a bad quality, but if it helps me see the good in other people, isn’t it a bad quality worth holding onto?

Of course I would always prefer to live in Tolkien’s world where there are good and bad and everything is simple (and who wouldn’t want to live in the Shire??). But unfortunately we live in Martin’s world. What a terrifying thought. To know that others are grey. To know that we are grey. We need to understand that others are not perfect just as we are not perfect. Treat others the way you want to be treated and forgive others just as you wish to be forgiven.

Calligraphy

This summer, I stumbled upon the Instagram account of Scarlet and Gold. A few months ago, they announced they were having a free online calligraphy webinar. I took the class in June and afterwards practiced my calligraphy tirelessly because it is so much fun and the result is always just so darn pretty.

I really only learned the basics and how to write the phrase “let’s write pretty” so writing other phrases proved to be difficult. I think it’s safe to say I gave up for a while there.


I promised myself I would write a quote in calligraphy to hang up in my sophomore year dorm room and seeing as I move in soon I decided to get working on that today. So, while sitting on the couch watching Netflix, I broke out the calligraphy pen and inkwell. I decided to just wing it and write one of my favorite quotes of all time. (Many of you will recognize the ever so popular “Not all those who wander are lost” line from many a artsy t-shirt and Instagram caption.)

#Tolkien

A post shared by Kitty Williams (@amykathwills) on

It’s definitely still a work in progress but I’m satisfied with the way my first project turned out and I look forward to many more!

Keep an eye out for any upcoming webinars!

Check out my Instagram at @kitty_williams