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13 Year-Defining Shows You Have to Watch Before 2021 Comes to an End 13 Year-Defining Shows You Have to Watch Before 2021 Comes to an End


13 Year-Defining Shows You Have to Watch Before 2021 Comes to an End

Credit: Paramount/ Freeform/ Disney



2021 was a great year for television!

With several streaming services providing top-notch content alongside primetime, there was always something buzz-worthy gracing our screens. 

9 TV Shows We’re Sad to Leave Behind in 2021

And while it was hard to narrow down the best offerings of the year, there were some shows that defined the year. 

These are the shows everyone was watching and everyone was obsessed with!

Check out our list and let us know if there’s a show you’d add!


Only Murders in the Building – Hulu 

When Selena Gomez, Steve Martin, and Martin Short come together, shenanigans (and murders) are sure to follow. These murder mystery aficionados pursued a murder in their own building and turned it into a groundbreaking podcast… and more.


Squid Game – Netflix

Move over, Tiger King. This Korean drama took the world by storm and kept viewers on the edge of their seats as contestants engaged in deadly versions of beloved children’s games. 


Money Heist – Netflix

After five action-packed seasons, Money Heist took its final bow, but not before delivering several jaw-dropping twists. Did the Dalia mask wearing gang manage to pull off the biggest heist in the world?


The Chair – Netflix

Sandra Oh spearheads the drama about the first woman of color as the head of the English department at a prestigious university. 


Sex/Life – Netflix

Is there anyone who didn’t watch Netflix’s steamy Sex/Life and oogle Adam Demos’s package? A suburban wife goes down a fantasy memory-lane, which reconnects her to a past lover. 


Loki – Disney+

Another Disney+ film – post Avengers: Endgame – follows the adventures of Tom Hiddleston’s character Loki, Thor’s adopted brother and god of mischief.  


Ted Lasso – Apple TV+

The comedy’s second feel-good season explores the reason behind soccer coach Ted Lasso’s (played by Jason Sudeikis) kindness and its effect on everyone around him. 


Yellowstone – Paramount

If you’ve been hearing more and more about Yellowstone, that’s because everyone and their parents are obsessed with the Western drama about the Dutton family, a powerful family of ranchers. It even spawned a prequel titled 1883


Maid – Netflix 

The limited series focuses on a single mom’s willingness to survive as she who works as a cleaning lady to escape an abusive relationship and create a better life for her daughter. 


La Brea – NBC

In a TV landscape that doesn’t favor post-apocalyptic, supernatural dramas, La Brea found its groove and a dedicated audience. A sinkhole opens up in Los Angeles that transports a group of people to 10,000 B.C. A father’s quest to find his family fuels a rescue mission and reveals a deeper connection. 


The Other Two – HBO Max

After Schitt’s Creek comes The Other Two, a comedy about two siblings hailing from former SNL head writers . Cary and Brooke are both looking to find their big break, and find their lives turned upside down when their younger brother becomes a viral sensation instead.


Cruel Summer – Freeform

A teen drama set over three summers in the 1990s explores a young girl’s disappearance and how it affects the rest of her small-town.


WandaVision – Disney+

The mini-series and sequel to Avengers: Endgame finds Wanda Maximoff and Vision living their ideal lives in the suburbs only to find that not everything is as it seems.

15 TV Couples that NEED to Get Back Together

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Lizzy Buczak is the founder of CraveYouTV. What started off as a silly blog in her sophomore year at Columbia College Chicago turned her passion for watching TV into an opportunity! She has been in charge of CraveYou since 2011, writing reviews and news content for a wide variety of shows. Lizzy is a Music Business and Journalism major who has written for RADIO.COM, TV Fanatic, Time Out Chicago, Innerview, Pop’stache and Family Time.


ExMas Movie Review – Robbie Amell and Leighton Meester Make a Holiday Bet



ExMas Review A Bet During the Holidays Turns Enemies Into Lovers

While most holiday movies this time of year are centered around one’s Christmas wish, ExMas takes a different approach.

Beware—spoilers from the movie ahead!

Imagine the worst possible situation that can occur when you come home on Christmas…. is it your parents inviting your ex-fiancée, who broke your heart into a million pieces, over for Christmas dinner after you told them you weren’t coming into town due to previous work commitments but then decided at the last minute on a change of plans as part of a surprise? If so, that’s the exact plot of Robbie Amell (a treat for all of us Upload fans) and Leighton Meester’s (Gossip Girl) new Freevee movie.

And let me tell you, it brings plenty of comedic moments and jokes, sprinkled into what turns out to be a heartfelt plot about owning up to your mistakes and apologizing for shortcomings in a failed relationship, all while expertly capturing the chaos that is going home for the holidays. You know the former couple will find their way back to each other in the end—this is a Christmas movie after all—but it’s less about the destination and more about the journey that gets them to the “aha” moment. 

It’s a fa-la-la-oh-my-god-is-this-really-happening situation that Amell’s Graham and Meester’s Ali turn into a competitive bet to see which one will win over the family’s love and which one will be kicked out before Christmas day.

Along the way, Graham and Ali realize that they aren’t over each other one bit, while also admitting their own faults led to the demise of their relationship. Graham explains that he was doing what he thought Ali wanted—working more so he could work his way up the corporate food chain to make enough money to provide them with the perfect life. However, all Ali ever needed was for him to be there for her, present and willing, though she didn’t voice it either because she was scared he was going to walk away, so, she walked away first. 

It all comes down to a lack of necessary communication in a relationship—which happens far too often to couples these days that are caught up in the hustle and bustle of life—but there’s no shortage of time to talk it out when you’re forced to spend the holidays under the same roof. 

ExMas Review A Bet During the Holidays Turns Enemies Into Lovers

Robbie Amell and Leighton Meester star in EXmas. Photo Credit: Paulina Stevens/Exmas Film Inc.

Graham’s reaction upon walking into his childhood home and seeing the woman who broke his heart standing at the top of the stairs was to freak out, naturally. And who wouldn’t? This is a huge betrayal of trust from the people who are supposed to love you unconditionally and side with you, no matter what. As he tries to make them see the issue, their argument is that she’s been part of the “family for a very long time.”

When he realizes that Ali has ingrained herself into the family by playing Wordle with his sister and helping his brother study for his exams, he realizes that he can’t just up and leave, he has to show the family how “evil she is” by making them dislike her to “save his family” and “save Christmas.”

Admittedly, it’s a pretty extreme retaliation, but one that delivers plenty of good fun, especially since Graham knows her faults and weaknesses—like her competitive streak—and can easily exploit them. And that’s a two-way street as Ali is also able to sabotage Graham, making her the perfect and worthy opponent. Graham leverages Ali’s irrational fear of goats to ruin the dealership’s Christmas party, while she deliberately moves a sign in the bathroom to ensure that he floods it when flushing, allowing her to be the toilet bowl plunger hero. Of course, these are just two adults acting silly so that they don’t have to confront the harsh reality of their former relationship, but it’s all in good fun. 

They both try to make the other jealous with new crushes—and she tries to sabotage his relationship with Jess by telling her that he has problems in the bedroom (though that short-lived romance tanks all on its own when Jess suggests a threesome with her roommate/special friend), while he allows her to invest in Brady knowing that it will eventually end with him trying to sell her a car during the date. 

But it also emphasizes that the dating scene is a scary, scary place, and once you’ve found your person, you have to hold on to them tight and never let go.

It also becomes evident why the family gravitated toward Ali instead of Graham in the first place—and why the duo inevitably broke up—as Graham isn’t present most of the time; he doesn’t care to ask about his family members’ personal lives or keep up a relationship as he’s too busy with work. His sister, Heather, assures him that Ali was always there at every event when he wasn’t. 

The Christmas season, which starts off to be the stuff of nightmares, helps Graham reprioritize what’s important as he begins to see that he took everything that mattered for granted, his family and Ali included. 

When Graham’s father suffers a sudden cardiac arrest following a competitive, yet friendly, game of hockey during the holidays, that’s when he really starts to understand just how much time he’d invested into the wrong thing. Of course, a career is just as important as anything else, but it shouldn’t take precedence over the things that truly matter–and he was working for a boss who expected him to meet a Christmas Day deadline and had no qualms about calling and demanding more from him even when he was in the hospital following a family member’s health scare. At that moment, Graham takes a leap of faith and quits—the start of his new life on the horizon. (This may or may not be a Horizen pun, I’ll let you decide.) 

There were several other factors that brought him to the finish line, where he realized he screwed up and couldn’t live without Ali, including a heart-to-heart with his mom, a night of amazing drunk sex with Ali, and saying goodbye to her after they both forgave each other for the pain they inflicted. 

Once she was out the door, Graham and his family couldn’t shake the feeling that something was missing—and in true Christmas movie fashion, they all ran to get the girl, trying to fit into a vehicle that wasn’t up to par for the journey. As they made their way to the other car, Graham found Ali standing at the front door and immediately poured his heart out to her, only for her to explain that she only came back because she forgot her phone. 

Obviously, that was the last cruel joke she played on him as the two made up and sealed the deal with a kiss. Admittedly, there wasn’t undeniable chemistry between Amell and Meester as actors—they sold the friendship more—but the plot was believable enough that you found yourself rooting for them regardless. It’s actually quite nice for the chemistry to feel more grounded and realistic rather than the kind always portrayed in holiday movies that can sometimes feel unattainable for the average couple.

Fast forward to the next holiday, at their home in Los Angeles, Graham came through on his promise to help her start up her bakery truck, proving that his priorities are finally in order, as yet another time jump two years later, revealing that they welcomed a baby together.

And just because so much time had passed, doesn’t mean Graham didn’t have revenge on his mind as he invited his sister’s ex, Heather, for the holidays because they remained such good friends after the breakup.

As they say, payback’s a bitch, but if Graham’s situation is any consolation, maybe Mindy (Veronika Slowikowska) and Heather’s story will have a happy ending. After all, isn’t that the magic of the holidays?

The film also stars Michael Hitchcock, Kathryn Greenwood, Steven Huy, Thomas Cadrot, and Donna Benedicto. It’s available to stream now on Freevee. 

9 Holiday Movies You Need to Watch to Make the 2023 Christmas Season Bright

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Upload Season 3 Premiere Review – Take Down Freeyond (101 and 102)



Upload Season 3 Premiere Review Episode 1 and 2 Ticking Clock Strawberry

Upload returned for a third season that hasn’t skipped a beat. Though much of the action takes place in the real world after Nathan’s successful download in hopes of stopping Freeyond, there’s still a tether to Lakeview, where it all started, via Ingrid and Nathan #2 and Horizen thanks to Aleeshia and Luke. 

The shenanigans of the afterlife at Lakeview have always been the draw of the show, so it’s no surprise that watching Ingrid and Nathan #2’s storyline play out is one of the highs of this season—and surprisingly, Nathan and Nora’s relationship once they’re finally able to exist on the same plane is a bit of a letdown. The pureness of their relationship fades rather quickly when reality sets in, which was inevitable once they actually brought them together.

Nathan #2 is rebooted to a version before the family day/right after poker night meaning that he’s got some memory loss that works to Ingrid’s advantage–he doesn’t remember breaking up with her, finding out that she’s not really dead, nor does he remember that Nora came back and that they launched a whole plan to take down Freeyond. He doesn’t even know that he was murdered and that Choak is responsible. This Nathan is basically thriving on ignorance is bliss—and it looks good on him. It almost doesn’t even feel like the same Nathan that once existed, which is a testament to how much character growth Robbie Amell’s character has gone through in such a short time. His life hasn’t been flipped upside down yet, so as far as he knows, he’s deeply in love with Ingrid and completely oblivious to the issues they’ve been having. Eventually, she confides in him that she’s not actually dead, and unlike his former self, this version of Nathan thinks she’s incredibly selfless in her sacrifice so that they can be together. 

Ingrid initially believes that her chances with Nathan are completely done before finding out that not only is there another version of him but he’s also completely in love with her. She tries to become a better person, someone more like “Norma” so that he’ll like her better, but he assures her he loves her the way she is.

There craziest thing about this is that there’s a reality where Ingrid and Nathan make it work. Who knew?

But Nora isn’t totally out of the picture, she’s simply focused on OG Nathan and ensuring that he survives his download. 

Not only are they trying to outrun the clock placed on him by downloading (the nose bleeds are stressful considering the last download’s head exploded on live television + he’s experiencing weird symptoms like constant farting and being disgusted by most smells), but they’re also focusing heavily on what Nathan came back for—their mission of shutting down Freeyond, the affordable digital afterlife company that’s created using Nathan’s stole code, which got him killed by the founders, David Choak and Ingrid’s dad.

Quite honestly, bringing Nathan back to the land of the living has complicated things quite a bit, making it harder to sustain the magic and innocent silliness not just in his and Nora’s relationship but in the first season altogether. You’d think that by finally getting to be together, Nathan and Nora would be living in bliss, but their reality is a bit more bleak as they adjust to their new dynamics where they are “equals” and no longer dream of “what could be” but make the best of what is.

Making it work is a lot harder than simply daydreaming of being together. They still want to be together, so the effort is there, but they have to accept each other’s quirks, flaws, and faults, along with Nora trying to get used to all the attention that Nathan receives from other women. It’s an adjustment on both sides, all while juggling all the other responsibilities.   Instead of solely prioritizing their relationship, Nora and Nathan are using their time to return the drives of Freeyond’s victims to their families, even if they don’t have the money to do anything with their loved ones (though they do have some sweet bonding time while staying with Elijah’s family on the farm during which they they realize just how lucky they are to finally be together) and focusing on their main mission to destroy Freeyond.

Nathan is forced to work alongside Nora’s ex, Mateo, the lead of the Ludds running point on their whole mission, which makes for some very tense, testosterone-filled moments, with Mateo holding his own against Nathan and not allowing himself to get intimidated. 

Despire his insanely jealous over Nora’s relationship with Nathan, he keeps trying to make a case for himself, but sadly, he doesn’t survive the first episode. His demise comes on the heels of the revelation that Detective Sato is corrupt. When the stakes are so high, you really have to be careful about who you can trust. When Nora and Mateo figure out that Freeyond is basically killing people who are voluntarily uploading, they manage to shut the whole thing down, but Sato arrives and makes it clear that he’s trying to line his pockets by eliminating the people posing a threat to expose Choak. During the confrontation, he shoots and kills Mateo just before Nora is able to use the upload tool to burn a hole through Sato. It’s one of her most badass moments, and while Mateo’s death is a bummer, he almost immediately becomes an afterthought, which proves that he was never as crucial to the mission as he thought he was. 

At the same time, Nathan discovers that Freeyond never intended to give the uploads a place to live—it didn’t matter to them as their primary goal was to eliminate 10 million voters so that they could rig the election. He finds their pre-recorded “press apology” about the tragedy and releases it, thus crumbling Freeyond’s business model.  

There’s a lot of moving parts this season—as we tether between realms–so it becomes hard to keep up with motivations and the what’s what of it all, but the series still manages to keep the same level of kookiness fans have come to love and expect. 

And a special shout out to Owen Daniels’ AI guy, who continues to be a show and scene stealer. I hope he’s making the big bucks for taking on so many roles and carrying the weight of the afterlife alongside Luke, another standout who has truly committed to his overly dramatic character. 

Other Notable Moments Worth Mentioning

  • Choak definitely noticed Nathan in the bathroom during the super secret Freeyond meeting, but what will come of it?
  • Ingrid is still harboring a huge secret from Lakeview Nathan despite all the talk of transparency—she’s planning on cloning him in the real world. And this version of Nathan might be into it!

At this point, Nora and Nathan are considered mortal enemies as the world believes (has been convinced) that the Ludds are responsible for the takedown of Freeyond (they don’t even confess to their involvement), and while that’s technically the case, the fact that millions of innocent lives were saved is a tidbit the public hasn’t been made privy to just yet, nor do they know that it’s backed by the world’s biggest billionaires.

The stakes are definitely raised, and it’s only a matter of time before Lakeview Nathan is brought up to speed and finds out about his “other” existence… the real Nathan. And what happens when Nathan finds out that he’s been replaced by himself? Will Lakeview Nathan realize he’s also in love with Nora or will he remain faithful to Ingrid?

What did you think of the first two episodes of Upload Season 3?

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‘Berlin’ Is the ‘Money Heist’ Spinoff We Never Knew We Needed



'Berlin' Is the 'Money Heist' Spinoff We Never Knew We Needed

Berlin is the Money Heist spinoff we never knew we needed… but we’re so glad it’s almost here. 

Since Berlin (Pedro González Alonso) was hands-down the most captivating (and problematic) character in the Spanish heist drama, fans always wanted to get to know more of him, especially after he sacrificed himself in the season 1 finale for his team, largely due to his terminal illness, redeeming himself in the process.

Quickly rising the ranks as a fan-favorite, the writers kept Berlin’s spirit alive in the following seasons via flashbacks, noting that he always had a hand in the planning of the heists, even if he wasn’t around to see them through. And it became more and more clear that there was an unsatiable thirst from audiences to explore additional parts of the character’s origin story; thus, a prequel to Money Heist focusing solely on Berlin’s prior escapades only made sense. 

Related: Kiernan Shipka’s New Slasher Comedy Is Your Fall Must-Watch

As seen in the later season of Money Heist, or La Casa de Papel, Berlin garnered even more intrigue when his son, Rafael (Patrick Criado) joined the heist. The former Electronics Engineer from MIT is Berlin’s prodigal son, whose only request was not to end up a thief like his father, also drew attention after entering a relationship with his father’s wife, Tatiana. It’s a lot to unpack, clearly, but it’s also proof that there was nothing boring or mediocre about Berlin’s life in the slightest, at any point. 

So, again, it warrants a spinoff that digs even deeper into this complex, charismatic, and morally questionable character we’ve all come to love. 

When he joined the Professor’s group in the series, he was already one of the most seasoned robbers of the bunch, having a plethora of experience mapping out and executing heists of ranging scales.

Also Read: ‘Sullivan’s Crossing’ Is The CW’s Most Promising New Show—And It Stars Chad Michael Murray

With Berlin: Money Heist, we’re not only going to get to see one of those previous heists in action, but we’re also going to get a sense of the man he was before attempting the biggest heist in history, which made him the beloved criminal we’ve come to know.  

Capitalizing on the love already established for the series—one of Netflix’s most popular shows of all time—the prequel finds Berlin, in all his glory as Andrés de Fonollosa, the mastermind behind a heist targeting the biggest auction house in Paris to steal €44 million.

The series trails the planning of a new heist as he recruits his crew: “Michelle Jenner (Isabel) plays Keila, an eminence in electronic engineering; Tristán Ulloa (Fariña) goes into the skin of Damián, a philanthropic professor and Berlin’s confidant; Begoña Vargas (Welcome to Eden) plays Cameron, a kamikaze who always lives on the edge; Julio Peña Fernández (Through My Window) brings to life Roi, Berlin’s faithful squire; and Joel Sánchez plays Bruce, the relentless man of action in the gang.”

While it’s mostly an all-new cast, we’ll see a few familiar faces with Alicia Sierra (Najwa Nimri) and Raquel Murillo (Itziar Ituno) appearing at some point, though it’s unclear what their connection is to the storyline. Is it possible that their paths have always crossed and Berlin was always on their radar way prior to the action at the Royal Mint?

We may not be getting the version of Berlin from the original series, but don’t fret, as the teaser trailer evidenced, he’s still as ruthless, dapper, and flirtatious as ever, meaning that they really did this character–and prequel—justice. The fact that it hails from the original showrunner, Alex Pina, is also a sign that it won’t let the fandom down.

“It’s a trip through the golden age of the character, when he robbed around Europe crazy in love,” Pina previously told TUDUM, adding, “That’s the most surprising, the comedy. You’re going to make people laugh a lot.”

Berlin in his prime, in love, and flexing his comedic bone? As the beloved criminal says in the trailer, “it’s all the things worth living for.”

The full synopsis for the series reads:

“There are only two things that are sure to turn a bad day into a great one: love, and a payday worth millions. They’re what keep Berlin going through his golden years, a time when he still has no inkling of his illness and hasn’t gotten trapped like a rat in the Spanish Mint. This is where he starts preparing one of his most extraordinary heists: making jewels worth 44 million disappear like some sort of magic trick. To do it, he’ll enlist the help of one of the three gangs he’s ever stolen with.” 

Watch the Berlin trailer below:

Berlin arrives a few days prior to New Year’s Eve on Dec. 29, 2023, which means you’ll have plenty of time to binge watch while counting down to 2024.

To prepare, you can stream Money Heist on Netflix and read our coverage here. 

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