We can’t go to the cinema, restaurants, pubs or clubs, the theatre or the shops. What can we do? We can read, watch TV and listen to music, that’s what. But where to start? See recommendations from the Property Week team and our readers below:
If you want something gripping to watch to take your mind off the madness of the world we currently find ourselves living in, Unbelievable on Netflix really is unbelievably good. That said, as brilliantly written and acted as it is, it is far from cheerful and may do little for your anxiety levels in this already anxiety-inducing time.
For something a little more light-hearted, hilariously funny and easy to watch, Schitt’s Creek is superb. It has a terrific cast with excellent chemistry. There are already five seasons on the streaming service and the sixth is due to premiere in May – if you haven’t seen it yet, get on it!
Another recommendation is Cheer, a series charting a cheerleading squad at a small American university as they prepare for the national championships. The show focuses on one student each episode, and delves into the reasons they joined the team – some of which are incredibly moving. If you’re looking to laugh, cry, and feel a burst of hope after each episode, this one’s for you.
Now that a lot of people are working from home, the number of people interacting each day is going down. That can be quite lonely, and it’s no wonder a lot of people are listening to the radio and watching television to abate that. So we’ve put together our top podcasts for brightening your day.
If you want a laugh: Fortunately by Fi and Jane is a podcast from Jane Garvey and Fi Glover. The two BBC Radio 4 broadcasters (you may recognise Jane as a presenter on Women’s Hour) spend the hour chatting to themselves, speaking over a range of guests, and sometimes bring some radio clips to play. Mostly though, they’re very rude and extremely funny, and we would recommend them heartily if you need a lift.
If you want a deep dive into human nature: The Ted Radio Hour by NPR. This is a genius concept, with each podcast focusing on one topic such as “anger”, “failure”, “the source of creativity” and “risk”. A number of Ted Talkers are interviewed on their talks, weaving together a fascinating exploration of important topics.
If you want to keep up to date with current affairs: The Daily from the New York Times and Beyond Today from the BBC both follow similar formats, covering one newsworthy topic each day of the week. They’re short, very well researched, and cover a range of topics from the success of South Korean oscar-winning Parasite, to the American women who joined ISIS.
If you want something silly: No Such Thing As A Fish comes from the QI elves (who write the questions from the panel show). They take us through all the strange facts they learnt that week. Prepare to be impressed, horrified and to have more than one laugh out loud.
If you want something gripping: The Dropout or Broken: Jefferey Epstein. The former follows Elizabeth Holmes, who is currently standing trial for massive fraud, after her blood-testing firm Thernos unrivalled. The latter takes us through the life of Jefferey Epstein, uncovering previously unknown actions and experiences. It also delves into Ghislaine Maxwell, his longtime alleged facilitator, and the prison in which he spent his last weeks.
If you want something akin to therapy: How Did We Get Here is a podcast from Dr Tanya Bryon, a psychologist, and her longtime friend Claudia Winkleman. In each episode, Claudia interviews a member of the public who has a problem they wish to fix. We then listen in as Tanya talks that person through the issue, with incredible results. It feels like a free therapy session, and our only tip is to make sure you’re not wearing makeup as it’ll smudge.
Without the general office hubbub, you may find yourself needing some chill background music to drown out the noise of your partner’s video conference call and/or kids. Well, look no further than lofi hip hop radio - beats to study/relax to, a YouTube stream of calm background noise that is bound to keep you focused.
For a mid-morning stretch/dance break, listen to Beyoncé’s HOMECOMING: The Live Album, a live album of her legendary Coachella set from 2018. Comes with a warning of possible unproductivity.
From one legend to another on this side of the pond, Kano’s 2019 Hoodies All Summer was genre defining in an era where grime has become mainstream, but with more soulful and uplifting notes.
It’s perfect for a Sunday afternoon, or any day of the week in self-isolation.
Although many of the world’s most famous museums are shut for the foreseeable future, Google Arts and Culture collection allows viewers to take virtual tours of leading institutions. Here the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, Guggenheim Museum in New York, Musee d’Orsay in Paris, and many more, can be viewed from the comfort of your couch. This huge project displays a wide range of art and artefacts from Egyptian mummies through to Vermeer’s atmospheric domestic interiors (particularly apt for these strange times)
In the face of theatre and venue closures many are also moving their performances online. New York’s Metropolitan Opera will be streaming shows every night at 7.30 EDT, which will be accessible until 3.30 EDT the next day
In many ways the release of the 900-page final instalment of Hilary Mantel’s Thomas Cromwell trilogy couldn’t have been better timed. Spend what would otherwise have been your commute getting into the ‘The Mirror & the Light’ and the deadly intrigues of Henry VIII’s court in the wake of the execution of his second wife, Anne Boleyn
For those entertaining children whilst working from home and in need of an early morning workout, Joe Wicks is running PE lessons at 9am each morning on his YouTube channel.