Let’s face it: without 20-page essays to write every week, the dedicated English majors of the world are going to get bored this summer. We spend countless hours each semester reading classic literature, analyzing poems, and questioning if our MLA formatting is correct. It’s time to give our minds a break over the next few months and start watching the story instead of reading it. Here are a few shows you’re sure to love to binge-watch this summer if you’re a book nerd like me:
For British literature fans, this is a no-brainer. Sherlock retells Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic works in new, innovative ways by putting Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Watson (Martin Freeman) in the 21st century to solve crimes, and be attractive. If you miss your Brit Lit 101 class, but aren’t in the mood for heavy reading, this is the perfect show for you.
The remake of the old hit show Full House is perfect for the English major who just wants some light comedy. The sitcom still preaches family values, and can be a little corny, but that’s perfect for the days where we just don’t want to think anymore. Give yourself a break from over-analyzing and criticizing and laugh at old favorites in Fuller House.
While it’s not technically a show, who wouldn’t want an excuse to watch this classic film again? Pay homage to the recently-passed original author, Harper Lee, and watch Atticus (Gregory Peck) and Scout (Mary Badham) fight racial injustice in the Deep South one more time. This literary classic is a staple of high school English classes — so relive the good old days (and get inspiration for your next analysis essay) with this film. Who knows? Maybe this time, you’ll really understand why it snows in chapter eight.
4-5. The Shakespeare Films
Yes, these are films too, but if you have more than just half an hour to kill, you can afford to relive the classic works of Shakespeare as contemporary retellings. You know the stories — now see what filmmakers have done to adapt Hamlet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream for modern audiences. This is not only quality entertainment, but also a great way to brush up on your knowledge of the playwright on the year of his 400th birthday.
If you’re tired of Shakespeare at this point, maybe you need one of the most relaxed (and hilarious) shows available on Netflix. Blue Mountain State is mind-numbingly dumb, making it all the better when you need a mental break. Featuring a fictional college with students who endlessly party, BMS will make you wish you went to state university.
Once you’ve binge-watched all three seasons of Blue Mountain State, you’ll need something to bring your IQ back up to normal range. This Netflix original is a perfect mix of political scandal and drama, making for an interesting watch for the analytical English major.
Finally, keep your brain alive and well this summer by watching this interactive show on psychology and the mind. With tests and mind tricks, Brain Games is sure to keep the intellectual English major on their toes all episode long. The close link between psychology and the study of English literature is just an added perk.
English majors and book nerds are always looking for a good story — and these shows will certainly give us just that, and keep our minds refreshed and ready to go when the new semester starts this fall.