I am totally on board with the idea that we can learn things from all media – including the shows and movies that we stream on Netflix. I can’t tell you how much royal history I have learned from The Crown (plus some of the great royal documentaries that are available) but with any historical retelling, it’s sometimes important to fact-check. Google to the rescue! Here’s a great article where People magazine fact-checks the blockbuster show:
Fact-Checking the Crown: 5 Things That Are True (and 3 That Aren’t!)
You can also pick up a lot of great life lessons (whether things to do, or things not to do) and quotes from your screentime. I really took it to heart watching The Good Wife when Eli explains to newly elected State’s Attorney Alicia that people want to be heard. It doesn’t mean you have to give in and give them what they want, or that they own or control you, but allowing people to tell you what they think and offer their opinions is often all you have to do to maintain positive relationships.
I also do a ton of Netflix Googling. Remember when you used to watch a show or movie and ask yourself, “Where do I know that actress from?” The answer is only a few clicks away! (The guy I spotted on Luther: yep, he was in Braveheart. That song I recognized playing on The Good Wife? Sung by Bette Midler in Beaches, which I haven’t seen in probably 20 years but watched dozens of times in my teens, obviously enough that the music stayed with me). Thank goodness for Google, or these little things would drive me crazy!
As a parent, I am often called upon to answer questions that my daughters have about their shows…usually to explain the adult jokes in kids’ programs that they are just starting to catch on to! Recently, I was hit with the question, “What’s a hickey?” (I promised not to divulge which little sweetheart asked.) After ascertaining the context of the exposure to the word (yep, a show), I was happy to be the one to explain. As awkward as some conversations are, I’m glad they feel they can come to me.
I asked my girls to tell me some of the things they’ve learned from their screen watching, and eleven-year-old Olivia made me proud when she quoted a grammar rule to the effect of, “Who can be answered by he or she, whom is answered by him or her.” (Project MC2, if you’re curious.) “I also learned how to pick a lock!” Eva piped up. Yes, very proud.
Disclosure: I receive perks as part of the Netflix Stream Team. Opinions are, as always, my own.