Chinese New Year this year falls on 12 February, a Friday. You know what that means?
A long weekend for you to catch up on the latest Netflix shows!
Not sure what your life’s purpose is now that you’ve finished watching The Queen’s Gambit? Feeling lost after binging all three seasons of Stranger Things?
Not to worry: we’ve got you covered.
Here are the ten hottest Netflix shows in Singapore to catch up on this CNY weekend.
10. Finding ‘Ohana
The first mention on this list is Finding ‘Ohana, which comes in at number 10.
An American family adventure film, it is focused on a Hawaiian family who leaves their Brooklyn home to return to rural O’ahu, Hawaii to take care of their ageing grandfather. In particular, two siblings Pili (played by Kea Peahu) and Ioane (played by Alex Aiono) who are initially disgruntled to have to spend their summer in O’ahu, discover an old notebook containing clues to a treasure left behind by pirates which leads them into a daring treasure hunt.
But as they set out on this exhilarating adventure through the breathtaking natural scenery of Hawaii, they unearth other valuable discoveries as well. Pili and Ioane rediscover their Hawaiian heritage, forge their own identities, and reconnect with their family.
The film incorporates themes relating to familial connections, and cultural identity and traditions. Paying homage to the film’s namesake, Pili discovers that the ultimate treasure is not gold and jewels, but “‘ohana”, which means “family” in Hawaiian.
9. Flower of Evil
K-drama lovers, rejoice! Flower of Evil is a South Korean romance crime thriller about Baek Hee-Sung (played by Lee Joon-gi), a man with a mysterious past. His wife, Cha Ji-won (played by Moon Chae-won) is a homicide detective, and the couple is happily married with a daughter.
Yet, while they make a picture-perfect family and Hee-sung is a seemingly loving husband and father, there is more than what meets the eye. Behind his facade of the perfect husband, Hee-sung hides his past and true identity; he is, in fact, an emotionless psychopath. He changes his identity and tries to leave his dark past behind him, deceiving his wife.
Eventually, Ji-won and her colleagues begin investigating a string of mysterious murders and things eventually take a shocking turn of events as the clues start to point to her husband. She has to face the jarring reality that her husband, whom she loves dearly, may be hiding something from her. She eventually learns of his deception and chases after his past, slowly uncovering the man behind the mask.
“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.” Pride and Prejudice enthusiasts and Jane Austen fans, do you recognise this quote? If you like spicy Regency-era romance (McSpicy can’t compare), Bridgerton may be the show for you.
Based on the best-selling series by author Julia Quinn, Bridgerton is an American period drama that is set in the upper echelons of Regency-era London society, in the year 1813. The powerful, wealthy Bridgerton family, comprising eight siblings, has to navigate the competitive marriage market.
The fourth child and eldest daughter of the family, Daphne Bridgerton (played by Phoebe Dynevor), has made her debut in the social season with Queen Charlotte’s favour. She soon meets Simon Basset (played by Regé-Jean Page), the Duke of Hastings, one of London’s most eligible bachelors, and they quickly form an indisputable attraction to each other.
Red is an American action comedy film that was originally released in 2010. Loosely inspired by the three-issue comic book mini-series published by Homage Comics of the same name, it is the first film in the Red series.
Former black-ops agent Frank Moses (played by Bruce Willis) is living peacefully and normally after retirement. But his past with the C.I.A. puts a target on his back as he is privy to dangerous secrets, tagging him as someone whose status is RED (Retired, Extremely Dangerous).
One day, an assassination squad raids Frank’s house and attempts to kill him. Though he easily wipes them out and escapes, his home is destroyed. He seeks help from and reunites with some of his old associates to discover who is targeting him, and is forced back into his old line of work.
Lupin is a French mystery thriller series that premiered on Netflix less than a month ago on 8 January. Assane Diop (played by Omar Sy) is the son of a Senegalese immigrant who migrated to France in hopes of seeking a better life for his only child. After his father is framed unjustly for theft and commits suicide, Assane grows up to become a professional thief 25 years later.
Inspired by a book about gentleman thief Arsène Lupin, he works to get revenge on the wealthy Pellegrini family. He skillfully exploits his charisma and mastery of thievery, subterfuge, and disguise to expose the Pellegrinis and avenge his father.
5. 18 Again
18 Again is a South Korean television series based on the 2009 American film 17 Again. Jung Da-jung (played Kim Ha-neul) and Hong Dae-young (played by Yoon Sang-hyun) have been married for almost 20 years, and the couple has a pair of fraternal twins, Hong Shi-ah (played by Roh Jeong-eui) and Hong Shi-woo (played by Ryeoun).
Things take a bad turn when Dae-young is fired from his job, Da-jung files for a divorce after becoming disillusioned with their marriage, and the twins begin ignoring their father. Dae-young, filled with regrets and misery, laments about his pitiful life. He wishes that he could go back in time and miraculously, his 37-year old body changes into his 18-year old body (played by Lee Do-hyun).
Under the alias Go Woo-young, Dae-young attends Serim High school where his children go, beginning a new life. But being in an 18-year old body while retaining a 37-year old mind gives Dae-young a fresh new perspective to his family, and he begins to learn more about his children. He gradually realises the real reason behind his family’s crumbling bond, and resolves to protect his children by befriending and guiding them.
4. Fate: The Winx Saga
Most youths now would probably recognise the name of this show. Fate: The Winx Saga is a teen drama series and a live adaptation of the popular Nickelodeon animated series Winx Club, which received much international attention outside of its initial production in Italy.
But if you’re imagining colourful, glittery outfits and bright bursts of sparkly magic, you might need to review that image in your head. Fate: The Winx Saga is targeted towards young adults, and is “edgier and darker” as compared to the “colourful world” of the original Winx.
The premise of the Netflix show is similar to the original one: Bloom (played by Abigail Cowen), a fairy with fire powers enrols into Alfea, a magical boarding school in the Otherworld. She, alongside her four newfound friends, must learn how to master their magical powers. Meanwhile, ancient creatures called the Burned Ones return to the Otherworld, putting everyone at Alfea in danger.
3. The Uncanny Counter
Winning the bronze medal on this list is The Uncanny Counter, a South Korean television series which is filled to the brim with fantasy, mystery, and thriller elements. A huge hit in its home country of South Korea—the series is the highest rating OCN series so far—it has been released for streaming in selected countries on Netflix.
Based on the Daum webtoon Amazing Rumor by Jang Yi, the titular character is So Mun (played by Jo Byung-gyu), an 18-year old high school student who has been left physically crippled after getting involved in a car accident that took his parents’ lives seven years ago.
So Mun gets recruited to join the Counters, a group of paranormal-hunters who possess special abilities and who search for and banish evil spirits (akgwi). The akgwi escape from the afterlife to prey on humans who have a strong desire to commit murder or have committed murder, and then consume the humans’ spirits. So Mun then gets entangled in “a thrilling journey of battling against bloodthirsty demons, reconnecting to his past, and uncovering the ugly truth behind a major redevelopment project in Jungjin.”
2. Below Zero
The one that barely missed out being the “It” show this CNY weekend is Below Zero, a Spanish action film. Though it did not initially garner much attention and anticipation, its release in late January propelled it to become a sudden and immediate breakout hit.
Police officer Martin (played by Javier Gutiérrez) has been assigned to drive a prisoner transfer van at night. But things go haywire fast: a mysterious figure tails the truck, and some of the prisoners seem to be hiding secrets of their own. A sudden attack on the van forces Martin to contend with both his assailants and the icy cold of the night. Chock full of twists and turns and even a little bit of gore, Below Zero keeps watchers constantly on their toes for almost two whole hours.
One thing’s for sure: the ratings for this show are definitely not below zero.
Now, for the moment of truth. What is the hottest show this weekend? And the show that beat out all other nine shows this weekend is…
1. Bling Empire
The only reality TV show on the list, Bling Empire is strongly reminiscent of Crazy Rich Asians. The show follows a group of crazy rich Asian and Asian American who reside in Los Angeles, including Singaporean star Kane Lim, who has been making a splash ever since.
You guessed it: they’re at the top of the food chain, the richest of the rich in a rich city, the kind of people you read about in magazines. So why not take a sneak peak into the glitzy, glamorous lives of these exclusive elites?
(Because if you can’t be rich, you can at least watch people be rich and pretend you’re rich too, right? Yay for some Versace.)
Feast your eyes on their lavish, extravagant lifestyles as drama unfolds within the group. One thing’s for sure, Bling Empire will make for a very entertaining watch this CNY weekend.
Featured Image: Netflix