6 September 2022

2022 Summer Recap

We didn't float in a pool once this summer but we did get to see each other when Meg and Ben came to Ontario. Babies were had, ice cream cones were eaten, and here's all the content we enjoyed...

Cultish: The Language of Fanaticism by Amanda Montell

I posted a review of this book on here in July. It was interesting but definitely reads more academic than recreational. - MG

The Cat's Table by Michael Ondaatje

This review just went up last week. I didn't really love it which sucks but I will continue to read Ondaatje novels. - MG

Dear Committee Members by Julie Schumacher

I've been reading this in small pockets I can find in the day alongside another novel. It's a series of recommendation letters written by a creative writing professor. It's pretty funny and I will definitely write about it on here when I'm done. - MG

You Got Anything Stronger? by Gabrielle Union

Thank god for Gabrielle Union because the rest of my summer reads have been duds. This is her second book and so far I'm enjoying it. I will write about it on here when I'm done. - MG

The Idiot by Elif Batuman

Saw so many people posting about this book so asked for it for Christmas. I read a huge chunk of this book on our drive to Ontario this summer and really enjoyed it. It's about a young Turkish girl who goes to Harvard and meets a variety of similar weirdos. Review to come! - MH

The Rules Do Not Apply by Ariel Levy

I hate to admit when Belletrist (Emma Roberts' bookclub) picks a good one - but this is definitely a good one! If you feel you have fucked up your life in any capacity, this is the memoir to pick up. Review to come! - MH

Trust Exercise by Susan Choi

This was probably one of my "sneaky favourites" of the summer in that how much I enjoyed the book really crept up on me unexpectedly. I also listened to an accompanying podcast (The Stacks) that covered it and that really added to my post-reading reflection. Trust Exercise is about a few high school students involved in an intense theatre group and their relationships with one another. Review to come! - MH

The Lying Life of Adults by Elena Ferrante

This was my first ever Ferrante read! If I am being completely honest, I felt a little disappointed by it, but that could just be because I find her Italian characters off putting. Review to come. - MH

Oh William! by Elizabeth Strout 

I read this book in just a few days time towards the end of July and enjoyed it quite a bit. I've read Strout in the past but preferred this book because it is focused on one character (unlike Olive Kitteridge). Review to come! - MH


This is such a weird show to describe to people. It's funny but it's more dark than it is funny. It's about a brother-sister duo who live together after the sister gets a divorce. The sister's teenage daughter lives with them too, and they are all sort of navigating the world of dating while dealing with a lot of trauma from their childhood and past relationships, etc. There are four seasons on Netflix and I liked it but it wouldn't be a go-to recommendation for me. - MG

Tara Lynne Barr, Michaela Watkins and Tommy Dewey, the stars of Casual

Southern Charm

My brain is an absolute trash pile from the amount of reality television I've been watching, which includes 8 seasons of Bravo's Southern Charm in about 3 months. This has to be one of the worst shows on Bravo but the overlap with Summer House was getting to be too much for me to not watch it, and so here we are. It's about a weird group of friends that span from early twenties to like, fifties, in North Carolina just living lives of textbook white privilege. One of them still has an actual fucking butler. There are literally no other races on the show until the Black Lives Matter era where the show starts to erode on its own premise and throws in a few token diverse cast members to compensate and they start having all these cringe worthy on screen convos and "doing the work". Unfortunately, I'm sucked in now. - MG

I Love That for You S1

Starting this was a no brainer for me. I love a 30 minute dramedy and I love, love, love Molly Shannon. Unfortunately I didn't really like this. Spoiler ---- the main character fakes cancer for attention, and this is just too gross a concept for me. I also think I'm just out on Vanessa Bayer. - MG

Below Deck: Sailing Yacht

Scott and I have been blowing through Below Deck for the better part of the year and it's always been good but there is nothing, and I repeat, nothing, comparable to seasons 2 and 3 of Below Deck: Sailing Yacht. Daisy, Gary, and Colin (who I am in love with) bring something to the cast as a trio that none of the other seasons have had. I love that they party on the boat instead of out in town, and the drama and love triangles are next level. It's like going to a fun party every time you turn an episode on. I am obsessed and if the three of them aren't back for season 4 I don't know what I'll do... SKIP SEASON 1. - MG

the cast of Below Deck: Sailing Yacht S2 (the best season of the franchise)

90 Day FiancĂ©

I got a Discovery Plus subscription practically on the drive home from the hospital with my second baby because I have been waiting for what seems like years to watch this from the beginning. My baby is 6 weeks old and I have blown through most of the seasons so far. My brain is mush. It's very entertaining, and I mostly like it, but sometimes it's so sad and hard to watch because of these poor, poor people who just want love so bad they're blind to actual visa fraud... I always try to predict on episode 1 which couples will make it and which won't and I used to be very bad at it but now am almost batting 100. - MG

Irma Vep

I loved how unique and innovative this show was! Irma Vep is an HBO miniseries by Olivier Assayas that reflects on his 1996 film of the same name. The show stars Alicia Vikander (who I love) and is only eight episodes long. I would recommend checking out the movie first! - MH

Irma Vep
Irma Vep

The Rehearsal 

The Rehearsal was the most demented show I watched all summer. Ben is a MASSIVE fan of Nathan Fielder and he was super excited about this new six-episode HBO series. The premise is that Nathan helps people simulate an experience they are looking for so they can "practice" before it happens in real life. We cackled a lot and were sad when it ended. - MH

Westworld S4

Like everyone else still watching Westworld after the disaster of season three, my feelings about the show are complicated. Season four had a lot of ups and downs in terms of what I thought was well done, but I'm still committed to seeing this series eventually end. I really enjoyed listening to the Prestige TV Podcast on the Ringer Network where they summarized and theorized about each episode. Long live Ed Harris!! - MH


Physical S2

I felt kind of lukewarm on the first season of Physical, but I found myself really enjoying the second season! Rose Byrne plays a woman who is looking to create an aerobics empire (similar to Jane Fonda) in the 1980s. - MH

The Rescue

I'm late to this party but this is a great Jimmy Chin doc on Disney Plus about the Thai soccer players who got trapped in that cave a few years back. Ron Howard just made a scripted movie about this story that's on Prime now that I'm eager to watch as well called Thirteen Lives. It was a really good documentary with some crazy footage that I honestly can't believe parents allowed be included. - MG

Top Gun: Maverick

Obviously this was amazing. I liked the original Top Gun but I am not a Tom Cruise girl and I am a Miles Teller girl so the sequel was more for me. I felt like it had a really fun, smart script and everyone in it is just so hot. I need to know what Jennifer Connolly's skin care regimen is. We saw this at the drive-in for our third anniversary mid-June and it's STILL in theatres so, go see it if you haven't already. - MG

Tom Cruise and Jennifer Connolly in Top Gun: Maverick

Steel Magnolias

This is a Puterman family favourite. My parents, sister and I quote lines from this movie regularly and I got my sister an armadillo cake for her wedding. I made Meg watch it with me when she visited in July and it was a nice little flick for the two of us. Amazing casting. - MG


If you are looking for a good cry, here you have it. I basically watched this entire movie through tears. Stanley Tucci and Colin Firth play a gay couple where Tucci's character is suffering from early onset dementia. They are travelling around in an RV doing a farewell tour to their friends and family before he can't remember them anymore. It's SO good and SO sad. I loved them as a couple so much. - MG

Promising Young Woman

I just watched this recently and loved it. I don't really know what I'd call it because it's got comedy, romance, mystery, and crime. Carey Mulligan plays a sexual vigilante ruining the lives of people involved in the sexual assault of her friend. There is a great pharmacy dance scene to Paris Hilton's "Stars are Blind" that you either smile like a fool through or you're a liar. - MG

Carey Mulligan in Promising Young Woman

Bodies Bodies Bodies

I went to see this movie twice in theatres and it will almost certainly make my top 10 list at the end of the year! It's about a group of friends stuck in a mansion together during a hurricane and one-by-one they start to get picked off. I found the dialogue really funny and enjoyed all the "therapy-talk" that makes you roll your eyes into the back of your head. - MH 

Bodies Bodies Bodies


Ben and I got to see this on opening day all alone in recliner seats in Ontario. I got a kids popcorn pack and he got a gin and tonic and some tootsie pops ... quite the combo. Nope is Jordan Peele's newest movie and it is also certainly his least creepy. It's more of an alien action piece than a horror. - MH

Marcel the Shell With Shoes On

This was an extremely adorable movie about a little tiny shell (voice by Jenny Slate) living in an abandoned house with his grandmother. Slate and her then-husband used to release a ton of little short videos on YouTube featuring Marcel the Shell and then they finally expanded it into a feature film. I laughed a lot but also cried a lot at the end. This isn't normally my kind of movie, but it definitely won me over. We also got to see this at my favourite theatre The Hyland in London, ON! - MH


Ben and I rented this off of Apple and soaked it up for a Sunday flick. Watcher is a paranoid thriller in the vein of Rear Window starring Maika Monroe. I loved Monroe so much when I first saw her in It Follows and am always interested in whatever she puts out now. If you want something creepy but not scary, check this one out! - MH



One of my major blind spots is the Predator franchise, but that didn't seem to really impact my enjoyment of the prequel-like Prey. This movie is set in 1719 and follows a young indigenous woman as she learns to stalk and hunt prey. The tagline of the movie pretty much sums it up "They hunt to live. It lives to hunt." Another good Sunday flick! - MH 

Chatty Broads Episode 398: Being an ~Adult~ Entertainer & Raising a Family with Lena the Plug

I've told a ton of people about this podcast because I found it so, so interesting. Bekah and Jess from Chatty Broads have Lena the Plug, a porn star, on their pod and she talks about her upbringing, getting into porn, being a mom who does porn, and doing porn with her husband (also a porn star). It was just so fascinating. You can listen here. - MG

The Deep Dive: KULTDASHIANS with Casey Wilson

I love The Deep Dive with Jessica St. Clair and June Diane Raphael but in this episode Jess is absent and Casey Wilson, who co-hosts Bitch Sesh, a Housewives podcast, joins June to talk about the Kardashians. June, Casey and myself all love the Kardashians and I was cracking up this entire pod listening to their takes on the family. It's mostly just a Kourtney rip sesh which is fine by me because I hate Kourtney. The second half of this moves into stuff about Teal Swan and I stopped listening but if you enjoy the Kardashians you need to listen to the first half of this. You can listen here. - MG

The Watch

This is one of the podcasts I listen to twice a week, but I wanted to recommend their "Mid-2022 Top 10 Shows" episode. This is a great way to keep up on any shows you haven't checked out yet and to re-prioritize your list. After listening, my must-watches are probably We Own This City and The Bear. - MH

The Prestige TV Podcast: Westworld

I love listening to recap podcasts when I am super invested in a show. I love Westworld but more than half the time I feel like I have no idea what's happening. This is where the companion podcast really works for me. I love Danny Heifetz and how critical he is of the writers. His passion and hysteria keep me laughing at a show that takes itself way too seriously. - MH 

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