First I’d like to welcome everyone to my newest addition to Hashtag Avenue, All Queued Up! If you couldn’t guess my name is Kylie and I’m a professional Netflix binger. I have a degree, and I’d show you, but I don’t have time for that.

So basically what this segment will include is thoughts on what I’m currently binging, tips on how to become a champion binger, and suggestions on what to watch – because we all know that Netflix doesn’t give the greatest suggestions. So hopefully this is something that will interest you, if not that’s okay, but if it does then Hi nice to meet you 🙂

Also take note that I will never call my queue a “list”… I’m still bitter with Netflix for changing that and no I don’t want to talk about it. So let’s get started.

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First up is Degrassi Next Class! I’m splitting this one into two parts, since season 1 is only 10 episodes. So today I’ll talk about episodes 1-5. There may be some spoilers ahead, I’m not here to tell you all the juicy secrets of this generation at Degrassi, but if we’re going to have a serious chat about the show some things are going to slip. You’ve been warned.

So last night I was playing menu hero as I usually do, I’ve watched so much Netflix that finding new good things to watch is like trying to find that sock you lost last week in the dryer.. so menu hero is basically just me browsing the menu for the gazillionth time even though I know what’s there. I put Degrassi Next Class in my queue when it first got uploaded, but my JT loving heart couldn’t watch it  right away. Last night I changed my mind and went for it because honestly I just couldn’t stay away. Plus, it was bought by Netflix and they have NOT steared me wrong yet – besides House of Cards but that’s just because it’s not my cup of tea, it’s a good show and I’ll admit it. The husband loves it, I watch it with him when I’m ready to go to sleep… So Degrassi it was. Then I had the sudden realization. I’m fucking old.

So if you don’t know the history behind Degrassi here’s a brief lesson. From 1979-1986 The Kids of Degrassi Street aired in Canada. I’ve never seen it, I’m sure it’s fantastic. Then from 1987-1989 (happy birthday me) Degrassi Junior High had a good run. Again, never saw it, I’m sure it rocked. Keep on going and we have Degrassi High from 1989-1991. Copy and paste, I never saw it, blah blah. Then my life changed in 2001 when a Canadian teen drama made it’s way into my heart, that’s right, I’m talking about Degrassi the Next Generation. I can go on for hours about this series of perfection, but I won’t, because that wouldn’t be a brief lesson. So in short, it was amazing. It was later re-named Degrassi and now for it’s 15th season Netflix has renamed it yet again Degrassi Next Class. Ta-dah!

So last night I binged episodes 1-5, which was like child’s play. These episodes are only 24 minutes long, I easily could’ve had the whole season done, but I was excited about this segment so I taught myself a little control.

When episode one starts, I wasn’t sure whether the opening line was genius or cringe worthy. “You know how Drake says ‘started from the bottom now we’re here'” … now if you don’t know why this is so important, well then you obviously didn’t watch Degrassi Next Gen, because if you had then you would know of a little Canadian boy named Jimmy Brooks aka Aubrey Graham aka Drake. Yes Drake’s real name is Aubrey and I would appreciate if you called him that, because I do. So this nod to Jimmy/Aubrey/Drake took me a moment to process and ultimately come to the conclusion that I love the reference and I applaud the writers.

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Another note to point out, is that this show was meant for us. Their episode titles are all hashtags!

#BootyCall

#NoFilter

#YesMeansYes

#NotOkay

#ButThatsNoneOfMyBusiness

And just from the ep titles alone I’m sure you can figure out that this show deals with the tough issues of today’s youth. I’m not being sarcastic here, it really does. One thing about Degrassi is that it’s always been a heavy show. Drugs, sex, rape, disease, death, mental health, sexual orientation, and just about everything else REAL LIFE deals with. So it’s no surprise that Next Class is going to be bringing up some of today’s issues; gender, feminism, more sex, body positivity, more sexual orientation, and still all of the other things listed above. *A quick disclaimer: I’m not going to be talking about my own opinions on today’s issues as a society, only because that is not what this segment is about. I’m here to be super chill and talk Netflix amongst friends. And no I will not come over for some Netflix and chill unless we are actually going to be watching Netflix and you’re buying the pizza!*

But the point is, Degrassi takes real issues and brings them to light in a way that’s entertaining and a learning experience. So how about a quick ep breakdown?

#BootyCall – In episode one we get a glimpse at each of the characters real quick. Maya is the rocker with an insecure boyfriend, Tristan is everyone’s gay best friend who’s still heartbroken after his boyfriend left him for a girl, Zoe knows she has a crush on Grace, but doesn’t know if Grace is into girls… Shay literally stuff cotton padding down her pants to enhance her ASSets. So you know, a typical day at High School.

#NoFilter – We get some Catfishing in this ep when Frankie is feeling down and her friends don’t know how else to get her to talk… so they make a fake account online as a boy and have poor Frankie spill her heart out, yeah that’s cool right? Miles catches his own parents doing the deed, only his parents are supposed to be separated, and Zoe is trying to get closer to Grace, but she uncovers something awful that no one wants to have happen to their friends.

#YesMeansYes – Maya’s boyfriend, Zig, is trying to keep her from leaving him for another guy… so his answer is to try and pressure her into sex. Yeah cause that’s what we all want. Miles starts doing prescription drugs from his new friend Esme, and little bro Hunter is just having a real tough time in basketball so he fights to get a Gamer Club set up at the school. Spoiler alert, it works and Degrassi is now officially the coolest High School ever and I want to go.

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#NotOkay – In this one Maya is start to learn that some men are dicks, and they are especially dicks to young women. Tristan goes on a date with a grade 10 – which is apparently scandalous cause Tristan in a grade 11! #CraddleRobbing… – and Shay struggles with the idea of bringing a boy home to meet her parents.

#ButThatsNoneOfMybusiness – Remember when Maya was like “man, guys kinda suck…” well in episode 5 she gets introduced to the world of feminism. This was a good episode because it teaches the young girls out there that feminism isn’t about hating men but rather a strive for equality. This ep also touches on masturbation among young women and that is SO IMPORTANT! We always see the topic talked about on tv and in movies for young men, but never girls, and I love love love that they touched on this because when I was that age I was so embarrassed by it, and confused, but it doesn’t have to be like that! It’s perfectly normal, and personally I think healthy.

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So that’s a breakdown of the eps! So far my personal fave characters are Shay, Tristan, Miles and Lola. But I haven’t gotten to know all of them as well as I want to just yet.

Time to return to the binge, and I’ll see y’all in part 2! Hope you enjoyed this segment, if there’s anything you think you’d like to see more or less of, let me know in the comments below! Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter where I’ll tweet now and again during my binges, and maybe some sweet sweet Netflix suggestions as well. Binge on my friends!

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