Mara's Ten Amazing Viewing Suggestions for Stir-Crazy Social Distancers

Practicing social distancing, self-isolation, or quarantine? Even if you’re already used to holing up and doing your own thing, these uncertain times are having the best of us feeling a little stir crazy. When the housework is done, and you’ve been as productive as you can be (or want to be), what now?  Take a look at my list of top 10 movies and shows to watch while you’re at home, “waiting for this whole thing to blow over”!

Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home

It’s hard to just pick one movie from the Star Trek franchise.  As a Trekkie, there’s something I enjoy about all of them. But on these types of days, Voyage Home is the one I gravitate to.  It’s the most light-hearted of the series, and while it’s not the most hysterical movie you will ever see, it radiates good humor. With Spock himself, Leonard Nimoy as director, you can tell that they all had a blast making this one.  

Seen it too many times? Try: Star Trek V: The Final Frontier. This one isn’t as much of a fan favorite as IV, but has some classic cast moments that really pay off for fans. 

Saved By The Bell

This series has been a favorite of mine since it originally aired Saturday mornings in the '90s.  I obsessively watched every episode, had a small photo of Mark Paul Gosselaar on the corner of my desk, and I even read a Saved By the Bell original novel. I don’t think I ever tired of the show’s sheer and brazen absurdity and I likely never will. I put this show on when I’m bored or having a sick day to let out all my harsh judgments. Virtually every decision by every character in this show is morally questionable or just plain illogical.  Things like smoking pot and taking caffeine pills explode into epic and devastating proportions, while things like misogyny, stalking, other criminal behavior, and eating disorders are fodder for corny jokes. And did I mention the fashion? And the hair? There’s a lot going on here. The show has virtually no continuity, so just pop on any episode and you’re good to go. SBTB also has tons of content. There are four seasons of the original show, two movie-length specials, and the College years spin off. Get caught up before the new reboot starts!

Seen it too many times? Try: Weird Science TV series. This often forgotten about television series is better than the original movie it’s based on. Essentially, a Sci-Fi/Fantasy “monster-of-the-week” 90s teen comedy, this show is highly underrated and under-talked-about. 

Evil Dead II/Army of Darkness

What can I say about the Evil Dead Trilogy that hasn’t been said before? My personal favorite is the sequel and I always love to follow it up with Army of Darkness for the double feature. Don’t get me wrong, I dig the original- it’s where it all started. But the humor in these two make them more enjoyable. If you’ve seen these, you know what I mean and if you haven't, what are you waiting for?! Go check ‘em out. 

Seen it too many times? Try: Crimewave. The underrated movie Sam Raimi and co. made after Evil Dead 2. Shot in Detroit, culminating with a car chase on the Belle Isle Bridge, this is one that all Detroit-area natives and Sam Raimi fans need to see.  If you like his brand of Three Stooges-type comedy, you’ll enjoy this.

Serial Mom

As one of John Waters most fervent fans, I can’t recommend his filmography enough, so to choose one, like the Star Trek movies, is tough.  Serial Mom, however, is perhaps the most joyous and unapologetic movie John Waters has ever made. He has mentioned this was his own mother’s favorite movie of his, and I think it’s his quintessential masterpiece. From the genius casting of Kathleen Turner as the titular character, to the hilarious and at times ludicrous dialogue, this movie cures boredom.  

Seen it too many times? Try: A Dirty Shame. This is the last movie John Waters made and it’s not talked about enough! It’s just as good as the older ones. 

Wayne’s World

If you’re in the mood for another comedy- but want to spare the guts, go for the classic SNL skit turned classic movie, Wayne’s World.  Whenever I’m bored, sick, had a bad day- you name it- this movie hits the spot. My ultimate comfort movie, and probably the most re-watchable movie of all time. Just an all around feel-good buddy comedy.

Seen it too many times? Try: Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion. One of the only female-centric buddy comedies! Another lighthearted movie with fun characters, rewatchability, and added 80s nostalgia. 

Batman: The TV Series

Who doesn’t want to watch adults run around in spandex and act a fool? This show is known for its camp value and super 60s aesthetic and it never lets down. Pick your favorite villain and watch any episode of this show. The zany two-parters make the time really go by. 

Seen it too many times? Try: Wonder Woman TV Series. Kind of more of the same. But Wonder Woman. 


It’s my opinion that this is one of the best movies ever made. Beetlejuice is totally original and unique, with brilliant performances, and a fun soundtrack. I never tire of this one. The mix of morbidity and humor always lifts my spirits (no pun intended). 

Seen it too many times? Not possible. 

Betty Boop Cartoons

These animated shorts from the 1930s are bizarre to say the least. There are tons, and of course, the best ones are the Pre-Hays Code ones.  Put these on when your attention span is low, and logical narratives have become tiresome. 

Ed Wood

Even if you’re not a fan of Ed Wood’s unique brand of what some would call “so bad it’s good” film-making, this biopic is a feel good movie about making your dreams come true, full of colorful and lovable characters. Sadly, the true story, as told through interviews in the book, “Nightmares of Ecstasy: The Life and Art of Edward D. Wood”, is much more grim.  Tim Burton gives Ed Wood the sensitive treatment he always deserved.

Seen it too many times? Try: any of Ed Woods actual films. If those aren’t your cup of tea, try My Name is Dolemite, another biopic about a misfit filmmaker, written by the same screenwriter. 

Danzig music videos:

Until You Call on the Dark, Mother, Am I Demon, Killer Wolf, Crawl Across Your Killing Floor, How The Gods Kill...just to name a few. 

Not only are these amazing songs, but each video has that moody Danzig aesthetic: black and white, a lot of shadows, and people wearing hoods and masks, usually based on horror movies, film noir, and manga.

Don’t like Danzig? Try: your favorite band or musician’s music videos! Chances are they have tons of them and you haven’t checked them out in a while. 

-Mara Powell