Saturday, 7 April 2018

Love Simon Review

*Disclaimer: this post doesn't have any spoilers or information that isn't accessible online already.
I was very lucky to see Love Simon early in Cineworld as a Secret Unlimited Screening. This was a really nice surprise as there was zero information about the film before screening, and I wanted to watch this film anyway!

Myself and my boyfriend missed a small fraction of the beginning of the film, so for the first ten minutes or so I wasn't sure what film I was watching, until it was revealed that Simon is gay. Love Simon is about a guy in high school who is secretly gay, he fantasises about a new homosexual lifestyle when he will move away to college to be openly gay. He doesn't plan on telling anyone until he reads on an anonymous website that there's another closeted gay guy at school.

The film then turns into this mystery-love story, which keeps the audience trying to guess who the mysterious gay guy is. It uses hilarious and heartfelt fantasy scenes to display what's going on in Simon's head. I love that Nick Robinson who plays Simon just looks like a regular guy, that the filmmakers haven't portrayed him as a "stereotypical" gay guy - not that there is a stereotype, it's just that previous films can have certain depictions of gay characters.


Whilst watching Love Simon, I wondered why is there only now a film aimed at young adults with a gay main character hitting mainstream cinemas? It's 2018? It feels like this film should've come out years ago. From my perspective gay characters are usually the protagonists "gay best friend", this is probably the first one I've watched where they are the main character. And I love it.

I love that this was chosen for the secret screening, as people of all ages and with different film preferences would've been drawn in for this. They potentially might not have seen any publicity for this film. I don't think anyone walked out of my screening, but I read online that some people did. Fair enough it's not for everybody, but you could at least sit down and see how the film pans out. I also read that whilst a lot of people said they wouldn't have chosen to watch the film, they actually loved it. My boyfriend really loved this film - and he's not a fan of young romantic comedies!

How cool is this badge I picked up from Cineworld?!
There's a short clip on YouTube you can watch of one of the funny scenes, where some of the characters come out as straight to their parents. It's a fantasy scene, but it's completely relevant as it's asking why is straight the default? I think when families bombard you with questions like "so when are you going to get a girlfriend/boyfriend?" (delete as appropriate) We could instead change it to "so are you interested in anybody?" or "are you in a relationship?". These are just brief examples I've thought of, but my point is why are we assuming the sexual orientation of other people? I remember getting these loaded questions when I was younger - I am straight, so it never offended me. It must be hard for those wanting to come out to family and friends if they've been on the receiving end of straight orientated questions.

I think Love Simon can open up a discussion amongst people of all ages, but most all of it's a really enjoyable film. The film has a really good structure to tell the story, and even though it's been two weeks since I first saw it, it's still on my mind and I will have to see it again.

I definitely recommend this film to watch, as it'll have you laughing and nearly crying at the same time, you get to go on a journey with Simon. Love Simon is out in cinemas NOW.

Let me know your thoughts!

Love Saffron x
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Sunday, 1 April 2018

Happy Third Birthday To My Blog

It was my blog's third birthday this week! Happy Birthday! But that doesn't mean I've only been blogging for three years. I first starting writing on an older blog EIGHT YEARS AGO. That's kind of crazy.

This past year has been amazing. I put so much more effort into my writing, the presentation of my blog, I started enrolling my boyfriend Connor Cleary for photo shoots, I bought a blog template and personalised domain. I'm so happy with my little corner of the interwebs to write what I want.

In celebration of my blogs birthday, I wanted to talk about the three best things that have happened to me since starting this blog.


~ My Mental Health

This blog didn't start out as a lifestyle and mental health blog. I started it mainly to look at the beauty industry, and my take on it. I didn't know much about beauty ~ I still don't. But I'm glad that I've been able to use my blog as a platform to inform others about anxiety and depression, and it's been a good release for me as well.

By writing about my experiences I managed to find others around me who felt the same. I didn't feel so alone, and it was good to have other people around who understood what I was going through. I don't know how I would've got through the worst of my mental health without my blog.

~ Getting Invited to Events

I made a bath play-doh pumpkin at the Lush Halloween event
Every Blogger's dream is to go to swanky events for brands, and get an exclusive look at products and post tonnes of Instagram stories, and enough Boomerangs to make you feel queasy! I couldn't believe it when I started getting brands reaching out to ME?! My first event I sought out myself and asked to be on the guest list as the event was made public. Then once you've made a bond with that company, they will usually ask you back ~ which is amazing!

So far I've been to Lush events, The Body Shop events, opening night of Pryzm night club with the help of Pompey Bloggers, a complimentary meal with Beefeater, and I've got plenty more upcoming events to share with you all!

~ Networking

L-R Me, Charlie, Charlie's partner and Mike at Pryzm
I say networking like it's really formal, but actually I mean all of the friends I've made over the internet. I never would've imagined meeting up with people via Twitter, but these are the people I speak to on a regular basis and we're all really supportive of our work. It's just lovely, and I'm so grateful for meeting some of my internet friends in real life!

They definitely help motivate me, if I didn't have my friends I'm not sure how far I'd have gotten. Don't get me wrong, I love writing just for me, but I want people to read my posts and interact and bounce off of my ideas. It's always great to have people to proof read risky posts!

Please check out their blogs! Mike, Sophie L, Charlie, Alanna, Sophie E, Poppy and James to name a few.

~

I'm really proud of what I've accomplished so far. I've even had my first sponsored post with Adorli, but my blog is still purely my hobby. I mean if it did become something I could do full time, I'd be more than happy to write for a living. My younger self would be ecstatic!

I'm going to keep growing my blog and my content, as I've got plenty of ideas and I still want to return to making YouTube videos as well.

One thing I have learned about blogging and social media is that it's really beneficial to engage with other bloggers, by commenting on others posts it starts a conversation and gets you more involved with the "community". This also can encourage others to engage with your content as well, the blogging world isn't always "if you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours". My mantra is just to be nice to people in the real world and online, as I believe in good karma and I like to be a nice person.

I hope you liked my little blog birthday post! Let me know some of the things you're proud of/have achieved in the comments.

Love Saffron x
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Saturday, 31 March 2018

Seven Thoughts on The Greatest Showman

*Disclaimer ~ There won't be any spoilers in this post.

I hadn't actually seen a lot of the publicity for The Greatest Showman, or a lot of trailers (I always find trailers give too much away these days - but this is an issue for another day). It sounds a bit stupid, but I didn't really know it was going to be a proper musical, which isn't an issue for me as I LOVE musicals. I had heard some of the songs from the soundtrack previously, and loved them - but I just thought maybe it was a background song...


Anyways, I really wanted to see this film but I didn't know anyone who wanted to go. On my bucket list, I wrote that I wanted to go to the cinema by myself. I thought what better time to go and see The Greatest Showman?


- Love the casting, except the actress for Queen Victoria I just didn't think she suited it - sorry. Zac Efron has been a celebrity crush for most of my teenage years and adulthood, Zendaya is just a beautiful human being and everyone loves Hugh Jackman.

- I had goosebumps for most of the film, I felt like I was watching a real time musical in a theatre. If you've gone to a theatre before I'm sure you'll know what I'm talking about? You feel elevated and joyous throughout the performance and leave the show with a stupidly big smile on your face. The Greatest Showman did that for me.

- I love the diversity of the casting, and the fact that the film tries to address the issues in society with regards to people just being different from the norm, or having a different skin colour. I think they did a really good job at representing this and giving it a family feel with the characters supporting each other.

Keala Settle is absolutely incredible, she needs all of the credit
- Throughout watching TGS I kept wondering if it was based on true events, when I got home I started doing some research. P.T Barnum was a real person, and did create the first circus. He found people from all kinds of backgrounds either with talents or with distinguished looks. But he was very cruel to his performers and animals. Apparently he locked one of the performers in a cage with monkeys. There's a few points in the film where you see elephants and I was concerned if they were real, but they were all CGI ~ it didn't address animal cruelty in the circus in the film, but it's still an important issue today.

- The film is a very abstract representation of the real P.T Barnum, they've taken the core story and turned it into a positive family friendly musical. They pose Barnum as a man who's come from an under privileged background who wants to make a name for himself, and be successful for his family. He creates the greatest show on earth. Finds people who have been shunned by society, they become a family, stick up for each other whilst having careers and a home.

- The soundtrack is incredible. I didn't think too much of 'This Is Me' before I saw the film, once I'd seen it the song had a whole new meaning to me. I saw TGS early February and I listen to the soundtrack at least two to three times a week.

- The Greatest Showman came out in cinemas in the UK on Boxing Day 2017. It's still having regular showings now (at least they are in my local Cineworld). I'm certain that show's it's success and popularity, I've heard some people have gone back to watch it again and again! I'd love to see it again soon if I can. When it gets released on DVD I will be sure to watch it on repeat.

My lovely blogger friend Sophie has an amazing in depth post about 
The Greatest Showman, I loved reading it as it's so insightful into the real P.T Barnum.


I hope you enjoyed my little thoughts post on The Greatest Showman, as previously mentioned the film is still screening here in the UK. If you haven't seen it yet, I recommend that you do! I had such an enjoyable experience and I love anything that can distract me and cheer me up from the daily grind.

Let me know your thoughts below!

Love Saffron x

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Monday, 19 March 2018

My Swag | Body Shop VIP Event


 As promised from my Body Shop event post here's my haul from the evening! Above are the items that I purchased off my own back. I thought it would be rude not to indulge in all of the amazing Body Shop products whilst I was there!


A lot of the products that were out at Christmas; Vanilla Chai, Frosted Plum and Frosted Berries are largely discounted at the moment! I needed to stock up on Vanilla Chai as I am hooked. One of the things I love about TBS products are how thick the substances are, I find it's so much nicer on my skin and the scent sticks around longer. Plus the Christmas packaging is too cute.


An example of the Cruelty Free International logos appearing on TBS products across their ranges! 


If you haven't tried out these bad boys, you're missing out! These bath bombs and bubble bars are not even the size of golf balls (which makes them great for storing), chuck out a lot of colour, bubbles and their scent considering their size. There were four scents available in the Chichester store: Mango, Green Tea, Coconut and Pink Grapefruit.



I've been eyeing up the Vanilla Body Mist for some time now, I have a fairly large collection of body mists and perfumes already, alas I did not have this. If you haven't noticed I'm a huge vanilla fan, I would have everything scented vanilla if I could! I can't wait to whip this baby out and blow people away.




At the Christmas event it was revealed that TBS were working with House of Holland to create some make up and beauty products. I really wanted this palette but I felt I couldn't justify it at the time, plus I have almost every colour of TBS eye shadow crayons...I don't have an addiction. When I saw the palette was reduced and still available to purchase it was the first item that went into my basket! Two of the sections are for eye shadow, one for cheeks and one for lips. I love the idea of combining different sections of make up in the same palette to save working from numerous ones. It's safe to say this is the first eye shadow palette I'll be reaching for when I do my make up next!


I've been meaning to pick up one of these tote bags for ages. I am beyond happy that I am now the owner of a Forever Against Animal Testing Bag, and I can't wait to flaunt it everywhere!



Above are the products I got given kindly by the staff in the Chichester branch. Yes, that is a whole gift set of five different scented body butters. I couldn't believe it either! We also got given a £15 off at Wagamama's! I'm looking forward to cashing that in.



 In this little bag of goodies are some samples of new products coming out!




When I took this out of the bag, I thought it was so cute! I'm hoping I can take my mum to a store soon! I'm sure she'll love it.



I'm most excited to try the shampoo, charcoal mask, tea tree night mask and the camomile balm which melts off make up! When I try them out I'll be sure to do a little review on here or on my Instagram story.

I just want to thank everyone at the Chichester Body Shop one more time (or forever, I haven't decided yet), for all of the goodies you gave us and for a lovely customer service. It's honestly such a nice change of pace to meet people working in retail who LOVE their job and want to help their customers. It feels like we're more friends than customer/employee. And thank you again to James for organising it all, you do a fab job!

Let me know if you like the look of these products!

Love Saffron x

P.S if you haven't already please sign the petition to ban animal testing here.


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Sunday, 18 March 2018

Becoming a Bunny Blogger | Body Shop VIP Event

I was so happy to see that The Body Shop in Chichester were hosting another Blogger event! I absolutely loved the last one (you can read about the event here, and my haul here).

Since the last event The Body Shop has the Cruelty Free International Leaping Bunny logo rolling out across it's products. This is very exciting to see, as the Leaping Bunny is the only internationally recognised logo for cruelty free products. There are other campaigns to ban animal testing but only certain logos are legitimate.

The lovely staff at TBS asked us to share our posts and photos as #BunnyBloggers. Of which I'm beyond happy to tag my posts etc, as I'm really passionate about cruelty free beauty and other everyday products.





When we arrived we had a choice of soft drinks or prosecco, we were able to have a nose at any new products and items in the sale (almost everything is in the sale, you should check it out here). After all the bloggers arrived the lovely staff at Chichester introduce themselves AND the staff from Wagamama's who were feeding us tasty vegan treats! They then took turns to talk us through new products and try a few ourselves, and told us more information about all of the good work that The Body Shop are doing.

Over half of their products are now vegan, the one's that aren't are those that contain by products of animals or insects, such as beeswax and shellac. All of their products are vegetarian.

They are trying to get 8 MILLION signatures to stop animal testing. So far they have over 4 million, but they need 4 million more by this summer! Please have a look at The Body Shop website there's so much information on the ban against animal testing. Apparently for one ingredient to be "tested" 1,400 animals are used. Even if there were no side effects for that animal it gets put down. This is for just ONE INGREDIENT. Not per product. Think about that for a bit.


Now onto the fun stuff!

These are some of the products I loved the look or smell of:


These hand sanitisers smell amazing and come in cute sizes which make them easy to carry around when you need them.




I spotted some body butters that were new to me, the Honeymania and Piñita Colada ones smelled incredible!


I love shiny things, and I saw three shiny lip liquids. There's this stunning pink/purple one, a yellow one and I think there was a darker one as well. Unfortunately I can't find these on the website but have a look in a store near you! They are a sort of holographic unicorn range, and I love it.



I was not aware you could get body butters in pots this big! When I run out of my current body butter/moisturiser collection I'm going to pick up some of these bad boys!

My lovely vegan blogger friend Sophie and I promoting Forever Against Animal Testing
When your friend makes you laugh because she knows you want as many blog photos
Me and my amazing friend Lily
Me and James the Duty Manager of the Chichester store, who's a superstar by the way
Lots of selfie-able content, I'm making a collection of TBS staff selfies 😂 This is with Max and he knows the rules of how to take a selfie!


At the last event there were lots of games to win prizes (and if you know me you'll know I love winning). They brought back the elusive Hook A Duck, of which you are blind folded and have to hook a duck which has to be an odd number to win. You have to rely on the staff and your friends to guide you as it's actually really hard! Shout out to my friend Lily and Kensey (TBS staff member with flawless make up) for helping me win Vitamin E moisture cream!




I love The Body Shop events, there's so much thought gone into each one and the staff are just so amazing and friendly. I'm going to do a separate blog post on my swag I bought from the event soon, so keep an eye out for that post!

Also a huge shout out to James for inviting all of us to the event and looking after us so well, thank you so much! I look forward to the next one. It's always lovely to see my fellow internet friends Mike and Charlie, and some new faces as well.

Let me know your favourite TBS products or what you've got your eye on in the comments below!

Love Saffron x


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Saturday, 10 March 2018

Being a Woman in the TV & Film Industry | International Women's Day

Since my International Women's Post last year a lot has happened. Especially in the film industry.

Filming/sound recording at Bestival 2016
And the thing is, I wasn't surprised when all of these allegations and accusations came out. Men in a position of power taking advantage of women beneath them. It's a tale as old as time.

#MeToo and #TimesUp has been making such a powerful impact. I love that at the film awards ceremony's both women and men were trying to make a stand. To give a voice to those who don't have one.

It's hard to see the industry you idolise and want to work for in a bad light. I grew up with a huge love and respect for film. Aside from all of the horrible news that has come from this, there has been a lot of good.

Victims coming forward and investigations opening, celebrities and important people addressing the situation and calling for action. In some of the cases the accused are actually taking responsibility, although it is only a few.

Reading with the actors from my short film 'Burgundy' where I was the Producer
International Women's Day is here to address the inequalities of women all over the world, and in all different kinds of careers.

I can't vouch for the women in other countries, or women in different careers. But I feel that I can vouch for women in TV and Film. I'm aware I'm not successful in this industry (yet) but if I've spotted inequality and unfairness already, that's saying something.

Over a year ago I worked on an independent feature film. Everything seemed normal and fine at first. Then I began to realise that all of the women associated with the film worked in the production office or in hair and make up. There were only men on set (director, first assistant director, third assistant director, director of photography, camera assistants, both sound guys, script supervisor etc). Now I'm not saying there is an issue with that, I'm glad that the women were in important roles for the film. It is stereotypical that women are in organisational roles, not just in TV and Film.

But, it was also my treatment on this film. I know I was just a menial runner, but I worked hard. I was working twelve hour days for three weeks alongside my part time job. I was on this film as work experience as I was still in education. I put so much effort into trying to do a good job for the film, I didn't want to let anyone down and I wanted to make a good impression. On a few occasions I was looked down upon, by the actors, crew and investors who came to visit.

Unfortunately, I've become accustomed to this treatment throughout my life. I usually just brush it off because I know who I am and the hard work I put in. However, after a while it starts to eat away at you. People thinking you're a slave, do this do that, with no politeness or even acknowledging that I'm a human being.

Discussing the day's shoot with the lead actress from 'Burgundy' on set
In my office currently I am the only female colleague out of nine of us. I don't think it was intended that way, I think it's the experience and confidence of applicants. Last year I had to re-apply for my job as the contract renews each year, but I was up with the chance to be promoted. After being bruised and battered from university I wanted to pull myself together and give everything I had. Luckily, I answered all of the questions well and was granted the promotion.

I feel like I have to work extra hard to prove myself in my career. When I was at university I would tend to do this stupid thing and not put myself forward for things, and play dumb. When I was around male peers or lecturers I could feel their judgement and I unwillingly proved them right. They thought I was just a girl wasting my time on a film course, with no hopes of becoming successful because I'm not a man. No one ever said these exact words to me, but I felt it.

For one of my projects at university I needed to research women in the role I aspire to be in. I felt guilty that I couldn't name very many female film producers off of the top of my head. But I can name countless male directors ~ I'm aware producers don't get the same publicity as directors, but again I couldn't name very many female directors either. There are plenty of female directors and producers you just don't hear about them enough. I was nearly brought to tears when watching the end credits of the recent Beauty and the Beast adaptation. The first female credit that rolled was for editing, below all of the "important" male roles. I was fuming, as Belle's character and Emma Watson both empower women...but this message didn't make it in the creation of the film?

I'd love to hear from more of you about your own experiences in any career about your treatment by colleagues or management.
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Monday, 5 March 2018

What I've Been Watching | January

I've been planning this blog series for quite a while now. I'm a huge fan of Netflix, and myself and Connor have Cineworld Unlimited Cards, so we often go to the cinema. I personally love recommendations of things to watch, so I thought I'd talk a bit about What I've Been Watching this month.

Friends


Considering all ten seasons were released on Netflix on New Years Day, there's no surprise I've basically been watching Friends all. The. Time. I'm enjoying it almost as if I were watching the series for the first time instead of the 99999999th time. I'm thinking of doing a little post about reasons why I still love Friends, as there's some controversy going around. Let me know what you think in the comments!

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️- It'll always be there for me

Grimm (Season 6)


I have a love/hate relationship with Grimm. I love the first three series (I think), and then the storylines became absolutely mental and I didn't like it. I stopped watching it for a year or so, then caught an episode that Connor's mum was watching (the penultimate one of Season 6). When the recent series was released on Netflix, I thought I'd give it another try, as I am attached to the characters and I was curious to see where it goes. I'm glad I've finished the series, but I also feel like I will never get that time back. I don't understand the ending to it AT ALL. Grimm, what are you playing at??

⭐️⭐️- How powerful can a stick be?

Victoria


I didn't get a chance to catch this on ITV, and I've been loving The Crown and I quite like Jenna Coleman. I basically watched the first series over a couple of days. I was addicted. The portrayal of Victoria and Albert was so adorable and romantic. I did not start to belt out the Gloriana theme tune every time it played...I learned a lot considering I'm not mad about the Monarchy, I just love films and television shows about them. I now need the next series! Please Netflix??

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️- More of Victoria and Albert's romance please.

How To Get Away With Murder (Season 3 and 4)


I. Love. This. Show. I've been hooked since I first watched it at university. I love Viola Davies, she is a queen. The way they mix the present and the future makes me binge watch each series as I HAVE TO KNOW what happened. I'm a huge lover of crime dramas, I love trying to figure out who did it, or who died. Although, I did think they were going to end it at Season 3, and I'm not quite sure where they are going with it in Season 4, but I'm holding on.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️- Pass the popcorn

Black Mirror (Series 3 and 4)


This series is absolutely incredible. When Connor recommended it to me when it was on TV several years ago, I couldn't believe how relatable the episodes are to real life. Even though it's science fiction, I feel like Charlie Brooker has analysed human behaviour and society, dissected the evil that's already there, then twisted it into futuristic fictional drama. Some episodes are centered around technology; like implants, virtual reality, a world where you get jobs, houses etc based on the amount of stars your peers give you for photos/your personality. But, some display just how brutal society is, by blackmailing the prime minister or people through your webcam. It is amazing, but I do warn you that some episodes can be tough to watch, especially the first one of the first series.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️- Let's not bring these stories to life...

Riverdale (Season 2)


I loved the first season of Riverdale, but I feel like they are losing me now. I have no idea where it's going or why. I love the cinematography and the neon colours, and how it looks like it should be set in the 1950's but it is actually present day. In the second series, they wrap up one of the storylines and we're now just watching some of the characters unravel? For what reason??

⭐️⭐️ - Archie's changing ginger hair colour is infuriating

The Crown


I was hooked on the first series, but I'm finding I'm not watching the second series at the same pace. I'll get there, as previously mentioned I love learning about the royals so I will stick with it! Clare Foy's portrayal of the Queen is really good, I barely even recognise Matt Smith as Prince Charles! He does such a good job of capturing his essence.

⭐️⭐️⭐️ - More corgis please

The Post


I've heard some reviews that people don't like The Post. I really enjoyed it, I was fascinated by how the American press worked and I do love a film with Tom Hanks in it. I also loved the portrayal of women in the 1970's, especially the response to a female publisher. The film is set in America, where the Vietnam war is still ongoing. "When American military analyst, Daniel Ellsberg, realizes to his disgust the depths of the US government's deceptions about the futility of the Vietnam War, he takes action by copying top-secret documents that would become the Pentagon Papers". (Imdb)

I'm really in love with factual films at the moment, I enjoying learning more about the world's history!


⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ - The lead up to President Nixon's tapes being released

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri 


This. Film. Was. Incredible. I loved the black comedy writing, a lot of the character's dialogue was so brutal, but amazing. It's no wonder this film smashed the awards season this year! 100% recommend seeing this, although I do warn you of some gory scenes if you're a bit squeamish. Frances McDormand's performance was really good, I loved her as the protagonist.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ - ...And still no arrests?

Hook


I feel ashamed to say I've only just seen Hook. I must've been living under a rock because everyone else has seen it! I loved the animation of Peter Pan and absolutely worshiped the live action version growing up...I had a huge crush on Jeremy Sumpter, who plays Pan. I feel my childhood was deprived of Robin Williams and only as an adult am I appreciating his work. Although, I feel that watching Hook as a twenty two year old in 2018 was a bad call. The filmmaking is completely ancient! I know I was a film student so I tend to over analyse, but come on! Some of the shots just didn't make sense? Aside from the cinematography, it was an interesting portrayal of a live action grown up Peter Pan.

⭐️⭐️ - Since when was Skrillex available in 1991? Bangerang.

The End of the F***ing World


I'm not even going to lie, I watched all of this series in one evening. No regrets. I knew I had to binge watch this series and it felt so good. Alex Lawther plays James; a teenager with a tendency to kill animals. He decides he's ready for something bigger than a rabbit or a cat. A human. When Alyssa approaches James, he thinks he's found the perfect kill. This comedy drama had me hooked on the relationship between two dysfunctional awkward teenagers. Thoroughly recommend!

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️- At first I thought this was set in America...How did they make England look America??

Let me know what you think about this blog series, and if you've watched any of the above. I love a good discussion!
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