Netflix’s Dark Tourist First Impressions

Dark Tourist is Netflix documentary hosts by the New Zealand journalist David Farrier. The series explores the phenomenon of dark tourism – tourism that involves traveling to places associated with death and suffering.

I enjoy a good documentary. But I feel like so far in this first episode I’ve been disappointed. They don’t go in depth enough for me about these topics. The first episode is covering two topics: the legacy of Pablo Escobar in Medellín and dark tourism in Mexico City.

In Medellín Farrier shows a short section of him in a tourist show with a Pablo Escobar look-alike. It shows how locals still make money from Pablo’s legacy, something that Farrier explores a little more by talking to the locals. I think it’s such an interesting topic – especially how so many of them are grateful to Pablo because they took them out of living in huts to living in houses because he built up the area. But this topic is quickly moved onto seeing someone where Pablo used to live and meeting his brother’s ex-wife in law. It’s a bit of a strange jump that I personally didn’t see much appeal in because it didn’t reveal much or tell us much about him or his life or tourism. Farrier then moves on to meeting Popeye, Escobar’s former hit man. This could of been super interesting but they didn’t discuss the legacy of Escobar as much as Farrier fretted over whether or not it was okay to think that Popeye seemed like an okay person. The episode then changed over to Mexico City.

In Mexico City there’s not that much of a set tourist attraction Farrier explores? He talks a little about the Day of the Dead before leaving that topic behind to meet followers of Santa Muerte (a cult) and witnesses an exorcism. The show then again quickly changes to Farrier experiencing a mock illegal crossing into the US.

With each episode only 40 minutes long and each episode exploring a different area (i.e. Episode 1 is Latin America, Episode 2 is Japan, Episode 3 is the US…) I think this documentary is trying to cram way too much into this short time period. Such interesting topics from episode 1 I felt like I barely learnt about. I understand that the documentary is based upon learning more about dark tourism so it’s not as important to know the history of Pablo Escobar say, but I felt like there was such wasted resources. He had so many interesting people to interview and footage to shoot and I felt like I learnt nothing – just watched a guy walk around these locations a bit and not really exploring the topic in depth.

It was a very basic episode that has an interesting premise but falls very, very flat for me by trying to focus upon too many places. We’re jumping from city to city and person to person instead of actually exploring the topic. There’s no interesting insights or take-aways.

I think if I continue to watch this series it’ll be late at night while I’m needing to shut off my brain and relax because it’s not very stimulating, but still is somewhat structured enough that I could watch it episode by episode.

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My Bedroom, My Happy Space

Personally, I’m a big believer in cultivating a happy place for yourself. Wherever it is, it’s a space where you can go to relax, have time for yourself, really whatever you want to do with it.

For me this space is definitely my bedroom. I have my own room and we aren’t renting so I’m lucky that I am pretty much free to do what I like with the room. My room is where I easily spend the bulk of my time. I read there, watch things, play games, study, sleep… the list goes on. So, I’m very committed to doing whatever I want with it (within reason obviously) to make it feel like my space.

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Okay so what if it’s mostly sleep?

My mum is also big on the whole filling spaces with things that make you happy, as evidenced by the Dr Suess art prints in our dining room and the beach/transitioning it seems into more of a lake/forest aesthetic that is in our living room. (Marie Kondo who? I only know my mum telling me to keep the things that make me feel the happiest since I was 5). Her bedroom in comparison though is a lot ‘plainer,’ with a more muted white-washed colour scheme, plenty of pillows and throws, and a minimal number of larger art works. I really think she’s the one who’s instilled this mindset into me (considering my brother has a strong baseball and Mario theme going on, while my sisters who share the biggest room have set up a Slytherin/Ravenclaw theme and decked out their own desks how they like).

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It’s been instilled into me from a young age

So, what I’m trying to say is, go forth and fill your space up with whatever makes you happiest.

I know online there’s articles saying to ‘Add lots of soft pillows and blankets!’ ‘Add in greenery!’ and ‘Make sure to use calming colours!’ to your happy space and to that I say: FUCK YOUR ADVICE WOOOOOOOOOO I MAKE MY OWN RULES HELL YEAH WHAT A REBEL! OKAY MAYBE I TOO LIKE THROWS AND PILLOWS BUT SHHHHHHHHH

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How do I get Kenma’s hair?

Honestly though, some of these articles have some good ideas for inspiration. I’ve tried having plants in my room before and boy have I learnt that am I not a green thumb. The pressure to keep them alive was immense. And I still ended up accidentally killing them because turns out over-watering is a thing that happens. Fake plants though also aren’t for me. I think it’s because they remind me too much of the poor plants I’ve killed throughout my life in an attempt to not disappoint my mum’s herb garden.

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I managed to kill a lucky bamboo plant! That’s how bad I am!

My room is quite filled with things (ahem merch stuff ahem) and I can honestly say it makes me feel happy just looking around my room. Obviously not everything in my room is perfect – I still haven’t found black boxes to replace old purple ones, I really need to repaint my room and I should probably get around to hanging up those two posters above my bookshelf with nails or some form of double tape that have been just sitting on the books for quite some time now. But I’m happy with what I’ve done with my space so I’m not in a rush.

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What an inspiration

I want to be able to look around and feel a sense of comfort and joy from my happy space. This is also one of the driving reasons behind why I think that as a friend one of the lowest things you could do to me is insult my happy space. I tend to be quite sensitive and a people pleasure (despite a strong, stubborn internal dialogue that affirms that we don’t care if people think bad things of us. Quite conflicting – I know) so saying something negative about my happy space makes me only a tad bit, itty-bitty, really only a smalllllll bit hurt. I rarely let people even into my room because it’s so personal to me and to have someone say something about how they think it’s too overcrowded, or there’s too much of something in it can sting. Especially when they continue to reassert these opinions when I try to distract from my hurt by saying something like ‘I like them and they make me happy so I think it’s fine.’ It’s not for you. You’re not meant to like it. It’s meant for me.

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Though I would think that this is common sense?

It’s my room and I’ve decorated it with things that make me happy. I update things in it and add things and change things and that’s all fine. Whatever I do with it is fine.

I’ve put a lot of time into cultivating my room to make it a space that I’m happy with and in. This space is important.

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A Series of Unfortunate Events: Episode 1 and 2

Parts of this have been in my drafts for about a year just as notes. And yes, I am aware that I’m about 3 years behind on this series since it aired in January 2017.

Episode 1

Firstly, I love all the actors. Whoever hired Patrick Warburton as the narrator and Joan Cusack as the judge needs a goddamn raise. I was really impressed at how easily immersed in the story world it is to get with how committed the actors are to their roles.

I love the sets too. Everything is just so well put together and generally pleasing and aesthetic. All the vast differences in colour schemes between locations too is great, and how wardrobes tie in so well to their respective character. This whole thing kind of has a Wes Anderson vibe to it and I appreciate that.


The storyline so far is interesting, and I haven’t read the book (or is it books?) so I am completely in the dark about what’s happening and what to expect. But there’s definitely something going on here and I’m keen to find out what.

And I like that they explain what words mean. It’s a thing that happens and considering the series has a PG rating and its target audience is children, I think it’s a good move. The show assumes children are intelligent and they are. I watched this episode with one of my younger sisters (aged 12 at the time) and I could see her about to ask me what a word meant and then when it got explained, she was really impressed by the show. She was also really happy while watching when she realised that it was setting up a more complicated narrative than she was used to being allowed to watch.


It’s exciting to see, especially since after watching the first episode she started seeking out other PG rated shows that had this type of narrative complexity she wanted. We were all very sheltered as children (okay, maybe I did a sneaky by letting her watch this episode with me) and the most ‘inappropriate’ things we could watch were DC PG series like Young Justice (trust me, I know it doesn’t make sense. But neither does barring an 18-year-old from watching The Hunger Games at 11pm on a low, considerate volume on a Wednesday night when all my siblings and Mum are already asleep. But Mum was banned from watching Neighbours and Home and Away when I was 3 months old despite her reassurances that there was no way a 3-month-old understood what was going on in a soap drama so what chance did I have). My sister’s never been interested in superheroes at all though and really only watched these types of shows with us because she really didn’t want to watch her alternative of… well, not much. She’s an avid reader though and most content she consumes is via books she borrows from the library or asks Mum to get her.


It was around this time too that she had started watching Avatar: The Last Airbender and I think these two shows just opened up a new type of world for her. Since then she’s found shows like Voltron: Legendary Defender and The Dragon Prince to watch on the TV (probably helps that my older-younger sister [which I say like she’s not a few months off of 17] and I watch them) and things like My Hero Academia to privately watch. I know she finished A Series of Unfortunate Events too since she didn’t realise one day that I was home while she was sick and panicked paused on one of the final episodes when I walked into mum’s room to find nail polish remover. It makes me happy to see her finding TV series which she enjoys. It makes me happy that this series was one of her gateways to finding more things she likes.

But now, I’ve been rambling too much. The episode is over and this leads us to…


Episode 2

Boy, do I love the story world building in this episode. The sets are perfect, the costumes are perfect and the shots are great. All the little knick-knacks and props set up too are so detailed and coherent

It’s an entertaining episode. I enjoyed the theatre troupe and how Sunny’s dialogue is accompanied by subtitles. They had some good lines. Watching a villain struggle to keep their plan together and come up with ideas on the fly is also always entertaining to me.

The CGI? Doll hands? are kind of dodgy in parts like where Sunny is dealing cards, which watching a baby win poker and save herself is good enough content for me to get over it.

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The series’ humour is fairly snarky which I appreciate. I certainly wasn’t expecting anyone to say, “Dear God, why would anyone listen to a consultant” or, “Let me give you some advice. If you keep using such big words so early in the morning, then you’re going to end up a very lonely man.”

The storyline got way darker way quicker than I was expecting though, especially with the marriage plot. And Gustav getting tranquilised and falling into a pool to die – that’s some End of the Fucking World type shit right there. The judge not getting the kids? That’s the most heartbreaking thing. Why do we have to crush the poor woman’s dreams like that? I can only handle so much. The journalist’s wife too just straight up getting excited when something goes wrong and because she’s getting a scoop is way too funny to me as a media student. And her tricking the kids into saying something to then quote them is way is such a dodgy magazine tactic.

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Final Thoughts

This series, at least from the first episodes, is great. The story world is well developed, the characters are interesting and the narrative they’ve begun is definitely mysterious and appealing. For full appreciation, I would recommend watching on a larger screen than a phone – the sets are quite detailed.

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The Art of Pitching Shows to Friends

I, for one, find that I am incredibly hard to pitch a show to. I like what I like and if you’re not pitching something to me correctly, I most likely will only get a bit turned off of it. (I’ll have you know that I’m incredibly stubborn.)

I’ve found the best way to make me watch something I’m not showing an interest in, if your desperate attempts at persuading me that I’ll like a show are failing, is to make a deal. Telling me you’ll drop nagging me multiple times a week about how I need to watch a show if I watch the first two episodes with you? Pretty much a sure-fire way to make me watch.


Also compromise. If I watch the first 6 episodes of something you want to watch, then you’ll watch that movie with me that I want to watch.

Or make a rule of ‘You’ll watch an episode with me whenever I want, but I’ll make sure to have a snack supply for you during it.’ Works a charm.


I find these can often be the best way to get me into a show that you want me to watch, especially since between university, a part-time job, a casual job, trying to maintain a social life and attempting to not spiral into even more terrible mental health I find the time I do dedicate to leisure activities are things I love and get invested in (at least before the coronavirus…). So, when I’m already ready to read for the next 8 hours overnight that 110k+ fanfiction piece I’ve been waiting to get to, I might not be so ready to just give up that time to try a new suggested show that just hasn’t clicked with me upon first glance.

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I feel like one of the best examples I can provide is this:

I have been told to watch Mob Pyscho 100 for what’s probably over a year now. I’d been shown pictures by one person trying to convince me to, and the character designs were fine but not that appealing to me as a first impression. And so, it was put into the back of my mind and labelled as a ‘maybe.’

Someone tried to explain the plot to me without giving anything away, and whatever impression was left from that conversation was so bland that I don’t even recall anything they said expect for that the main character is super powerful.

Others tried by pitching that it’s in the top 25 of the 2010s – again not super helpful.

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Finally, someone made me watch the first two episodes with them and I loved it. After watching I asked, “So it’s like Saiki K but a bit darker?” and I said that’s all they needed to tell me to get me to watch it. They hadn’t watched The Disastrous Life of Saiki K so they weren’t sure, but I said it also has a super OP main character. I explained that while it seemed while Mob was more insecure and not great socially, Saiki has no interest in being anything but average but keeps getting dragged into situations by those around him. I also mentioned that Saiki K was more light-hearted than Mob Psycho 100. And they seemed interested in watching Saiki K after too!

saiki k

They managed to watch the first 2 seasons within a day too. Thanks, Australian lockdown. I’m definitely not intimidated by how they managed to do that. The best I can do is one season of 12 episodes, 20 minutes long each for anime within 2 days, and for something like Umbrella Academy with 10 episodes all 1 hour long, a week…

But anyway, relating a show back to something I love gets me easily hooked. And even if I don’t, I’ll at least keep it in my memory.

And as I conclude this post, I feel like my main take away from writing this is that I seem super fussy. Oh well, it’s probably true.

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An Updated Pop Vinyl Collection

I have somehow managed to amass even more pop vinyls since last time. I often wonder how, but then remember that the vast majority were gifts or arcade prizes (along with some really cute plushies…) and I am grateful for all of them! Especially since I love decorating my room with things that I love, and merchandise is a big part of that for me.

It’s so hard to pick favourites, but this corner has to have some of them…

Fun fact about the Eeyore: it was a present ordered online for the diamond edition (which is usually glittery black). So when it arrived blue, the person who bought it for me was very confused and about to call the supplier to ask why it was the wrong colour. They then looked it up online, and realised that this was the ‘chase’ version and that the supplier did a thing where you could win it if you ordered online

I’ve had to start budgeting when I go to the second-hand book festival run each year in my city

It’s a bit of a Kingdom Hearts shrine area…

I just really love the Halloween Town designs!

I’m not going to think about Voltron Season 8

I have wayyyyyy too many favourite MHA characters

The collection has grown…

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The 2020 Releases I’m Most Excited For

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

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I love, and will forever love, Animal Crossing. I can’t wait to start playing on it the Switch and be given that golden ticket to a deserted island by the racoon I will forever be indebted to.

Ori and the Will of the Wisps

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This is such a gorgeous series, so I can’t wait to stand around for hours just looking at everything.

Attack on Titan Final Season

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I love AOT. And watching the anime’s final season is going to ruin me.

Yuri!!! On Ice Movie

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Although there is no confirmed date yet for the movie, one can dream that it will be out 2020. BECAUSE I LOVE THIS SERIES WITH ALL MY HEART AND MY LEVEL OF EXCITEMENT FOR IT HAS NOT BEEN DAMPENED SINCE ITS ANNOUCEMENT.

My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising

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I love MHA. I know the movie is already out but I haven’t watched it yet so I’m including it in this list. Can’t wait to cry over it, and then read non-stop fanfiction and go on a following fan artists spree these next few weeks.

She-Ra Season 5

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Even though nothing is confirmed yet, I am putting it on this list because She-Ra: The Princesses of Power is one of my favourite Netflix series. Everything about it is so good, and I need more in my life.

Dragon Prince Season 4

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This is another one of my favourite things I’ve watched on Netflix (and featured on the list despite that the next season has not yet been confirmed). Each season just keeps getting better, and that just makes me hyped for the next!

Umbrella Academy Season 2

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Umbrella Academy was sooooooo good! I’m so keen for the next season! It can’t arrive fast enough!

All the Bright Places

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This Netflix movie coming out is based upon Jennifer Niven’s book of the same name. I love her YA novels, so I’m interested to see what the movie will be like.

Brooklyn 99 Season 7


Any Brooklyn 99 is good.

Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)

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The Harley Quinn animated series has made it up into my top 3 DC Universe TV series, which makes me excited to then go see Birds of Prey. Plus, Margot Robbie! Harley Quinn!

Wonder Woman 1984





It’s Scooby-Doo! Need anything else be told to me to make me more excited?

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She-Ra: Princesses of Power is returning to Netflix for season 3 on the 2nd August. And I am HYPED. So, what better way to prepare for the release by binge-watching seasons 1 and 2 again, and scrolling through the internet for theories?


Catra will be banished to Beast Island

This theory has been floating around quite a bit recently. It states that Catra will be banished to Beast Island at some point in the series and there she’ll grow the most and learn more about her own past. Whether she’ll return redeemed and ready for a fresh start, escape from the Horde, join the Rebellion or maybe even fully embrace the evil of the Horde we’ll have to wait and see.

The Tumblr account invisible-pink-toast also has a more fleshed out theory about Catra being banished to Beast Island that involves other characters’ fates. It’s a pretty interesting read and a very plausible theory!

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Don’t Trust the First Ones

This theory states that the First Ones haven’t been that honest with us. Think about it… They entirely rearranged the natural order of a planet they colonised, just left for no apparent reason and aren’t exactly explaining what happened with She-Ra Maara. This has led people to think that perhaps they’re even the main antagonists of the series.

(Slice of Otaku has the only source I can find to credit with this theory. His video is very good if you’d like to watch it here:


Maara was affected by a virus

Tumblr user realm-of-etheria theorises that the virus that affects She-Ra is the reason Maara went ‘rogue.’ They propose that the virus that affects She-Ra and drives her kind of insane is the reason why Maara lost control of her powers and went on a rampage like we learnt in season 2. If Maara was too powerful and no-one could take the sword away from her, then that explains why no-one could stop her from doing whatever she did.

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The 2003 animated TV series is what I’m most familiar with. That’s the one that I was raised on as a 2000 born baby.

1. Astro Boy’s first appearance was in 1951 in Captain Atom in which he held a supporting role, before being given his own series.

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2. Astro Boy originally started off fighting crime with seven powers: jet powered flight, analytical skills, multilingualism, super hearing, headlight eyes, hidden weapons in his back and the ability to tell if a person is good or evil. Since then though more powers have been added to his repertoire.

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3. There have been three different Astro Boy TV series (all animated) from 1963, 1980 and 2003.

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4. Astro Boy has robot relatives! These include his sister Zoran/Uran, his brother Cobalt and his robotic Mama and Papa.

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5. Osamu Tezuka (the creator of Astro Boy), is also the creator of the manga/anime series Kimba The White Lion and Black Jack!

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I guess the normalcy of it helps just set a ‘relax routine’ too?

I have 2 go-to things that I always watch. Usually after something like exam block when all I want to do is sleep; or if the week hasn’t been amazing and I just need something to do that’s calming and nice.

The first one of these things is Studio Ghibli films. Whichever one I feel like watching in that moment. I love Studio Ghibli and their films. They’re cute, visually lovely, story wise amazing and I don’t think I could ever get sick of watching them because of how wonderfully made they are.

My usual go-to ones though are Howl’s Moving Castle and Ponyo. With then The Wind Rises, The Tale of Princess Kaguya, Princess Mononoke, Kiki’s Delivery Service, From Up On Poppy Hill and When Marnie Was There making frequent reoccurrences too. They’re engaging, pretty to watch and easy to have an emotional response too. Lying down on the couch huddles in blankets alone watching these is truly the way to go.

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My other one then is Daria. I love Daria so much. It’s funny and relatable, and I’m also always inspired by Daria and Jane and how there are in constant pursue of their passions throughout the series. Daria makes me want to invest more of my time into writing, and Jane makes me want to take up art again (both things that I struggle to maintain when life gets busy). There’s also enough episodes to give variety to choose from, so usually I just pick a random season to watch episodes from so that I don’t watch it so much that I become bored.

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Studio Ghibli films and Daria both are things that I am always watching. And I do think that I have the mindset of ‘watching these are nice, and I’m going to enjoy it, and I’m going to feel relaxed and happier after watching these.’ Because so far they both seem do this trick very nicely!

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Mid-semesters are slowly killing me at the moment…

I haven’t ever showed any merch I have before, so I thought it might be fun to do!

I’m not really a big collector but I do have quite a few pop vinyls (way more than my Mum likes anyway… She likes to sometimes look at them and then count up how much money I’ve spent on them. Which I mean, fair enough!)

So here is the not quite non-existent but also not extensive collection of pops that I have!

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Shaggy looks so good!

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They don’t really go together… but oh well!

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Raven is glow-in-the-dark too!

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I really love all the Halloween Town designs ❤

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Mad Hatter featuring a semi-alive plant

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Kaiba is one of my latest additions to the family!

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Jack and Black Lady look so great!!!