Like most South Africans, I spent the better part of the week tuned in to the local news channels between intermittent scrolls through social media.
With the country in the vice-grip of rampant and unprecedented looting and violence, I was concerned about the safety of my family as well as that of the residents in several terrorized communities and townships across KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and Mpumalanga.
Given the state of emergency nightmare unfolding between our very eyes, no one could look away nor could we prevent ourselves from drowning in an abyss of despair and, to some extent, anger over the inaction of our politicians and ruling government.
The silence of most of our celebrities and influencers were deafening. To those who spoke out, I salute you.
I don’t want to get into the politics of what has transpired, though.
Watching everything unfold as the news cameras captured the utter direness of the situation was heartbreaking and did my head in.
Focusing on work or even distracting myself with a TV series was the furthest thing from my mind. We are all human and we deal with things differently, I suppose.
By Wednesday, I just couldn’t watch another news bulletin. And then my mood was buoyed by watching communities mobilising on clean-up efforts.
The spirit of ubuntu was burning bright. Everyone started breathe a little as normalcy started to return.
When I went to bed that night, I switched off my phone and streamed the seventh and final season of “Younger”.
I wanted something that was far removed from my current reality but still appealed to my binge-watching sensibilities.
Having just completed the sixth season of “The Bold Type”, this show was the perfect fit and substitute.
Set in New York, “Younger” follows the personal and professional lives of three best friends, who work at Empirical Press.
The comedy-drama, which is based on Pamela Redmond Satran’s 2005 novel of the same title, revolves around Liza Miller (Sutton Foster), who is 40 and a divorcee.
She managed to establish herself in the company by pretending to be much younger, a fib that was kind of mandatory to get into the ageist organisation but one that continues to haunt her despite her successes nonetheless.
Then there is Kelsey Peters (Hilary Duff), who, in getting promoted at Millenial, found herself out of a boyfriend and colleague after Zane Anders (Charles Michael) left to join Rivington. Ouch!
Sprinkling some colour (and quirkiness) is Lauren Heller (Molly Bernard), who joins the dirty 30s club. Her mother even threw her a “Little Women in Space-themed birthday, inspired by the pitch of a unconventional female author.
At the start of the season, Liza is on cloud nine. Charles Brooks (Peter Hermann) popped the question. It seemed like the stars aligned for her happily ever after. There’s just one problem - she didn’t say, ‘Yes’.
It wasn’t a rejection, she just needed time and then counter-proposed that they live, “Happily Unmarried’. Not only did it put the kibosh in their romance, but it also upset him.
He wanted the piece of paper. He wanted a second chance at happiness.
But the scars of her first marriage left Liza reeling from the prospect of going down that painful road again. And so they were at a stalemate
Talk about things getting awkward at the office. And Lauren didn’t help matters with her surprise engagement celebration for the couple.
Meanwhile, Diana Trout (Miriam Shor) decided to bury the hatchet with Charles and wants to write her biopic, documenting her failure in the political landscape.
This closeness between Diana and Charles riles Liza even more.
The other interesting character in the series are Josh (Nico Tortorella), a dreamy 20-something tattoo artist.
Of course, rebound romances seem to be the order of the day as Liza succumbs to the free-spirited charms of Anton Björnberg (Thorbjørn Harr ), a Swedish writer who recently signed with Empirical Press. Words aren’t the only things thrown around between the two.
Let’s just say, she isn’t the only girlfriend letting off a bit of steam.
“Younger” is like a smouldering meeting of “Sex and the City” and “The Bold Type”. It’s sassy, chic, relatable as well as dramatic and fun.
“Younger” season 7 is currently streaming on Showmax.