#i am begging you
RENO MY RENO! Canadians fix people’s home improvement mistakes and are super nice about it but FIRM with man who don’t finish projects!
so far some shows that have worked for me:
Lord & Ladles – scottish chefs cook historical feasts in historical mansions! you meet wacky old money people and learn about strange things their ancestors got up to! you get to watch as world-renowned chefs fail at catching a fish! someone makes a hedgehog out of marzipan! people in the olden times ate some crazy shit! every episode ends with the chefs cheersing each other while lying on vintage furniture!
Big Dreams, Small Spaces – cute british people have cute yards that cute gardening man helps to make into much cuter yards. one lady wants to grow vegetables to share with her neighborhood. one lady wants to sculpt a huge mud head covered in moss coming out of the ground. one dad wants a garden for his down’s syndrome kid so he makes a sensory garden with a thousand different smells and textures. one couple wants to grow flowers for their wedding. it’s all wonderful.
Nailed It! – a bunch of people probably got high and decided to throw money at this show idea. everybody tries their best and everybody comes away either having learned something helpful, having had a rollicking good time, or having won a bunch of money. all the judges are good sports and nobody is made to feel bad for doing bad. also there’s some fucking crazy shit they get up to with modeling chocolate i tell you what.
Skin Wars – actually a lot about artists and their craft??? not really at all about sexy ladies being naked??? very cool stuff done by people with atrocious fashion sense and a complete willingness to buy into the moment. a few bad apples but mostly the reality-show-ness is pretty toned down and people are there to make cool art.
A Cook Abroad – chefs go to different parts of the world and learn about food there. A dumb white guy makes bread with adorable egyptian ladies! A british man gets exhausted by the length of roads in argentina and is only recharged by steak! An awesome woman makes cheese in france!
Love Your Garden – british man does garden makeovers for wholesome deserving families with special needs. Maybe a little bit on the weepy side of things but his assistants are all great and have fantastic hairstyles and people in wheelchairs deserve flowers!
Puffin Rock – this show is supposedly for babies but it is SO PRETTY and SO CHARMING and it’s about animals and nature and stuff and doesn’t really completely shy away from that?? like, one of the characters is a little rodent and the seagulls are the bad guys and he’s actually afraid of getting eaten?? anyway baby birds sing songs with baby bunnies and play splishsplash with baby seals and snuggle with baby animals of all sorts in a beautiful hand painted island.
Animal Airport – hey did you know some crazy shit goes down in Heathrow?? Did you know that there isn’t rabies in the UK? Everyone’s doggies and kitties have a long trip but they all get home in the end and also there are turtles and cheetahs and bugs and fish and everything!!!
this list is so relevant to my interests it hurts.
i’d also suggest the bbc historical farms series–it’s not on netflix, but it *is* mostly on youtube. the metafilter guide that originally introduced me to it is here. there are a bunch of different series of it, now, and each one is a group of archaeologists and historians living on a period location–victorian farm, they live in a farmhouse from the era, and they farm and raise animals and etc wearing period clothing, using period tools and sources as guides. and it sounds like it could be cringey, but they’re all experts in their fields and actually really invested in trying to do things well, so instead it’s a bunch of shows about teamwork and being friends (most of the core team stays the same) and learning things, and it’s delightful.
similarly, the sweet makers and victorian bakers have modern confectioners and bakers recreating period foods wearing appropriate clothing and using cookbooks from the era to guide them. (warning that one of the sweet makers episodes deals heavily with the history of sugar, and the slavery and horrific abuses associated with the same.)