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ABTV Netflix Hidden Gems: Midnight Gospel
Plato proved, through his incorporation of Socrates as a character in his Dialogues, that the best philosophical endeavors are conversational. A way of keeping up with the back and forth that is our reality, to find answers to life’s many confusions. Thanks to Pendleton Ward and Duncan Trussell, Netflix is now home to eight short episodes that pull back the curtain on those confusions through conversation, in order to restore conscious clarity to anyone willing to sit down and listen.
We’re introduced to Clancy (played by Trussell), our relatable main character, traversing worlds and interviewing those he finds, all from within his universe simulator. Think of it as a multi-dimensional podcast, as many of the conversations on the show are pulled from Trussell’s real-life podcast. Mind-bending metaphysical discourse gets backdropped by Ward’s now iconic otherworldly animation (made famous in ‘Adventure Time), creating a truly delicate balance that allows conversation and backdrop to synergize in thought-provoking ways.
What does it mean to die? To love? What even are love and death? Who are you? What is the self? What is the universe made of, and how are we connected to it all? The show acknowledges the difficulty of approaching such questions today in Western society and seeks to be a guiding light. Ward and Trussell take grand philosophical themes from the East and weave them into digestible spools of gold catered to the Western ear.
IMG_004_Clancy learns meditation and mindfulness
Through its conversations with the likes of celebrity physician Dr. Drew Pinsky, author Caitlin Doughty, modern magus Jason Louv, and others, the show strongly and consistently emphasizes the importance of accepting one’s situation in life and connecting with the flow of the cosmos by being present and aware. We see this most profoundly in Clancy’s relationship with his mother. At one point, the two walk through a sensory museum filled with exhibits about birth, life, and death in vivid, emotionally striking moments that should send you running to hug a loved one. Something we could all benefit from.
In this unprecedented time, filled with unnerving energies, an entertaining and humorous guide to the freeing peace of self-affirmation should connect with a lot of people. So, give it a shot, and if you find something valuable in it, be sure to recommend it to a friend. Everyone needs a light to follow in this fog.
If you love Midnight Gospel and ABTV Netflix Hidden Gems, share this article with a friend. Tune in daily to AfterbuzzTV articles and aftershows for the latest news and info on pop culture and entertainment.
Keagen Fritz is a screenwriting and production major at California State University Fullerton with growing industry experience.
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