How to Recommend a TV Show

How to with John Wilson The Watchlist
Pictured: How to with John Wilson, Season 3 Episode 3 "How to Work Out"
// How to with John Wilson is top-tier HBO but not enough people are watching.
Brodie Fogg
Aug 23, 2023
Icon Time To Read2 min read
Published on August 22, 2023

You might feel like recommending TV shows is getting harder in the age of streaming.

It’s not like you just recommend any old show. It takes a lot to gain your seal of approval. Still, you might feel like your friends just don’t take your suggestions seriously.

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Despite How to with John Wilson being in its third and final season, you can still count on one hand the number of people you know who have actually watched it.

You’re not too concerned. The same thing happened with Nathan for You, another show that went wildly underappreciated until Nathan Fielder– Executive Producer on How to with John Wilson– became popular with his HBO hit The Rehearsal.

But if you stay tuned, I’ll make sure your recommendations don’t go unnoticed. Stick with me, and I’ll show you How to Recommend a TV Show.

Step 1: Know your audience


You can’t please everyone. Recommending anime series JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure to someone who subsists on a diet of NCIS might be an exercise in futility.

Step 2: Refine your pitch


You might write a lot of words, but you sure don’t say a lot of words. Maybe your brain came with an in-built broadcast delay.

When asked for an opinion in the tepid heat of a video call, you stammer your way to a response like “I don’t know it’s just funny.”

But when asked to write a tight 200 words on a TV show you like, you, uh… double that.

What you want to say is “[I don’t know] if there’s anything else quite like it. [It’s] a labour of love and never [just] about how to do one thing. It’s raw, oddly poignant at times and always [funny].“

You want to say it’s part of the Nathan Fielder extended universe, and a surprisingly important time capsule of life leading up to and following the COVID pandemic.

But you don’t, and instead you…

Step 3: Gain Influence


You realise that maybe you’re just not the right person for the job. So you identify the most influential figures in your friend group or workplace, and convince them to watch How to with John Wilson.

You realise that your colleague Fergus John Halliday has a refined taste in television and a good sense of humour. Most importantly, you realise, people listen to his recommendations.

Maybe you don’t need to convince everyone to watch How to with John Wilson. Maybe you just need to convince the right person, and the rest will work itself out.

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How to Stream Everything Else in this Newsletter

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There’s too much good TV and not enough time. We take the guesswork out with our weekly picks for what to watch.
You're going to love The Watchlist**By clicking this link, you are contractually obliged to love The Watchlist. You don't have to tell everybody about The Watchlist, but that would help prove that you love it in the court of law. if it came to that.

What to expect from The Watchlist

The growing number of streaming video-on-demand services has unlocked a world of entertainment for everyday Australians. But what should be a dream come true has slowly turned into a living nightmare; an avalanche of content delivered direct to your screen with nobody sorting the rare gems from the rivers of cinematic sludge.

It's like that scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark where the Nazi opens the coveted ark. The thing we so desperately wanted in Australia, after decades of delayed movie and TV releases, has melted our face off and turned us into a puddle of quivering goop.

What The Watchlist offers is a return to simpler times. Like getting a recommendation from the cool Video Ezy clerk. We keep our recommendations simple and focused, typically in line with a common theme (actor, director, genre etc.,) or recent release. 

There are plenty of services and newsletters like The Watchlist around the world, but our recommendations are specific to an Australian audience. So if we recommend something, you can be sure we'll tell you where its streaming too. 

Brodie Fogg
Written by
Brodie Fogg
Brodie Fogg is the Australian editorial lead at Reviews.org. He has covered consumer tech, telecommunications, video games, streaming and entertainment for over five years at websites like WhistleOut and Finder and can be found sharing streaming recommendations at 7NEWS every month.

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