Finished I May Destroy You? Here’s what to watch next

Posted by for Life

Try to plug the gaping Michaela Coel-shaped hole in your life with one of these brilliant TV shows…

Michaela Coel’s I May Destroy You is, without a doubt, one of 2020’s best TV shows so far. And now it’s all over.

That’s right: the final episode of the comedy-drama – which sees social media star and author Arabella (Coel) attempt to piece her life back together after a sexual assault – aired earlier this week, sparking an outpouring of praise on Twitter.

“Just finished #IMayDestroyYou and it truly destroyed me,” tweeted one viewer. “I don’t know if I’ve ever watched something more real, vulnerable or beautiful. Thank you @MichaelaCoel this has helped me with my own healing in more ways than I’ll probably ever realise. You’re incredible.”

Another wrote: “Just watched the finale of #IMayDestroyYou and cried almost the whole way through. Michaela Coel’s writing leaves you breathless and there’s nothing on television like it. She has given me closure and hope and so much more. She deserves ALL the awards!”

And still one more said: “I was already blown away by #IMayDestroyYou but that finale is absolute genius… all power to Michaela Coel for crafting such a magnificent piece. BRAVA!”

Of course, it’s unlikely we will find any other TV series that adequately fills the enormous I May Destroy You-shaped hole in our lives. Despite this, though, we’ve come up with a list of oh-so-watchable shows to tuck into. All will either tackle some of I May Destroy You’s big themes (consent, race, mental health, millennial life) or tap into some of those same feelings and emotions you experienced watching Coel’s genius onscreen the first time around.

Enjoy.

Chewing Gum

Written by and starring Michaela Coel (hurrah!), Chewing Gum tells the story of Tracey Gordon, a religious, virginal, Beyoncé-obsessed 24-year-old living in London’s Tower Hamlets. Tackling everything from Pentecostals to periods, this brilliantly funny sitcom taps into a feeling we all of us know far too well: that the more we learn about the world, the less we understand.

Chewing Gum is streaming on Netflix now.

Feel Good

This dramedy series stars writer and creator Mae Martin as Mae, “a rising talent on the stand-up circuit and recovering addict whose addictive behaviors and intense romanticism dominate every single part of her life.” 

The official description for Channel 4’s Feel Good continues: “When she meets pragmatic, but so far heterosexual, George (Charlotte Ritchie) she’s smitten, and much to her surprise George feels the same.

“They embark on an intoxicating romance as Mae juggles relationships with her parents, fellow addicts in a drugs support group, her colleagues at the local stand up club, and most importantly tries to transform her relationship with George from an addictive one to a healthy one. But the real question is can Mae replace a toxic addiction to love with love itself?”

Feel Good is available to watch on All 4 now.

Unbelievable

Based on a true story, Unbelievable opens with an unflinching portrayal of Marie Adler (Kaitlyn Dever)’s sexual assault and subsequent rape kit and interview by the police. However, with so few people willing to believe her story, Marie is eventually forced to recant her rape allegations and is prosecuted by the state for filing a false report. Her relationships with her foster parents and friends suffer. She loses her job and her support network. She is found guilty and is fined $500.

Then, a few years later, two female detectives follow a trail of evidence that could reveal the truth. 

Unbelievable is streaming on Netflix now.

Insecure

One of the smartest comedies of the last few years, Insecure – written by and starring Issa Rae – focuses on the life, loves, and choices of protagonist Issa. More important than this, though? It delves deep into her beautiful friendship with BFF Molly (Yvonne Orji).

Insecure is available to watch on NOW TV.

Sex Education

To quote Stylist’s Meena Alexander: “Sex Education crept onto our Netflix ‘Recommended’ bars with little fanfare at the beginning of last year, then suddenly it was all anyone could talk about. A refreshingly honest depiction of the messiness of growing up, we fell hard for tough girl Maeve, virgin-turned-sex-therapist Otis, and his scene-stealing best friend Eric… [and offered] a crash course in the trials of teenagehood.”

Sex Education is streaming on Netflix now.

Sex Education season two still
Sex Education season two: Asa Butterfield, Emma Mackey and Aimee Lou Wood

Black Earth Rising

As a child, Kate Ashby (Michaela Coel) was rescued from the horrific aftermath of the Rwandan genocide and brought to the UK. As Black Earth Rising makes all too apparent, though, the tragic shadow of her past proves impossible to escape.

Black Earth Rising is streaming on Netflix now.

Apple Tree Yard

Apple Tree Yard, based on the novel by Louise Doughty, begins as scientist Dr. Yvonne Carmichael (Emily Watson) embarks on an affair with a mysterious stranger she meets in the Houses of Parliament. At the end of the first episode, though, Yvonne decides to share a taxi home with George (Steven Elder), one of her more annoying colleagues. Enroute, though, George asks her to accompany him to the office to fetch his stuff. She does so. And it is there, in that now-deserted office, that he rapes her. This four-part psychological deals with the fallout from that night.

Apple Tree Yard is available to rent on Amazon Prime now.

Broad City

Created by and starring Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson, Broad City tells the tale of two best friends who struggle with their low-paying jobs while they balance daily lives in New York City.

Broad City is available to watch on NOW TV.

Top Boy

Top Boy takes viewers into the housing estates of east London, exploring the tension between the drug gangs that operate almost openly and those who strive to live honest lives against the odds in the crime-riddled area. Frequently hailed as one of the best shows on Netflix, it blends all the elements of a tense drama with subtle social realism, some tenderness, innocence, and humor.

Top Boy is available to stream on Netflix now.

The End Of The F**king World

This comedy-drama, which was created and written by Charlie Covell and based on a graphic novel by Charles S. Forsman, has a cool 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. That’s not just because it’s furiously funny, of course: it’s because it’s furiously funny in spite of the fact it expertly deals with the heavy themes of sex and consent.

The End Of The F**king World is available to stream on Netflix now.

Adult Life Skills

Impossibly endearing, this quirky drama sees Anna (Jodie Whittaker) struggle to come to terms with the fact she’s almost 30 and still living in her mother’s shed. Will the budding video star’s friendship with an unhappy boy and a smitten young man inspire her to finally grow up and accept adult responsibilities?

Adult Life Skills is available to stream on Netflix now.

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Images: Netflix/BBC

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Kayleigh Dray

Kayleigh Dray is Stylist’s digital editor-at-large. Her specialist topics include comic books, films, TV and feminism. On a weekend, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of tea and playing boardgames with her friends.

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