Season two of Emmy-winning show, Master of None hit Netflix last Friday, and like a shameless superfan I managed to get through all ten episodes in just three days – relieved that season one’s follow-up had not just met, but exceeded my expectations a bucket load.
Master of None tells the story of Dev (played by Parks & Rec’s Aziz Ansari), an Indian-American actor who lives in New York. And like any single-and-ready-to-mingle human living in 2017, we see Dev regularly getting screwed over by the complexity and horrors of 21st century dating – from the agony of guessing how many emojis to put in a flirty text, to the dread of being “ghosted” by someone you really like. Add to this friendship debacles, work drama, odd and embarrassing parents, the stunning NY location and a brilliant script, and you’ve got yourself a pretty great show.
If you’re new to Master of None but fancy giving it a watch, I’d recommend that you exit this post sharpish until you’re at least up to speed with at least the first season. I really wouldn’t want to ruin it for you, but (in spite of my attempts) I can’t guarantee that this post is completely spoiler-free (sorry).
If you’re already a fan, or just don’t care that much, then obviously read away! I’d love to get your thoughts and opinions, too – just leave me a comment on social media or in the little box below.
So, why IS Master of None the best show on Netflix at the moment?
1. THE CHARACTERS
You root for and fall in love with all of them – from Dev, the show’s charming protagonist who’s life you become far too invested in, to Arnold, best described as a hilarious and adorable BFG-type who’s always on hand to impart wisdom and humour upon his buddies. Not to mention Dev’s straight-talking childhood friend, Denise; Dev’s sassy agent, Shannon, played by Orange is the New Black‘s Danielle Brooks; and there’s even an episode in which Colin Salmon plays the best possible version of Colin Salmon, and bakes batches upon batches of cinnabuns. Need I say more.
2. THE DIALOGUE
The writing is slick and sharp whilst still being realistic and relatable. The magic of Master of None is that it balances dramatic, engaging storylines with quick one-liners that make you physically laugh-out-loud. It’s never, ever boring.
3. THE PRODUCTION
The quality of the production is outstanding, and even more so in season 2. Each episode has its own quirky way of telling a story – from the charming, black-and-white “old movie” style of ep1, or the year-on-year insight into Denise and how (as a black lesbian) she came out to her family in ep8. You never really know what you’re going to get from one episode to the next, and as an audience we’re constantly left in suspense and awe of how each storyline is composed and put together.
4. “PARO” THE ROBOTIC SEAL
Master of None is the show that introduced “Paro” the robotic seal to the masses, and like pathetic teenage girls, we fell for him. Sadly, “Paro” was absent from season two, but I still have hope for a spin-off.
5. THE MUSIC
The soundtrack features a polished and suave collection of tracks that include a mixture of old and new. The music also manages to reflect the circumstances or mood of each scene without being so on-the-nose that it comes across as annoying or lazy. Check out the playlist here.
6. THE FOOD
Never, ever watch this show when you’re hungry because it will drive you to the point of starvation. Dev eats out a lot and at some incredible places, and in the real world he’d be the size of a house.
7. THE HARDER HITTING STUFF
Master of None isn’t afraid to tackle issues like racism, homophobia, gender inequality and the sexual harassment of women, and it does so without being at all preachy. Other topics include the importance of family heritage, the cultural values of minority groups, plus modern romance and the dating scene in the 21st century – all pretty interesting stuff.
8. MEET THE PARENTS
I can’t not mention Dev’s mum and dad, who happen to be Aziz Ansari’s parents in real life. They’re so fantastic that they really deserve their own dedicated spot on this list. Ansari is clearly passionate about involving his parents in his career, even bringing them out on stage at his Madison Square Garden stand-up gig back in 2015. (Also available on Netflix, well worth a watch).
But his decision to cast them in Master of None comes off so well because it portrays an authentic parent-child relationship, which is really prominent in the scenes they have together. His dad in particular is a proper comic star, best loved for his bluntness, cheeky-chappy-charm and repetition of the expression “hey man” every time he addresses Dev.
Seriously, what’s not to love?
Check out the trailer for Master of None season two below.