It’s validating to see introverted characters, especially in a society that doesn’t place us in the mainstream.
We introverts are famous for staying home with a book, hobby, or watching TV and movies. Some of us have always been homebodies, and others have been staying home more, like everyone, for about the past year. My introverted husband sometimes feels like he’s watched everything there is to watch. So, here are some ideas for introvert-focused TV shows and movies.
After all, we introverts often receive validation when we see our traits reflected onscreen and in a society that doesn’t place us in the mainstream. It’s not only entertaining, but reaffirming, for us to see characters who are like us.
Without further ado, here are my top picks for TV shows and movies introverts can appreciate this year, and why I think you might like them.
6 TV Shows and Movies Introverts Will Appreciate
Endeavour is a British detective show set in 1960s and ‘70s Oxford in Great Britain. Detective Constable Endeavour Morse is a young, brilliant introvert and the main character. The show must be doing something right, because it’s reached seven seasons, with an eighth coming out via PBS Masterpiece and Amazon Prime later this year.
Morse is serious, always thinking, doesn’t mind being alone at all, and appreciates a good book or some classical music. Through the show, we see him grow as both a detective and team player (to some extent). We also see that he’s subtly charming and someone a lot of women want to get to know. Running parallel to the mysteries he and his partner/boss must solve in each episode, we get to know Morse’s small, but close, friend circle, too.
If you’re like me, you’ll relate to some things about Morse as a fellow introvert, and even more so if you’re a little nerdy or don’t necessarily care what others think of you. Many introverts may also enjoy the escape to a different time and place, and the opportunity to solve crimes along with the detectives (since problem-solving is one of the things we do best!). And the British understated modes of self-expression and communication are a bonus.
2. Raya and the Last Dragon
Raya and the Last Dragon is for the introvert dreamers whose minds are filled with colors and stories, as well as anyone who just needs to smile or laugh. Generally inspired by Southeast Asia — but set in a fictional land with the mandatory fantastical creature sidekicks — this is the latest Disney movie. You can expect something sort of like Moana or Frozen, with character-building themes and at least half the jokes made for adults. Awkwafina plays the dragon, so you know it’s going to be funny, and Daniel Dae Kim, Sandra Oh, Gemma Chan, and Benedict Wong also voice characters. And, like these other movies, if you’re a parent, you may end up watching Raya and the Last Dragon multiple times.
The film is set when humans and dragons used to get along, but monsters called Druun then disrupted the balance. The dragons actually sacrificed themselves for the humans! Five hundred years later, Raya is a young warrior who must find the last dragon and stop the Druun.
If you’re not only an introvert but also creative or artistic — or tend to be a little serious, like me — I think it’s hard not to appreciate a Pixar movie. They’re vivid, musical, and just excellently made. They definitely transport us and spur our imaginations.
If you haven’t caught it already, you can view Raya and the Last Dragon on Disney+.
OK, so hear me out on this one. I know WandaVision (from Disney+) takes The Avengers franchise in a new direction. At first, a lot of people, myself included, weren’t sure where they were going with the series. But if you hold out for the slow burn, you’ll be rewarded.
I’m not going to spoil it for you, but let’s just say this is the series for people who notice things other people don’t notice. Yep, we introverts and highly sensitive people (HSPs) tend to be like that. If you’re up to date with The Avengers, there are tons of “easter eggs” to spot throughout. There’s a mystery brewing from the first episode, and the little clues are there for those who are observant. If you’re just starting to watch, though, avoid social media spoilers!
I don’t know for sure if the starring superhero couple, Wanda Maximov, aka Scarlet Witch, and Vision are intended to be introverts or not (though a lot of superheroes are). If I had to guess, I would say Vision is both an introvert and a thinker. And whether Wanda is an introvert or not, she “gets” him, that’s for sure — a bona fide introvert trait. So maybe you will even relate to the protagonists, as well.
4. Da 5 Bloods
Black History Month this past February seemed more important this year than ever before. One thing about introverts is that we tend to like learning, and there are a lot of great ways to learn about Black history anytime throughout the year (as well as watch it be made today).
In February, I decided I needed to get more familiar with Spike Lee films as part of learning more about both Black achievement and the struggles Black folks have faced in America. I’ve seen a couple of his movies, but not all the best ones. There are a lot to choose from, since Lee has made over 50, and while they can be funny, they’re not all feel-good, with good reason.
If I had to recommend one of Spike Lee’s films for introverts, it would be Da 5 Bloods, which came out last year. The introvert connection is that it’s one of the last films actor Chadwick Boseman made, and I think he was both an introvert and an incredible person, artist, and writer.
Even though he was a famous actor, he was very private and focused. He certainly knew how to keep a secret, such as when he was cast as Black Panther back in 2014, and when he knew he had terminal cancer. Based on his last few career decisions, I suspect he thought deeply, as many introverts do, including about the legacy he would leave behind.
Da 5 Bloods moves back and forth between the Vietnam War and the present, when four veterans return to Vietnam for their squad leader’s remains, and more. Through this film, you’ll be moved, see a truly great introverted artist in action, and learn. It also humanizes every single character, no matter their perspective. And, it made me want to travel to Vietnam.
Da 5 Bloods is available on Netflix and runs for an intense two-and-a-half hours, so be ready and get cozy.
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Jane, a National Geographic documentary, came out in 2017, and even though I am a long-time fan of its subject, I didn’t know about it. One night recently, I woke up in the early hours and it was on and caught my attention. The film is about Dr. Jane Goodall, naturalist and likely an introvert and HSP, and how she pioneered studying chimpanzees.
I’m not the only introvert who likes nature, but also any and all nature shows. In this documentary, you get to see the chimpanzees and Tanzania, as well as Dr. Goodall’s self-narrated story, through never-before-seen footage from her early years in Gombe and on.
Dr. Goodall dedicated hours of observation to eventually be able to get close to the chimps. She would go out alone at dawn, and watch and take notes until dark every day. She didn’t mind the solitude, and she grew close to the animals she eventually observed.
If Dr. Goodall hadn’t spent all those watchful hours without any other humans, there are so many things that scientists would still not know. This biographical documentary will make you proud to be an introvert, and speaks to how introverts often figure out ways to remain true to themselves as they navigate personal relationships. And, these days, Dr. Goodall continues to use her time and influence for environmental causes around the world.
6. Lisey’s Story
Stephen King wrote the book this series, Lisey’s Story, is based on in 2006, and many have been made into films and series. But, this time, in a rare bonus for his many fans, he also wrote the script for every episode of the upcoming miniseries.
His quote, “The quietest people have the loudest minds,” plus his hours of solitary and prolific writing every day, clue us in that he’s probably an introvert. He has also shared he was born to write — introverts make the best writers, after all.
Lisey’s Story begins when Lisey (pronounced Lee-see) returns to her novelist husband’s office two years after his death to go through his things. We see Lisey in the present alongside scenes of her husband’s life as she remembers it. As the story progresses, she recalls alarming (and even supernatural) things about her husband, along with realizations that allow her to save herself in the process. Things get continuously creepier, as they tend to do in Stephen King stories.
With King, J.J. Abrams, Julianne Moore, and Clive Owen involved, it’s likely to be a well-done project. There’s no specific date for release yet, but Apple TV announced that viewers will be able to enjoy this series in 2021.
I don’t always go for horror and gothic stories, and my introverted inner world tends to be less dark than what you find in King’s plots, but this is one I plan to catch. King is one of the most talented authors out there, and it will be exciting to see what he brings to a streamable series.
Introvert-Friendly Honorable Mentions
I didn’t include some introvert-friendly movies and TV shows that are so popular, you’ve probably already seen them. If you aren’t yet among the millions who have already watched The Mandalorian, The Queen’s Gambit, Peaky Blinders, Stranger Things, and Bridgerton on Netflix, you can enjoy the introverted characters and heroes in these series, some of which will have new seasons this year.
Additional Honorable Mentions for what we introverts should watch also go out to: To All The Boys: Always and Forever, Waffles + Mochi, Atypical, Dickinson, Bones, Queer Eye, Gilmore Girls, Mr. Robot, Daredevil, Daria, A Perfect Planet, and Shadow & Bone.