TV Review: Death to 2021

The year 2021 started out with some hope and optimism. The Democrats just barely won control of the US Senate and thus supposedly would be able to get some things done. Donald Trump would be out of office in three weeks. Vaccines were going to be available soon that would enable us to emerge from the pandemic.

But things did not work out that way. Trump has gone full bore bonkers with his claim that the election was stolen and enough of his cult believe him to cause problems. Two Democratic senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema seem determined to side with Republicans in opposing efforts to improve the lives of many people. And new covid-19 variants have emerged that, coupled with inexplicably stupid resistance to taking them and other pandemic resistance measures, has seen the number of cases rise sharply at the end of the year.

But the eternal optimist in me hopes that this year will surprise me by turning out better than the current signs indicate.

In general, I am not a fan of year-end retrospectives or lists of various things such as best books, best films, and the like. One exception is a list of well-known people who died during the year, many of whom did not get much press attention at the time of their death and so I missed it. For example, I learned from that article that the celebrated Indian sprinter Milkha Singh had died at the age of 91. I remember him because of a very silly joke that I heard at the time when he came to Sri Lanka to compete in a meet. The joke went that as he was sitting by the side of the track after a race, someone came up to him and asked, “Are you relaxing?” To which he replied, “No, I am Milkha Singh.” That shows the kind of juvenile humor that appeals to me and sticks in my mind.

Another exception is the TV show called Death to 2021 that took a sardonic tone in reviewing the year, using actors to represent various types of people commenting on events that were shown in actual news clips. This is a repeat of the format from last year that was called Death to 2020 that I reviewed favorably and last year’s episode is also still available on Netflix.

I enjoyed this year’s one too, though I do not think it was quite as good as last year’s show. Of course, last year was also more chaotic, what with the arrival of the pandemic and the US election.

Here are a couple of clips but they do not really do justice to the show. I do not know why they have not produced a proper trailer that would provide a more representative sampling of what the one-hour program offers.

But if you are wondering what to watch this evening as you see out the old year, this might be a good choice.


  1. John Morales says

    Just finished watching it.

    Quite droll, a bit heavy-handed, but hey… pretty good for USAnian satire.

  2. Mark Dowd says

    Speaking of deaths, Betty White snuck in there at the last minute, weeks away from her 100th.

    Literally the most appropriate ending for a year that’s hammered us all with relentless shittiness. One final “fuck you” right when you think it’s over.

  3. sonofrojblake says

    “pretty good for USAnian satire.”

    Diane Morgan, well known Yank from Bolton, New Mexico. /eyeroll

  4. mathymathymathy says

    I remembered the Milkha Singh joke from my childhood as well. The problem was, though, that it was told as part of a class of jokes that were making fun of Punjabis for being unintelligent. I don’t know if that racist context was there when you heard that joke, but it definitely was in my family.

  5. Mano Singham says

    That’s interesting. In Sri Lanka, we had our own ethnic bigotries and the ethnic bigotries of India were not well known. So the joke may have come to SL from India and was seen simply as silly piece of humor and not have the ethnic overtones it had in India.

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