Read time:4 minute, 17 seconds

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Everything Now is a thought provoking and emotive comedy-drama series which follows the life of 16-year-old Mia Polanco (Sophie Wilde), her friends and her family. In the opening scene, we meet Mia and her dad as she is being discharged from a 7 month stay in a psychiatric hospital for treatment of Anorexia Nervosa. She is discharged by Dr. Now, played by Stephen Fry. More on him later!

As an opening scene, we are braced for a bit of an emotional rollercoaster. Personally, I did feel quite drawn in, with a sense of trepidation as this can be a little triggering. However, the way this series plays out really spoke to me. We see how Mia navigates settling back in at school, playing catch up with all her closest friends who she feels have gone on in life without her. We see her battling with her emotions, battling with her eating disorder as she experiences day to day life and relapses. We see her figuring out who she is, and her sexuality plays a huge role in the overall message of the series as well as the joy of it. I was excited for her, learning things about herself that I can only dream I had the confidence to be so open about, at the age of 16! 

There are so many things that Mia narrates to us, about her experiences with eating disorders, that it sounds like the writer is someone who knows what they’re talking about. It may be their own lived experiences or through supporting someone else close to them. I found so many parallels with her thought processes in my own illness, in my own high school experiences, in my own recovery. This is also a fantastic series for reminding us things can change. They may never be perfect, and sometimes we feel we are stuck so fast in our negative thought processes and behaviours that there is no way out. Mia helps us see we can change, and that things can improve.

There are many stand out moments I enjoyed – such as getting her first girlfriend. Something of an unusual mix, they are polar opposites. I found myself feeling frustrated for her not being able to tell her “actual” crush, Carli, how she feels!! Oh if only I’d be able to go back in time and tell myself how annoying this is to see now! Tell the girl already!

As we travel through the series, we are met with reminders of how tough it can be for teens – with a light hearted humorous twist.These include going to parties, pulling friends, drinking, being impulsive the way many teens are, and the general humour of Mia and her friends. I thoroughly enjoyed these parts as they remind us through our challenges in life, we can still have fun. Mia’s attempts at this don’t always go very well, but she keeps on putting her head up to fight another day in her desire to be happy. If that’s not empowering, I’m not sure what is.

One of the most important characters to me is Mia’s consultant, Dr. Now. He provides such care and attention to detail with Mia, it seems nothing would get past him. As ever, Stephen Fry puts on a great performance, and I found myself really trusting him for Mia. He seems so genuine – if I could choose a consultant it’d be someone like him! At points, he says such crucial things to Mia that really seem to stick with her. One of the most meaningful things he says is when Mia describes her loneliness. His response is that when she was most unwell, Anorexia was always with her so she was never alone. But Anorexia was never a true friend. This, among many other things he says, as well as what Mia experiences, hit the nail on the head. Make no mistake, this series is not all doom and gloom, and I thoroughly enjoyed the journey we go on with Mia. 

We are left with quite a lift in our spirits with a powerful ending, having more faith in Mia’s recovery and excitement for what her future holds. I live vicariously through anyone who comes out that young!

Everything Now is an 8 episode series on Netflix UK created by Ripley Parker, daughter of Thandie Newton.

As I mentioned previously, I have experienced my own struggles with eating disorders, and consider myself to be in recovery. While I appreciate the content can be triggering, I think we do need to be able to discuss these things more openly so those who suffer but don’t yet have support can see it doesn’t have to be a taboo, and that things can get easier. 

I urge anyone who is affected by the issues raised in the series and in this article to seek support from your local services, GP, Samaritans support phone lines, any other support lines, or get in touch with BEAT and check out their website at 

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El Blackford

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