I've managed quite happily without a Sky TV subscription for many years, but sometimes a show comes along that you just have to see. For me that was the final season of Mafia drama Gomorrah, for which I happily paid for a NOW TV subscription.
And then my horror-loving pal told me about Yellowjackets, which turned out to be the most fun thing I've watched in years. So that's my first recommendation for this month – but it's not the only fear-themed pick, as you'll see in a moment.
Here are the 3 NOW TV shows that I recommend you watch in February 2022.
Yellowjackets (available until 19 February)
This tale of a young women's football team surviving a plane crash is must-see TV. It's beautifully written, the acting is amazing – Juliette Lewis and Christina Ricci are clearly having the time of their lives, while the younger cast members are uniformly excellent too – and it pulls off the difficult trick of happening in two different time periods without making you wish there was less of one and more of the other.
I'm being really careful here because I don't want to give away any spoilers, but the series takes place in the late 90s, when the plane crashed, and in the present day, when the survivors are dealing with the aftermath. It's very tense and often very scary; it's also very funny in places and takes great delight in misdirecting you. Part folk horror, part survival movie and part murder mystery it's one of the best things I've seen in years and I can't wait for the second series.
The Fear Index (from 10 February)
Based on the best-seller by thriller supremo Robert Harris, The Fear Index has the temerity to suggest that capitalism might actually be a little bit bad sometimes. Josh Hartnett is Dr Alex Hoffman, a computer scientist whose algorithm exploits fear in the financial markets and will make lots of people very, very rich. But then Alex is attacked by someone who knows all of his security codes. So begins the worst 24 hours of his life.
The book is a load of old tosh but crucially, it's hugely entertaining old tosh, and while it's all bit daft it's hugely enjoyable and makes some salient points about unfettered corporate misbehaviour. Early word on the series is that it's true to the book in that respect, a rollercoaster ride that's enormous fun if you don't think too carefully about the plot and enjoy the spectacle of some really horrible people having a really horrible time.
Bel-Air (from February 14)
This may seem an odd choice for a fear-themed selection, but Bel-Air is a reboot of the enormously successful and much-loved Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, the series that introduced us to Will Smith. It may have been thirty years ago but there will be plenty of fans hoping that the reboot adds to the canon rather than ruins it – and signs so far are really encouraging. Set in modern-day America, Bel-Air features Jabari Banks as Will and has Will Smith working behind the scenes as executive producer. Like the original it traces the journey of Will from the streets of West Philadelphia to the luxury of the titular LA neighbourhood, but where the original was largely played for laughs the reboot promises to be more dramatic.