Tidying Up With Marie Kondo (2019)
I watched it on Netflix
Rating: 9/10 – loved it!
In a series of inspiring home makeovers, world-renowned tidying expert Marie Kondo helps clients clear out the clutter — and choose joy.
I watched this show days after its release on Netflix before someone broke down on Twitter over Marie Kondo’s thoughts on decluttering/tidying up your books. I’m not even going to go into that whole debacle, because I think it’s utterly ridiculous. I’ll get into that later, I promise.
If you don’t know Marie Kondo, she is a Japanese organization expert. She’s been helping people tidying up and decluttering their houses for years, and is quite famous for her KonMari method. 2 years ago, I read her well-known book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. I even wrote a small review on it. While I didn’t think it was life-changing at the time of reading it, I’ve been a huge advocate of decluttering and organizing your home ever since. When I discovered her new show on New Year’s, I knew I had to watch it.
As usual, I will keep my ‘Thoughts on TV’ posts organized through bullet points. Let’s talk about what I loved about this show.
⭐️ Marie Kondo. I know it sounds ridiculous to mention her as one of the best aspects of her own show, but I truly feel like she deserves to be praised. She’s an absolutely adorable woman, and a big part of the reason I loved Tidying Up so much. Why? Because she’s such a kind, warm, and respectful person. The amount of respect she shows for every person and inanimate object is wonderful to see. She introduces herself to a home every time, never tells anyone they should get rid of something they don’t want to throw away, and understands everyone’s journey towards finding that spark of joy is different. She never tells someone they didn’t do a good job, or didn’t get rid of enough. She simply gave them the tools to decide what they needed and wanted in their lives.
⭐️ the amount of belongings everyone keeps is different, and that’s okay. I love the fact that this show doesn’t try to whittle down people’s belonging’s to a certain amount. They stress that every person is different, and so is their attachment to things. Someone might have a love for fashion, and clothes might bring them heaps of joy. If so, it’s perfectly okay for you to have a big wardrobe! Others might be avid readers and decide to keep a lot of books, and that’s okay too! The point is to hold your things, determine whether the make you happy or not, and act on that feeling. Marie Kondo highlights that it’s impossible for her to decide those things, and lets the owners choose for themselves.
⭐️ instead of organizing their home for them, she teaches people how to do it on their own. That’s one of the things I appreciate most about this show. Often in these type of self-improvement shows, a crew will come in and help the people improve their homes or lives. That’s nice, don’t get me wrong, but what will they do once the crew leaves? Will they be able to keep it up on their own? Here, that’s not the case. Marie gives people a plan to give structure to the process, and helps them get started. She gives them tips and encourages them to ask for her help when needed but she never actually did it for them.
⭐️ portrays a number of different home situations. Tidying up is different for everyone, and the show does a good job of portraying that. There’s a couple with two children, a couple who feel like they still live like college bachelors, a couple with their first child on the way, a couple whose children have left home, a woman who lost her husband, and more. It’s wonderful to see them explore the different homes and situations, and how her approach can help everyone. I’m also happy to see that they showed solutions for a family who can’t afford to buy new furniture to store things in or doesn’t have much space.
⭐️ all the wonderful families. I loved seeing how these people transformed their house, and made it a home again. An oasis of joy and peace, instead of a place that causes stress. Each person had different reasons for their need for organization, and it’s really nice to see. One woman lost her husband, and wanted to go through their stuff but didn’t know where to start. Another couple had just settled down, and needed to find a way to store their items to benefit both women best. There were just so many different types of families showcased, and I loved that.
⭐️ Iida. Shoutout to the lovely woman who translated for Marie and the people she helped! She was so kind as well.
I have to admit that there’s one thing I didn’t really love about the show. Maybe this bothered me so much because I’m not a native English speaker, or maybe it’s simply my personality. Anyway, here’s what I didn’t like.
💥 they dubbed the show. I really, really dislike it when they dub foreign languages. If you’re unaware of what that means, when Marie was speaking in Japanese to the people around her, they layered someone’s voice translating her words over Marie’s voice. I can’t tell you how much I hate that. In Belgium, only children’s movies and shows are dubbed. The other shows are simply subtitled. I understand that for blind people or a disability relating to their vision, dubbing is fantastic because it allows them to understand what’s being said. So in a way, I do understand it. But I’d so much rather read subtitles and actually hear Marie’s words. A translator never brings the enthusiasm and inflections across in the same manner, and it really affects my watching experience. Trust me, as people whose first language is not English we are used to reading subtitles. We do it all the time. It’s really not that hard! (unless you have a disability that makes doing so impossible, of course)
I would highly recommend watching the show. I love Marie Kondo’s approach to decluttering, which is to get rid of things that aren’t serving you, and aren’t bringing you happiness and joy. She’s such a sweet, kind and respectful person, and the show really reflects that. Tidying Up with Marie Kondo is uplifting, and does not put people down for the amount of stuff they own, or (don’t) want to get rid of.