Dash & Lily

Classic signs that Christmas is right around the corner: Carols play on the radio, snow settles on the ground, and a deluge of holiday romance plots hit the screen. Dash & Lily is Netflix’s latest entry into this annual TV tradition, adapted from the YA novel Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares by Silver Spring-born author Rachel Cohn and her writing partner, David Levithan. In search of a special someone to share the holidays with, the sentimental Lily hides a notebook in the Salinger section of The Strand Bookstore. The misanthropic Dash discovers her message, and an anonymous correspondence between the two begins. There’s just one catch: Lily loves Christmas, while Dash’s skepticism toward yuletide cheer makes him a bit of a Scrooge. To overcome this dealbreaker, the two bookish teens spend the holiday season sending each other on a series of dares throughout New York City, growing out of their shells along the way. But when the time comes to meet face to face, the pair must decide whether they’re meant to be or if they just got swept away in the holiday magic. Given that Dash & Lily was filmed in 2019, the series may well be one of television’s last documentation of Christmastime in pre-COVID New York. The series’ festive crowds, concerts, and parties serve up a dose of sweet winter escapism needed at the end of a long year. Dash & Lily is available to stream on Netflix. Free with subscription.