The Returned (2015)


Picture Courtesy of A&E Studio

The Returned is an English remake of the 2012 French show of the same name (translated).  In a remote mountain community, the town is turned upside down when a select few of their dead return.  They have not changed since the day they died and for the dead no time has passed at all.  Even more confusing for the returned is the fact that they are unaware of their own passing.  Coming back to the ones they love they must try to understand what has happened to them while trying to assimilate back into their families and lives that they left behind.  There does not seem to be any pattern as to who returns as there are some who have been dead for decades and others mere moments before returning.  Things seem to hint towards the towns water supply and dam all going back to the towns tragic past where the dam burst and killed 28 of the towns people.

I had never heard of the original French version of The Returned, but when preparing do my review and coming across a preview for the French version it’s not hard to miss the similarities.  There are many scenes from the preview alone that mirror the 2015 English remake which may give hope to those who enjoyed this remake.  Going into the first season I was aware that there were only 10 episodes.  I was also aware that while the show had aired on A&E and is now available on Netflix, the show was cancelled with only the one season and without completing the season finale.  You read that correctly.  If you were to entertain any ideas of watching this show on Netflix, keep in mind that you will have to endure a wild cliff hanger right before things start to come to ahead.

The character interactions can become tedious at times, but The Returned has a way of creating a great deal of suspense and shocking revelations during their short time on air.  Even with the familiar faces of some actors/actresses, it wasn’t enough to build enough viewers for them to even finish the season finale, leaving the show at its highest peak.  Though I have never seen any of the French episodes, and to be honest have no intentions of looking into them, if you did watch the English series and cannot bare the unknown you may have a chance at finding out what happens to The Returned.  The original French version of The Returned is based on the film of the same name released in 2004.  The first season of The Returns (Les Revenants) was released in 2012 and dubbed the French zombie show around the height of The Walking Dead.  Oddly enough, the second season was not released until 2015.  Now that both the first and second season have been released and completed you may have your chance to finish the chilling tale, though the suspense may be hindered by the addition of subtitles.

It’s hard to suggest that you watch the series knowing that it doesn’t end and basically makes the whole experience pointless.  From what is available on Netflix, the show has just enough strange and thrilling moments to keep you guessing and hanging on, hanging on forever never knowing what happens, or jumping over to the original French version which may hold the secrets you can’t live without.  Unfortunately, I will not be Returning to this show and am leaving this experience dead in the water.




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