13 Reasons Why Season One

58f5bb21f0077.image

Picture Courtesy of Netflix

13 Reasons Why is the controversial series added to Netflix that set off a chain reaction through all of its subscribers.  Based on the novel of the same name by Jay Asher the story focuses on a handful of teenage issues but the focal point is suicide.  It is this subject that ignited so many strong opinions from viewers that they immediately set their fingers to the web to spread their opinions and their campaigns against the show.  People even threatened to cancel their subscriptions to Netflix over the release of the show while continuously pulling a Helen Lovejoy of “won’t somebody please think of the children” which frankly, good riddance to those types.

It has taken me a long time to begin this review as it took me just as long to try and formulate my feelings towards the show while watching it.  Let us all begin with the fact that the main character of the show commits suicide.  This is not a spoiler as it is thrown in our face during the first episode and every minute of each episode thereafter.  Perhaps most peoples first and normal reaction was to pity our main character Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford).  What caused a young girl so much pain that she was willing to end her life you may have asked?  Don’t worry, because Hannah Baker has set out 13 Reasons Why and has recorded them onto cassette tapes for her victims to hear.  I can only imagine the spark that that word just set off in your brain as you read this.  Victim.  Clearly the girl who has killed herself is the victim, how could you possibly say that these people who she singles out as being the cause of her suicide are not to blame?  Let us continue and find out, shall we?

Mental health is a very serious subject and something that should not be discussed lightly.  There are too few discussions on the subject that only add to the difficulty that so many people have when it comes to discussing the topic.  Or maybe the most difficult part is that we don’t know what it is that we are discussing?  Mental health differs for each person.  While you can create terms and categories that each person who suffers from mental illness can fall into, each person within those groups feels things differently.     This effectively creates even further subgroups branching out organically creating a complex road map that fades away into the unknown.  While one could applaud Asher for his efforts at trying to bring teenage issues, mental health issues and suicide to the lime light, one can’t help but think how much money follows the obvious reactions he knew he would achieve.  Whether you achieved good or bad, Asher, you know you made gold.

Hannah Baker may be our main character and narrator, but as we know, she has killed herself, so the solution to this hitch is to insert Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette).  The thing about Clay Jensen is that from what we can tell he is actually a really good guy.  He is not the captain of the football team, he is not the smartest person in the class and he is also not the bully, and yet maybe he is?  What do we really know about Clay?  What do we know about any of the students from the school?  What we do know is that a few of these students happen to spotlight in Hannah Bakers tapes and we also know that Clay happens to be one of them.  The rules of the game, though I choose the word game loosely,  you receive a mysterious box full of cassette tapes labeled 1 through 13 along with a map.  You listen to the tapes, follow the instructions and use the map.  Once done you pass the tapes on to the next person in line.  Whether each person was meant to listen to all the tapes or just their own isn’t necessarily clear; however, there is no way of knowing which tape is yours without listening to them all.  This also means that while you now know what role you played in Hannah Baker’s suicide, you now also know what role everyone else played.  You could easily just not listen to the tapes.  You could pass them on to someone else, not accept them, or simply just destroy them, but could you live  with yourself not knowing what it is that you did that trigger her death?  Could you live with the truth of what you did being shared with the entire world?  Let the mental abuse roll on.

13 Reasons Why is like the saying “watching a car crash.  It is so horrifying but you cannot stop yourself and you cannot look away.”  Have you ever taken the bus and passed a car accident?  Instead of being a “rubber necker” and jumping out of your seat to see what is going on, instead try looking at the people around you.  You’ll notice that every single person has immediately stopped what they are doing and are looking on in shock and awe.  The unknown is also a very terrifying concept.  You are given a giant red button that says push me and you are told not to push it.  How long could you last?  The same as each person on the tapes needed to know what they did, the viewers are forced to continue each episode from tapes 1 side A and Side B to tape 13.  The need to know who, what, where, when, why and how is just too hard for all of us to resist.

Normally I can formulate my opinion on something rather quickly, but what to say about 13 Reasons Why after episode 1 was no simpler after episode 13.  I’d like to go back to the  word victim.  Can you really say that anyone in the show is a victim?  Each person has their own blame to take responsibility for, but rather than allowing each person to do that Hannah Baker has devised a plan to shame each person and share it with the world. Had she not killed herself and still released a series of tapes, while the people on the tapes are at fault for their own actions, it would be easy to also call Hannah Baker a bully.  We live in a world where today everyone is a bully, everyone is at fault, everyone is a good person, and everyone is a bad person.  Your opinion matters, but it is also the wrong opinion and while you have certain freedoms to share your opinion, you should not be allowed to do so so freely.  You are damned if you do and you are damned if you don’t.

Clay Jensen may be on those tapes, but what Hannah did to Clay by putting him on the tapes was a severe case of mental abuse.  Clay loved Hannah and Clay thought he had been a good friend to Hannah.  I think it is safe to say that Clay Jensen is a good person, especially compared to most of us at his age, or any age.  There is always something you or I could do more for someone else, but is it fair to lay such a burden on someone like Clay?  There are people like Clay all over the world who could be summed up into the theme of The Giving Tree.  People will take and take from those trees until they are nothing and simply move on to the next tree while saying that now dead tree could have done more for all the takers.  Let us also point out the fact that this is High School, a cluster fuck full of horrible people all trying to find out who they are while being pitted against each other in the ultimate form of Hunger Games.

Clearly I could rambled on about this series for ages.  For those of you who were able to make it to the end of the series, congratulations on becoming the Victor in this endless Hunger Games called life.  Let us all now take some time to self reflect on the little things that we do each day, the little things that we could do in our lives to make a difference and the little things that we could do in other peoples lives to make a difference.  These are great themes and ideas, but while asking what everyone else and everything else can do for you, you should also be asking what it is you can do for yourself.  There are outlets for everyone and all you need to do is ask.  Easier said than done and something that may never be resolved, but I think we can all agree that killing ourselves and creating tapes, videos, mashups and other such terrorizing methods is not the answer, ever.

I had to laugh at the announcement that Netflix was forced to put out regarding 13 Reasons Why season 2.  This has never been done for any other show, but Netflix actually had to put out a formal announcement about how season two will play out in order to try to appease and release the building backlash from the show.  I couldn’t tell you for sure whether or not I would be watching season two.  It all comes back to the unknown, we all want to find out what happens right?  We need to make sure there is some sort of justice served in the end.  A life for a life will make everything right….right?

 

The Returned (2015)

The_Returned_US_Intertitle

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.

 

 

Shadow Hunters The Mortal Instruments: Season One and Two

Shadowhunters_Intertitle

Picture Courtesy of Disney-ABC Domestic Television and Netflix

Based on the best selling novels written by Cassandra Clare, the Shadow Hunters TV series gives us an extended glimpse into characters and a world we have come to love.  While I was excited for the announcement for the TV series, there is something about being hooked on a week to week viewing along with season breaks that tends to steer me clear of initially watching these shows.  With the introduction of more and more shows being made in this way on Netflix and the convenience of Netflix on multiple devices I have become more open to the idea of starting series like these.  Of course, having the added benefit of almost two seasons finished before I started didn’t hurt.  The TV series has the interesting challenge of not only being compared to the books that is often a touchy subject with book to movie adaptations, but a film has already been done and must now compete with both the books and the film.  I think at this stage though we can all agree that while we loved watching the Mortal Instrument: City of Bones film adaptation, there were far too many things that went wrong to ever hope for additional films in the series.  That is where the TV series comes in.  It is able to continue the story on a smaller scale, with the freedom of time and seasons, as well as the ability to alter and expand on characters and scenarios.

Season One

For those unfamiliar with the series, it is about a girl named Clarissa (Clary) Fray who on her eighteen birthday discovers that her mother has been blocking an entire world from her, one that she is thrust into without the help of her mother.  Clary’s mother is kidnaped by a dark Shadow Hunter named Valentine and while Clary must try to deal with the kidnapping of her mother, she must also try to comprehend the existence of demons, vampires, werewolves, shadow hunters and angels.  The series written by Cassandra Clare is very expansive having a main series, a prequel series and other side series to build off this intriguing new world.

I think we can all agree that the show is already better than the movie after watching the first episode and finally getting a Jace we deserve.  While everyone has their own tastes, we all know the only thing going for the Jace (Jamie Campbell Bower) from the film was the accent.  While our new Jace (Dominic Sherwood) may seem a bit rough around the edges at first, his character and his two toned eyes start to grow on us.

The main character of Clarissa (Clary) is played by Katherine McNamara who brings a better visual portrayal than that of Lilly Collins in the film version (more of what I had pictured), though the acting abilities are non-comparable.  Though we can sympathize with Clary’s plight, her acting is a hard pill to swallow complete with cringe worthy scenes and classic campy horror movie running.

I can’t really touch on the character of Clary’s mother Jocelyn Fray (Maxim Roy) for comparison purposes as I can’t even remember Clary’s mother in the film.  The TV series mother had a rocky start as well, though this seems to improve as the series progresses.

Clary’s best friend is Simon Lewis (Alberto Rosende), the awkward nerd who also has a hipster rock band is a favourite for many.  While Clary’s life is turned upside down with the knowledge of the Shadow World, it doesn’t take long for Simon to be dragged in and buried by the events. (Ha!)  As for Simon’s character, we will touch on him more in season two.

Alec Lightwood….oi… where to start.  Played by Matthew Daddario, as our struggling gay shadow hunter it took me quite some time to come to terms with his early 2000’s hip mom lesbian haircut.  Sure it is a very shallow thing to point out, but it truly overshadowed his entire character for the whole season.  While Alec’s character can be a bit of a pain in the ass in both versions, I have to say I prefer Daddario’s portrayal over Kevin Zegers.

Isabelle Lightwood (Emeraude Toubia), Alec’s sister, is on par with our main heroin Clary, but with the added benefit of not being the main heroin.  Isabelle is able to be all the things we want to be without the harsh spotlight.  Isabelle is a bad ass warrior who hooks up with all the good looking bad guys all while wearing revealing clothing, heels and looking hot.  While Jemima West was able to portray the good looking aspect of Isabelle, Toubia’s ethnicity adds a much needed spice to Isabelle’s character.

Luke Garroway, Jocelyn’s boyfriend and ex-shadow hunter turned werewolf had little change in the film version for Aidan Turner who portrayed a werewolf for three years on the show Being Human.  The show version turned things up with the very attractive Isaiah Mustafa who is a vast improvement.

Magnus Bane is a very enigmatic character and I was worried how they would portray him in the tv series compared to the film.  The film stars Godfrey Goa who played a great Magnus and I was very pleased to see that Harry Shum Jr. was able to keep up and not let us down.  While everyone is meant to watch the story of Jace and Clary, it is the story of Alec and Magnus that really steals the show (though struggling and awkward at first).

While Valentine Morgenstern is our villain we should not like him in any way shape or form.  The tv series cast Alan van Sprang who is a more likely depiction of Valentine, though we can’t help but miss the face of Jonathan Rhys Meyers from the film version.

While there are many more actors and actresses that could be touched on, these are the relative main characters of the show.  The first season for the TV series of Shadow Hunters can be summed up as amateur and low budget.  Despite these things the show is engaging in a way that we can’t help but enjoy the extended retelling of Clare’s best selling stories, along with the unknown for the embellishments that the tv series introduced.  There were many conflicting things with the first season with some actors and actresses needing much needed help compared to others, amazing scenes and props in some areas while issues in others.  The weapons weren’t something I already touched on, but the runes or “tattoos” have always been a confusion topic.  Some of the runes are so large that you have to wonder how the Shadow Hunter is able to continue adding more.  Could it be that the life expectancy of a Shadow Hunter is so short that they have never run into the situation? Or is there more that we are missing when it comes to these magic symbols?  The series took liberties when it came to the markings by having some in black, some in dark red, and some showing up as scarred flesh.  Some were most obvious outlines and coloured in, while others were more authentic.  These were just some of the issues that the first season ran into.

The first season was a rocky start, but enjoyable none the less.  It took no time at all to blast through the first season and well into the second season where you see many of the issues addressed.  The show follows the main points of the books, but as mentioned there are many allowances made for the TV series adaptation that usually occurs with TV series.

Season Two

The first few episodes it is hard to tell the differences, but there are many things that were addressed in the second season to try to clean up from the first.  The actors and actresses seem to have improved their acting abilities (or perhaps we have just become accustom to them after a full season), though there are still moments of cringe.  The Seraph blade weapons have gone from cheesy light sabers to full metal blades with glinting blue runes.  Still not quite what was envisioned in the books but perhaps more visually understandable and pleasing than the first attempt.  They also seem to have gotten the hang of the ruins settling on a full black rather than the shotty attempts and dabbling of the first season.  The show seems to struggle between the boundaries of film budget worthy visuals and made for tv stunts, but still worthy of a TV budget series.  The institute was turned into a more technology heavy headquarters than what was envisioned in the books but I loved the stained glass throughout the institute.

While the story is relatively known to us for the first season, there were many things that were not from the books and things that occurred in the books that are missing from the series.  Most of the time this is done to make things less confusing for the audience and allow those who have not read the books to be able to watch the show from start to finish with no issues.

Although season two is not quite finished with two episodes still to come, one in June 2017 and the other date unreleased at this time, we are left on a bit of a hanger and wondering what is to come next.  The season two finale/break leaves us with a mysterious new character though I imagine there are a few of us who have read the books that have a couple guesses.

I have to say I had my doubts about the first season and I was grateful that the full two seasons were available at the time I started to watch it.  I can’t say what the fate of the show would have held for me had I watched the first season on a weekly basis.  I imagine I would have dropped it for some time to be able to binge watch, but also fear that I may not have picked it up again.  With the convenience of Netflix and the Netflix and Go option for the series I blasted through both seasons and I have to admit I am hooked now (naturally now that I am hooked and have reached the end).

Fans of Cassandra Clare’s novels, as well as fans of all things Shadow World related should really give this show a chance.  As mentioned in all my comments about the first season it is best to at least make it a few episodes into the second season before you really decide your feelings on the show.  It will never live up to the visions we all had in our head but it is definitely better than nothing or having to sit through a second disaster continuing the film adaptations.

Being Human (UK) Season One

10004

Picture Courtesy of Touchpaper Televsion

Being Human is a British tv series starring supernatural characters.  The series seems to have inspired an American version of the show with a similar concept.  We are all familiar with different legends and supernatural beings, being human explores three different supernatural beings as they live together.  Each has their own struggles that they must battle, each while trying to fight their new abilities and instincts and just be human.

John Mitchell (Aidan Turner) is a vampire and while he is over a hundred years old, he remains frozen in time in his twenties.  John has been able to adapt to his new life and has learned to live among humans.  His quiet existence is threatened by the local vampire group who have other beliefs as to how vampires should be living with humans and who the superior being is.

George Sands (Russell Tovey) is a young werewolf struggling to accept his new circumstances.  With the help of John, the two rent a flat together as John teaches George how to join society as the two work the night shift at the local hospital.  George does not know any other werewolves and has had to learn to cope with his change on his own.  John has tried to help where he can, but there are things that a vampire simply can’t help a werewolf with.

While George and John have decided to move into a flat together to try to live a normal human live, they are joined by the recently deceased Annie Sawyer (Lenora Crichlow) who died in the house.  All Annie can remember is falling down the stairs of their home and all the dreams she had with her fiancé, Owen.  Owen still owing the property continues to come in for maintenance on the house giving Annie chances to see him again.

The three struggle with their own new circumstances with the support of each other.  As much as they try to fit in they must endure persecution making the struggle to try and be human all the more difficult when you cannot see who the real monster is.

John’s character had lived over a hundred years.  He has seen the world change over time but still managed to have little to no style adapting a sort of homeless grunge appearance. Though he had pale skin, he was a very hairy fellow which made it seem like he would have been more suitable for the role of the werewolf.  Having Turner and Tovey reverse roles would not have solved the problem though as Tovey has a softer less aggressive appearance that would not have been suited for the vampire role.

George has difficulties adapting to his role as a werewolf, even after having met one, it is clear he does not have the same aggressive traits, but more timid and gentle.  George is very reminiscent of Ron Weasley in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets with his high pitched squeaks like that of Ron and spiders.  Tovey as George is likeable and brings comic relief to the trio.  His transformations are silly and nostalgic having the appearance of something you might have seen on Are You Afraid of the Dark with a very fake, yet appealing, werewolf appearance.

Annie’s character is a lost and a little eccentric ghost as she tries to cope with her death and finding out what her purpose is. From the looks of the series, she outlasts both John and George and a main character in the series.

There is something about the brits that I just love.  Being Human has a strange mix of the supernatural flare with the backdrop of a very subdued British tv show.  Don’t let this fool you though as there were many a time while Netflix and Going that I had to jump scenes in order to block out the sex and nudity while in public.  With the sex, nudity, violence and supernatural the show was rather anti-climactic and had a way of carrying on without being overly engaging.  Without the convenience of the show I would not have made it as far as I did to complete the first season.  After discovering there were an additional 4 seasons for a total of 5 I decided to give up on the series.  It was clear when taking a glimpse at some of the other seasons that they increased the budget and visuals, but unfortunately it wasn’t enough to keep me hooked on the series.

 

Stranger Things – Season One

stranger_things_logo

Picture Courtesy of 21 Laps Entertainment, Monkey Massacre and Netflix

 

If you haven’t seen Stranger Things you at least know someone who has and has told you that you need to watch it, repeatedly.  The Duffer Brothers struck gold when they decided to create this science fiction horror TV series and wrapped it in a beautifully done 1980’s package.

The first season is set in the 1980’s in a town called Hawkins, Indiana.  Highlighting some of the best things from the 80’s we’re introduced to a group of four boys playing Dungeons and Dragons with the seasons soundtrack containing some of the best songs from the 80’s.  The four boys consist of Mike Wheeler (Finn Wolfhard), Dustin Henderson (Gaten Matarazzo), Lucas Sinclair (Caleb McLaughlin) and Will Byers (Noah Schnapp).  After an epic game of Dungeons and Dragons the boys set off on their bikes back to their homes.  While on the way home, Will Byers encounters a strange and disturbing creature that chases him all the way home.  Safely locking the door behind him, he discovers that his mom and brother are not home and the creature is still after him.  When he rushes to the shed to get the gun, he loads it just in time only to have the creature get him.  There is no sign of Will or the creature and his mother Joyce Byers (Winona Ryder) is completely beside herself.  Taking time off from work she discovers that although her son is missing she can still feel him near.

While the hunt is on to find Will,  a mysterious girl appears in town running from some very dangerous people.  The three boys discover the strange girl, whom they find out is called Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), and that she may know where their friend Will is.  The three boys, with the help of Eleven, begin to follow the bread crumbs leading to Wills disappearance and how to find him  before the creature does.

There are three groups of characters all following the same story beginning with: the youngest crowd of the three boys and Eleven;  Will’s older brother Jonathan Byers (Charlie Heaton) and Mike’s older sister Nancy Wheeler (Natalia Dyer); and Will’s mother Joyce Byers with the help of the town Sheriff Jim Hopper (David Harbour).  All three groups allow the audience to remain fully immersed in the story while following different clues and allowing time for some character development.  While the kids are our main focus and source of entertainment we can’t help but to be intrigued by the teenagers as well as the struggles of both Joyce and Jim covering all angles for the audience to relate to.

As I mentioned, the Duffer Brothers struck gold when they created, wrote, directed and co-produced Stranger Things (which they ensure we know their names and roles by repeatedly pointing it out during the opening credits of each episode).  The opening for Stranger Things is simple creating the title accompanied by music with every element screaming 80’s and creating something so short, yet so impactful and setting the tone for the series.  The characters from the children, to the teenagers and to the adults, both main characters and side characters are so well selected that there is really nothing to complain about when it comes to actors/actresses.  The characters are engaging and the storyline is spellbinding from start to finish having the audience caught hook, line, and sinker with this science fiction horror ripe with nostalgia.

If you haven’t already been prodded by friends and family to watch the Netflix Original allow me to be the first to tell you that this is a must see that will have you on the edge of your seat from the moment the quintessential 80’s theme washes over you submersing you in a world from the past with an exotic touch of the future.

3% – Season One

3_official_artwork-jpeg

Picture Courtesy of Boutique Filmes and Netflix

3% is a Brazilian dystopian tv series about the general public that live in poverty and the testing process they are able to take to become one of the 3% elite.  Those who pass the rigorous testing process join the others who have passed on a submarine shuttle that takes them to an island known as the Offshore.  From a young age you are told about the Offshore and it’s limitless possibilities.  You live in poverty living off of scraps and struggling to survive, don’t you want the opportunity to live with the elite and become one of the 3%?  Your parents or a guardian would register you for the Process and when you reach the age of 20 you are given the opportunity to enter the testing facility where you are only given one chance.  Stage one is an interview process with 3% test co-ordinators to determine if you are one of the worthy 3%.  If you pass the interview you then move on to the next testing phase, if you fail you are sent back to your life of squalor to perhaps have children one day in the hope that they will make it further than you and have a better life.

The current head of the Process is Ezequiel (Joao Miguel).  Once someone living in poverty he is an inspiration to those in the Process that they too can make it to the end and become someone like him.  Though he is the head of the Process and should have everything there are things lurking behind his stoic facade and secrets that could jeopardize his own place in the 3%.  As a new year of the Process begins, we are introduced to a new pool of candidates.

Michele Santana (Bianca Comparato) – pronounced on the show as Michelley – has been alone ever since her brother joined the process.  Their parents dead, it was left to Michele’s older brother to take care of them both, but when his chance to join the Process came he had to leave Michele to fend for herself.  Though much of the process is shrouded in secrets Michele’s faith in the process is shattered when she is told that her brother, her only family left, has died during the testing Process and killed by Ezquiel himself.

Fernando Carvalho (Michel Gomes) is seen as someone who has no chance to make it through the process as he is confined to a wheelchair.  He believes he has the same chance as everyone else to get to the Offshore, but as such little information is known about the Offshore he wonders if there are others like him on the Offshore or if their technology is able to cure him.

Rafael Moreira (Rodolfo Valente) is egotistical and a cheater causing many others not to trust him.  Though he has his own dark secrets and a drive to get him through the Process, he will need to work with the others in order to make his way through.

Marco Alvarez (Rafael Lozano) comes from a well off family who is known for it’s members to all pass the Process and become part of the 3%.  With the knowledge that his parents and siblings have all made it to the Offshore there is immense pressure for him to do the same; however, this knowledge has made him more cocky than driven.

Joana Coelho (Vaneza Oliveira) is seen as a lone wolf.  Able to join the others in group activities and do what needs to be done to pass, she is still seen as a loner and will let nothing distract her from making it through the process.  Though she could be seen as having great drive and passion for the Process, could it also be fear of what remains if she were to fail and must return to the inland?

There are many other characters that form the first season, though it is these characters stories and interactions that really define the first season.  What are the key qualities of a Utopian society? What would you do to make it to the Offshore and become part of the 3%? What would you sacrifice? There are those who believe whole heartedly in the process, but there are also those who believe the process to be unfair.  These people are part of an organization known only as the Cause and they have made it their mission to destroy the Process and provide more opportunities to all people, not just the 3%.  Is such an idealistic view attainable? What would happen if the Process did not exist and what would happen if someone from the Cause was already in the Process or part of the 3%?

3% has an interesting dystopian scifi concept that was intriguing setting it up for yet another gem of the Netflix Original Series.  There is something that immediately catches your attention when you start the series and that is the fact that it is not originally a show done in English.  As I mentioned the show is a Brazilian show that has been dubbed in English for English speaking audiences.  Unfortunately, what this means is the mouths of the character do not match the words being spoken as well as the voices not always matching the character speaking them.  There are things that are more likely lost in the translation though the gist of it is clear.  There are times when I had to wonder if the translation was correct or doing the original justice with one thing digging under my skin.  It is very possible that one of the main characters name is actually Michele (Michelley) but this seemed more like a mistake in translation, or at least I hope it was.  There were many interactions between the characters that seemed completely fake which I believe had to do with a delay in actions or words being spoken during the translation.  The most notable character for the delay is Rafael who is a very energetic speaker causing his actions to be very expressive compared to his somber or short dialect.

Though I have harped on the translation and the faults of the show, the concept of the show was entertaining as well as the scenery and testing process.  There are many questions left to be answered which may be left for the announcement of season two in the making.  There is much to be done and discovered with many of the secrets of the Offshore to be revealed as the Cause and the 3% may come head to head.

I’m usually pretty hopeful when it comes to Netflix Originals as they seem to have a pretty good track record thus far.  As much as I wanted to like this show, I found more things to upset me than entertain me.  Many of the characters were annoying at best and many scenes had you scratching your head.  Though season two has been announced and all our burning questions will be answered, I feel like the odds of me continuing with this series and watching season two are slim to none.  Fans of dystopian scifi will enjoy the concepts and scenery, though I feel like the translation and characters are deal breakers.

Scream Tv Series Season Two

scream-2-1

Picture Courtesy of the Weinstein Company and Netflix

 

You may recall how pleased I was with the first season being able to stump me and my detective skills.  The first season ends with us finding out who the killer was.  Emma and the rest of the “Lakewood Six” as they have been called try to pick up the pieces of their slaughtered lives.  Emma has taken things the hardest being the centre of all the killings and has left town for therapy.  Emma is back, but it appears someone has some unfinished business to attend to.

While more secrets are revealed causing everyone to look just as guilty anew, our new mystery killer has no problem dumping bodies out in the open.  With a few new characters to help widen the pool of suspects Scream season two takes us on another slaughter tour of gasps and jumps to aid to your binge watching or commute.

Our killer has a different agenda this season enjoying playing with his characters more and as I mentioned they have no trouble killing left, right and centre.  Though we thought we could have exhausted all the secrets this troubled little town could hold, there is always something more to come out of the woodwork.

This season doesn’t hold quite as much suspense and intrigue to it as the audience has to sit through a bit more song and dance as we play cat and mouse with the killer.  They still manage to keep the jumps and spooks coming though.

Season Two ends with a sort of halloween vacation special taking our group to a secluded island with a murderous past.  As if one psycho serial killer wasn’t enough, some of our troop have decided to take their minds off their current hunter by researching a murderous legend.  This allows for a short little vacation for our newest newest killer, whom still remains nameless even after season two, though they do stop in to remind us that they will never, NEVER, stop hunting our poor little Emma.  As a sort of teaser during the very last minutes of the show a faceless unexpected ghost checks in to a lakewood hotel (though even at this I have to wonder about the desk clerk who lives in a town drenched in murderous legend and daily news who wouldn’t make the connection to the name during check in).  With season three not being readily available and not one to keep up with shows on TV, I do have to wonder when this one will be finished and available on Netflix.  Will I ever see the end of this series?  I can’t say for sure.  All I know is… I will be right back.