100; Better; Confessions of Frannie Langton; school spirits; The consultant
Scripted series aren’t the core of Netflix, reality shows are. The streaming giant ramps up production of dating shows, fashion contests, and survival sagas, all from a global perspective. Her latest crossover hit is Physical: 100a South Korean fitness bout with serious pec appeal that brings together everyone from champion bodybuilders and elite soldiers to Olympic gymnasts and fitness influencers.
It’s a smart show to lean into Squid Game Compare with huge studio spaces and masked tracksuit-clad attendants as the 100 contestants steadily narrow down to one champion. Whether individually or in a team, the games are varied survivor Challenge and mythical tasks. But it moves at a stately pace, with plenty of matches and a focus on how the contestants – many of whom know each other’s reputations – react to the clashing bodies.
The tone between opponents is respectful throughout, emphasizing how cultural differences help bring a global curiosity to Netflix’s international quests; The tone of an Australian edition would be very different, mate. I’m surprised Netflix hasn’t released a stricter international version, but even so, this unexpected hit will still make converts.
Leila Farzad, who was great as the hard-nosed celebrity manager at Stan’s i hate suzieShe’s even better in this British crime drama, playing a corrupt Leeds police detective who’s genuinely trying to get her life back on track – even if it means going after the crime boss and friend she’s been protecting for years. With Andrew Buchan (Industry) when her unofficial partner became an opponent, it is a study in amorality, power dynamics and self-confidence. The plot can be a bit conventional, but every scene between the two main actors has a real charge.
Confessions of Frannie Langton
This is a refreshing, welcome corrective to traditional British-era romantic drama, which reinforces historical revisionism, queer perspective and Gothic agony. Frannie (Karla-Simone Spence), sent to Britain as a slave from Jamaica in the early 1800s, finds opportunities in education and pleasure in an affair with her privileged mistress, Marguerite Benham (Sophie Cookson). In adapting her own 2019 book, Sara Collins maintains the revealing detail alongside the flashback-heavy dramatic flourishes. It’s a reminder that television is an invaluable – and entertaining – vehicle for re-examining the conventions of the past.
The torrid high school mystery gets a supernatural twist in this above-average American young adult drama, in which a dead student, Maddie Nears (Peyton List), finds herself anchored in the afterlife at the school where she appears to have been murdered. Alternately aided and hindered by a spooky support group of phantom teens – they meet at the gym – Maddie tries to solve her own case from the other side of the living investigation. It is The Breakfast Club meets Spiritnotable for the heavy veneer of trauma and fear laid over a criminal investigation department.
British creator Tony Basgallop has a knack for reimagining the mundane with an enduring uneasiness that tilts into the supernatural. On Apple TV+ The servant He turned raising a newborn into a nightmarish realm while the workplace becomes a menacing prison in this darkly comic thriller about the nerve-wracking new boss of a software company. Christoph Waltz uses all his Tarantino tricks to threaten his 20-year-old employees, though the clash of generations takes a back seat to macabre office rituals in this amusing if somewhat minor argument for safe working from home.
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https://www.smh.com.au/culture/tv-and-radio/mock-of-ages-mel-brooks-turns-history-on-its-head-in-new-comedy-series-20230303-p5cp8o.html?ref=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_source=rss_culture 100; Better; Confessions of Frannie Langton; school spirits; The consultant