Chambers: Season 1, Episode 1 “Into The Void” [Series Premiere] – Recap, Review (with Spoilers)

Half of Rebecca's face and half of Sasha's as the Chambers title card.
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The best thing about Chambers will be its representation of Native Americans. As for the rest? Well, it may depend on how much you dig the horror genre.


Network
Netflix
Creator(s) Leah Rachel
Director(s) Alfonso Gomex-Rejon
Writer(s) Leah Rachel
Air Date 4/26/2019
Genre(s) Horror, Thriller, Drama
Good If You Like Shows Starring Urban Lead

Fish Out Of Water Stories

Creepy Rich White People

Isn’t For You If You Aren’t Into Horror
Introduced This Episode
Sasha Sivan Alyra Rose
TJ Griffin Powell-Arcand
Rebecca Lilliya Scarlett Reid
Ben Tony Goldwyn
Nancy Uma Thurman
Frank Marcus LaVoi

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The Introduction

17-year-old Sasha, raised in Arizona, happens to have heart failure when trying to lose her virginity to her boyfriend TJ. Leading to her getting the heart of a young girl named Rebecca who died tragically. So tragically that, three months after Sasha’s recovery, Ben and Nancy try to get involved in Sasha’s life by offering her a scholarship to a fancy prep school. One which, since he sees it as a great opportunity, her uncle Frank pushes her to take since it could make her one of the first in the family to go to college. An idea Sasha pushes back against but, with time, accepts the idea of.

However, as strange things start happening, Sasha questions if she made the right choice.

Question(s) Left Unanswered

  1. What happened to Sasha’s parents when she was 2? Which is seemingly the age when Frank began to raise her.

Highlights

Native American Focus

While the first episode doesn’t touch upon Frank and Sasha’s culture heavily, considering how rare it is to see and hear about Native Americans being cast, never mind starring, in shows with an actual budget, that might be one of the main attractions to the show.

Just A Normal Girl Dealing With Crazy White People

Especially since Sasha, while raised by her uncle for reasons not yet mentioned, seems different enough to be interesting but relatable enough to not be off-putting. Take her wanting to lose her virginity, not trusting rich white people who live in a house that seems like a fortress – you can understand her way of thinking. Add in her fears of going to a prep school and abandoning all she has known, and Sasha comes off as someone you want to get to know further. Also, hope to see survive whatever the heck Ben and Nancy got going on that likely led to their daughter being killed.

On The Fence

The Horror Element

You ever watch a show and feel the most basic part of it was good enough? That, the characters, as introduced, have more than enough going on to attract an audience so all the extra stuff is a bit much? That’s how I feel about the horror element. For while Ben and Nancy do give a good eerie vibe and seem sinister, a part of me feels that their part in this, their story, goes beyond acting like a Trojan Horse for Native American representation. Especially in terms of Native Americans who are from Arizona and the west coast.

Which is an issue for me since there is no way they are going to have Uma Thurman and Tony Goldwyn play second fiddle. They are the actors who most people likely know the names of. So as much as I can slightly get into what they bring into the show, I also feel like they are going to quickly become a reason to roll your eyes until their scenes are over.

First Impression: Mixed (Stick Around)

With only recently getting into the horror genre, I must admit I’m still trying to find the value of it. For while Chambers isn’t focused on gore and cheap jump scares, with presenting Sasha and her life first, it’s hard not to get mixed feelings. On the one hand, you have this Native girl whose life we don’t see in popular media that often. Yet, on the other hand, with Chambers not going for the cheap thrills, it could mean we may get something that, if watched alone in the dark, could likely lead you to having nightmares.

Hence the mixed label. The main, if not sole, issue of Chambers is that it pushes you to hope the horror element doesn’t drown out the rare opportunity to get a Native American actor and character be seen, heard, and represent themselves. And while I have no doubt that it won’t be brushed under the rug, there is a real fear of it becoming secondary as the truth about Rebecca becomes more prominent and Sasha maybe just becoming a vessel.

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