TV Series Series Premiere The Stranger: Season 1 Episode 1 – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)

The Stranger: Season 1 Episode 1 [Series Premiere] – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)

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In the new Netflix mystery series, one person’s reveal of a mother’s lie and a bunch of teenagers having a wild night, unravel a family, and their community.


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Created ByHarlan Coben
Directed ByDaniel O’Hara
Written ByDanny Brocklehurst
Aired (Netflix)01/30/2020
Genre(s)Crime, Drama, Mystery
Introduced This Episode
AdamRichard Armitage
CorinneDervla Kirwan
TomJacob Dudman
RyanMisha Handley
JohannaSiobhan Finneran
WesleyKadiff Kiwan
DanteKai Alexander
DaisyElla-Raw Smith
MikeBrandon Fellows
HeidiJennifer Saunders
The StrangerHannah John-Kamen

This content contains pertinent spoilers.

Plot Overview

Adam is a lawyer, and his wife Corinne is a teacher. Both are well respected and known, as well as their kids Tom and their second child Ryan. Two years ago, there was an attempt to add a third to their brew but Corinne suffered a miscarriage.

Well, at least that is what was assumed until a stranger approaches Adam with the kind of information a stranger shouldn’t be privy to. And with Adam a bit shaken, he investigates what is said and discovers the worse. This leads to Corinne being confronted and her committing a series of acts that makes her look more and more guilty. Making it so Adam may now even question if Tom and Ryan are his.

As this all happens, two detectives, Johanna and Wesley, are investigating a decapitated alpaca that was left in the downtown area alongside a boy, likely one of Tom’s peers, Dante, being found naked in the woods. In the previous night, we are shown a party that Tom attended with his girlfriend Daisy and friend Mike. One which was a bonfire with headphones to keep too much attention from coming to them. And sometime, during that party, Daisy may have walked about with Dante and Mike saw.

Now, as for how all this adds up to Tom having the alpaca’s head, Dante in a coma, and Corinne on the run? Well, you got to continue to watch to find out.

Review

Highlights

You Care About The Characters In and Outside The Mystery Element

Corinne (Dervla Kirwan) talking to Daisy's mom.
Corinne (Dervla Kirwan)

Whether you are talking about Adam and Corinne’s issue, with what Corrine may have lied about, to Tom having an alpaca head and the investigation Wesley and Johanna have, it’s hard not to be hooked. Especially since they have given each character the kind of personality and life needed to make it clear the crime or mystery isn’t the most interesting or biggest thing to ever happen to their lives.

For example, we meet one of Adam’s clients who doesn’t want to move out of his home, despite a redevelopment representative ready to offer 400,000 pounds. And, to add some fun to it, said client locked the rep into a room to punish them! Then, when it comes to Tom, depending on if you enjoy teen drama, this whole thing between him, Daisy, and Dante could be about far more than it appears. Especially since Tom and Daisy have a casual relationship that I wouldn’t say both want to be that way.

And from there you have Daisy’s younger sister who seemingly is going through something, Johanna going through a divorce with her best friend, Heidi, played by Jennifer Saunders, and “The Stranger” who apparently plans not just to blow up Adam’s life, but many others.

On The Fence

The Teen Drama Could Become A Weak Point

Daisy (Ella-Raw Smith) during an assembly
Daisy (Ella-Raw Smith)

While Corinne and Adam’s drama is of interest, as well as what “The Stranger” can reveal to the other adults, when it comes to the teens, there might be a need to worry. Why? Well, there is something about a decapitated alpaca that screams, not desperation, but the use of a gimmick to draw your attention.

Heck, I’d even throw Dante running around naked in the woods. For a lot of what we see with the teens fits what you expect from a young adult show. The kind more about shock in visuals than storytelling. Which I hope isn’t going to be the basis for grabbing the viewer’s attention.

Overall

First Impression: Optimistic

The Stranger (Hannah John-Kamen) getting ready to blow up someone's life.
The Stranger (Hannah John-Kamen)

Despite feeling there might be a divergence in quality between the storyline of the teenagers and the adults, we’re feeling very optimistic about this show. The reason for that is, when it comes to the adults, between Corinne’s secret and how “The Stranger” will likely continue to blow up people’s lives, there is a lot of intrigue there. Now, when it comes to the kids, there is less of a hook but with Wesley and Johanna involved in their storylines, maybe they could up the ante a bit? Perhaps make it so these kids aren’t just another set who, thanks to hormones and lack of supervision, did something incredibly stupid.

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Amari Allahhttps://wherever-i-look.com
I started Wherever I Look back in 2011 and from movies, TV, the occasional book, play, and Broadway show, have been trying to bridge the gap between a critic and an avid lover of various forms of media.

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