Directors: Tom Shankland (1-4), Hans Herbots (5-8)
Story By: Richard Warlow & Toby Finlay
Cast: Tahar Rahim, Jenna Coleman, Billy Howle, Ellie Bamber, Mathilde Warnier, & Amesh Edireweera
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I was very much satisfied with this series! I was initially drawn to it simply because of the 1970s/80s vibe of the movie poster—specifically the setting of the series.
There were 2 issues I had with the series, but overall it was a solid series that I’m glad I took a chance to check out.
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Below are my grades for key components in #TheSerpent that I find to be key in any story/film/series—Theme, Plot, Pacing, and Character Arc/Development.
Additionally, I have added an entertainment factor scale to help you determine whether or not the film is something you’d be interested in taking time out of your weekend, evening, or day to watch. The scale range consists of: Worth the Watch, Interesting Enough (if looking for something new to start), & Don’t Rush.
I have also added a few non-spoiling thoughts, wonderings, and comments as I watched the film to help give some rationale for my grades and entertainment scale.
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Character Arc/Development: C
General Entertainment Factor: Worth the Watch
Film Enthusiast Entertainment Factor: Worth the Watch
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1. First, I just want to point out the yellow jumpsuit ‘Monique’ had on at that damn pool… oh, that was a look! There was also the green she wore when the returned from India! 🙌🏾🙌🏾🙌🏾
2. I don’t know if this is weird to say, but Ajay was beautiful to me. Hair! Skin! Smile! Eyes! I just loved him—visually… 👀🥴😍🤷🏾♂️
3. I was really hoping to get more from the constant struggle with getting Herman to eat… I think in hindsight, I “get it…” but even what “I get” isn’t enough to give it such clear scene time. 🤔👎🏾
4. Oh, and Dominique…he was bae, too! 😍
5. The plot/story was well delivered. I was concerned that the falling action and resolution would be rushed (as Netflix series sometimes do), but I actually found the falling action to be one of the strongest plot points of this series—just when you thought things were done, or should have been done, there was another level to the story provided. 👍🏾
6. I was/am REALLY concerned about the racial representation of Charles Sobhraj. Tahar Rahim, though the acting was solid, really couldn’t embody some of those internalized motivations of Charles because he is white presenting… especially the scene with the “thug” comment… I was like, “… … … sir, the audacity for your response…” 👀🤦🏾♂️👎🏾
There were even scenes where you could tell he was wearing makeup to darken his skin… 🤦🏾♂️
7. Speaking of Charles the character, I was pleasantly surprised by the other internalized motivation for Charles to get to Paris… I enjoyed this somewhat humanizing component to Charles and his actions. 👍🏾
8. However, to continue with point #7, I wish there was more to that. When his mother comes in with her analysis of him, it takes away from that internalized motivation even being something humanizing. Instead, it came off as tactical… which then made his ending relationship not make any sense… 🤨
Additionally, “Monique’s” character needed more work as I watched what was attempted with her character arc via the falling action and resolution. Something was definitely missing &/or a little rushed… 🤔
9. Yo… Nadine sort of worked my nerves! She had me on edge EVERY TIME she was on the screen. So I guess she came and did what she was supposed to do, huh? 🤷🏾♂️🤣 Especially when she went to “follow the flashlight” … like GIRL! 😩🤦🏾♂️🤣
10. Oh he was SO bold with the students! Like, REALLY! 😧
11. I won’t lie… the jumping back and forth with 3 weeks later, 4 years later, 2 weeks ago, etc… it started to get a little confusing. BUT, it was also needed and appreciated. Additionally, every hour of each episode was definitely used well! 👍🏾
12. I think the only moment that possibly could’ve been left out, in reference to the pacing, was seeing Stephane’s visit. It was obvious that her visit was meant to help develop “Monique’s” character arc, but… it wasn’t strong enough for me. 🤷🏾♂️👎🏾
13. The theme was simple—Justice is always served eventually. I found it so fascinating how Embassies responded to the situation…and even the police. Just, wow! 👍🏾
14. Sooo… no one is really aging as they should? That damn officer only grew grey hair in his eyebrows in 30 years? Come on, now! 🤦🏾♂️🤣👎🏾
15. OOOO, and the Interpol lead… he was bae, too. 👀😍😜
16. It was the languages for me! 👍🏾
17. Phew Chile! The amount of cigarettes they were puffing. My goodness! 👀👀
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Overall, #TheSerpent is a really well done series. It gives Catch Me If You Can-meets-Bonnie and Clyde-meets-Unsolved Mysteries. Again, my only major issue had to do with Tahar Rahim being able to truly live in the words and beliefs of Charles Sobhraj due to him being White passing… luckily, his acting is strong.