Editor’s note: The views and opinions expressed in this review are solely those of Marlon Wallace and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of WBOC.
This series is about a man who loses his memory and learns that there are people after him, potentially trying to kill him. He has to figure out who he is and why these killers are after him. At the same time, a woman who works for the police tries to help him, as she deals with her own personal issues. In several ways, it feels like Memento (2001) and the first season of FX’s Fargo (2014). In that, there’s plenty here by which to be intrigued. The direction and the acting are really good. Harry and Jack Williams are Emmy-winning producers from the series Fleabag (2016). They weren’t technically writers for that show but they have written for various TV shows. Nevertheless, the writing is my chief complaint about this series.
Jamie Dornan (Belfast and Fifty Shades of Grey) stars as an Irish man who is suffering from amnesia. He wakes up in a hospital in Australia with no memory of how he got there or who he is. He doesn’t even remember his own name. His only clue is a note in his jacket that points him toward a diner. He then has to retrace his steps and unravel the mystery of what happened to him.
Danielle Macdonald (French Exit and Bird Box) co-stars as Helen Chambers, a probationary constable, which is the lowest rank that a person can have as a police officer in various countries. She’s a bit of a shy person. She’s trying to be less so because she wants to rise in the ranks of the police. She’s not very tough though. She doesn’t seem to be liked much by her peers. She is engaged but it’s to a very large and very verbally abusive man named Ethan.
A lot of the series is about Helen learning to overcome her shyness and becoming tougher or strong enough to stand up for herself. Another point of this series is Helen having to decide between her verbally abusive fiance and a potential romance with the Irish man.
Shalom Brune-Franklin also co-stars as Luci Miller, the woman who works at the diner that the Irish man visits because of the note in his jacket. She’s clearly the opposite of Helen. She’s Black. She’s fit. She’s not shy. She’s personable and strong-willed. She’s tough, very tough actually. She becomes another potential love interest for the Irish man. Yet, there may be more to her than meets the eye.
Once the truth is revealed and the Williams lay out who the Irish man is and what happened, it makes the series lesser in my mind. One plot line that felt important before the truth revealed fails as utterly pointless. That plot line involves a man buried underground. One of the questions that’s a running theme throughout the series is whether or not the Irish man is a good guy or a bad guy. Once the truth is revealed and the ambiguity of that is gone, the potential romance between Helen and the Irish man becomes incredibly problematic.
Running Time: 1 hr. / 6 eps.
Available on HBO Max.