My Netflix Picks: “Damages”

My Netflix Picks: “Damages”

Worth It
Aug 4, 2011
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So, ampoule this month’s “My Netflix Picks” is the critically acclaimed crime-thriller-drama, tooth Damages. Seeing as it stars Glenn Close and Rose Byrne, tablets I figured it can’t be all that bad. Killer actresses. And indeed, they are absolutely incredible in this taut, edge-of-your-seat, murder mystery serial.

Glenn Close plays the intense, controlling Patty Hewes, senior partner of one of the fiercest law firms in New York. She brings on the young and seemingly naive Ellen Parsons (Rose Byrne) as a junior lawyer. However, there’s a catch. Ellen’s sister-in-law is a reluctant witness in what is Patty’s current biggest case. Ellen sees this but seems unphased and eager to move up in the firm. As the season rolls along we learn more about Patty’s intentions with Ellen, but Ellen cleverly stays one step ahead and seemingly manages to keep herself in Patty’s good graces.

From the very first episode, the creator’s of Damages use a very effective story-telling technique. While the majority of each episode focuses on the central plot line of Hewes trying to take down the corrupt corporate beast, Arthur Frobisher (Ted Danson), we are shown flash-forwards of a gruesome murder plot revolving around Ellen. Each episode we learn a little more about the mystery, but are always kept confused and dying to know more. This non-linear story line along with the intense drama of both timelines makes this show hypnotic and incredibly exciting. There’s never a dull episode as we experience the emotional ups and downs of the characters. I found myself saying…”ok…one more episode and then I’ll go to bed. Just one more!”

Every element of production makes this a great show. Let’s start with the writing. The script is so well developed. It is sharp, tight and perfectly reveals to the audience only what the writers want us to see. Then there’s the acting. Across the board, Damages is one of the best acted shows in the last decade. Every character is played just right. And the main players (Glenn Close, Ted Danson, Rose Byrnes,  Zeljko Ivanek) are all in top form. Regarding the technical aspects (lighting, effects, sound, etc…), it’s all very effective and tasteful, used to enhance the suspense and drama perfectly.

This show is a smart, edge-of-your-seat, cat-and-mouse chase from beginning to end. The relationships are complex, filled with all sorts of double-crossing, back-stabbing, who-dun-it kinda fare.  And what’s best about Damages being featured on Netflix is that it doesn’t just offer seasons one or two, like so many other great shows (i.e. Madmen). But Netflix managed to negotiate all complete series for viewing — one through four. I’m already half way through season two and, let me tell ya, it’s just as satisfying as season one. This show is killer! No wait…it’s to die for! No, that’s awful….ummm…just go check it out.


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Craig the Critic

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