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Netflix's THE POLITICIAN: Season 1 Review

Politics. It's an issue that most of us associate to being just for the adults. But with "The Politician", the trio of Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, and Ian Brennan takes a refreshing and witty high-school spin on the cutthroat, deceptive, enthralling ins and outs of being a true blue modern-day politician. The best way we could sum the whole experience is it is a literal teenage version of "House of Cards". Does it work? When the series concentrates on politicking and campaigning, it does but midway through the season were the conflicts have been run dry, "The Politician" becomes a candidate without a campaign, without a direction, and the overall product suffers as a whole.


Payton Hobart (Ben Platt) has known since age seven that he's going to be the President of the United States or at least he believes this is his destiny. But destiny doesn't come on a silver platter. First he must build a story of success based on past president's profiles like going to Harvard or his goal for now: being elected as the Student Body President of Saint Sebastian High School. To do this, Payton must outsmart his classmates without sacrificing his own morality and carefully crafted image.
"The Politician" surprised us in a lot of ways. On paper, we honestly thought the show was weird and quirky and we were not wrong. "The Politician" has a unique vibe that is both preposterous and grounded at the same time. This quirk is what actually made the show work for us. It's laughably unrealistic showcasing teens plotting and doing all kinds of serious crimes without much consequences and yet we still found ourselves relating to several of the show's main characters with each of their own triumphs and struggles as an alpha prime or as a pawn in the political arena. The biggest asset for "The Politician" was easily its presentation. The show employed various styles to move its plot forward. Our favorite would be the "Gone Girl" episode literally inspired by the novel (or film) "Gone Girl" and "The Voter" which revolved around a regular student who our main characters try to convince to vote in the upcoming school elections. Each episode had its own visual punch that made the experience surreal yet memorable. The weakest link for the show would be its narrative and how it treats the supporting characters that revolve around Payton. In particular, the narrative takes a nose dive once the school elections are over and a winner had been declared. If the episodes during the campaign had brilliant surprises and satires, the episodes after that felt uninspired, forced, and directionless. As for the supporting cast, we felt that it was unable to do each justice. With the numerous characters involved, the show struggled to make each one feel significant except for the characters of Infinity and her Nana. It was as if "The Politician" had too many episodes when it came to its narrative but severely lacked episodes when it came to its supporting cast. "The Politician" though had an amazing last episode that sets up a second season quite well. Overall, "The Politician" even with its major issues was surprisingly enjoyable, funny, and quirky. It may not be perfect but it's still an entertaining show at its core.
Rating: 3 and a half reels




Why you should watch it:
- unique and quirky visual style makes every episode pop
- it's a teenage version of "House of Cards"

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- the supporting cast lacked character development
- the narrative eventually loses steam

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