*Mild spoilers ahead*
Amazon’s new drama Homecoming has got a lot of hype from critics and audiences alike. Taking place simultaneously in the present and future, the story unravels the truth behind a program called Homecoming, which houses soldiers recently returned from combat in a facility and help them return to everyday life. However, the program may not be all that it seems, and after a government worker receives a complaint about it, dangerous secrets threaten to expose themselves. The idea comes from the mastermind behind Mr. Robot, and the show is based on a podcast. At the center of this show is Julia Roberts, who plays a therapist at Homecoming.
The first thing I noticed about this show was its artful editing and design, which seems to pay homage to classic noir mysteries and 70’s dramas. Coupled with an eccentric soundtrack, this show feels like a piece of art.
But how does it hold up as a story? Well I thought the premise was interesting enough, I was definitely pulled in. And the episodes are only a half an hour long, so it seemed to move along at a good pace. The characters worked well enough and were entertaining. I think it has all of the makings of a great mystery. Plus, it’s got the sentimental addition of dealing with combat veterans, and all of those characters are extremely compelling.
But here’s the thing — I felt like the show was trying way too hard to make feel tension, conflict, and suspense. For example, they devoted an entire episode to a character telling us “Something’s wrong! We’re trapped!” and I felt like they could have done it in a much more subtle way. The audience is plenty smart enough to understand that this situation was shady. Also, the distanced boss was a bit cliche and his decisions were always hasty and idiotic, and they all obviously led to the downfall of the facility. I didn’t feel like I had to do much work watching this show, like it held my hand the entire way. Which I suppose isn’t always a bad thing. Recently there’s been a trend in television where they decide not to tell the viewers anything, so this is a nice change.
And don’t get me wrong, it’s not like there’s not questions left to be wondered about at the end.
Even despite how thick they laid on the suspense, it was still a fun watch overall. It was an interesting concept and a decently well executed. It’s the kind of show I’d watch if I was looking for something quick after dinner but not completely mindless. I do think this show will be an Emmy contender, so it’s worth checking out for how well it has done critically as well. And Julia Roberts’ performance is worth the watch all on its own.
Tell Us: Have you seen Homecoming? If not, do you plan to?