Together with HBO Max, Apple TV + is outperforming both Netflix and Amazon Prime Video in content goodness. As a matter of fact, the battle for exclusivity in the world of streaming is fought on two fronts: that of quantity and that of quality. In the first one militates the streaming platforms of Reed Hastings and Jeff Bezos (also Disney +, albeit with much stronger and different brands), but it is above all the first to need a large number of productions, this being in fact its primary market. Prime Video is different, and already from the type of subscription and offer it is evident, being a “second base“of the company where many resources from e-commerce are invested.
On the other hand, the streaming of the Apple works on all-round quality and the right quantity, which in these first months of 2022 has already distributed TV series such as Scissione by Ben Stiller (here you can find our first look of Scissione, WeCrashed with Jared Leto and Anne Hathaway, Slow Horses with Gary Oldman and also the irresistible and overwhelming The Afterpartysophisticated comedy in salsa whodunit created, written and directed by Christopher Miller and Phil Lord (21 Jump, Spider-Man: A new universe). An irreverent and successful series, capable of shaping an exciting one mystery murder on a conceived conceptual scaffolding to explore suspect after suspect among many different genresresulting for this revolutionary.
High school reunion with crime
There are guilty hunts set on a luxurious train (the review of Murder on the Orient Express tells you anything?), During a birthday party of a wealthy entrepreneurial family (and the review of Knives Out?), Along a romantic cruise in Egypt (we are sure that our review of Murder on the Nile will refresh your memory) or even on an island psychiatric center (Shutter Island), but none so far had ever thought about a high school reunion.
The comedy is obviously the host to enslave context and characters properly, one more curious and wacky than the other, each of them with something to hide. Many years have passed since the end of adolescence, and many things have changed for Aniq (Sam Richardson), Zoe (Zoe Chao), Yasper (Ben Schwartz), Brett (Ike Barinholtz), Chelsea (Ilana Glazer), Walt (Jamie Demetriou) and Xavier (Dave Franco). Above all, the latter has managed to establish himself on the international music scene as one of the most followed and loved pop singers, obviously strong in an immeasurable ego that distinguishes all the “beautiful and damned” artists who respect each other. Needless to say, it is he who dies in the very first minutes of the seriesduring the’Afterparty of the high school reunion organized in his gigantic mansion on the cliff. Who killed Xavier? Such as? Because? These are the questions that the shrewd and somewhat extroverted Detective Danner will have to answer, played by an unbridled Tiffany Haddisha true token of Apple production already reconfirmed for a second anthological season. The Afterparty has an avowed comedy skeletonmoreover conceived to be choral like any self-respecting whudunit, with an ensemble of performers from the world of comedy.
So he wants to entertain, parodying the genre of Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie on everyone to hand it over to the new generations without, however, displeasing the old women. Overseas someone has called it a “millennial whodunit“, where the pretext of the murder actually wants to lead to something else, whether it is a conceptual or cinematographic experimentation or to deepening and marked evolutions of the characters involved and their relationships. Indeed this does, The Afterpartyputting together a cast of actors in their own way hilarious and perfect to create very precise and elaborate characterizations, conceived as small cogs of a larger and more complex mechanism.
The mental films
Christopher Miller and Phil Lord not only manage to joke about the hunt for the absolute culpritputting together a desecrating and captivating show with light tones and an excellently cadenced rhythm, but also throwing themselves into a work of deconstruction of the same through the ingenious idea of ”mental films”.
You know when a suspect begins to tell his story, trying to retrace the facts from his own point of view, perhaps lying? Mental movies are exactly these, and the whole The Afterpartyepisode by episode, he explores the different versions of the story told through each of the eight protagonists mentioned. Each episode, a mental film. Each mental film, different reworkings. Every reworking, new details.
No one in the whodunit has ever attempted a similar operation before, but the series goes even further and plays its definitive card: each episode, a different genre for each versiondepending on the character of the narrating characters.
That is how The Afterparty it also becomes a musical, a thriller-horror, a badass action title or an animated film, all always mitigated by comedy and without ever straying from the main plot of the story, simply diverging (or confirming) in curious ways and exasperated the confessions of the various suspects questioned by Danner. This allows the series to be renewed from episode to episode while continuously telling the same story. But also the personalities of the various characters play a fundamental role both in the genre and in the story itself. A splendid example is that of Yasper, where a phenomenal Ben Schwartz engages in a mini-musical with some original songs cacthy and really hilarious (“We All Get One Shot Twice“above all). The intent is to manipulate gender clichés with great vision and abilityadapting them to the needs of the investigation to carry on the narrative.
In fact, one never turns in circles and the complexity of the structure mixed with the committed base must not be misleading: the plot is accurate, the sowing of clues very rich, the attention threshold required to arrive at the solution of the case first. of Danner very interesting. Throw yourself into the serial arms of The Afterparty it means enjoying one of the most innovative and intriguing whodunits ever produced, as well as in one of the best and most curious products of the already sophisticated Apple TV + bookshop.