World News – CA – Barbarians: Review of Netflix’s New Historical Drama – Asap Land


It is not difficult to see the endless potential of staging a production in the days of the Roman Empire, even more in a moment like the present in which the products to historical theme have a success – almost – guaranteed In addition, such a setting has not always been fully exploited, perhaps only by the famous Rome of HBO There is space, Netflix he wanted to seize the opportunity and thus was born Barbarians, a German television show with the aim of staging the famous battle of Teutoburg, one of the worst defeats ever suffered by the Empire and which essentially ended Roman expansionism in Germany

So Barbari is set up as a purely documentary series? Apparently yes, but the season finale and especially the marketing – a rather heavy juxtaposition with Vikings was born that Netflix never wanted to avoid – reveals a much larger project

Here, however, the paradox arises: if we are to view it as a documentary series, the experience can be defined as satisfactorily successful; if, on the other hand, this first season is only the first act of an epic dedicated to the Germanic tribes, many problems arise.So Barbari is an ambivalent series, composed of lights and many shadows, which we were able to preview and which debuts on the streaming platform today, October 23

As expected, Barbari takes place entirely in AD 9 and recounts – in an understandably fictitious way – the events that later culminated in the Battle of Teutoburg, in which a coalition of Germanic tribes managed to defeat three legions of the Roman Empire They notably follow the exploits of three protagonists, all belonging to the Cherusci tribe: Thusnelda (Jeanne Goursaud), a young woman with a warlike spirit and eager for revenge against the Romans; Folkwin (David Schutter), a gifted warrior and childhood friend and lover of Thusnelda; and finally Arminius (Laurence Rupp), son of the leader of the Cherusci but raised by the Empire as a pledge of peace

The forces on the ground and the context become clear from the first minutes, with the Roman presence increasingly exorbitant and cumbersome even if tolerated despite the growing discontent of the various tribes, unable to unite against a common enemy because they are also engaged in insignificant conflicts between them This is something we often repeat in similar products like a mantra, but being able to introduce context in a natural way and through the script is one aspect. fundamental for any historical series

And Barbari succeeds perfectly, while taking advantage of a situation that is actually very easy to define. This does not detract from the merit of a show that starts off smart, fast, immediately showing the drama of the situation and the senseless division of the tribes, united in a general council in which in the end nothing is decided because each one thinks of reinforcing or affirming their own reasons

It’s a brilliant and evocative start, then heightened by a realization of the environments and costumes of excellent craftsmanship and in general by an intriguing narrative framework, triumphant to tone down the usual feeling of dejavù that arises in anyone with even minimal knowledge of these events Comparison to the Vikings, in the first few bars, no longer seems like a distant utopia but is gathering momentum, at least until some shortcomings start to shake production from top to bottom

The problem is that Barbari intends to be an ambitious Germanic epic and in order to complete such a wonderful project, extraordinarily charismatic and magnetic characters are needed In the Netflix series, they are just not there and the characterization of the protagonists, like that of the secondary cast, opens a chasm of superficiality All the barbarian characters, from Thusnelda and Folkwin to the various reiks, have only one trait: to be pro or anti-Roman And we fully understand that in the narrative context this score makes sense, but in a dramatic transposition behind this choice then an entire character has to be built. Consequently, even the central role of Thusnelda and Folkwin paradoxically makes little sense, because basically it would have been the same for the spectator if there had been two other protagonists animated by anti-Roman sentiments There is nothing that prompts you to get attached to it in particular, with the result of having two central roles in the personality of the cardboard which must however fulfill a necessary function in the story.

A consideration that can be implemented in the same way also among the Roman ranks, with a single – and partial – exception found in Arminius, the only character with a true story arc The young cohort prefect of the he Roman army is, without a doubt, the most intriguing and complete personality of Barbari, torn between his Germanic origin and a strongly Latin upbringing

With Arminio, nostalgia for his past and unattainable esteem for what Rome is in all its greatness converge wisely; a body of knowledge and experience inconceivable for a barbarian But even on Arminio, the series awkwardly stumbles, putting its final decision in the hands of chance and not a strong and extremely dramatic choice

The surprises, however, don’t end there: just as Barbari seemed compelled to steer towards a mediocre epilogue, the Battle of Teutoburg arrives in its majesty A sensational staging, costumes and paintings masterful facial expressions, memorable goosebumps comparisons that together create a stunning conclusion

As if that was almost a warning, to testify to what this production is capable of and that is why Barbari is a mysterious two-faced series, as enigmatic as its sensational gaps and monumental when it manages to put every element in the right place In the hopes that a hypothetical second season unfolds more in that latter direction

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Netflix, Battle of the Teutoburg Forest, Barbarians – Season 2, Barbarian

News from around the world – CA – Barbarians: Review of Netflix’s new historical drama – Asap Land


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