Making an action thriller that is also realistic is quite a task. The creators of The Night Agent have done just that
ollywood may have been losing its touch in the recent years with monotonous and repetitive content. However, 2023 seems to be the year of its comeback.
The latest thriller worth talking about is The Night Agent. The ten-episode thriller brings together a proper storyline, cast, believable acting and greyish-blue hues sketching the viewer as a part of the plot once the show starts running.
Released in March, the series has American actor Gabriel Basso featuring as an FBI agent, Peter Sutherland, alongside Luciane Buchanan who essays the role of Rose Larkin, a cyber security expert.
The plot follows Sutherland as he is assigned to attend to a phone that rings once in a blue moon but he is in luck; the bell rings in his eerily empty and silent, windowless office. From that moment his story begins.
The series pivots on the story of the president of the United States Michelle Travers, portrayed by Kari Matchett. While Travers makes only occasional appearances in the series, every time she does appear, the plotline takes a turn, unfolding into layered sub-plots featuring strong characters.
Travers is shown struggling as the vice president plots against her. People totally unrelated to her are caught up in the big scheme of evil which later alters the course of everyone’s lives.
Based on a novel by Matthew Quirk, the ten-part series is about political feuds that fuel corruption, decades of war, shedding of innocent civilians’ blood and backstabbing by politicians.
The innocent and modest attires of the characters are a perfect representation of the old adage “Things are not always what they seem.”
The Night Agent gets more intense as it progresses with various characters politicking and airing one another’s dirty laundry in public. The show adds a believable spin that leads to a trail of surprises which are justified by characters that switch loyalties in different situations, based on their spontaneous cost-benefit analyses.
The more you know, the more dangerous this becomes.
The series follows the Sutherland-Larkin duo as Sutherland rushes to identify the White House mole. Larkin’s character arc unfolds when she goes from being a bankrupt tech CEO to focusing on one thing; finding her aunt and uncle’s murderer.
These two govern the show but side characters also do a wonderful job of supporting the lead roles. These include the president’s daughter, Maddie, with her terrified expressions and will to right the wrongs. She is portrayed subtly in her body language when she is kidnapped and people are murdered in front of her
We see the chief of staff, Diane Farr, battle with ethical dilemmas and longstanding loyalty and friendship that visibly leave a composed woman frustrated with the to-and-fro. Farr falls apart as she struggles with these dilemmas and by the end of it begins to come undone.
Several thrillers have been aired over the course of the year but this one stands out mainly due to its steady pace, exceptional dialogue delivery and catchy plot.
The political rivalry, the mole in the White House, the unresolved murders, a father-daughter relationship in a shambles: the series gives the audience quite a show. This is evident from the fact that the series has been slotted for a second season which will come out next year in the same ten-episode sequence.
“I’ll fall forward so my body weight is distributed across more area.”
“Sounds good, just jump.”
Nitty gritty details indicate that the effort was not wasted. From Chinese tea to jumping out of the window, the cast infuses humour as a coping mechanism in the several stressful sub-plots.
The series comes as a pleasant break for the viewers with not a single negative review. This is a huge achievement for this genre on Netflix, given its recent history of constantly having shows with potholes such as Kaleidoscope and/ or par-for-the-course plots such as The Strays.
Though the plot is obvious, the cast do an amazing representation - from Larkin’s fearful undertones and shaking hands to portraying how Ashely Redfield, the vice president, has neutral expressions of a seasoned politician as he falsely accuses people of betrayal while he is the perpetrator, the organiser, the mastermind and the hoodlum behind all the chaos in the country.
The series has realistic and humanistic elements to it. The fights result in injuries on both sides and we see Rose thanking Sutherland in the most down-to-earth manner as they are getting chased by assassins, Ellen and Dale.
The ‘good side’ fails far too often. In the end, all the sacrifices make a difference.
The show rises to the level of Squid Games, Money Heist and The Crown.
The writer is undergraduate student of psychology at FC College