Friday, May 18, 2012
The Booth At The End (Web Series Review)
This Hulu.com original web series stars Xander Berkeley(Nikita, 24) as a mysterious man who takes meetings in a diner, offering clients literally whatever they wish in exchange for a "task". The task is always challenging and often criminal, but sometimes it's also a challenging act of goodness. And whatever the wish, the man somehow has the power, or authority, to grant it upon completion of "the task".
The Man's motives, power and origins are a mystery that is never revealed. So I wouldn't watch in hopes of finding out who or what the mysterious man is, or who he works for. What's more interesting and telling is the lengths people are prepared to go to get what they want, or what they think they want. I cringed as I watched people do, or nearly do, some of the most horrible things to bring about what they most desire.
There are some major philosophical and theological ramifications based on who The Man really is and who he works for. For example, one client wants to feel closer to God and The Man claims he can deliver on that as well! The series is extremely compelling from a character standpoint, intriguing from a sci-fi/fantasy standpoint, and worth talking about from a philosophical standpoint.
The performances are wonderful almost across the board, and truly drive the experience. Xander Berkeley in particular is fascinatingly unreadable.
It's a web series, so naturally you shouldn't expect any special effects sequences. In fact, every single scene takes place in the same booth of the same diner. Yet because of the writing and performances, I felt as though I had been with each of these characters as they went away from the diner and continued to live their lives.
Although it doesn't appear the series will continue, it ends on an unresolved note that could either be seen as a cliffhanger or a post-modern "what do YOU think will happen next" sort of ending, which can be satisfying enough for those who are more used to unresolved endings.
All five episodes of the series are available to watch right now, and strung together they could easily serve as a "free movie rental" for a Summer Of Free weekend! (Total run time of all five episodes is about 114 minutes.)
You can check out "The Booth At The End" FOR FREE at-
It's unrated by the MPAA, but falls in the same category as most prime time network television dramas in terms of content.
For information on the scoring system used for this review, visit spiritblade.net/reviewscores.
Listen to this review this weekend on The Spirit Blade Underground Podcast!