Netflix's 'Dark' Is Being Praised As The Next 'Stranger Things'
The new German supernatural crime thriller is just as gripping as life in Hawkins.
BY Megan Davies | Dec 11, 2017 | Film & TV
Stranger Things' second season premiered a month ago now, so that's more than enough time to have binged the whole nine-episode run three times over – skipping episode seven, of course.
But while the show's third season may feel further away than ever right now, today (December 1) Netflix has premiered Dark, an all-new supernatural thriller series that may just make the wait for more from the Duffer brothers just a little easier.
Described as a "family saga with a supernatural twist", German thriller Dark follows four families in a German town as the disappearance of two young children exposes fractured relationships and double lives, and a supernatural mystery that ties back to the same town in 1986.
But before you go adding it to your list, you have to figure out if it's actually any good first, so here are all the reviews for Netflix's latest in one handy place for you below:
"Dark takes its cues from shows that have been pop culture successes in recent years. The Stranger Things comparison is relevant, due to the use of '80s music, kids riding bikes, and a government conspiracy lurking at the edge of town.
"Dark is also a more mature version of Stranger Things, featuring a great deal of swearing, nudity, and gore. Thankfully, none of the 'R-Rated' material feels excessive. Dark lives up to its name in terms of its narrative [...] Dark is a delightful bit of supernatural fun that's worth the 10 hours it will take to finish when it releases on December 1st."
Image by Julia Terjung/Netflix
"The series sits somewhere between an American drama and a Scandinavian noir in terms of tone, taking the familiar structure of big budget US thriller and imbuing it with the cold, almost sterile chilliness of a crime drama set in a dense, European forest.
"In terms of Dark's narrative, there are striking similarities to Netflix's runaway hit Stranger Things. Not only does the town back onto a thick forest where unexplainable things are occurring, it is also home to a group of young people whose adventures include walking along abandoned railway lines and past a big, looming government building guarded by barbed wire. And a child is missing. That said, this is far from a Stranger Things rip off and could not be more different in tone. Dark will chill you to the bone. It will lure you in... then leave you in the dense forest shivering, scared and desperate for answers."
"Playing into Teutonic stereotypes, Dark could be pitched as a brooding European take on Stranger Things, with all of the precision-engineered, universe-bending mysteries and 1980s nostalgia, but none of the warmth or humour or relatable characterizations.
"Every performance is intense and fine, but none is memorable, and my notes were a nightmare of confusing interchangeable pieces of the ensemble until I realized that was partly intentional and partly irrelevant. There's a grimly determined chief of police, a grimly determined hotel owner, a bunch of grimly determined high school students and several grimly determined nuclear plant employees. And that guy in the hood? He's grimly determined, too."
Image by Stefan Erhard/Netflix
"Wrestling with themes of time, family, grief, guilt, and the metaphysical, Dark hits all of the finer points that helped propel series like The OA and Stranger Things to atmospheric success in a surprise string of 2016 hits. While not merely a rehash, there are enough elements from these past successes in Dark to make audiences think that it's been finally calibrated to their sensibilities. Handsomely made and appropriately tense, Dark isn't so much a puzzle show as a storytelling algorithm, ready to be recommended for viewers like you."
"Once you get beyond the initial shock of the Stranger Things similarities, you'll find Dark is a much more sombre, more expressionistic show. While it does deal with events in the 1980s, it's not tinged with nostalgia. Nor is there a sense of Spielbergian adventure at play. Instead, Dark is comprised of ticking clocks, shadowy rooms and long, cold stares. It gets under your skin almost immediately, bringing a chill with it.
"The slow burn won't be for everyone, and Dark may suffer from a narrative that's just a little too impenetrable. But once you get beyond the slightly overwhelming initial episode, Dark settles into a nice, eerie rhythm. If Netflix was hoping for another Stranger Things-like hit, they may have just found it."
Image by Netflix
"Where it matters, though, Dark is utterly different. Stranger Things, Netflix's biggest sci-fi hit to date, was the work of perky American millennials raised on Steven Spielberg and Dungeons and Dragons. Dark, by contrast, is the streaming giant's first German-language collaboration (with director Baran bo Odar and writer Jantje Friese). More Goethe than Ghostbusters, the 10-part drama arrives suffused in Mitteleuropa gloom. The bared buttocks which appear in the five minutes serve as a warning we're not in Hawkins, Indiana anymore.
"As popcorn entertainment, Dark sputters more than it blazes. As an exploration of evil and the weirdness that festers on the fringes of everyday life, Stranger Things can't hold a candle to it."
From: Digital Spy