Tuesday, September 15, 2020
TV Tuesday: Russian Doll
It's Nadia's birthday, and her best friend, Maxine (played by Greta Lee), is hosting a blow-out birthday party for her in her funky New York apartment. Nadia, played by Natasha Lyonne who played Nicky on Orange Is the New Black, drinks a lot, chain smokes, and takes home a stranger. Later in the night, though, out on the streets again, Nadia gets hit by a car and dies. The next moment, she is alive again, in her friend's wildly-lit bathroom, looking in the mirror. Confused, she walks out to find that she is back where she was hours ago, at the beginning of the party, with Maxine greeting her for the first time again. She keeps reliving that same birthday night (slightly different each time, since she is now freaking out), and she keeps dying in different ways and restarting back in the bathroom again. She is going crazy trying to figure out what's going on, why, and how to stop this unending loop. Then, in one of her re-lifes (when she actually makes it to the next morning), she meets someone else who is going through the same thing, a handsome guy named Alan, played by Charlie Barnett. Nadia and Alan team up to try to get to the bottom of this crazy cycle they are both stuck in.
Ever since its release last year, I've been hearing people rave about Russian Doll, so it's been on our (very long) list of shows to try. Why didn't anyone tell me it was about someone trapped in a time loop?? I love this kind of brain-twisting plot! Seriously, this is my favorite kind of fiction: time travel, time jumping, time loops, you name it, I'm there for it. Besides that, though, even if you're not into time-twisting like me, the show is just as good as everyone's been saying. It's smart, clever, intriguing, dark, and very funny. Natasha is outstanding in her bizarre lead role, and the supporting cast is a lot of fun, too. Each episode has new developments, as Nadia and Alan investigate this weird phenomenon and come up with new theories. We absolutely loved this show and blew through its eight short episodes in a week (which is rare for us--we're not usually bingers). And, though the ending was just about perfect, Russian Doll has just announced that it will be back for a second season. We can't wait to see what's in store next!
NOTE: As you will see in the trailer, there is ample foul language and some sexual content, just in case that's not your thing.
Russian Doll is a Netflix original program, so it is available exclusively on Netflix. Season one is available now and is just eight 30-minute episodes, so it is perfect for a quick binge!
Check out this awesome trailer that both shows the basic plot of the show and its dark but hilarious tone: