TV Review: The Stranger (Netflix) – Season One

Written by Danny Brocklehurst and based on the Harlan Coben novel of the same name, The Stranger premiered on Netflix in January 2020. The series follows a happily married father of two, Adam Price (Richard Armitage), whose life is turned upside-down after a stranger (Hannah John-Kamen) tells him a secret about his wife. The revelation has a devastating impact on his seemingly perfect life, catapulting him into a world of danger.

Overall Season Rating:

Harlan Coben is certainly a name that we will all be eager to see a new release from now. The first of his books to be adapted by Netflix, Safe, was an original thriller released before the days we all became obsessed with crime series, and now we have The Stranger, another mystery that you’ll want to get stuck straight into.

A well-paced thriller, the tension vamps up with each episode. By around the fifth episode, you’ll want to binge-watch the rest all in one go. There are many twists and turns that will keep you engaged, and an ending that you won’t see coming (although I had guessed whodunnit in the final moments).

However, it is somewhat disappointing that there are two separate stories going on in an attempt to distract viewers from the mystery at hand, and some of the reasons given for certain characters’ behaviour don’t add up in the long run. There’s definitely a lot of loose ends which seem to be hinting at a second season, but the only thing I want to see more of are the performances from the two leads.

Siobhan Finneran and Richard Armitage are what make this series so great. I didn’t realise that I fancied Armitage until now, but I will definitely be keeping an eye out for him in more series and films in the future. Finneran is also really enjoyable and she leads the investigative side of the series brilliantly. I also loved her chemistry with her partner Kadiff Kirwan, and would happily watch them solve more mysteries together.

Hannah John-Kamen is brilliant as The Stranger, too, and it was exciting to see her in another dominant role after first seeing her in 2018’s Ant-Man And The Wasp. The rest of the supporting cast are great, too, including Anthony Head, Jennifer Saunders, Paul Kaye, and Shaun Dooley. I especially enjoyed the appearance from Lily Loveless who I was a huge fan of in Skins.

You’re likely to have been told by a friend or relative to give this series a go already as The Stranger is certainly one of Netflix’s most talked-about series this year, so you should probably listen to them and give this a binge.

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