‘Furies’ Series Review: Is Action All It Takes?


As much as I love the visual mediums of film and TV, I have grown very weary of the action genre. Maybe it’s the oversaturation of the market with big-budget ensemble films (yes, Marvel, looking at you), or it’s simply that there is no room for originality in said genre. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not hard to impress; it just so happens that these days, impressive content is hard to come by. With our reduced attention spans and 100 shows dropping every day, I’m certain we’ve crossed a line when it comes to authenticity. Recently, I came across a video of director Guillermo Del Toro talking about how films should be judged by style and not just substance. In fact, sometimes, just like art, it should be judged only by style. Okay, a French Netflix action thriller is not meant to be seen through a film-intellect lens; however, I can’t help but feel massively bored and borderline annoyed at these shows that seemingly want to break barriers with female action leads and massive budgets for cool stunts and such. No, I’m not impressed; it’s not new, it’s not imaginative, and it’s got no feeling. 

Whenever there’s a female lead in an unconventional role, I tend to give that piece of entertainment some sort of preference in terms of whether I can pretend to like it for that one reason alone. When I started with Furies, I had the feeling it’d be nested in this category in some corner of my brain; however, the more I do this job, the more resistance I build to such a lazy response to entertainment. I suppose, in some ways, this is a good thing because it means the juices in my brain are still flowing in the right way. Furies is a show that uses many categories of action and combines them into a mediocre show, with some high-octane action sequences and the hope of being something big with a female-centric plot. You’ve got godfathers, mafias, gangs, mob families, a heist-like situation, betrayal, a love triangle, family bonding, and so much more that I can’t even keep track. At its heart, it’s a revenge drama about a woman who gets caught up in a web of insanity when she witnesses something terrible on her birthday. 

The fabric of this story is woven with too many different weights of yarn, which leaves it easily tearable. It almost feels like every new twist or crucial piece of information gets added after the consequences occur as if written in reverse. What I mean is, if in a story, C is the cause of A and B coming together, in this show, it feels like A and B are decided after C’s already gone down. Can you imagine that this show got me so confused that I’m making math-like equations to explain when I can’t do math to save my life? Furies is not a bad show. I’m not hating it blindly; these are my personal reasons for not liking it. However, I do believe a majority of the audience, which appreciates good action series, might like this one. Keep in mind, though, that since the formula’s a little bit messed up, leave your brain behind while watching this one. I did find a lot of things in this show quite unbelievable, not in a fantastical sense, but in the “is this really possible?” or “how could that be?” kind of way. 

At its center, the show has a female in the role of peacekeeper in the dark and scary Paris underworld. This is rather fascinating, and personally, I feel like it could’ve been a much more impressive thing if the show actually used this factor to its benefit. In this particular case, if you switched out these peacekeepers, aka the furies, for males, it would make no difference to the plot or to the situation within the show surrounding these characters. This is where lies the flaw. I suppose one could argue that women can be cold-hearted murderers like men and other such things; however, I feel like there’s a need for something deeper, gender-wise. Especially when it comes to these particular characters. There’s a lot of emotionality in Lyna, the protagonist. I mean, she’s got a lot to swallow as soon as the show begins, yet somehow, she swims through massive emotional blows as if she’s got no heart. Additionally, some montages in this show that occur as flashbacks are quite annoying and don’t do anything for it as a whole either. 

Despite its many flaws, the cast does a good job at upholding the story as it goes, and yes, if all you care about is if the action sequences are fantastic, then sure, they’ve got a bite to them. However, I don’t think they’re anything fresh or memorable. In fact, I think overall, the show is quite forgettable (I sound like a broken record at this point when it comes to action television). Actress Lina El Arabi is fantastic in the role of Lyna and carries the show on her shoulders well. She is quite fitting for this role, and I was left smitten by her perfect abs and toned muscles. On the other hand, her mentor, nemesis, and friend, call her whatever you like: Selma, played by actress Marina Fois, feels like quite an undercooked character and is quite superficial. Yes, she’s got the biggest twists to her name, but there’s something underwhelming about the character as a whole and the way she comes about in the show. However, the actress does what she can to elevate the character. 

I suppose my patience has run dry when it comes to the action genre, and I might be the problem here, but in this age where the world demands fast and exciting, I find it hard every day to enjoy something wholeheartedly for what it’s presented as. There’s just so much to take in all the time, and the smorgasbord of content available to us is unbelievably lavish and, at the same time, threatening. So, maybe I didn’t like Furies because it didn’t give me what I would’ve liked from a show like this, but if you’re on the lookout for pure action entertainment to help you get through the weekend (what’re those?), then Furies might be the perfect pick for you. If I hadn’t had to watch it for this job, I’d probably have skipped this one to save others from listening to me rant about how we’re failing TV as a society, but alas, here we are, so perhaps I’ll go chew someone’s ear up while you ruminate over what I’ve said or simply enjoy this show over the weekend with a dear friend and a bag of chips. 

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Ruchika Bhat
Ruchika Bhat
When not tending to her fashion small business, Ruchika or Ru spends the rest of her time enjoying some cinema and TV all by herself. She's got a penchant for all things Korean and lives in drama world for the most part.

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