‘Anatomy of a Scandal’ Netflix: How ‘Yummy Mummies’ Captured TV

The following are the main spoilers from Netflix’s “Anatomy of a Scandal”.

“The Anatomy of a Scandal” aired Friday on Netflix, with author David E. Kelly – and her audience – return to the familiar landscape: the case of a handsome, wealthy man (Rupert’s friend), his beautiful blonde wife (Sienna Miller), his beautiful brown-haired mistress (Naomi Scott) and the detective (Michael Dogger) who hopes to unravel their story. . Co-created and written by Melissa James Gibson and co-written by S.J. Directed by Clarkson, the six-episode series gets all the scores you would expect. There will be twists! There will be drops! There will be many deadlines!

But the real question is: is “Anatomy of a Scandal” acting as a crime-thriller or additional evidence that Kelly’s trash-TV frenzy should be stopped? TV editor Matt Brennan and staff writer Meredith Blake revealed:

Matt Brennan: Honestly, the first chapter of “The Anatomy of a Scandal” is not terrible. Then the second episode happened.

Most of the hour – more Series – Conservative MP James Whitehouse (friend) has been set up in the courtroom where he is being prosecuted for raping Olivia Lytton (Scott), a former parliamentary colleague who was in an extramarital affair. That is, all the other lines of Olivia’s testimony that cut the episode out of the story rather than delivering a stylistic dick instantaneous, except for the very high ham-handled soft-focus flashbacks. It also prompted me to pick up a hammer on my TV screen.

I think that’s what sparked this conversation. Because, despite my series and frequent series, I ate the “Anatomy of a Scandal” anyway. Then when I saw this feeling I remembered it was before me Others Glossy David e. Limited series like Kelly HBO’s “The Untoing” and Hulu’s “Nine Perfect Strangers”. Since the launch of “Big Little Lies” in 2017, she has turned what you describe into a “rich white woman” play into a cottage industry, and these projects are coloring in greater numbers. Nevertheless, five years after the storm hit “Big Little Lies” TV, I am still impressed with the episode for the episode.

I feel the need to involve my therapist here, but in the meantime, I ask you: do you feel the same way? If so, what is gravity?

In “Antomy of a Scandal”, Michelle Dockery as Kate Woodcraft, a barrister who prosecutes a prominent person for rape.

(Netflix)

Meredith Blake: I do not know when or why Kelly decided to become the premier historian of Super-Weldy Yummy Mummies TV with predatory husbands, but he certainly happily accepted this sub-genre. Alas, every successive iteration of this formula seems to yield less impressive results.

Based on the novel by the Guardian’s former political correspondent Sarah Vaughan, “The Anatomy of a Scandal” explores an attractive context – the British ruling class – and the Oxford Toff-Toff-Tory MP on the topic of a friend. Clearly modeled after Boris Johnson. And David Cameron of the world. (Not to be confused with Prime Video’s ‘A Very British Scandal’, another star-studded limited series about sex, power and misbehaving toffees will be released this month.)

Despite this sociologically fertile landscape, “anatomy” offers no sharp sociological insight into the “big little lies”. Not much needs to be said about class, sexual consent, political power or how these forces interfere, and it is only interested in conspiring through serious, unethical attempts to retaliate against rape survivors. The direction was cheese and nose, especially the device Clarkson uses to really depict the emotional state of each character at the end of each episode.

And unlike “The Untouching”, there is no malicious glamorous Hugh Grant or Nicole Kidman in the collection of fancy outerwear to invest in us. It does not even offer much in the way of real estate porn, as we expect from Kelly’s latest products or at least HBO budgets. (I loved the Whitehouse kitchen wallpaper.)

Despite these obvious flaws, it could not clear me from the “anatomy of a scandal”. Lady Mary, Michael Dockery, of “Downton Abbey” may be a scene from one of those funny barrister wigs. Maybe it’s the graceful brisk pace – each episode lasts 45 minutes. Or I wanted to see if my prediction about the show’s Big Twist was correct (that is), but I found this series shockingly easy (or maybe Because) It was so confusing.

All of these, yes, Kelly (and Gibson) certainly know how to impress us. Should we really be surprised or worried about this? Of course, we would love to see a show about sex and slander involving beautiful, disciplined rich people. This is what makes the world go around, isn’t it? We have a lot of R-rated movies and prime-time soaps; Now we have a limited series of stars. In my opinion: this is not a show we should think too much about or we should feel guilty for what we have seen.

Now, should we talk about the end? What does it mean that the rejected wife Sophie (Miller) eventually becomes the hero of this story by warning the press of her husband’s involvement in that lip?

Brennan: To answer that question I am violating one of the principles of good criticism, what can I say Wanting The “anatomy of a corruption” did instead of breaking down what it does.

First things first, let’s summarize what it is In fact Occurs: Over the course of the series, we learn that James Whitehouse raped Kate Woodcroft, a lawyer at the dockery then known as Holly Perry, when they were classmates at Oxford. James confesses to his wife that the couple had sex in advance during a run-in on campus, but says it was consent. Sophie – with Further He learned that James had lied to protect the now-Prime Minister’s intervention in the accidental, drug-related classmate’s death. The same night His encounter with Holly – Kate finally believes. So, after Kate’s appearance in the trial, Sophie leaks James’ cover story to the press. In an attempt to get revenge Kate faces another rift, while Sophie goes with her two children to a beautiful cottage overlooking Dover’s white rocks. (God, writing like this really underscores the absurdity, doesn’t it?)

What strikes me about the end of the series is that the two women mobilizing to bring down the main character who wronged them is actually a much more compelling storyline than what he said about the courtroom drama we actually get in “Anatomy of A”. Corruption. ”(I.e., contains investigation Absolutely Conflicting testimonies of Olivia and James, and they were questioned by prosecutors. It’s mind-bogglingly dull.) It is especially true to know that Dockerie, as a no-bull, out-blooded barrister, gives the most amazing performance in the ensemble and spent most of the series as a blank slate. , Comes alive in the final episodes when she begins to suspect her husband. But instead we get this completely unaware Wife ex machine We need to make sure that we do not regret that the rapist escaped.

However, I will say that pointing out the horror of “the anatomy of a corruption” as we are in this conversation crystallizes its appeal to me. As you say, this series and its sequels are reminiscent of mid-budget movies and prime-time soaps of yesteryear; To that list I would add classic Hollywood B-level type movies. What we find in the average type of text is not new, but what this series gives us: familiar archetypes, paint-by-numbers plot elements, recognizable pulses, and the ability to see long when making emails. In a way it brings relief Because There is no ambition or interest in it beyond getting us from point to point.

Kelly is basically Roger Korman of the Fox-Prestige Limited series at this point. He works fast, he follows a template, and he can reliably trust me to engage in six to eight episodes. (Not anymore!) For the future, I happily sign up once a year. Not everything has to be a masterpiece.

A woman in a yellow blouse with folders under her arm

Naomi Scott plays Parliamentary Assistant Olivia Lytton in “Anatomy of a Scandal”.

(Netflix)

Blake: Of course not! The disappointing thing about “the anatomy of a scandal” is that it is not possible Masterpiece creation, And then something better than that. As you say, Doggy is so good (she even pulls the wig), And Miller, with the ungrateful task of delivering endless reaction scenes in those difficult courtroom scenes, becomes very stressed as his character realizes he is married to an anti-social.

If the direction is not too sad (in episode 5, Kate and James stand nose to nose in the dark courtroom, I screamed while talking about consent) or writing focused on endless witness hearings (Kelly is the master of legal drama, but he’s like the crutch of courtroom scenes Uses), may have been something special for us.

However, Kelly showed no signs of slowing down: “Love and Death” will be available on HBO Max later this year. Another unhappy married woman, only this time She Violent psychiatrist, not her husband. A change in pace!

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