By Rikki Yanez
Assistant Web Content Manager
If you enjoy bingeing the latest Netflix series, you may have heard of the recently added Netflix limited series Maniac.
This series is not like your typical Netflix Original due to the content being so complex that you have to fully devote your attention to the show, otherwise you’ll miss important parts. However, it will still leave viewers interested after each of the episodes.
This show is a mixture of all genres such as drama, comedy, sci-fi, fantasy and suspense. Netflix describes this show as two individuals who are struggling with personal problems that “connect during a mind-bending pharmaceutical trial with a doctor, with mother issues and an emotionally complex computer.” Some of the recurring themes in the show are manipulation, relationships, family, trauma and mental illness.
If you are still confused with how all that can fit into one show, then keep reading! (By the way, there are no spoilers in this blog.)
This show does take awhile to introduce the main conflict within the characters, as well as what the reasons as to why Owen (Jonah Hill) and Anne (Emma Stone) decide to go into the pharmaceutical trial. Jonah Hill’s character plays a schizophrenic who struggles with wanting to be normal, while having to deal with his wealthy family that are pressuring him into lying on trail for his brother being accused for sexual assault. While, Emma Stone plays a manipulative individual that does what she can due to her addiction on the ‘A’ pill that’s being used during the pharmaceutical trials. Meanwhile, Justin Theroux plays the doctor who created the pharmaceutical company along with the drugs all along battling with his mother issues.
I think what keeps people watching this show is how well the producers were able to incorporate so much content in 10 episodes. The shows incorporates major problems in this world with family trauma people have to deal with in their daily lives including mental illness.
Maniac is relevant to today’s society since it includes advancements in technology such as artificially intelligent computers. The creators bring up an interesting question of how far one will go with technology in order to create the ultimate pill that will basically eliminate pain, mental disorders and therapist in all.
Maniac also makes you think if creating this computer that is capable of feeling empathy is ethically okay during a pharmaceutical trial since it can have a major impact on the patients and the data that is recorded, which you will see happen towards the middle of the season. The idea of creating a show that is set in a lab seems like it’s bound to make viewers interested and does make the show seem longer, however by adding the alternate realities that the actors experience in the trials creates a more of a intriguing show since it’s like viewers are experiencing different shows within one where both are connected.
All in all, what reeled me into this show was that it was different than what I have seen in awhile. Also, the fact that it’s a mixture of most genres was something I haven’t seen done in awhile. The characters Emma Stone and Jonah Hill were very serious and emotional, which is something you rarely see often, however the did a remarkable job in this series.
Featured Screenshot via Netflix.