From the Rookie Corner: The Night Of Snapshot Review

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Some days it feels like TRYING to find something interesting to watch on TV is a nightmare. Looking at the On Demand section, I find an endless selection of “reality” TV. Just, no. I have a short list of shows I watch. I have books to read. Sometimes, I just want something new. A few weeks ago I stumbled onto the HBO series The Night Of. The series is based on Criminal Justice, British television drama series produced by the BBC and written by Peter Moffat. That alone gave me hope. Grabbed a snack, a little vino and curled up with my iPad. The series stars John Turturro and Riz Ahmed. Ahmed plays the role of Nasir “Naz” Khan a Pakistani-American college student who “borrows” his father’s taxi to drive into Manhattan to attend a party. Of course, by “borrow,” I mean – took without permission. While he’s trying to find the party, a beautiful young woman gets into his cab. She wants to go to the beach…. so, he takes her. What could go wrong?? Add in drugs, alcohol and sex. Sounds like a great night, right?? It IS. Until the next morning. Naz wakes up to find her stabbed to death. Of course, he is charged with her murder. From here, the mini series follows Naz and his experiences at Rikers Island and his defense team of the ‘ambulance chaser’ type Jack Stone with ambitious defense attorney Chandra Kapoor (Amara Karan.) No, I am not going to lay out the whole damn story. You want to know everything? Set aside the time and watch it. What I AM going to tell you is the characters in the story are well-developed. The transformation of Naz over the eight episodes in both well done and disheartening. To go from a naive young college aged kid to living in Rikers Island is obviously something that will change a person, but how each person adjusts to survive is very different. The fact that Naz HIMSELF is not 100% positive what happened that night creates a crisis within himself. Like any series, yes – there are holes.Nothing is ever going to be perfect. However, after last night’s finale, I felt…. disappointed? My impression when I started the series was that it would conclude in the eight episodes since it was a mini series. Rumor has it there may be another season coming, but HBO has yet to renew. I intentionally did not watch the BBC series as I unsure how closely the two series were connected. I think I would have enjoyed the series overall more if either more was tied up at the end or I at least knew another season was coming. When The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones leaves me hanging, it’s annoying – but I at least know there is another season to torture myself with. Right now? I just feel a tad unsatisfied. Up until the finale, I was feeling a little more ‘all in.’ Don’t get me wrong, overall, I enjoyed it. Absolutely well written. John Turturro and Riz Ahmed’s performances were brilliant. The end just left me feeling a little ‘meh.’ Is it worth watching? Yes. Will a second season change my perception? Perhaps. As it stands? I would give it a B-…. definitely check it out, kids. If you think you can trust a rookie.



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