White Lines Review: Alex Pina’s whodunit qualifies as time pass, but offers nothing great
Siddarth Srinivas -
The body of a legendary Manchester DJ is discovered twenty years after his mysterious disappearance from Ibiza. When his sister (Zoe Walker) returns to the beautiful Spanish island to find out what happened, her investigation leads her through a thrilling world of dance clubs, lies and cover-ups, forcing her to confront the darker sides of her own character in a place where people live life on the edge.
CLICK TO STREAM Format: Web Series Platform: Netflix Movie Rated: 16+ Genre: Drama, Crime, Thriller Language: English Digital Premiere Date: 15 May 2020
Money Heist made the world go crazy, and when its writer Alex Pina got back with a new show on the block, it did get in some attention. White Lines, the murder mystery which dropped on Friday, is a blend between the English-Spanish spaces, where a woman goes to the land of booze, parties, beaches and bikinis to find out the truth behind her brother who went missing 20 years ago.
What’s the story about?
White Lines follows Zoey (Laura Haddock) as she takes off to Ibiza at the very start, looking for her brother whose remains have just been unearthed after a desert storm. As autopsy reports indicate that her brother Axel was murdered, she flies into a world of drugs, mishaps, new people and new truths about her own life so far.
In a show that spans more than ten important characters, only two manage to stand up strong. The first is obviously Laura Haddock in the lead role, one that she takes by the horns. Her matured outlook towards the character provides loads of shades to the character, and she is ably supported by Nuno Lopes who has a meaty role to play. The combination scenes between both these characters light up the proceedings of the show and all the dynamics that the proceedings create also lead up to them in some way or the other. But for these two, White Lines suffers from an under-performing cast who try to hide their flaws in the glossy and bright visuals of the show.
The good thing about White Lines is in how the show sets itself up, introducing us to the characters and the milieu in an interesting fashion. However, the bad thing lies in how there are rarely any interesting proceedings once we reach the midpoint, and the depth that the characters try etch slowly wears off. The series indeed takes some dark turns here and there, but that is not enough to bring it up to keep us invested in the proceedings until the final episode where we find our answers. As the world-building of the show takes place in a clumsy and cluttered manner, some viewers might straightaway want to jump into the final episode and get to know the real truth behind Axel’s killer. And the sad part being, they wouldn’t have missed much by doing so.
Setting the show in Ibiza is truly the biggest takeaway, and though it might not be a completely perfect representation, there’s enough to like, especially when it’s coming by at a time when travelling is banned in most parts of the world. The performances by the lead characters in Zoey and Boxer are very good, giving us something to cheer about as they gobble up a majority of the screen time. The twist at the end too is not a bad one. In a show filled with multiple characters who go through multiple shades, it is not too easy to guess the real killer.
Where White Lines misses the trick is in how it does not create room for adrenaline rushes at any point. The reveals and the twists are done in a subtle manner, which may be a turn off for those who are looking for solid drama, especially when they come down here after Money Heist. The show is also extremely raunchy, so people who don't have a liking to that might want to stay away.
Did I enjoy it?
Not quite. I was hooked for the first 3 episodes, but the middle parts of the show offered nothing great except for the climactic stretch which got some respite.
Do I recommend it?
With the lockdown in progress, anybody who has ten hours to kill could check out White Lines. But be aware, that you are not going to be blown away.