Rehashed concepts are thrown into Netflix’s The Stranded, making the story feel baseless and just like yet another teen-drama.
Before I dig into Netflix’s The Stranded Season 1, I must announce one thing. As much as we would love to recreate a TV serial phenomenon like Lost, I’m of the belief that it is never going to happen again. Netflix tried it with The I-Land, which was a ropey, soapy answer to Lost, and now we have a Thai series trying to conjure our imaginations — to fall in love with characters banded on an island built from a strange scenario.
In the case of Netflix’s The Stranded, the characters are not thrown on to an island due to a plane crash; it’s caused by a tsunami that came with no warning. Students who survived the terrible incident are on an island, on their own, waiting for help.
Netflix marks this series as “suspenseful” but unfortunately, like The Society, which also puts students together to fight and survive, it gives off that seen-before teen drama that we often become bored of. We cannot win; we either get a story that does not understand teenagers like Hulu’s insufferable Looking for Alaska, or we get writers trying to relive their college days, planting every drama possible surrounded by fantasy-like action tropes.
The Stranded is dramatic, but naming it suspenseful feels like false advertising. The tsunami is not built up in any way, and the series fast forwards to the students partaking in their new life, wondering why no-one has come to help. Hormones are flying, medical expertise is DIY and everyone wants a hold of their confiscated smartphones. There’s no built-up moment in the pilot where the students are scrapping to get the initial camp set up, it’s all very rushed for no apparent reason.
There is a purpose to The Stranded Season 1. As the students discover what has happened to them, unknown forces go against their efforts. Nothing is straightforward in The Stranded, as it relies on the mystery. Was the tsunami a natural disaster or formed from something else? You have questions pursed on your lips from Episode 1.
So in a way, The Stranded Season 1 is like Lost, in that it invokes mystery and gets you asking questions, but as for the characters and their development, and the overall scenario, we’ve seen it before and you are not missing anything by keeping the Thai series off your thumbnails.
You can read the recap of The Stranded episode 1 by clicking these words.
Daniel Hart is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has operated as Editor-in-Chief since 2017.