It’s not a perfect show, and there are quite a few mishaps. And at least two cringe-inducing episodes could easily have been removed. But on the bright side, the cast does a great job, and there are some juicy cliffhangers along the way.
This review of the Netflix series Partner Track season 1 does not contain any spoilers.
Originally a 2013 novel written by Helen Wan, the legal rom-com tells the story of Ingrid Yun. And with Helen acting as a consultant, there’s hope that the show will stay truthful to the novel. As for what the show is actually about, it follows a young lawyer, Ingrid Yun, who is desperate to land a role at Parson Valentine as a junior partner. But whilst she’s determined to succeed professionally, will she encounter love along the way?
With a soapy vibe throughout, there are many twists, turns, backstabs, and fallouts along the way. They alone are reasons to watch the show. But it’s the story itself that brings the show down. Whilst the pilot episode hints at a little magic within the show, it fails to land on its feet fully. Instead, what occurs is an overly long, at times boring, and cringy attempt to draw the audience onto the world of Ingrid and her friends.
The show starts things off by doubling down on how important the role of becoming a junior partner is to Ingrid. However, that emotion feels lost the further you watch. And when the ultimate scene comes where you discover whether she makes partner, it’s kinda hard to truly care. The more you dive into Partner Track, the more cliché it becomes, making for an exhausting watch.
However, among the highlights of the show is the way it handles issues within the workplace. With racism, sexism, and white fragility explored, there are some scenes that will reflect what some have tragically had to experience in real life. The emotion from these kinds of scenes is what proves that there is something magical in the show. It’s a shame that there weren’t more of them.
Aside from those scenes, the biggest highlight of the show is its cast. Arden Cho is superb as she leads the cast, and although her character is extremely infuriating at times, it’s Arden’s performance that allows you to want to root for her regardless. (Even if you know you shouldn’t be rooting for her). Dominic Sherwood’s role as the love him or hate him Jeff Murphy also acts as one of the highlights of the show. Aside from the cast, the twists and constant cliffhangers will leave the viewers asking for more. Whilst I wasn’t overly keen on the show as a whole, the ending to the last episode has me begging for a second season.
The overall feeling after watching Partner Track is that there is something gold within the show. It just needed a bit more grit. But if that grit appears in a second season (if Netflix chooses to renew the show), then it could become the show that it was meant to be.
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