Every Atheist Needs: The OA

The OAYet another television recommendation from GM? Yes! T.V. is where all the good storytellers have gone these days, let’s face it. Movies are clearly for simpletons now. You’ve got to have the memory of a goldfish to be able to enjoy seven incarnations of Batman per year. That and the need to “reboot” every movie that ever made a buck in my childhood is enough to stay the fuck away from the overpriced theatre experience… except when new Star Wars films come out. No, television is the medium to tell a good yarn these days, and The OA rivals the best of them.

It’s really difficult to explain The OA. Think about trying to explain the island in Lost to someone who has never seen the show. Or the Upside Down in Stranger Things maybe. The OA is really beyond description. It’s like a Robert Anton Wilson trilogy, minus the talking dolphins.  Really, it’s an eight episode frolick in what-the-fuckery.

The OA explores themes of mythology, afterlife and the supernatural without getting religious. With each new episode, you’re drawn into a story that leaves you with more questions than it answers. It’s the sort of show almost everyone binges on, finally watching the last episode at 4 in the morning with a “I can’t fucking quit now! I’m so close to the answers!”

When the final credits roll, though, it’s 5 o’clock in the morning and you’re tucked into your blanket all snug in your couch staring blankly at the text on the screen.

It’s not fucking over, you think. I need answers.

And that’s how you end up a permanent fixture on The OA subreddit, absorbing every theory and skimming through every scene some foreign Redditor has spotted a clue in. Some of them are far-fetched, connecting things that clearly have no connection, but some of them add to your viewing experience and your enjoyment of the show just never seems to end.

The acting is outstanding, with my favourite performance by The Office and Inside Out’s Phyllis Smith. It helped that Hershel from the Walking Dead played the OA’s adoptive dad and the bad guy was played by the same actor who played Lucius Malfoy in the Harry Potter movies, Jason Isaacs. The otherwise largely unknown cast was also magnificent.

It’s the sort of show that just gets into you. It’s the short of show you desperately need more from but you know that there can’t be more or it’d ruin it. It’s eight episodes and that’s it. Only one season, and all talk of another season seems to center around similar stand alone stories.

Honestly, I still don’t know what to think of it, outside of the fact that I truly enjoyed it and I think you might too.

Have you seen the OA? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

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  • Margaret Tombs

    This sounds very interesting and I’ll try and make time for it if it comes to the UK. I’m into The Man in the High Castle, Outlander and of course Game of Thrones at the moment. Myself and Daughter just saw Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them a couple of weeks ago and it was Brilliant. JK Rowling is a great storyteller of our time. Sometimes a remake is absolutely necessary though, and I’m glad to hear that Interview With The Vampire is about to get the TV Series treatment. I loved the original film, but was very disappointed with the follow up, Queen of The Damned. They tried to squeeze two full books into one film and it didn’t work. I much prefer the modern trend of splitting books to make two or three films.

    • Ooo I love Man in the High Castle! Also, Game of Thrones is just beyond any other television… it’s just stunning.

  • Margaret Tombs

    I nearly forgot, Doctor Who is back soon as well, required viewing in our house.