I do enjoy horror movies. I’m not some pretentious twat wagon that sticks his nose in the air at the mere mention of a slasher flick or a murder spree adventure. Hell, I love the Friday the 13th franchise and I am one of the critics that will constantly praise Saw as being one of the best horror franchises of the past couple of decades. I do enjoy them… But man, of all the genres out there, horror is the one that is filled with the most mind numbing crap. Oh! Speaking of mind numbing crap, let’s talk about Darknet!
I was expecting a lot more out of this series going into it. I saw it on Netflix while browsing through the lists one day and thought: ‘Hmmm…. I do enjoy a good anthology series AND people are comparing it to American Horror Story and V/H/S so I’ll give it a go.’ After watching it, it is nowhere near the same level as American Horror Story and V/H/S. It isn’t even in the same room as American Horror Story and V/H/S. Darknet is the lowly fry cook dumping the used grease into a back alley while American Horror Story and V/H/S enjoy a lovely dinner with sensible good movies and television series.
Darknet is a Canadian horror anthology series that follows various people in different horror situations. The running theme between all of them is the fact that they are all connected through this strange website called Darknet where people post various macabre topics such as how to hide a body, selling organs, and luring gullible people into death traps.
This series does attempt to turn a couple of tropes on its head. For instance, each episode was able to bait me rather well into what exactly was going on. It does thrive on being unpredictable if anything. For instance in one episode a police officer is going door to door inquiring about a murder until she finds a young woman. The imagery and the tone was suggesting that the young woman was the murderer and was planning on gutting the police officer next. But when the police officer turned out to be the murderer I was actually surprised. It was unexpected and well done.
Darknet is a show that will keep you guessing. It is unpredictable and seems to thrive on its ability to give the audience a swerve and throw something out there that they weren’t expecting. At times it does feel a little ‘OH! You didn’t see that coming did you? Oh yeah we are so clever!’ But it is still a positive part of the movie.
Short Anthology Stories Means No Development of Character
You know what happens when you spend your entire time building suspense and no time building character development before moving on to the next part of the anthology? You have a whole lot of characters that the viewing audience does not give a rat’s ass about. I don’t care if some guy getting a divorce is about to have his organs sold on the black market, I don’t care about this random woman who is being stalked by some creepy dude, I don’t care about any of these characters because I’m not meant to. I’m only meant to be entertained by the fact that someone is dying in a suspenseful way.
This isn’t interesting, it isn’t fun, it isn’t entertaining. Give me some substance to work with so I can feel something when a character dies or a sense of justice when they get the killer. Don’t just kill someone in front of me and say ‘Are you not entertained?!’
Why do people have to be so stupid in horror movies? Why can’t you have intelligent people doing intelligent things? They can still die, I don’t mind that. But at least they act with some common sense and rationality. Almost everyone in Darknet is just asking to be viciously murdered or have their organs sold on the black market.
In the first episode a young woman is being stalked by a man in her house. When she puts a camera in her house and notices that the stalker is hiding in the closet, she pulls the closet open and straight up butchers the guy. That part I’m okay with because that was fucking awesome. But then instead of calling the cops and saying ‘Hey! I just killed a guy who I thought was going to murder me in my house as self defense.’ She gets on the Darknet and asks how to dispose of a body… Does this woman understand that she was well within her rights to murder this dude who she thought was going to murder her? Straight up killing this guy is something that nobody would fault her for. Now she has a lot more crimes under her belt then just self defense.
In the same episode some dumb fucker named Jeff decides to go to some back alley where a serial killer told everyone on Darknet that he left evidence of him murdering someone. What do you think is going to happen if you go there? Sure enough the guy gets murdered in front of a camera to show everyone that he has in fact killed someone. This is why you don’t meet serial killers on the internet. They will murder you.
The level of stupidity on display is just so astonishing that I can’t watch it without laughing at these people’s poor decision making.
Darknet tries to be a thought provoking nuanced horror TV show that keeps you guessing around every turn and on that note I suppose it kind of succeeds. But when you have no character development and the characters act in such irrational ways, it just becomes another dime a dozen horror story with a decent concept built around it.
Final Score 1.5/5
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