The OA. Wow. What a divisive show. If you read the reviews online they oscillate wildly between people who think it’s the worst show since Lost, and people who’ve spent hours drawing diagrams and probably gesticulating wildly about how great it is. I went into this show only intending to watch the first episode but somehow got sucked into watching the entire season in two days. You can probably guess which camp I ended up in.
The OA is a new Netflix Original created by Brit Marling (who also stars in the lead role) and Zal Batmanglij, and was released late last year. It’s about a blind woman who goes missing for seven years and then mysteriously returns with her sight restored, when people want to know where she was all those years and what happened to her. This is probably the most vague plot line I can give and I’m doing it on purpose because I think this show is best viewed with very little foreknowledge.
I can definitely understand why some people would find it frustrating and angering to watch; this show is really not like anything I’ve seen before. If you like shows where they give you all the answers wrapped up neatly in a box then you will probably hate this. If you want a strange ethereal story that manages to capture feelings in an intensely poignant manner while doing bizarre things that most TV shows don’t do, then you should absolutely watch this. Go into this, not suspending disbelief but suspending cynicism. This show is a strange gem of sincerity in a world of TV saturated with skepticism and tongue in cheek references. And don’t worry about it turning into another Lost situation because the creators have said they’ve planned out the story and there’s a bunch of clues hidden throughout the first season.
So just go watch The OA and decide if you think it’s a pile of garbage or the best thing that’s ever graced your retinas.