TV, TV Reviews
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TV Review: The Slap

We just watched an 8-part miniseries about a slap, and you’re damn right if you think we’re angry…


In the climactic scene of The Slap‘s series finale, the judge overseeing the trial of Harry (Zachary Quinto) delivers a brief monologue on the absurdity of the case, and notes that “you’re all wasting court time when we need to examine the rape of a 9-year old girl”. What she says proves that the writers of The Slap are to some degree self-aware, something that angers me greatly. You KNOW that it’s ridiculous to spend so much time talking about a slap, yet you’ve just made me dedicate 8 hours of my life to watching a TV show about a slap? The slap in question, in case you weren’t aware, took place all the way back in Episode 1. Hugo, the monstrous young son of Rosie and Gary Weshler (Melissa George and Thomas Sadoski), was waving a baseball bat around at an afternoon barbecue and- to protect his own kids- Harry (Zachary Quinto) slapped him. It’s up to the audience to decide if he was right or not, but after it is established in a later episode that Harry has a history of domestic violence, we are supposed to side against him. However, Rosie Weshler is an equally awful human; a judgemental, aggressive wreck who drinks wine as she breastfeeds her son. Who do we side with? Sympathetic, loving father Hector (Peter Sarsgaard)? But he’s cheating on his wife with a teenager! His wife Aisha (Thandie Newton)? But she’s cheating on him! The cast list is long and messy, with certain major figures- such as Brian Cox’s Manolis- given literally nothing to do outside of their assigned episode. Uma Thurman shows up as a character with zero purpose or role in the central story, and her episode (Episode 3; make sure you avoid it) is one of the worst hours of television i’ve ever seen. The Newsroom‘s Thomas Sadoski is about the only decent actor in the cast. In the end, it emerges that the teenage characters- Mackenzie Leigh’s Connie and Lucas Hedges’ Rickie- are by far the least awful people in this circle, with Rickie the likeable focus on the series finale.

Amidst the unbearable melodrama, only about 15% of which was in any way bearable, I found myself laughing several times per episode upon the realisation that I am, indeed, watching an 8-part miniseries about a child being slapped. During the conclusive trial, the legal advisors began referring to the slap as a “strike”. If only the show itself had such subtlety.

This entry was posted in: TV, TV Reviews

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Jerry is a founding member of the BuzzHub team and is currently in the position of Film Editor. He chips away at his wall with a pen-knife, counting down the days until Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

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