Review The Bad Guy: Gomorra incontra Breaking Bad

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We offer you the review of The Bad Guy, a TV series distributed by Amazon Prime Video in two tranches of three episodes, between 8 and 15 December, which follows the tragicomic adventure of a Public Prosecutor who, unjustly accused of being corrupt, in turn infiltrates the mafia

ORIGINAL TITLE: The Bad Guy. TYPE: Comedy, Drama, Legal drama. NATION: Italia. REGIA: Giuseppe G. Stasi, Giancarlo Fontana. CAST: Luigi Lo Cascio, Claudia Pandolfi, Vincenzo Pirrotta, Selene Caramazza, Giulia Maenza, Antonio Catania, Fabrizio Ferracane. DURATION: 8 episodes of about 50 minutes. DISTRIBUTOR: Amazon Prime Video. PRODUCER: Amazon Studios, Indigo Film. EXIT STREAMING: 08-15/12/2022

The release of The Bad Guy confirms Prime Video’s desire to bring something different to Italy compared to the more conventional products of Italian fiction. The new series takes a well-known and recognizable theme such as that of the mafia, two prominent faces such as those of Claudia Pandolfi e Louis LoCascio and inserts them in an original and different story. The result is a screening halfway between serious and half-jokingly, masterfully filmed, which entertains and clearly differs from the panorama of infinite repetitions of the same, of identical series, especially on the theme of the mafia in Italy.

Recensione The Bad Guy: Gomorra incontra Breaking Bad

The plot and the trailer | The Bad Guy Review

The plot of The Bad Guy is actually something we’ve already seen: a Sicilian magistrate, Nino Scotellaro, who fights bitterly against the mafia, is unjustly accused of colluding with the boss Mariano Suro, which he always tried to capture and who even sent the murder of his father-in-law, who is also a prosecutor. After a heavy sentence, he is transferred to a Calabrian prison, but during the journey over the Strait of Messina, the recently built bridge collapses (in a dystopian but disturbingly plausible scene). Nino daringly saves himself, but everyone believes him dead. Thus he takes advantage of the situation, to implement it a ruthless plan for revenge in disguise, infiltrate the mafia and hunt down Mariano Suro.

The premise isn’t all that innovative, but from watching the six episodes one is left almost incredulous by how many original ideas and imaginative gimmicks are condensed into a local production, which hasn’t even received aggressive sponsorship in recent weeks. Starting from the deus ex machina identified in collapse of the phantom bridge over the Strait of Messina (which aroused the ire of none other than Matteo Salvini), which creepily condenses the Italian spirit of the series and the sinking of its roots into the rottenness that exists in the country. And also the headquarters of the screenplay, the Wowterworld water park, sad monument to the economy of the mafia (of which Colapsce and Dimartino created the jingle) and emblem of postmodern pseudo-ecological decadence.

Comedy or drama? | The Bad Guy Review

A little lightness and a little seriousness characterize this ambivalent series. The Bad Guy, directed by Giuseppe G. Stasi and Giancarlo Fontana, it goes beyond conventions and stereotypes of the mafia series, in particular those made in Italy. Because The Bad Guy, despite the fact that it shares many stereotypes with other series and films in its premises, seeks a new path in its development, creates it and carries it forward with continuous twists and turns that follow one episode after another.

Recensione The Bad Guy: Gomorra incontra Breaking Bad

This is how the lighter and more amusing scenes and situations are born which do not ridicule everything but enhance it compared to the conventional story. But also the more serious and even violent scenes, which keep the viewer glued to the screen and give depth to the production. Naturally, they play a fundamental role in this interpretationsfirst of all by a convincing Luigi Lo Cascio both in the role of the positive hero, of the impeccable magistrate Nino Scotellaro, and of his bad alter ego, his cousin Balduccio Remora. But also Claudia Pandolfi, who colors the Sicilian atmospheres of the series with spontaneous Romanity and sensuality in a direct connection from the places of power in Italy with the slums in which the mafia laborers operate.

Why watch the Prime Video series? | The Bad Guy Review

If you are therefore wondering why watch The Bad Guy on Amazon Prime Video, especially fearing the prejudice of fictional actors or “old Italian cinema actors”, we can tell you that behind even a trivial plot, in reality, it develops into a so that it is the exact antithesis of the banal. In fact, the screenplay focuses on a grotesque constructive madness that breaks the monotony of modern series. From the first instant to the last image, the series challenges the viewer without ever forcing a scene. Even the most improbable ones are perfectly hinged in the general structure of the series.

The amazement and pleasure of witnessing such an extravagant narration undermines the paradigm of Italian serial products that are almost always sketchy, approximate or extremely derivative. Of course, even in The Bad Guy, as mentioned, there is no shortage of references, but the feeling is that the authors have acted in a territory of unprecedented freedom. Until recently it would have seemed almost sacrilegious to think of a mafia story told with a dark comedy. And instead the crazy vengeful journey of the protagonist is totally over the top in a sadly probable way.

Recensione The Bad Guy: Gomorra incontra Breaking Bad

Conclusions

We can conclude this review of The Bad Guy by stating that the original Amazon Prime Video series closes 2022 on a high note, with a breath of fresh air in the television landscape. Excellent interpretations, excellent script and the soundtrack, full of goodies also from films of the past and very evocative. The plot, suspended between dark comedy and thriller, is compelling, and the ending (without anticipating too much) leaves the series with a bitter and disillusioned aftertaste which, however, makes us understand its power. The epilogue is in fact a clear reference to the premise and a very clear reference to what had already been narrated in Sicily (but naturally the discourse can be extended to the whole of Italy) by The Leopard: once again, things have not changed and the hubbub leading up to that point was no more useful than its narration. There will probably be a second season of The Bad Guy. What is certain is that this series will still be talked about for some time to come.

Plus points

  • The excellent performances
  • The soundtrack
  • The originality of the writing

Points against

  • The pace is not always constant
  • The finish leaves a bitter taste in the mouth

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