I have not been so enthralled by a Netflix series, maybe ever. “Dead to Me” is riveting and addicting from start to finish. There are 10 episodes in season one, each one clocking in at about 30 minutes and each one more dramatic than the last.
“Dead to Me” follows Judy (Linda Cardellini) and Jen (Christina Applegate), two women who meet each other at a grief-counseling group. Both have recently experienced significant loss — the loss of Jen’s husband and Judy’s miscarried children— and instantly become inseparable friends.
Cardellini and Applegate’s twopairing is a match made in heaven that the world didn’t know it needed. Cardellini’s character has a sweet personality and infectious smile that are perfectly complemented by Applegate’s two character with a snarky and badass persona.
While Judy and Jen have very different lives and personalities, they both clearly demonstrate the same point: women get stuff done. All of the men in the show are — to put this delicately with no spoilers — pretty much useless.
Throughout the series, secret after secret is revealed, but the show does a great job of making viewers feel sympathetic for all parties involved. There is no “bad guy” or “good guy” in the series. Everyone is given a comprehensive background story that helps viewers understand motives and feelings behind their actions.
The show also portrays grief and parenthood in very real and modern ways. Jen copes with her husband’s death by being tough and strong for her two boys, but sometimes she just has to sit in her car and yell to heavy metal music. Jen's character encapsulates what it's like to cope with grief in many different ways.
Jen also struggles with her two children adapting to life after their father’s death. Her older son struggles with acting out and making bad decisions in the wake of his father’s death. Once again, the show does a great job of demonstrating how people handle grief and how to deal with it.
The show quickly turns from dramatic comedy to a murder mystery. The plot thickens with each episode and each episode is left with a bigger cliffhanger than the last.
The creators of this series were trying to transcend the limitations of a specific genre. The series as a whole is comedic with intense thriller scenes spread throughout. There are even a few heart-wrenching, tear-jerking scenes throughout the show. To put it simply, this show makes you “feel all the feels."
When I first began watching this show, the storyline made me think this was a one-season kind of series. However, the last episode ends with the tease of a second season. The second half of the season left a lot of open doors, so hopefully another season (or two) will wrap up all of the unanswered questions we have.