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Thread: The OA (Netflix)

  1. #1
    That's Wacist! Mistwell's Avatar
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    The OA (Netflix)

    No idea if it holds up for the entire season, but damn the first two episodes are superb!

    Summary: "The series centers on Prairie Johnson, an adopted young woman who resurfaces after having been missing for seven years. Upon her return, Johnson calls herself "The OA", exhibits scars on her back, and can see, despite having been blind when she disappeared. The OA refuses to tell the FBI and her adoptive parents where she has been and how her eyesight was restored, and instead quickly assembles a team of five locals to whom she reveals that information, also explaining her background story. Finally, she asks for their help to save some other missing people who she claims are currently in the same situation she has described to them."

    There is a supernatural / sci-fi / fantasy element to things.

    So far, it's well worth watching.
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  • #2
    Friendly Coffee Kzach's Avatar
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    Incredibly self-indulgent (the writer is also the producer and protagonist) story-telling via a long-form narrative with a payoff twist at the end. It's a very, very slow burner that while at times engaging and somewhat intriguing as to the "truth" of the fiction, meanders significantly and constantly treads a thin line between breaking ones suspension of disbelief, and drawing you into the narrative.

    Then again, I think that's half the point of the show; to test the audience's willingness to engage in the milieu.

    If you buy into it, then the ending is rewarding. But if you haven't bought into it and think that it's stupid and ridiculous, then you should definitely give up on it by about episode 5-6, as you'll just think the ending is retarded. Which it is, really, but I allowed myself to give in due to sheer boredom and so enjoyed the payoff.
    "Cunt. A word that sounds like a tennis ball hitting a racket in the sweet spot." ~ shiningbrow

  • #3
    madwabbit in disguise Underpants Gnome's Avatar
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    This is on my list and I just need to start making time for more Netflix.

  • #4
    I don't FEEL wealthy. Ulrik's Avatar
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    Thoughts on the ending:

    Spoiler:
    I hated the ending. Ep 1-7 were great. You could call me gullible, but the "crazy" plotline, to me, appeared out of nowhere in the last ep. Then, after they've put up heavy support for that plotline, they flip back and start implying that it's real after all. Then they drop a Columbine out of nowhere, stretching the interpretive dance elemenet (which had been pretty cool up to that point) waaaaaaaaay past the breaking point and finish it with "you must choose the ending you believe in yourself" ridiculousness. Blaaaaaaargh.

  • #5
    Friendly Coffee Kzach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ulrik View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member.
    Thoughts on the ending:

    Spoiler:
    I hated the ending. Ep 1-7 were great. You could call me gullible, but the "crazy" plotline, to me, appeared out of nowhere in the last ep. Then, after they've put up heavy support for that plotline, they flip back and start implying that it's real after all. Then they drop a Columbine out of nowhere, stretching the interpretive dance elemenet (which had been pretty cool up to that point) waaaaaaaaay past the breaking point and finish it with "you must choose the ending you believe in yourself" ridiculousness. Blaaaaaaargh.
    Yeah, I was fully bought in by that point so even though my inner dialogue was, "This is so stupid," I still got the feels from the "moment".

    But then I figured once things started getting a bit loopy at the mid-point of the season that I was going to have to be all in or all out. I basically knew that it was necessary if I was going to continue watching. I was bored so I turned off the brain and let it take me for a ride. It did it's job because I let it do it, not because it was brilliant TV.
    "Cunt. A word that sounds like a tennis ball hitting a racket in the sweet spot." ~ shiningbrow

  • #6
    Redwick, re-imagined RedWick's Avatar
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    I felt the "crazy" plot twist was decently telegraphed through the whole series, though I don't know if I liked the ending. The shooter thing came out of left field entirely.

    And I'm wondering if they'll end up addressing why the therapist guy was in Prairie's house when the kid broke in in season 2. That was something that really stuck out like a sore thumb to me.

    I also assumed OA stands for "Omega Alpha", the End and the Beginning.
    Life... is like a grapefruit. It's orange and squishy, and has a few pips in it, and some folks have half a one for breakfast. - Douglas Adams

  • #7
    That's Wacist! Mistwell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kzach View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member.
    Incredibly self-indulgent (the writer is also the producer and protagonist) story-telling via a long-form narrative with a payoff twist at the end. It's a very, very slow burner that while at times engaging and somewhat intriguing as to the "truth" of the fiction, meanders significantly and constantly treads a thin line between breaking ones suspension of disbelief, and drawing you into the narrative.

    Then again, I think that's half the point of the show; to test the audience's willingness to engage in the milieu.

    If you buy into it, then the ending is rewarding. But if you haven't bought into it and think that it's stupid and ridiculous, then you should definitely give up on it by about episode 5-6, as you'll just think the ending is retarded. Which it is, really, but I allowed myself to give in due to sheer boredom and so enjoyed the payoff.
    Thanks for that review. It helps. I'll try to set my expectations accordingly and do a self-check around episode 5-6.
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  • #8
    That's Wacist! Mistwell's Avatar
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    Binge watched the rest. Wow. I thought it was excellent! Really good ending to the season.
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  • #9
    I don't FEEL wealthy. Ulrik's Avatar
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    Spoiler:
    I think the reason the ending didn't work for me AT ALL is that until the last scene in the cafeteria it was either a straight up supernatural show about contacting the afterlife or a story about a mentally ill girl drawing in and brainwashing a group of rather vulnerable people. Both of those concepts work, and I even liked the bit where the gang really did got their lives on track even though it may all have been a fantasy. But because the show insists on "the audience deciding what happened themselves" and pushing a faux ambiguity right on our face it all fell apart. That last dance was not "faith" or "mystery" it was utter lunacy. Either they all die or it works, but the show refuses to actually commit.

    The show goes from supernatural story or psychological thriller to new age wishy washy bullshit.
    Last edited by Ulrik; January 2nd, 2017 at 10:51 AM.

  • #10
    Friendly Coffee Kzach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ulrik View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member.
    Spoiler:
    I think the reason the ending didn't work for me AT ALL is that until the last scene in the cafeteria it was either a straight up supernatural show about contacting the afterlife or a story about a mentally ill girl drawing in and brainwashing a group of rather vulnerable people. Both of those concepts work, and I even liked the bit where the gang really did got their lives on track even though it may all have been a fantasy. But because the show insists on "the audience deciding what happened themselves" and pushing a faux ambiguity right on our face it all fell apart. That last dance was not "faith" or "mystery" it was utter lunacy. Either they all die or it works, but the show refuses to actually commit.

    The show goes from supernatural story or psychological thriller to new age wishy washy bullshit.
    I kinda disagree. The last scene still trod the tightrope between, "Is this real or bullshit?" I mean, if you were that kid and everyone started suddenly doing that shit in front of you, you'd be like, "Wtf? They're crazier than I am!" So it "worked" or it WORKED! Either way, we still don't know. Could've been pure coincidence that she turned up at that exact time, could've been something else, still nothing is certain and it's not "wishy, washy bullshit" simply due to the fact that nothing is certain.

    Btw, anyone else think that it reminds them of the whole D&D trope of wizards not being able to wear armour because of the arcane "movements" they need to make, in order to cast spells?
    "Cunt. A word that sounds like a tennis ball hitting a racket in the sweet spot." ~ shiningbrow

  • #11
    That's Wacist! Mistwell's Avatar
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    The sounds we hear, the entire season, concerning her nightmares do in fact match with the events of the ending.

    Spoiler:
    You hear a tray drop in one episode, kids screaming in another, shots being fired in another, etc...

    The FBI therapist skulking around her house at night planted those books and violin to discredit her story. Prairie can't read English. She went blind when she only could read Russian, and learned braille. Her computer was in braille. At no time would she have ever learned to read English. Which explains why the books, in an Amazon box, look unread. In fact she's wanting to look Homer's name up right away before she even has net access, and is telling the first parts of her story well before any Amazon books could have arrived since it's the night after she gets internet access that she starts. Amazon is fast, but not fast enough to deliver within 12 hours and she's not fast enough to have read them in that time anyway.

    The text written in braille on the wall in FBI Counselor's office says Rachel by the way (I did not figure this out, it came from an article).



    Also interesting note. Rachel takks about her NDE in a car accident and describes a red backpack in the road. The scene where Buck passes the flares in the road, as if there had been a car accident, there is a red backpack



    Finally, what the heck was up with that audio Homer listened to in Hap’s office? A man’s voice says, “Your name is not Homer.” Another voice says, “Do you know Dr. Roberts?” And Homer's last name is Roberts. WTF?
    Last edited by Mistwell; January 2nd, 2017 at 04:30 PM.
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  • #12
    I don't FEEL wealthy. Ulrik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kzach View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member.
    I kinda disagree. The last scene still trod the tightrope between, "Is this real or bullshit?" I mean, if you were that kid and everyone started suddenly doing that shit in front of you, you'd be like, "Wtf? They're crazier than I am!" So it "worked" or it WORKED! Either way, we still don't know. Could've been pure coincidence that she turned up at that exact time, could've been something else, still nothing is certain and it's not "wishy, washy bullshit" simply due to the fact that nothing is certain.
    Spoiler:
    But to me it is totally wishy washy. OA's story has several key, undisputed supernatural events: Bringing back Scott (after 11 hours on the floor, complete with blood flowing backwards) and curing an advanced case of ALS, and that doesn't even consider the more unreliable case of similar near death experiences where they discover linked pieces of information.

    The ending in the cafeteria is perfectly explainable by a) the shooter going "wtf?", b) stray shot that happens to hit OA and c) tv logic. They go out of their way to have no clear supernatural events here, placing it firmly in new age "open your eyes and see the connections" bullcrap.

    FWIW I think the show is going for a supernatural story, but goes out of it's way to spread misinformation about where OA could have gotten her ideas.

    (If she did make it up, I think she got "Homer" from the article about the actual QB Homer that she found on the net, not the Illiad. Which again argues that the books are planted by the fed, for some obtuse reason that won't ever be revealed because I don't think a second season of this was ever planned.)


    Btw, what kind of spoiler policy should we have here?

  • #13
    Friendly Coffee Kzach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ulrik View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member.
    Spoiler:
    But to me it is totally wishy washy. OA's story has several key, undisputed supernatural events: Bringing back Scott (after 11 hours on the floor, complete with blood flowing backwards) and curing an advanced case of ALS, and that doesn't even consider the more unreliable case of similar near death experiences where they discover linked pieces of information.
    Spoiler:
    Yes, but all of those events are told by her as a story. So they're not undisputed at all. They could all just be the rantings of a delusional mind. Plus her own blindness could have been psychological since there was no actual damage to her eyes. It's a known phenomenon.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ulrik View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member.
    Spoiler:
    Btw, what kind of spoiler policy should we have here?
    Spoiler:
    I think spoilers are ridiculous.
    "Cunt. A word that sounds like a tennis ball hitting a racket in the sweet spot." ~ shiningbrow

  • #14
    madwabbit in disguise Underpants Gnome's Avatar
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    I binged and finished it in a state of insomnia. That seems somehow fitting now that I get to the end. It was interesting and like the Sense8 show just different kind of story telling. Like it or not I love that Netflix is really giving us out of the box shows.

  • #15
    COMMUNITY SUPPORTER JoeBlank's Avatar
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    We watched the first episode last night and will certainly continue watching. I probably won't check back in on this thread until we finish, since I have avoided spoilers so far.

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