Apple series: ‘Servant’: bad vibes, overwhelm and macabre humor with the Shyamalan label | TV

Servant is a hidden series on a platform almost as hidden. Apple TV + may not be the best-known on-demand television service, or the one with the most content. But it is possible that he is one of the most successful with his handful of original productions. In a catalog that has jewelry like Ted Lasso, Dickinson, The Morning Show, Mythic Quest O Central Park, his most messy bet and, at the same time, one of the most stimulating is Servant. Created and written by Tony Basgallop and produced by M. Night Shyamalan (who, thus far, has directed three episodes, the first of the series between them), the plot easily moves between horror, drama, suspense and black comedy and manages to reward the patience of the viewer.

A Philadelphia couple tries to cope with grief as best they can after the death of their baby. She, however, refuses to accept it and a doll reborn replaces his son. Her husband goes along with her out of fear that she is not prepared to face the tragic reality, so much so that he hires a nanny to take care of the supposed baby when she returns to her job as a journalist. However, the quiet babysitter seems to have hidden intentions and shortly after arriving home, mysterious things start to happen.

Lauren Ambrose and Rupert Grint, in the second episode of the second season of ‘Servant’.Apple TV+

Beyond the plot, which progresses, with a slow pace, between twists and revelations each more twisted, one of the great assets of this production is its dark and claustrophobic setting, with plans and disturbing images, trademark of the Shyamalan house. More than scares or sudden appearances, the terror here is in the silences, the looks, the darkness, the feeling that something supernatural haunts the whole situation, as it seems to be confirmed towards the end of the first season. The second installment (now in broadcast with chapters every Friday) picks up the story at the point where it left off and refines the tone of the series, taking advantage of a humor that in the first batch remained in specific strokes and now helps to leave even more blur the line between sanity and insanity.

The plot, which in the new chapters advances with more determination, has also opted to put more focus on the development of its protagonists, with special attention to the trio formed by the marriage played by Toby Kebbell and a Lauren Ambrose who seems to be having a great time with the twists of her character in the second season, to which her brother joins, a Rupert Grint whose character helps to degrease with his frequent comic contribution. Meanwhile, some pieces fit together, although the shadows and the mystery remain in an absorbing series that at this point combines very well its suffocating atmosphere with the plot, characters and its particular humor.

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Apple series: ‘Servant’: bad vibes, overwhelm and macabre humor with the Shyamalan label | TV