Obsession – The DVDfever Review – Netflix – Richard Armitage, Charlie Murphy

Obsession Obsession is out tomorrow on Netflix, and my first observation is how it does seem odd that while it’s a four-part mini-series, each episode is only about 30-40 minutes long, totalling around two-and-a-half hours. That’s basically a two-parter in TV terms.

William Farrow (Richard ArmitageSpace Sweepers) is a highly-succession surgeon who, for example, kicks off this series by saving conjoined twins when he separates them at birth.

At a party, he meets Anna Barton (Charlie Murphy), who gives him the same sort of look that Sharon Stone gave to Michael Douglas in Basic Instinct; and she has an air that’s very commanding and controlling, and definitely a case of “If looks could kill”, given her dark brown eyes having a steely gaze. As a result, it’s not a surprise that he’s besotted with her. Then again, she is hotter than the sun.

Alas, there’s a problem. She’s also his prospective daughter in law, as she’s due to marry his son, Jay (Rish Shah). Oh, what a tangled web we weave!

Of course, a bit of “how’s your father” is a bad thing, and it does get a bit “Ooh, la la!” Plus, there’s also bare bottoms! AVERT YOUR EYES!

Seriously, the sex shenanigans feel a bit Fifty Shades Lite, but the Hitchcock-style soundtrack is hilarious and brilliantly-constructed, but then it does come from the superb Anne Dudley from The Art Of Noise. There’s also some cliched dialogue, such as speculating about what if other people found out – hey, just enjoy the ride, so to speak – and stop trying to upset the applecart.

Naturally, no spoilers as to how things turn out, but it’s safe to say that Anna has a very winsome way, and when he asks her if she wants a drink, she responds, “What would you like me to drink?”

In fact, I was reminded of what I once heard in an exchange in The Trip To Italy between Rob Brydon and Steve Coogan, “She has a lovely gait”, “Oh, is that what it’s called(?)”

Overall, Obsession is quite daft at times, but then dramas like this often are; and quite frankly, certain scenes make me laugh out loud when I probably should be racked with tension, but it depends how seriously you take this. I did not, but the series doesn’t outstay its welcome, and it’s certainly worth a watch, although Armitage’s 2020 Netflix series, The Stranger, was better. Then again, it was shot in Stockport, so it’s bound to be better! 😀

That said, I prefer that it was a four-parter rather than a 10-part series which never seems to end. In some cases for those, I’ll never reach the end, even though I know it makes financial sense that if you’ve paid for the rights to make something, and have built big sets, you may as well put out as many episodes as possible, so as to get more bang for your buck.

Again, it’s also safe to say that Obsession uses existing buildings for locations, rather than creating huge sets like a sci-fi outing would do, and there’s no CGI in this.

As an aside, it did seem odd that Anna has a painting in her bedroom that’s simply a splodge of black on a canvas. I guess that’s modern art for you.

Thanks to our friends at Netflix for the screener prior to release.

Obsession is not available to pre-order on Blu-ray or DVD, but is on Netflix from Thursday April 13th.

Obsession – Official Trailer – Netflix

Detailed specs:

Running time: 32-42 minutes per episode (4 episodes)
Release date: April 13th 2023
Studio: Netflix
Format: 2.00:1

Series Directors: Lisa Barros D’Sa, Glenn Leyburn
Producer: Gina Carter
Writers: Morgan Lloyd Malcolm, Benji Walters
Novel: Josephine Hart
Music: Anne Dudley

William Farrow: Richard Armitage
Anna Barton: Charlie Murphy
Ingrid Farrow: Indira Varma
Sally Farrow: Sonera Angel
Edward: Anil Goutam
Jay Farrow: Rish Shah
Elizabeth: Marion Bailey
Nadia: Francesca Knight
Johnno: Kerim Hassan
Olivier: Victor Pontecorvo
Mimi: Celine Arden
Patrick Clacy: Greg Barnett
Receptionist: Isla Jackson-Ritchie
Lynnette: Letty Thomas
Psychotherapist: Ed Hughes
Peggy: Pippa Bennett-Warner