You have watched Alex Rider! You finally know why we love this show. We’re going to do a review per episode so that nothing remains unanalyzed, but it’s time to do a review of the season that is summarized in a question: “who is Alex Rider?” Get ready, spies, your mission starts now!
Here we go!
At the beginning of the show, Alex is an ordinary teenager … only he’s not. The murder of his uncle changes absolutely everything. Some unexpected secrets come to light and he discovers that his uncle was an MI6 agent and many questions remained unanswered after his murder. Thus, Alex meets his uncle’s boss and his second in command, Mrs. Jones, who doesn’t agree to recruit him because of his young age … but his boss has other ideas.
Alex doesn’t know who he can trust, he just knows that Jack and Tom are the only ones by his side no matter what. However, he cannot rely on them with MI6’s secrets because he fears they might harm them. That is the beginning of Alex’s adventure. An adventure that leads him to discover himself and what he’s capable of doing.
I confess that I haven’t read the books (something that I intend to remedy ASAP). This makes my perspective that of someone starting this story from scratch. I have nothing to compare to, nor did I know the characters until I saw the show. And I have fallen in love completely. It is a story that you can enjoy even if you haven’t read the books.
Doing that, connecting the viewer with a story that they know nothing about, is a very difficult challenge, especially when we’re talking about a literary adaptation. Alex Rider succeeds completely. The show just … grabs you from the first second.
Also, it manages to surprise you. In the first episode, the feeling I had was that it was a series for teenagers or young adults, entertaining but with no more pretensions than that. I was completely wrong. Little by little, as the story progresses, the story becomes increasingly dark, so much so that they touch on some topics that you do not expect them to address, such as cloning or the Nazi theory of the superiority of the race.
No, this show is not about Nazis and their disgusting theories, but it does take it as a starting point (it’s inevitable not to think about it when we talk about Dr. Grief’s disgusting ideas) to give it a spin and hence, create the secrets that Point Blanc hides.
Because it hides dark secrets. Dr. Grief (if he can be called a doctor) cloned himself and operates his clones to be exactly like the Point Blanc students, in order to strategically place someone exactly like him in power situations. This is The Gemini Project. While that happens, he keeps the students locked in cages in the bowels of Point Blanc.
I didn’t know what to expect when Alex entered Point Blanc but it wasn’t this. And I love when the writers of a show surprise me like that. With these crazy ideas that nobody expects but that make sense. And really, really, I feared for Alex’s life at that boarding school. When Grief finds out who he is and sends Eva to kill him, even when they put him in that kind of operating room … I thought that’s the end of everything.
This show has kept me in tension the entire time. Luckily, at Point Black, Alex can count on the hacker Kyra to help him on his quest to find out what’s going on at that strange boarding school. Although she is too smart to be fooled and knows that Alex is not who he claims to be, and I love her for that. By the way, I ship them like crazy! I love these two together and died of love when Kyra comes back for Alex, choosing him over her own life and saving him.
This is another thing I adore about how the show is written. Forget all that damsel-in-distress shit. Kyra is perfectly capable of saving herself and she saves Alex’s ass on more than one occasion. It would have been very easy to fall into the temptation of making Alex the boy who saves the world and the woman, but this show doesn’t do it and breaks with the stereotypes of the genre.
Thanks to Kyra, Alex manages to find out what the boarding school really hides, the evil Gemini Project, and manages to survive to continue fighting in his final confrontation against Grief and Eva. Although when it seemed that everything was fixed … the show returns to surprise us with a new twist.
Alex’s clone escapes the clutches of MI6 and manages to reach Alex, turning his life upside down and culminating in a final showdown that is perfectly accomplished and brutal!
But what happens while Alex is at Point Blanc? Jack is dying of concern and tries to find out something about Alex through Mrs. Jones as she bonds with Tom. They are the only ones who know the whole truth and support each other. But Alex’s enemies knock on their doors. While Tom is tortured (a tough scene that was surprising and it hurt me to see), Jack trusts Alan’s traitor, the architect of Alex’s uncle’s death.
The end of the show is quite hopeful, which I really liked because the feeling of family between Tom, Alex and Jack is something that I love but, at the same time, it was the thing I liked the least. As you know, the show was renewed for a season 2 and I think they should have left a bit more intrigue for the following season.
It is true that they leave us intrigued about who exactly Alex’s father is, because they introduce us as a suspect to Yassen, Alan’s ally and Alex’s uncle’s enemy, but is that so? However, I think they needed one more hook heading into season 2. Although, truth be told, we’re going to watch the next season no matter what!
As you can see, the show has elements that you don’t expect them to address because Alex’s path towards the end, towards the moment when, like him or not, he finds out who he really is, is not exempt from danger and suffering (remember that even MI6 he got a taste of him by kidnapping and torturing him), but that’s why this show is awesome because it’s raw and real like, life itself and I can’t wait to see how it continues.
We will analyze everything that this Alex Rider season has given in our reviews by episode starting tomorrow. For the moment, these are my thoughts on the story in general.