By Zach Gelfond
Netflix has been hard at work pumping out an almost ludicrous amount of Netflix originals. This platform-exclusive content has had a wide range of quality ranging from pretty bad to what some may consider masterpieces. Landing smack dab in the middle in terms of quality is the recent Netflix original TV series called The Irregulars.
If you’re ever looking for a rather mindless British mystery adventure crime drama to binge-watch, then The Irregulars is a pretty good choice. Taking place in 19th Century London, it features some good imagery and an emotionally charged plotline highlighting the crime-solving adventures of some low-class misfits from the streets of London. With the addition of a hemophilic escaped prince, the team tackles an assortment of strange cases with elements of both fantasy and horror. Also, did I mention that they are working under the hire of Watson and that Sherlock Holmes is also involved?
Honestly, if it seems like too much, it probably is. For a show trying to tackle so many genres at the same time, it ends up doing a half-decent job. Unfortunately, it also ends up diluting the whole experience by trying too much. Despite its shortcomings and a pretty large amount of plot holes, it is still a fun experience if you’re willing to completely turn off all disbelief.
The first episode sets up the rest of the series by demonstrating the group dynamic with Bea, Jessie, Billy, Spike, and Leopold. Bea is the group leader, Jessie is her rather naive and unstable sister, Billy is the group’s token impulsive-fighter personality, and Spike is the charismatic glue that holds the group together. Oh, and Leopold is the smart but conflicted prince! The first episode begins with Jessie having a nightmare with underground tunnels and a dark figure with a plague mask.
The show goes through a few unexpected twists and a few pretty expected ones. One rather expected plot point that I don’t feel bad giving away is the fact that Sherlock Holmes has a very non traditional role in The Irregulars. To be more specific, he barely has a role for most of the show and is pretty much just a useless drug addict that has abandoned every person in his life. Also, he ends up completely lacking the mental prowess he had before his addiction and is mostly unable to help. While this is all a refreshing new take on the well-known personality, I can’t say I didn’t miss the typical hyper-intellectual Sherlock.
Also, did I mention that Netflix canceled the next season? The show resolved the first season problem pretty well, but also left enough room for more with a bit of a cliffhanger. The move was quite unexpected since, besides my grievances, the show really did do very well and was on Netflix’s top 10 list for some time. Unfortunately, Netflix has not revealed any reason for the cancellation of the second season.