Chapter 1: Dreams
Chapter 2: Memories
Chapter 3: Lies
Chapter 4: Feelings
Chapter 5: The Past
Chapter 6: Family
Chapter 7: Loss
Chapter 8: Love
Set in Madrid during the roaring 20s, Cable Girls is an absorbing Spanish period drama that balances romance, humour and tension to great effect. Although this first season mainly focuses on Alba (later known as Lidia under a new alias), as the series grows and the plot thickens there’s a shared focus between the four women at the centre of the story that helps to balance this first season out. A questionable soundtrack and a cliffhanger ending does sour the experience somewhat but this Spanish drama is surprisingly effective in delivering a female empowering plot without ever feeling contrived.
The story begins with Alba (Blanca Suárez) who finds her life changed forever when she’s wrongfully accused of a double murder. A corrupt policeman offers to her let go free in exchange for her stealing money from the local telephone exchange. Alba takes on a new persona, Lidia, and with it the responsibilities of working as a cable girl alongside a group of women who share the limelight more and more as the series progresses. As Lidia juggles her own feelings toward the girls she works with and love interest Carlos (Martiño Rivas), a lot of her story revolves around her torn loyalty as she desperately struggles to figure out a way to pay off the corrupt policeman whilst keeping her job and friendships intact.
The other women introduced early on do a good job depicting different parts of 1920s culture and their story lines are interesting and well written. Carlota (Ana Fernández) struggles for much of this season with her father’s disapproval in her working at the telephone company and tries to get her to quit, experienced employee Angeles (Maggie Civantos) has a similar problem with her husband and Marga’s (Nadia de Santiago) charming storyline involving love interest Pablo (Nico Romero) has a good dose of humour thrown in to balance out the other story lines. All four of these plots work harmoniously together and for the most part do well to drive the narrative forward. It is a little disappointing that Cable Girls ends on such a cliffhanger ending though, leaving many of these plot threads unresolved but hopefully these are answered in the second season.
There’s a surprising amount of accuracy used to depict the 1920s too and everything from the costume design to the attitude of men and women of the era all feel realistically depicted and accurate for the time period. Unfortunately, Cable Girls slips up with its music choices that are questionable to say the least. Electronically charged, synth-driven dance music in clubs and vocal-heavy pop music during sombre moments completely destroy the immersion of the series and it’s such a shame as the actual content of the plot is generally very good. Speaking of audio, it’s worth mentioning at this point that the English dubbing for Cable Girls is poor to say the least. The authentic Spanish is far superior to watch with and we do recommend you choose this way of watching if you decide to get invested in this empowering period drama.
Cable Girls is a charming period drama that manages to capture the mood of the 1920s incredibly well. Despite a questionable choice of modern music and a cliffhanger ending, the four women at the centre of this story are well written, likeable and different enough to balance the series out in a suitable way. With a good mix of romance, drama and humour thrown into a female empowering narrative, Cable Girls is a decent Spanish series to get invested in and well worth checking out.
Verdict - 7.5/10