Neon – Episode 1 “The Dream” Recap & Review

The Dream

Neon episode 1 starts with Santi dreaming about being a successful reggaeton artist and living La Vida Loca. His friends wake him from his dream, and we learn they are going to Miami. They have a plan: Ness will be Santi’s music manager, and Felix will be his creative director. They will meet someone from a label in a few hours and are excited. It feels even more right as Santi’s song starts playing on the radio. They reckon it is a sign of destiny!

They get to Miami, and Santi checks if the meeting with Mia is confirmed. Ness is happy to inform him that the meeting is scheduled for the next morning, and the three will attend it together. Even though this is her first time being a manager, Ness assures Santi that she knows what she is doing. 

As they talk, Felix gets an alert on his phone about another musician. Santi is displeased that Felix has his alerts for Javier’s post. He is also pissed about being compared to Javier.  He thinks he is better than Javier, who can’t write his own music. Ness and Felix get into a minor altercation about who should handle Santi’s social media. On the other hand, Santi realises that Africa is not a country but a continent. Sigh!

They then drop by to check on the house they were to rent and are in for a surprise. The landlord not only catfished them by posting fake photos of the apartment, but she is also charging them more. To make matters worse, they can only move in two days later. With nowhere to go, the gang ends up sleeping in their car. They can’t afford to mess with their budget. 

The next morning, they wake up to find their car booted, costing them $250. There goes their budget! Nonetheless, they get ready for their meeting at a gas station bathroom. Santi is hopeful that Mia will offer them a record deal. Ness warns them to manage their expectation and stick to their plans. According to the plan, they will start by playing coy with Mia, build more hype about Santi, and then start a bidding war between record labels. 

The meeting doesn’t exactly go as planned. Mia doesn’t offer them a record deal and only talks about the reality of most artists who move to Miami and never make it big. She, however, shows interest in Santi’s musicality and hustle game.  She asks about their plan, and Ness lies they have it all figured out but doesn’t share it with Mia.

Unknowingly, Mia makes a joke about their plan, and Ness gets defensive. She starts pivoting and makes it look like Santi is more interested in being an independent artist. Mia quickly leaves, saying she has a party to prepare for, but doesn’t invite the group.

After the meeting, the boys lash out at Ness and blame her for messing up the meeting. Ness gets more defensive and says they need to make smart decisions. She questions if Santi trusts her and why he fell for Mia’s power game. The fight nearly gets physical as Felix insists Ness made them lose a multi-million record deal.

The night draws by, and Ness convinces the group to crash the party Mia mentioned. Santi and Felix are on the fence, but Ness can change their minds by stroking Santi’s ego and making them believe it is destiny. 

At the party, the bouncer recognises Santi and allows them in. However, Mia is not too pleased to see them. The plan was to be conspicuous, but Santi threw caution out of the window after seeing some of his favourite musicians. They question if they should stay, given Mia is giving them some suspicious look. Also, Javier is at the party, and Santi is unhappy about it. What happened between him and Javier? 

Ultimately, the group decides it is YOLO time, and they should enjoy the party. Ness confides in Santi that she is feeling insecure with Mia around. Santi assures her that he will always need her by his side. 

Later, Santi gets some time to talk to his role models and is ecstatic they recognise his song.  He is even more excited when his song is played at the party. They later leave the party and finally move into their apartment. Santi wakes up to an email from Mia asking for a follow-up meeting. 

The episode ends with Mia being revealed to be an assistant at a label artist and not a label manager. How will this affect Santi?

The Episode Review

What a twist at the end! This is only the first chapter, and it was a fun watch. Of course, we could have done without that whole scene about Africa! Why do these shows keep on doing this? 

So far, the characters are likeable, and Santi is truly talented. He seems to have a great friendship with Ness and Felix. They all have one goal; hopefully, it will work out for them.

We also have to rave about the music selection, which is on-point. It really adds more to the scenes and helps the audience connect with Reggaeton in a new, exciting way. I am looking forward to hearing more music from the show.


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