The Eddy is a uniquely stylized series that certainly won’t be for everyone. Those looking for the glitz and glamorous shine of Damien Chazelle’s previous efforts La La Land and Whiplash will almost certainly be left disappointed here. If you can take to the rustic, gritty quality of this show that gives the impression of it being filmed as an Indie but with the production design and acting of a professional set-up, there’s certainly a lot to like about this one.
Episode 1 of The Eddy begins with Farid approaching Elliot and updating him on the current situation – it doesn’t look good for their Jazz club. Despite the band playing well, they look tired and aren’t on top of their game. That’s bad news too because record producer Franck Levy happens to be listening. Elliot slips out the back and tries to convince him to return at a later date when he leaves, but for now he keeps his cards close to his chest.
As the night draws to a close, Farid greets the band and tells lead singer Maja to forget he’s there and sing from the heart. After a solo piano number on stage, a strange Serbain man arrives and demands to be paid. Given Farid has gone home, Eliot realizes he’s in trouble and heads over to Farid’s house, where his partner patches him up in Farid’s absence.
The next morning our different band members go about their day, as the different instruments start to harmonize together. Elliot meanwhile heads to the club and speaks to Farid, who tries reassuring him that everything is okay.
Rushing off, Elliot picks up his daughter Julie from the airport but their greeting is strained to say the least. Unfortunately when their bike breaks down on the road, it brings them to singer Maja’s apartment, where she clearly senses something going on between the two. As she heads off for a shower, the duo spar over a jazz duet but there’s clearly bad blood here.
Later in the day, Elliot heads off with Julie to listen to a prospective jazz group perform in their garage. While they do, Elliot notices that very same Serbian man who hit him the previous night and chases after him down the street. The bad news continues as Maja doesn’t show up to perform that night at the club. With all hope lost, Farid defies Elliot and decides to fill in for a missing Maja. Unfortunately his flat singing kills the crowd and they murmur and chortle at his efforts. After the show, a masked assassin corners Farid outside and slits his throat, leaving him for dead.
Julie wakes her Dad up in the morning and he hears the news about Farid, as Julie continues to act coldly toward him following what happened at the club. In the wake of what happened, Julie suggests he go with her back home but he refuses to return to New York. Instead, Elliot heads back over to Maja’s house where he finds her buzzer now working.
In the wake of Farid’s death, they decide to open the club up again and after some nervy moments, the club fills up and is busier than usual as the crowd listen to Maja and the others up on stage performing. As the episode closes out, Maja takes the spotlight and sings a beautiful solo in memory of Farid.
With a very gritty feel, unique and unusual camera choices and a wonderful Jazz score, The Eddy gets off to a pretty good start here. Those used to the usual conventional camera movements and smooth dolly and crane movements will almost certainly be disappointed with this one and at times, the lighting is a mixed bag between excellent and terrible. Only, this is ironically what gives the show so much charm, playing into the realism this one is trying so hard to emulate.
Unfortunately the shaky camera movements during chases are almost unbearable to watch and if there’s one downside to this stylistic choice, it’s this. Beyond that though, The Eddy gets off to a good start and it’s certainly enough to play a head-bopping tune to keep you listening to the end of this solo. Let’s hope it doesn’t hit any bum notes going forward!