The Resort – Season 1 Episode 1 “The Disappointment of Time” Recap & Review

Peacock’s latest comedy-mystery series is set on a secluded resort on the island of Akumal (near Cancun). Cristin Milioti and William Harper star as a couple whose marriage goes through a tough time. But instead of giving it more attention, the two are caught u[ in the mystery of a missing girl and boy from 15 years ago and an unprecedented hurricane that wiped off half the island.

The first three episodes aired on the network a couple of nights ago. We bring you recaps for all the episodes of The Resort along with explainers on confusing plot points, and of course, our take on them! Be sure to watch the episode first and then read the recap as there are obviously spoilers below!

‘The Disappointment of Time’ Recap

We open episode 1 of The Resort with lines from Ilan Ibera’s 1978 book called El Espejo (The Mirror), and another one from 1993 called The Delusion of Time. On the small island, a black van stops.

Two tourists – the Reeds – step out of the vehicle and are greeted by a hostess, Luna with cocktails and bands for the resort. Further conversation reveals that Emma and Noah Reed are visiting the island to celebrate their ten-year anniversary, or as Luna calls it, “the puberty of marriage”. Bahia del Paraiso is located along the scenic beaches of Akumal and is the Reeds’ home for the next week. On their first night, Noah has planned dinner with Emma in the resort itself. Although he is jet-lagged, he claims he will still be able to go through with the plan. He even bets against it with Emma. But he loses.

Now alone, Emma wanders around the room on her own. We see that she has had some kind of procedure (maybe an abortion?) and that she doesn’t feel herself. In the jacuzzi, she surfs the internet and comes across a tacky website where she takes a quiz on whether one should get out of a relationship if they see these signs. The next morning, they have a day planned around dirt bikes. On the bus, they come across a gay couple, the Teds. Just as Emma starts enjoying her bike ride, she gets lost behind the others and in a flash, falls over several feet after clashing with a rock. She has injuries – minor only – but notices a broken phone lying on the ground. She puts the flip Motorola in her pocket as Noah finds her there. Emma does not tell him about the phone.

On the same night, Noah falls asleep early and Emma is determined to find out the contents of the phone. The sim is still intact and she buys another flip phone to test it out. She sits in wonderment as she first sifts through the photos and then the messages. In the former, she finds photos of a couple and single photos of a boy. The line of text messages from fifteen years ago reveals a fight between the boy and his parents. She notices the name of the resort they stayed in – Oceana Vista. But when she is taken there by a cab, she finds the resort in ruins. Everyone in it died in a severe hurricane those years ago. She reads up on it online and we get the following details. The person to whom the phone belongs is Sam, a 22-year-old college student. He, along with a girl, Violet Thompson, disappeared right before the hurricane hit and killed everyone in Oceana.

Through a flashback to the eve of Christmas in 2007, we see Sam with his girlfriend Hanna and his parents boarding the flight for the island. En route, Sam discovers that Hanna is having an affair with a Professor Bryon from college and is heartbroken. Noah notices the old phone in Emma’s purse and confronts her about it. She is upset, at first, but as Noah becomes more interested, she divulges some details. It is also revealed that a body washed up some days after the hurricane but was so badly mutilated it couldn’t be identified. Noah and Emma discover evidence that proves Violet and Sam knew each other – a picture. In the flashback, the four arrive at the Oceana and Sam takes off on his skateboard around the resort. That is how he bumps into Violet. We end with a confusing scene: a close-up of Sam and Violet’s eyes superimposed upon Noah and Emma’s.

The Episode Review

There is so much promise in the first episode of The Resort. From the moment Emma finds that phone, things pick up the pace quite well. Even in terms of introductions and niceties, we do not lose a lot of time getting straight to the point. At first, there were indications this could be something like HBO’s very successful The White Lotus.

But midway through the episode, The Resort took on a life of its own. I still felt that despite the good work on cutting out the excess stuff, the first episode is a bit rushed. On trimming down the run time or adjusting story elements within the run time, we lost the chance for exposition; the minimum amount that is necessary for such shows.

Cristin Milioti looks like the one in charge – firmly, as William Harper’s Noah plays second fiddle. Looking at the way it is staged in the first episode, do not expect this to be some kind of ensemble drama where everyone chips in and we see other characters being fully developed. The way they’re going, I wouldn’t even be surprised if Noah and Emma aren’t paid too much attention either. Will it just be about the murder mystery unravelling, or will there be deeper dives into the existential crisis that is staring them in the face, waiting for the door to slide open?

Next Episode

You can read our full season review for The Resort here!


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