From Terminator and Alien through to Buffy and Glow, there’s a whole slew of media showcasing women in empowering roles. In recent years, the #Metoo movement and other cultural shifts of its kind have prompted a whole wave of new content to flood the big and small screen in the hopes of presenting this message front and center. For some, this doesn’t work too well as stories fall into the trap of belittling men and showcasing their flaws. Even worse, gender-reversed remakes feel like a step back most of the time, a way to cash in on past success rather than engaging audiences with an exciting, fresh IP. With that in mind, Unstoppable is the best of both worlds.
On the one hand, this girl’s road trip is a powerful journey (both literally and metaphorically) about sisterhood, friendship and finding purpose. Across the 10 episodes our quartet of ladies grow and evolve, becoming more confident in their own bodies and with their life choices. It’s a beautiful story and at times there are some stand-out moments. However, these are oftentimes tarnished by almost every male character here feeling like an archetypal villain, being obsessed with sex or just exhibiting some seriously shocking flaws along the way. It’s not a deal breaker, but it is something that holds this back from being a better series.
In terms of the plot itself, there isn’t a whole lot of originality here but the narrative works well to showcase the four ladies that front this series. Fed up with work, Vera lashes out in a pretty volatile way and leans on her friends for support. Rocio finds herself living an unfulfilled life, one that’s been laid out before her courtesy of demanding Father Ignacio and sex-obsessed boyfriend Juanita. Rounding out this trio of best friends is Carlota, a woman who reads poetry and exhibits a pretty fiery personality.
Fed up with their lives and needing a break, the trio hit the road where they cross paths with Marcela, a girl with a dark past and a debt owed to a pretty powerful man named Sapo. Desperate to save her brother, she hitches a ride with the girls and becomes wrapped up in a hedonistic world of sex, drink and partying. Across the 10 episodes, all four women reflect on what’s brought them to this moment and decide to set out and right the wrongs of their lives.
Most of the show follows a seralized format, with each episode leading into the next, while peppering in some stand-alone segments. This builds up to the climactic finale that sees the opening scenes of the first episode given more clarity as we come full-circle and understand what’s happening here.
Unstoppable touches on some pretty dark material at times and accompanying that is a fair amount of nudity too. There’s quite a few close up shots of this as well so do bear that in mind if you wind up watching this while commuting. Alongside that are some pretty shocking rape and forced sex segments that feel very uncomfortable to watch. While it makes sense in the context of the story, there’s a fair few of these peppered in the show between the different girls and it only reinforces the earlier statement about that misogynistic behaviour for men.
If you can ignore some of the obvious nods toward this, Unstoppable does have a pretty enjoyable story at its heart. There’s some good chemistry between the four women, the 10 episodes are zippy and easy to get through, while there’s enough drama and colour to each of the girls’ stories to make for an entertaining watch. It does get a little dark and the obvious female empowerment message is a bit heavy-handed at times but if you can take to the first few episodes, there’s an enjoyable enough show here that’ll see you through to the satisfying conclusion.