Saturday, October 12, 2019

What I’m Watching: Our Boys (Series Finale)

Our Boys: Season 1, Episode 10 “Chapter 10: A Shaft into a Dark Tunnel” (B+)

I’ve contended since it started that this show is excellent, and is the case when I watch episodes of “The Crown,” I’m eager to do some research after it ends so that I can find out what’s real and what’s fictionalized. I appreciated how the conclusion of this episode answered many of those questions, noting that pretty much everything about the perpetrators and the victim’s family was true aside from the names of the minors, whereas both Simon and Dvora, two very compelling characters whose interaction in this episode was extremely powerful, were composites of several people, just like Jessica Chastain’s protagonist in “Zero Dark Thirty.” The framing of this episode, which includes a closing note about the search for the killers of the three Israeli boys and how their homes were demolished, provides one last supporting argument for the idea that this show doesn’t portray Israel in the best light, focusing instead on how this search for justice reveals more about how unjust the country is. I do think that most of what it brings up is indeed fascinating, like Suha’s desire to have the Israeli killers’ homes demolished, but I can understand why this could just be used as more ammunition against Israel by those who already detest it. My hope is that those who watch will see it for the layered, introspective portrait of a deeply upsetting situation that hit home for so many that it is. I’m not sure it will appeal to Emmy voters, but I’m pulling for it, especially for Jony Arbid (Hussein), Adam Gabay (Avishai), Or Ben Melech (Yoseif Haim), Shlomi Elkabetz (Simon), and Noa Koler (Dvora). This has been an enlightening, excellent experience, though far from an easy one.

Series grade: A-
Series MVP: Jony Arbid as Hussein

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