Beware, this review is rated PG-13 borderline R.
Lets back up a little bit though. The first I heard about Hemlock Grove was when I decided to listen to my Pandora station a few weeks ago. They aired a commercial for this horror genre TV show that would be loading up on Netflix all at once. I was pretty excited, I never read the book which is what the show is based off of, but a new TV series that was done by Eli Roth? It sounded right up my alley!
Well a few weeks past after I’d forgotten about the commercial, and then the show appeared on my queue’s “popular on Netflix” section. I was like hellll, gotta start this shit before bed! And so I did, and it was a glorious first episode. It opened with a high school girl on her way to fool around with her attractive female teacher. I was like hell yeah! You break those stereotypes in fucking half and bring something new to the table! Said girl is then the first girl to get mangled by some sort of wild beast. The scene is brutal, the sounds are gory and the aftermath is eye-shuttering. Seems like it would be an awesome show from that 10 minute opening, but oh how I was wrong.
The editing is a bit all over the place, and you think “Oh maybe it’s just an artistic choice for the first episode, I’m sure they will explain everything a bit more in the next episode.” NOPE, they pull that bull shit editing without answering any questions for THE WHOLE SEASON.
I got to the fourth episode, and said to myself, “do I really want to continue this series? The acting is sub-par, Famke Janssen has this atrocious accent, and even after WATCHING THE ENTIRE SERIES I HAVE UNANSWERED QUESTIONS FROM THE FIRST DAMN EPISODE. WHAT THE HELL IS SHELLY? WHY IS SHE A GLOW WORM?! WTF? And by the time they actually answer the question of who the murderer is, you don’t even care! Most likely because you figure it out yourself in the 9th episode or because it was so poorly executed.
Not to mention at this point I begin falling asleep for a midday nap after 10 minutes of the show’s episode. Every day. It took me about 5 days to watch the whole season due to the fact of going back to re-watching episodes I slept through during auto-play. I’m being serious, this show is so sporadic and non-cohesive that it put me to sleep on a daily basis.
But seriously they desperately try to make the show about Frankenstein’s monster, vampires, werewolves, witches, gypsies, angels, god complexes, and shitty psychiatrists. It tries way too hard to incorporate every basic horror monster into one episode, which sounds great right? But they don’t take the time to set up each monster. They just jump around in every episode trying to incorporate each one in each episode but it fails miserably. There are a ton of sex scenes in this show though, which is a bit weird to watch while you are binge watching the show in the middle of the day.
It is awfully disappointing that it had a great premise which fell flat upon execution. What’s even more depressing is that the author of the novel apparently helped write some of the episodes. So does that mean the book is just as crazy bat-shit chaotic as the show? I hope not, because I would like to read the book so I can better grasp what the hell was happening during the 13 episode shit show.
If you are looking for something smart, clever, yet gory and horrific, Hemlock Grove is not the show for you.