Infinite Squee


In the last two days, I seem to have tripped and accidentally marathoned the entire fourth season of Engrenages, aka Spiral in the US/UK (except for the last half of the season finale, because I have a feeling everything is going to be HORRIBLE at the end and I want to bask on a wave of good feelings before the show stomps on my heart again).

I missed a season and a half of this show, because I took a break in the middle of season two - it's so bleak sometimes that I needed a rest - and in the meantime, Netflix lost the broadcast rights to all but season four. (I did find out after I'd already started watching season four that Hulu has all of 1-4 streaming for free, but I figured I'd go ahead and finish what I'd started, since I'm now spoiled anyway, and catch up later.) I wasn't planning to watch all 12 episodes in more or less one go! I just ... sort of couldn't stop once I started.

This is a show where I will go entire episodes thinking things like "THIS IS SO FUCKING DEPRESSING" and "WHY AM I WATCHING THIS SHOW AGAIN" and "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE, ALL YOUR LIFE CHOICES ARE TERRIBLE" ... and then it'll have a moment of such amazing transcendental adorableness that I'm like, oh right, that's why I watch this show! (The PTSD storyline in season four, oh my goddddddd. I'm pretty sure that as an actual depiction of mental illness, it's on the not-so-great side - like, say, suggesting not-so-subtly that taking pills is a feeble substitute for manning up and just getting over it. Yes. But, but .... the character stuff, aaaugggghhh ...!)

I can't really in good conscience recommend this to anybody unless you have an extremely high tolerance for violent, depressing subtitled television in which the characters have literally no life coping skills and also there is wall-to-wall police violence, a whole lot of various *isms, and authority figures generally acting badly in ways that are frequently condoned by the narrative. This show is pretty much the Hawaii 5-0 of Reasons Not To Get Arrested In France. (ALL THE PEOPLE ON THIS SHOW ARE TERRIBLE. EVEN THE NICE ONES.) Also, there are at least two fake-rape-accusation storylines, and the one in season four is part of the season arc and started annoying me so badly that I got the point where I was just skipping those scenes to get back to the storyline(s) I was actually interested in.

AND YET. I am wallowing around in OT3-ish feelings (Laure-Gilou-Tintin 4EVAH) and keep getting my h/c and friendshippy buttons pushed hard every few episodes. I am so easy for that kind of thing. I feel like I shouldn't love this show as much as I do, but then it'll veer out of the doldrums of utter miseryville to dump a truckload of feelings on me, and I'm pretty much there for it.

This entry is also posted at with comment count unavailable comments.