The first episode of HBO’s latest thriller The Undoing premiered Sunday. The miniseries is yet another in a genre that seemingly populates TV charts these days, wealthy white people and their affluent, dysfunctional drama. While it hits a familiar note, The Undoing has enough mystery and the rock star cast to pull it off. That is if you enjoy watching beautiful rich people get involved in big old messes and have all their dirty secrets revealed.
The cast is an absolute highlight of this miniseries. Nicole Kidman plays Grace Fraser, a therapist and the wife of Johnathan Fraser played by Hugh Grant. Donald Sutherland plays Grace Fraser’s father. Lily Rabe also stars in a supporting role.
The show follows the Fraser family, a wealthy New York City family with a son who attends an upper-class prep school called Reardon. The Reardon community is very wealthy and very white, and tensions rise when a beautiful young mother, with less financial means than the rest, joins the group and raises ire amongst the other mothers. Then tragedy strikes.
A Familiar Feeling
If you’ve seen Big Little Lies, HBO’s latest will strike a familiar chord. It explores all sorts of darkness within the upper echelons. Not to mention the backdrop—a high-class school with deeply dysfunctional high-class parents.
The Undoing definitely belongs in the same category of dramas, along with shows like Succession and Gossip Girl. These shows, shows that explore extreme wealth and intense drama, are always a big hit with audiences. I have a feeling that The Undoing will be no different, as long as it lives up to the bar set by the rest of the shows in this genre.
Lots of dramatic classical music combined with mystery and murder makes for an engaging experience. That is, as long as this kind of privileged schadenfreude is your thing.