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The Syndicate Series 1 DVD Review

The Syndicate Series 1 DVD

“The Syndicate” is not a winner.

In the 5 episode series 1, “The Syndicate” revolves around 5 troubled working class employees (Stuart, Jamie, Bob, Denise, and Leanne) of a supermarket who win it big with the lottery. Each episode focuses on one character, but all of the characters appear in every episode. The characters are as follows: 1. Stuart- An asthmatic man who lives with his materialistic fiancé, his obnoxious mother, his newly born daughter, and his brother Jamie (who also works at the store). Before winning the lottery, the desperate Stuart was in dire need of money in order to find a place for he and his fiancé (otherwise she might dump him). 2. Jamie- Stuart’s dumb brother who decides to rob the store they work out mere hours before they win the lottery. 3. Leanne- A kind single mother who is hiding from her mysterious past. The less said here the better in order to avoid spoilers. 4. Denise- A married woman who adores dogs and suspects her husband of cheating on her. 5. Bob- The boss of the store who has become terminally ill. The bulk of the stories involve much of what has been stated above, but there are also plots about: Bob getting married, Stuart and Leanne’s relationship, the story behind Leanne’s ex and child, police officer DCI Newell investigating the robbery (among other criminal acts), and Jamie clashing with a drug dealer.   

By now, we’ve all seen movies or shows involving someone whose life changes because of winning the lottery. Most of the time, the win turns out to be more of a curse than a blessing as the writer tries to hammer home the “Money isn’t everything” and “Money doesn’t solve all of your problems” clichés. Basically, that’s all “The Syndicate” really is. It’s a story about borderline “The Jerry Springer Show” esque unlikable, stressed-out characters and their often over-the-top dramas. I’m all for having conflicts in stories, but making characters idiotic individuals who bicker and act like they’re in an episode of “24” is hard to take. It becomes grating to watch these characters with the lone exception of the sympathetic Bob wonderfully played by Timothy Spall (Peter Pettigrew from the “Harry Potter” films). On a side note, Matthew Lewis (who played Neville Longbottom in the “Harry Potter” films) also stars in this show as Jamie.


Presented in widescreen, “The Syndicate” looks like a standard modern British drama. Make of that as you will.

The Dolby Digital Stereo audio track does the job.

The only extras are trailers for other Acorn titles.

Summary: “The Syndicate” offers nothing new and is a generally irritating series to watch.

May 30, 2013 - Posted by | DVD review | , , , ,

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