The second season of the series created by Steven Soderbergh is one of the most unique and exciting TV shows you will ever see this year. We explain why.
After a successful first season led by an excellent Riley Keough, Steven Soderbergh, creator of the show, and his two directors, the indie Amy Seimetz and Lodge Kerrigan, are free and go in this second season much further. Simply keeping the figure of a luxury prostitute and a certain aesthetic, they have changed almost everything; casting, format and structure.
A series split into two independent stories
Cut into two independent parts and each with a subtitle corresponding to the female characters who wears them, this second season is composed of two times seven episodes of about 28 minutes each. The first, Erica and Anna , takes place in Washington DC. We follow Erica, director of the Republican support fund. In the run-up to the mid-term elections, there is talk of manipulations and political shenanigans allowed through Anna, an escort girl used by Erica to achieve his ends.
The second, entitled Bria, travels to New Mexico as another escort under the witness protection program after agreeing to cooperate with the law to bring down a drug sponsor. The excellent cast is composed of Anna Friel as a Machiavellian politician, Louisa Krause as the first prostitute, Carmen Ejgogo as the second and Harmony Korine as a surprising guru / platonic lover of the second story.
Two sublime and distinct aesthetics
While in the first season, Amy Seimetz and Lodge Kerrigan made the episodes in turn, the directors here each directed a part. Erica and Anna , the first part of Lodge Kerrigan’s first seven episodes, are in the same decorum as season one. We find these luxury hotels with icy and sparse design, these deserted buildings and this pale light. Even more than in season one, the world seems to have been transformed into a strange clinic enclosed under a lead screed, a morgue sterilized of all organicity. Not a piece of blue sky, not a ray of sunshine, not a drop of human secretion come to disturb this inert, austere and freeze-dried universe.
Bria , the second part of the season done this time by Amy Seimetz, breaks with this aesthetic. Dressmakers’ dresses take on colors, a sun crushes the nimbus during the day, while neon lights with colorful colors illuminate them at night. The urban coldness and extreme richness of the political capital has been replaced by the imposing heat of the desert and mountainous landscapes of this poorer region of the southern United States.
While Kerrigan plays on a style of extreme aridity, the director allows herself a more vaporous texture, highlighted by a nebulous soundtrack. The two aesthetics answer each other and dialogue with each other, as evidenced by the use of the paintings of great painters in each of the two parts. Obeying a principle of inversion, the Erica and Anna are counterbalanced by the carnal works of Egon Schiele and Francis Bacon while Bria is decorated with the mineral and dark paintings of Pierre Soulage.
Sex, lies and video
If it is obviously a question of sex in this second season, the series reached a degree of sophistication and a magnitude greater than the first exercise. While one could possibly reproach the first season too much to rest on sex scenes sometimes lacking relevance script writing, each of the sexual intercourse here participates in the construction of an exciting speech on the relationship of power and desire.
Through long shots erotically erotic porn codes, the series reveals a world where sex and its derivatives (sex tape, vices, libido upset and enjoyment given or received) is a weapon of power. But under this instrumentation of sex for manipulation purposes, The Girlfriend Experien not forget to show that it is also a matter of drive, feeling and instinct. Complex, it is not limited to its feminist purpose, it goes further in the analysis of a society where everyone does not know if he is prey or predator of the desire of the other.
A second season of crazy radicalism
Soderbergh’s career on television is characterized by a remarkable authoristic approach of singularity and absence of concessions. His brilliant series The Knick (2014-2015) is undoubtedly one of the most mastered shows by its creator since he was at the same time the director, the director of photography, the cameraman, the editor and the producer. Extending this principle of mastery to these two acolytes, he forms with Amy Seimetz and Lodge Kerrigan a trio showing a fascinating radicalism.
Both directors were entitled to director’s cutbut also participated in script writing, production and editing. The result is a series with a bold narrative, obeying a mysterious stripping principle, a series whose structure, uniqueness of tone and aesthetics detonate in the current landscape. His strong staged biases describe a universe in which the omnipresence of screens (surveillance) and the harshness of the reports end up drawing a disenchanted cartography of the United States today.