THE CHANGELING: SEASON ONE
Starring: LaKeith Stanfield, Clark Backo, Adina Porter, Malcolm Barrett, and Samuel Herring
Creator: Kelly Marcel
Despite good performances from LaKeith Stanfield (of course) and Clark Backo, as well as some often great direction from Melina Matsoukas, The Changeling is a big ol’ mess. It’s a mishmash of genres, moving from romance to horror to fantasy, and on top of that, the pacing is piss-poor with many questions left unanswered. The first few episodes move really slowly before finally breaking fully into the story around midseason; however, it then has two straight Stanfield-free bottle episodes that completely kill the momentum. It was a laborious watch in a binge, and I really can’t imagine anyone staying with this series on a week-to-week basis.
Malcolm Barrett is such an underrated actor. He’s consistently hilarious while carrying dramatic weight in every word he says. He’s also the only thing I cared about in The Changeling, a puzzling mystery that has weird (read: stupid) people saying weird things that ultimately DO NOT unravel the weirdly sinister happenings while moving at a maddeningly uninteresting pace. This show reiterated my pure nonchalance towards horror, and it had me repeatedly asking, “what dafuq is going on?” to things that couldn’t hold my interest. So… Malcolm Barrett. Look him up, say, “ohhh yea, that guy,” and watch other things he’s in.