Together with Ted Lasso dominated the category’s television award nominations comedy of recent years, yet, there are still many, especially in our country, who do not know Barrycomedy (although we should probably talk about dramedy) of HBO focused on misadventures of a hired killer who decides to change his life and become an actor. A narrative pretext as original as possible and which leads the plot to go from comic scenes based on a black and grotesque humor and who often plays with the comedy of misunderstandings with darker moments and thriller hues that manage to create situations with a highly dramatic background: a game of balance that has conquered audiences and critics.
Currently composed of three seasons of eight episodes each and ready to return soon with its fourth and most likely last (even if there has not been a real officialization about it), Barry And one of the funniest and most interesting series currently present in the catalog of Now and Sky Go, even if the third season is still unpublished in Italy.
Without further ado, here’s our spoiler-free review of Barry, in the hope that it will make you want to catch up on this fantastic entertainment gem.
As we have already anticipated, Barry’s premise is as simple as it is original: Barry Berkman (Bill Hader)a former marine who became a paid killer after his repatriation and the difficult consequences of returning to civilian life, is struck by a passion for acting and decides to detach himself from the criminal environment in which he was involved together with the “manager” you went. It goes without saying that his decision to change his life will not only lead to major upheavals, but also to the furious and violent response of the Chechen mafia family with which the man had entered into a contract.
Thus begins the story of our Barry, a true anti-hero who divides his life between acting courses taught by the eccentric and wise Gene Cousenau and between his attempt to free himself from a world that just doesn’t want to let him go, while inside himself he fights a fierce battle between who he is, who he can be and who he wants to become. Skilfully alternating the comic element with the dramatic one, the HBO series manages to create a truly incredible combination that does nothing but raise its narrative, composed of a flawless screenplay that leaves nothing to chance. In fact, every action, every choice of the protagonist, every unexpected event has a precise consequence that fits into the story with skill and grace, giving a degree of realism to even the most over the top situations.
Suitable for comedy lovers in all its guises, but also for those who love stories with flavor crime full of twists, Barry it really has something that makes it truly unique. In this regard, we cannot fail to mention the great performances of the main interpreters of the series, among which undoubtedly that of a majestic Henry Winkler (the Fonzie of Happy Days) and the incredible Bill Hader (who won two Emmys for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for the role).
On the other hand, a character of such great depth as that of Barry needed one performance level actor: if from a humorous point of view we would not have expected less from Hader, well known overseas for his comedic talent for his appearances in many genre films and TV series but above all for being regular member of Saturday Night Live from 2005 to 2013, it is from a dramatic point of view that the actor surprised us the most. As is often the case with many comedians catapulted into roles in drama series, Bill Hader he managed to convince us above all for the great emotionality and for the inner torment that he was able to give to the character of Barryan apparently submissive, good and curious man who tries to hide from the world the darkest and darkest aspects of his soul.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise, given that the character of Barry Berkman was born from the pen of the leading actor, who, together with his colleague Alec Bergalready to the screenplay of great sitcoms and comedy come Seinfeld, Curb Your Enthusiasm e Silicon Valleyhas been able to create a three-dimensional character of which he is the master at 360 degrees.
But not only Barry!
Even the other main characters are well characterized and interpreted: starting with the aforementioned Gene Cousenau who here plays the role of unwitting mentor and moral compass of the protagonist, up to the ambiguous “manager” you wentpassing through the determined but at times unbearable Sallyaspiring actress from the foibles of protagonism and romantic interest of our anti-hero, up to the as ruthless as it is hilarious gang of Chechen mafiosi which plays the double role of villain that of comic line of the series. The scenes involving this group of criminals, menacing and dangerous, but also made up of weird and funny characters in their own way, are probably some of the funniest moments of the series. In this regard, applause goes above all to the interpreter ofirresistible Noho Hank by Anthony Carrigan (formerly known for his role as Victor Zsasz in Gotham), mobster with a soft spot for our protagonist and known for his polite manners.
We have already said it but we repeat it, Barry’s success lies in his pursuit of contrasts: the very idea of talking about serious topics such as PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), criminal organizations, murders, hitmen in a series comedy makes this manifest antithetical duality which, however, never turns out to exceed the limits. To embody this concept we find Barry: tender and clumsy, sweet and with a big dream, to have a normal family and to find fulfillment in acting, but, at the same time, also a calculating, cold and efficient hitman.
But how to push the viewer to adapt to such premises?
Focusing on a comedy that loves to play with grotesque and make his a humor nero, capable of making us laugh at situations and realities for which we would feel sadness and horror in everyday life, but which tease our cynicism and our irreverence. Barry’s comedy, however, despite this premise, does not constitute the predominant aspect of the series, but is, however, at its full service. As in the best products dramedyin fact, if the situation requires it, here, in fact, the tone changes suddenly, but not without style. Thus, in a fluid and natural way, the fun subsides to give way to highly introspective and dramatic sequences, which delve into the soul of the protagonists with great delicacy and which they hide their fragility and their fears and which bring high-impact sequences to the stage, capable of leaving the viewer in suspense or surprising with unexpected but coherent twists.
Investigating the complexity of the human soul e prompting the viewer both to laugh heartily and to question their own morality and about one’s place in the world, Barry it is undoubtedly one of the most interesting serial products of recent years, a small pearl which, if it is already a cult series in America, deserves to achieve greater notoriety and be rediscovered before it reaches its conclusion. We remind you that the show is available on Now and Sky Go with its first two seasons. To be recovered as soon as possible!
Leave a Reply