The adaptation of Si Spencer’s DC Vertigo graphic novel of the same name, Bodies, is already hailed as one of the best sci-fi shows Netflix produced since Dark. British filmmaker Paul Tomalin (known for the more mature Doctor Who spin-off, Torchwood) wrote the eight-part series for the streamer and served as executive producer. This time-bending police procedural follows four detectives from separate eras trying to solve the same murder.
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Where can you watch Bodies in the UAE?
Bodies is now streaming on Netflix in the UAE. If you don’t have one, you can create a Netflix account to watch this series and other shows on Netflix. Unfortunately, Netflix does not offer any free trials in Dubai and the UAE, so you’ll have to subscribe for at least one month.
The plot starts in 2023 London, where Detective Sergeant Hasan (Amaka Okafor) is called out on her day off to supervise a white supremacy protest in Whitechapel. She’s distracted by a young Asian man with a gun who lures her to Longharvest Lane, where she comes across a dead body. The John Doe (Tom Mothersdale) is in the nude, missing an eye, and has a strange hashmark tattoo on his right wrist.
In 1890 Whitechapel, Detective Inspector Alfred Hillinghead (Kyle Soller) also comes across the same murder victim. At a time when the London borough is still reeling from the Jack the Ripper murders, Hillinghead stubbornly makes it his mission to get to the bottom of what happened to the naked dead man.
In the mids of the 1941 Nazi blitz, DS Charles Whiteman, a Jewish cop who runs occasional illegal errands for a mystery phone lady (Greta Scacchi), also comes across the body. As does DC Iris Maplewood (Shira Haas) in the post-apocalyptic 2053 dystopia, where everyone either knows they are loved by the supreme ruler or is forced to live in poverty.
Their investigations always lead back to one mysterious man (played by Stephen Graham, who does not get enough screen time in this) and a decades-long conspiracy.
The first few episodes of the series are the most intriguing. While Bodies is not the first Netflix show to tackle time travel and paradoxes, it tells a compelling story. Each of the detectives is somehow an outsider in their respective society, and they each have different reasons to pursue the unsolvable murder despite what their superiors tell them to do.
However, by the time the big mystery is revealed, everything seems to fall apart. The stories wrap up a bit too neatly. It’s almost as if the writers didn’t know where to take these characters after the end of episode six and simply rushed toward a less-than-satisfying conclusion.
The performances are convincing enough, but the standout is Jacob Fortune-Lloyd as the only detective who’s less interested in the naked John Doe and more focused on staying alive. Watching him find a semblance of a moral compass in the film noir reality he lives almost makes up for the rather dull storylines in the other timelines.
Stephen Graham is also excellent as the mystery man who’s connected to the other storylines, but he doesn’t get enough screen time, and his character arc follows Dark too closely for comfort.
Bodies is compelling enough, and it adds an interesting spin to the tired police procedural drama. While the series starts strong, it seems to lose something along the way.
What are other critics saying about Bodies?
Austin Burke felt parts of the story were too ambitious, but mostly enjoyed the series as a whole.
Movies and Munchies enjoyed the series and was mostly impressed with the set and costume designs.
Unleash The Ghouls thought the mystery was intriguing, but struggled to emotionally connect with most of the characters.
Lori C. is an entertainment writer who studied Film and Television at University. She watches and reviews films and series from most genres, but some of her favourites include Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Charmed, The Handmaid’s Tale, Westworld, and True Blood.