In a world of shadow, Alina Starkov just became a very bright, very visible target—and the only hope to save her world from eternal darkness.
Netflix has given us a brand new look at its adaptation of Leigh Bardugo’s “Grishaverse” novel series, setting up the basic premise of the books. The aforementioned Alina (Jessie Mei Li) is a young soldier who finds herself thrust into a tussle between powerful elites when it’s discovered she has the magical powers of a Sun Summoner, a mage who can call forth pure light. In a world that’s being enshrouded in a monster-filled shadow called the Fold, that’s a mightily useful power to have.
Uprooted from everything she’s known to be trained in an army of sorcerers called the Grisha, Alina’s unique powers don’t just put the pressure of saving the world on her, but put her in the unenviable position as the object of power-plays by the most dangerous people around her, leaving her unable to tell friend from foe.
It’s a pretty action-heavy look this time around, albeit with the spotlight on Alina—metaphorically and literally given she spends about half her screentime here lit up like an almighty Christmas tree. But we do at least get some looks at the interesting dynamics at play in Alina’s life, from her bond with her close friend Malyen (Archie Renaux) to her tempestuous relationship with powerful magic user General Kirigan (Ben Barnes).
The eight-episode series drops on Netflix on April 23.
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