29th Oct2015

‘1992’ DVD Review

by Paul Metcalf


There is no getting away from the fact that political dramas can be boring if not done right. With the popularity of House of Cards though we’ve seen just how good these shows can be, and Italian drama 1992 just continues that level of success.

Based around the “Clean Hands” investigations that looked to bring down corrupt politicians in the Italian government, 1992 focuses on six characters and looks at how their lives were changed by the events. All looking for power in their own ways they all pay the price as sociopolitical earthquake taking place changes the world around them.

At the start of each episode we are reminded that the characters we see are fictional, but this also works to remind us that the events they are based on really happened. Using these as a backdrop we are introduced to a selection of characters, from the naïve disgraced soldier turned politician to the cop looking for vengeance on the crooked company who caused him to contract HIV from contaminated blood, they all have their need for power of a kind and all are willing to use people to do it.

The main strength of 1992 are the characters themselves, we are pulled into their world and made to care about them. None of them are truly innocent, but we end up caring about them and looking for their moment of redemption. What I was impressed about the most was the fact you could take any of these six characters and write pages just on them, what their motives were and where their fatal flaw was introduced. We as the audience feel disappointed by their actions, because we know where they went wrong. These characters are written so well that we fully understand why they do what they do, even if we hate the fact that they did it.

While 1992 may be an unfinished story with the “future” to come, there is a feeling that this first season fulfils everything it needs to in terms of making sure the audience is fully invested in what they see. Through using the political drama as a background for the events that take place, the atmosphere never gets too heavy for the audience and the momentum of the story moves at a pace that refuses to let you go. Are there any characters that could still be redeemed? Honestly yes, but in this first season they’ve dug their graves that are a little too deep to get out of.

For a first season 1992 is excellent television that introduces a world that the audience never wants to leave. This is a tale of corruption and the desire to have power, whether it be as a TV star, to gain vengeance over those who have wronged you, or simply to escape the past it is all about being the one in control. The fact that none of these characters have that control is very telling, and the audience watch entranced because they fully understand this fact. 1992 is must see television at its best, showing that with this show and the likes of Gomorra, Italy is producing some of the best television to come out of Europe right now.

***** 5/5

1992 is available on DVD in the UK now.

Review originally posted on PissedOffGeek

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