When it was announced that HBO would be taking the reins on the series adaptation of Stephen King’s The Outsider, constant readers around the world breathed a sigh of relief.
Although not everything they produce meets the highest standards, HBO always guarantees production value and some well known faces.
Ben Mendelsohn is the main attraction here portraying the conflicted Ralph Anderson, wrestling with the loss of his son whilst trying to stop a force he truly doesn’t understand.
This is the balance that The Outsider manages to strike, between realism and the supernatural. The show leaves a lot of things to our imaginations, which given the violent topic of devouring children, in some cases, is for the best.
Because of the procedural element, it is easy to draw parallels with True Detective, another HBO property, but this feels very much like its own animal.
There is an inherent slow burn quality to the series, which is inter-dispersed with some shocking moments that we are allowed to digest and process in our own time.
Although Mendelsohn is topping billing, it is Cynthia Erivo’s turn as the twitchy Holly Gibney that really steals the show. You may recognise the character from the Mr Mercedes series on TV and paperback, but this is truly the definitive portrayal of the character to date.
Once she enters the fray mid-season things truly ramp up into a stunning finale which feels quite definitive whilst also has us craving more.
Easily of the best Stephen King adaptations on the small screen to date.
The Outsider Season 1 is available now on Digital Download.