The Watch List: Sense8

By Sara Da Silva

Warning: Beware of spoilers.

As all my television shows come to an end, I find myself in need of new shows to binge watch. My latest target: Sense8. This Netflix original tells the story of eight strangers who find themselves to be mentally and emotionally linked.

Each “Sensate” has their individual story, however, these stories are ingeniously interlinked. Will Gorski is a Chicago police officer who is haunted by flashbacks of an unsolved murder from his childhood. Riley Blue, who becomes Will’s immediate love interest, is an Icelandic DJ living in London with a troubled past and a complicated drug-filled present.  Wolfgang Bogdanow is a Berlin locksmith/safe-cracker of Russian decent who is involved in organized crime with his partner-in-said-crime Felix Bernner.

Next on the list is Capheus, a Matatu van driver from Nairobi, who has a deep love for everything Jean-Claude Van Damme, and who is desperately trying to raise enough money to buy medicine for his mother who is dying of AIDS. Sun Bak, one of the show’s most badass characters, is the daughter of a powerful businessman in Seoul, has a master’s degree in economics and has a hidden passion for kickboxing. Nomi Marks is a transgender hacktivist living in San Fransisco with her girlfriend Amanita. Kala Dandekar is a Hindu pharmacist who is engaged to a man that she does not love. And last, but certainly not least, Lito Rodriguez, a closeted film actor who gets into some trouble with his boyfriend, their live-in “beard” and the man who believes that she belongs to him. These characters are so completely different from each other so there is never an opportunity to be bored.

The show successfully incorporates all story lines together by introducing two characters: Jonas Maliki, a fellow Sensate from a different cluster of eight who wants to help the new cluster, and Whispers, a Sensate determined to neutralize newly broken out Sensates.

Due to the connection between the Sensates they are able to communicate, utilise each other’s knowledge and skills, and feel each other’s emotions, which makes for some very interesting scenes. I never thought seen a man experience the pain of a female’s menstrual cycle could be that satisfying. By the end of the season they are all using each other’s skills to escape some pretty sticky situations, for example, Capheus uses Sun’s kickboxing ability and Will’s police skills to defeat some local gang members.

Not only is Sense8 a science-fiction drama, but it also focuses on issues that aren’t usually involved in such shows: gender, sexuality, race and religion. One of my personal favourite things about the show was that it was filmed in 9 different locations: London, Berlin, Chicago, San Francisco, Seoul, Reykjavík, Mexico City, Mumbai and Nairobi. Now that’s dedication. This is definitely a show that is binge-worthy if you have a couple days spare.

I have the utmost faith in Netflix originals and you should too.


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