FUBAR Netflix





Kennedy Unthank

TV Series Review

Luke Brunner has sacrificed a lot in service to his country. As a covert agent for the CIA, he’s lost out on time with his family, for instance, leaving him divorced and playing catch-up with his children. And after decades of baddie-slaying service, he was supposed to retire.

But that was before the CIA called him back in for one more mission. The operation sends him to Guyana, where an arms dealer by the name of Boro plans to sell a “suitcase nuke” to the highest bidder. Luke must intercept the package, and his past with Boro makes him the best man for the job.

You see, a couple decades ago, Luke was sent to take out Boro’s arms-dealing father (which he did) when Boro was just a young boy. Feeling bad for killing the boy’s father, Luke paid for Boro’s education and sent him care packages throughout his studies, and now Boro (who has no idea that Luke killed his dad) views Luke as, ironically, a father figure.

But now, Boro’s fueled with a desire to finish what his father started—as well as find and kill the unknown man who murdered him.

And there’s another hitch in the operation, too: the CIA has received intelligence proving that “Panda,” the agent they currently have on Boro’s compound, is soon-to-be compromised. Luke will need to extract that agent, too.

No problem—it’s all in a day’s work for Luke.

Or at least it was … until he comes into contact with the agent.

It’s his daughter, Emma.

From Kindergarten Cop to CIA Operative

It’s a big shock to Luke. Emma never told anyone that she was in the CIA. As far as Luke was aware, Emma was simply his perfect daughter who was all “straight A’s, first chair violin, no smoking, no drinking, no cursing.” But it turns out that the 28-year-old has been taking out ne’er-do-wells for the last 10 years.

But let’s be fair to Emma. Just as Luke discovers that she’s an undercover agent, Emma likewise learns about her dad’s actual career. And sure, she’s been hiding her secret for a decade, but he’s been hiding hissecret for her whole life. And it was his deception that caused her parents to divorce. That divorced pushed  Emma to try to be the perfect daughter to hopefully bring them back together. So, sure, they may have had the same secret, but as far as Emma’s concerned, Luke is the only one who has hurt others by keeping it.

The two of them have the best marks in their respective graduating classes, so the CIA is adamant that they continue to work together to stop Boro. But with all the secrets and lies, they’ve got a lot of reconciliating to do.

And it looks like they’ll need to do it while on mission.

This One Might Be a Total Recall

Arnold Schwarzenegger is back for yet another “guns blazing” adventure—except FUBAR is trying to squeeze a second person into his one-man army.

But the show’s title, an acronym with a meaning that the cleaner-mouthed man would describe as “fouled up beyond all recognition,” isn’t really talking about the difficulties of Luke and Emma’s mission; It describes their relationship as father and daughter.

And the truth is, that description fits Luke’s relationship with his entire family: His job caused his wife to leave him. His constant praise of Emma’s perfection caused his son, Oscar, to feel inadequate. And Emma’s drive to be perfect for her father, combined with the recent revelation of his lie, has caused her to feel like she’s not really sure who the real Emma is anymore.

At its core, FUBAR tells the story of a man who tries to fix a broken family unit—one that he did not realize was broken until his daughter hits him over the head with it. And once Luke realizes his mistakes, we’ll watch as he tries to guide his fiercely independent daughter from making the same mistakes that hedid.

By itself, that would be a nice story to tell. But those positive messages share the same acronymic description as Luke’s relationships do.

A couple characters actively cheat on their partners, and one is upset when the truth is revealed to the victim. A lesbian woman on Luke’s team exists seemingly primarily to make sexual references and jokes. And at one point, an operative strips down to her underwear (onscreen) and has sex (offscreen) with a target to keep the mission intact. Other sexual sounds and references are frequent, too.

The father-daughter duo blast through dozens upon dozens of generic baddies with the occasional splattering of blood, and some moments of combat can get quite intense. And if the acronymic title is anything to go by, viewers should expect a plethora of heavy swears.

We don’t expect saving the world to be the cleanest job on the market. But we’d appreciate if extra grime wasn’t thrown on top of it.

Episode Reviews

May 25, 2023 – S1, Ep2: “Stole Train”

Luke and Emma track Boro down to Kazakhstan, where they must prevent him from siphoning radioactive material from a train.

Luke suggests that someone would be sexually popular in prison. A dozen terrorists are shot and killed. One man’s body drags along the side of a train, leaving a bloody stain. Another man’s teeth are knocked out.

Luke calls someone a pervert. Luke uses his power to spy on his ex-wife’s boyfriend—and he finds him taking Viagra pills. A man chides Luke for using the word “cuckold,” saying that Luke is referencing pornography. A woman comments on how an arrow looks like male genitalia, and she also makes a couple other sexual references. Someone else makes a reference to “casual hookups.” A man congratulates himself for getting a “booty call.” Emma and her boyfriend kiss.

Emma calls someone “Judas” for not telling her about something. People drink beer and wine.

The s-word is used five times, including once in German. We also hear milder profanities, including “a–,” “d-ck,” “p-ss,” “h—” and “b–ch.” Someone displays their middle finger. God’s name is used in vain twice. People, including a young girl, use the word “fluffin’” as a replacement for the f-word.

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Kennedy Unthank

Kennedy Unthank studied journalism at the University of Missouri. He knew he wanted to write for a living when he won a contest for “best fantasy story” while in the 4th grade. What he didn’t know at the time, however, was that he was the only person to submit a story. Regardless, the seed was planted. Kennedy collects and plays board games in his free time, and he loves to talk about biblical apologetics. He doesn’t think the ending of Lost was “that bad.”

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