Nine Perfect Strangers

nine perfect strangers show





Emily Clark

TV Series Review

Usually, people go to a wellness retreat to escape their troubles. They relax in the tranquility of some paradise-set resort. They detox, eat special food, meditate, go on nature hikes, swim in spring waters, lounge in hot springs, do yoga, get massages and maybe even receive some acupuncture.

Tranquillum is a lot like these spas in that it offers all the same amenities—though perhaps at a higher price.

But what sets Tranquillum apart is that they don’t prioritize profit over people. For starters, they only accept about 10% of the people who apply to go there. But if someone truly needs help, regardless of whether or not they can afford it, Masha (Tranquillum’s owner and operator) will provide it.

She promises her guests that each of them will leave as a new person. They’ll be healthier than ever and happier than ever.

But it all comes at a cost …

Nine Perfectly Chosen Strangers

Masha informs her latest guests that in order to achieve the peace, prosperity and purpose she has now, she had to die first.

And we’re not talking about a spiritual death.

Masha literally died after getting shot. EMTs managed to bring her back, but Masha wasn’t the same.

Before someone tried to kill her, she was a successful businesswoman who did nothing but work and party. But although she had everything she could’ve wanted, she wasn’t happy. And she certainly wasn’t kind to others.

However, after being clinically dead, Masha turned her life around. She saw her death as a rebirth. And now, she aims to do the same for each of her guests.

“Tragedy,” she tells them, “can be a blessing.”

Each of Masha’s guests is keeping secrets. And she’s keeping a few of her own, such as why she specifically chose each of them to come, as well as the death threats she’s receiving from an anonymous texter.

But in order to find the wellness and healing that Masha promises, these nine strangers will have to reveal their deepest, darkest secrets to each other and work together to overcome their faults.

Tranquillum Is Tragic, Not Tranquil

Each secret revealed on this show is like a piece of a puzzle. And when all the pieces come together, the mystery behind Tranquillum will finally be revealed.

But much like Masha’s guests, viewers will have to sift through a lot of muck to find any tranquility in this show.

Language is far from tranquil. Characters sometimes get physical with each other and at one point, they slaughter Masha’s pet goat for food.

People have sex on screen (though we don’t see any critical body parts). One man is openly gay, one woman says her husband left her for a younger woman and another says she hopes her husband has an affair since she isn’t able to have sex anymore (due to her grief at losing her child).

The show also deals with the topics of drug addiction and suicide and gets surprisingly spiritual when one character quotes lessons from the Bible.

But it’s also important to note that for all of Masha’s talk about spiritual “rebirth,” she isn’t referring to the Christian understanding of the term, but rather something she created herself after her own life-and-death experience.

Masha may have chosen nine “perfect” strangers, but the show is far from perfect.

Episode Reviews

Aug. 18, 2021: “Random Acts of Mayhem”

Nine strangers arrive at Tranquillum, a wellness retreat, seeking escape and healing.

Masha talks to her guests about a spiritual rebirth (though it’s clearly not referring to the Christian understanding of the term). She also greets her guests with a “namaste” from the Hindu tradition.

A social media influencer vehemently objects to having her phone taken away for the retreat and experiences withdrawals. The girl’s husband wonders what will happen when they finally achieve the “perfection” she seeks.

We learn that a man is gay. We see people in their swimsuits in a hot spring. A man wonders aloud if another man is coveting his wife. Some women wear revealing outfits. A flashback shows Masha having sex and partying.

Masha reveals that she was shot and nearly died. (We see her bleeding in a flashback and a scar on her chest in the present.) We hear that people died in a sweat lodge. A girl says her brother “stopped living” a few years ago. A woman screams that she is “dead to the world” after learning that her latest book won’t be published.

A man urinates on a tree. People smoke (and one woman argues that one cigarette won’t kill her).

A kind woman’s interest is mistaken for nosiness and people are rude to her. We hear uses of the f-word, s-word, “a–hole,” “b–ch,” “d–mit” and “p-ss.” We also hear misuses of God’s name.

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Emily Clark
Emily Clark

Emily studied film and writing when she was in college. And when she isn’t being way too competitive while playing board games, she enjoys food, sleep, and indulging in her “nerdom,” which is the collective fan cultures of everything she loves, such as Star Wars and Lord of the Rings.

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