Welcome to Eden

Welcome to Eden





Kennedy Unthank

TV Series Review

What if a random phone number texted you saying that it could make you happy by letting you be the first to try a new energy drink? Kinda weird, but there’s a contract, so it’s probably legitimate. And because the upstart company, Eden, wants to keep its new drink under wraps, its employees are going to take you to a remote island to set the scene, to party and to try the product.

I’m not sure how that sounds to you. But to Zoa, it sounded like a once-in-a-lifetime experience full of fun. But after she drank the drink, she passed out, and she woke up with only four of the other invitees. According to Astrid, the event organizer, they missed the boat back to the mainland, and they’ll be provided housing while they wait for the next boat back in a couple of days.

Except, Astrid and the Eden employees are, like, really weird. And they’ve got a lot of strange rules and traditions. And whenever Zoa attempts to walk outside of the compound, a drone follows her. And wasn’t that boat supposed to arrive, um, yesterday?

As it turns out, Eden might not really be a company after all. But its earnest “employees” sure do put the cult in “company culture.”

Don’t Drink the Kool-Aid

The term red flag is often used to describe things that draw attention to issues that’ll have to be dealt with if said flag is ignored. Of course, we have sympathy for the problem Zoa and her fellow invitees find themselves in. But if I had a nickel for every obvious red flag the characters in Welcome to Eden willfully ignored, I’d be adding a few more zeroes to my paycheck.

After an unidentified phone number texts Zoa direct questions about her mental well-being, it invites her to try a new unknown energy drink. It’s apparently an upstart company, so you’ve never heard of it—and neither has she. They direct Zoa to go to an abandoned dark alley at night, where mute men wearing ski masks invite them into an old building by following a camera drone. I mean, what could possibly go wrong here, right? Then they’re told to board a party bus taking them to an unknown location, where they’re dropped off, told to give up their phones and sailed out to be dropped off on a remote island—once again, to try an unknown liquid substance created by an unknown company.

At this point, it seems that even if Eden’s associates were to construct a large flashing sign that read “Jonestown,” our protagonists would fail to notice it. But failing to see just how sketchy so much of that last paragraph is, Zoa and four of the other invitees drink the concoction, pass out and find themselves stranded on the island with a company which is increasingly looking more and more like a cult. And as it turns out, the cult has chosen them because they want to give them a better family life—whether they like it or not.

The issue with islands, however, is that they’re quite difficult to escape, especially when said island is run by a group of people who refuse to allow you to leave (just ask six seasons of Lost). So Zoa and the other unwilling inductees will have to plan elaborate plans and fight tooth and nail to escape this metaphorical Alcatraz. For viewers, that means enduring characters dying (predominantly through the use of a strange nail gun-like device), beatings and more. Additionally, drinking and swearing are predominant themes throughout the episodes.

And though escaping is super important to our characters, they apparently still have time for lots and lots of sex. Viewers will see a plethora of hetero and homosexual kissing. And though nudity is confined to a man’s behind (at least, thus far), sex is frequent. We also see many characters in revealing underwear or swimsuits. Additionally, one male character identifies as female and sleeps with another male character.

Welcome to Eden’s premise has proven an attractive one to American Netflix viewers, where this Spanish-import show is currently occupying the No. 1 slot on that streaming service’s chart. It sports an interesting, story, perhaps. But its heavy content concerns leave us wondering if the show reached that lofty spot due to its plot or because of heavy reliance on the gratuitous.

Episode Reviews

Mar. 18, 2022—S1, E1: “Birth”

A random phone number invites Zoa out to a remote island to try Blue Eden, a new energy drink. However, its strange effects cause Zoa and four others to miss the boat back to the mainland.

The majority of this episode revolves around Zoa and the invitees going from one drunken dance party to another with very little story substance. Frequently, we see characters kiss, including two women. And characters are drinking like they’re competing to see who can ruin their liver first.

Various female characters are seen in their underwear or in revealing dresses, and men and women are shown in swimsuits. We see sensual dancing, including once briefly using a pole. Many of the characters wear shirts that expose their midriffs. Astrid, the organizer of the event, wears a clingy and revealing sports bra. A female character is implied to have participated in a sexual threesome.

A man punches Fran, a member of Eden, who spits out blood. Then, the man attempts to drown Fran. Ibón, an invitee, is physically beaten by his father in a flashback. A girl vomits. Zoa’s sister references Zoa’s drug use.

In the English overdub, the f-word is used more 20 times, and the s-word is heard seven times. “H—” is used four times, and we additionally hear uses of “a–,” “b–ch” and “d–n.” God’s name is misused five times, and we see one use of the middle finger.

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Kennedy Unthank

Though he was born in Kansas, 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 and hermeneutics. He doesn’t think the ending of Lost was “that bad.”

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