Hold Tight Review: Harlan Coben Series is Weirdly Lukewarm

Hold Tight, or Zachowaj spokój, is a crime-drama-mystery TV series created by Harlan Coben and stars Magdalena Boczarska, Leszek Lichota, and Krzysztof Oleksyn, alongside other cast members. The series has 6 episodes, each with a runtime of around 50 minutes. The series is the continuation of Coben’s other series, The Woods.

Netflix describes the series as:

When a young man goes missing soon after his friend dies, life in a tight-knit, affluent Warsaw suburb slowly unravels, exposing secrets and lies.

– Hold Tight review does not contain spoilers –

As Hold Tight starts, there’s an undertone of something horrible. There’s a dead school kid and a sense of foreboding that something else will go wrong. It doesn’t help that Adam’s mother Anna tracks her son’s whereabouts and reads his texts.

The Woods, the first entry to the series, if you will, was a deliciously twisty watch. It teased and teased till the very end until you were ready to scream. Hold Tight has the same ring to it – it teases so much throughout the episodes that it’s maddening. A thousand different things happen at the same time without rhyme or reason – it’s confusing and the slow pace is infuriating. Since the series takes its sweet time to get to the point, some instances in the story might feel dragged.

Hold Tight

Missing children are always a headache – the heartbreak of the parents and the tension within the community is terrifying and nauseating. That’s what Hold Tight banks on. As Anna tries her best to hold her disturbed son tighter to her, the more he slips away. Everyone turns up with a bloody face and Anna finds every other person hiding something from her. As we go through these episodes, I feel like the series loses steam trying to create a complicated web of mysteries.

We don’t know anyone or can’t really understand what exactly is going on. It’s honestly frustrating after a while because you want answers or literally something to make sense of it all instead of more and more mysteries. Plus, you really start to lose sympathy for Anna after some time because she seems like such an untrustworthy narrator. Although it is extremely important to come up with twists and keep the secrets close to the chest, it’s also equally important to provide some amount of answers to keep the audience satisfied.

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Hold Tight

The answers, however, slowly trickle in after the 4th episode. Well, somewhat. Personally, the pace picks up slightly here since you, too, make your own connections now that you have some information. The story blows over from missing kids to something bigger here, something more complicated than simply teenagers going through a phase. As even more complicated things come out, Hold Tight creates a compelling story and gives its characters enough individuality to keep you hooked.

Now, coming to the answers to these interesting questions that the series forces us to face – how satisfying are they? The last episode answers everything that you want. A short fight sequence and some cuddles later, the payoff isn’t as interesting as you’d expect it to be. A short exposition dump proves the mystery to be not so mysterious and a weird ending sequence involving a gun and a porn video feels rather silly and unnecessary, considering everything.

I think the problem is that the series really increases our expectations since it keeps us so far away at first. But, when the truth comes out, it’s shocking (especially the absolute last scene) but it just doesn’t deliver the punch that you were waiting for for so long.

Summing up: Hold Tight

Hold Tight

Hold Tight takes its audiences for the long haul. Is the path that rewarding? Not really. Even the outcome feels a bit plain and somewhat forced. The series is fine, but without the thrill and craziness of Netflix thrillers we have come to enjoy.

Hold Tight is streaming on Netflix.

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Hold Tight creates a thrilling premise but the end result is kind of... not thrilling.


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Hold Tight creates a thrilling premise but the end result is kind of... not thrilling.Hold Tight Review: Harlan Coben Series is Weirdly Lukewarm