Stay Close (2021) Review: Harlan Coben’s Adaptation Is a Thrilling Binge-Worthy Tale!

An adaptation of one of Harlan Coben’s titles, Stay Close is the latest crime drama miniseries that is directed by Daniel O’Hara. The main cast includes Cush Jumbo as Megan, James Nesbitt as Broome, Richard Armitage as Ray and Sarah Parish as Lorraine along with Eddie Izzard, Jo Joyner, Youssef Kerkour, Daniel Francis, Dylan Francis, Tallulah Byrne, Andi Osho, Bethany Antonia, Rachel Andrews, Poppy Gilbert, Hyoie O’Grady and Phillip Gascoyne in supporting roles. The series is eight episodes long with a runtime ranging from 45 minutes to an hour-long.

– Netflix’s Stay Close review does not contain spoilers –

Stay Close: The Past Always Comes Back, Haunting

Megan Pierce’s suburban life as a soccer mom seems ideal and perfect. She’s the mother of three and has a lovely partner who she is all set to marry. But, before her grand day arrives, her dark past when she was a pole dancer named Cassie seems to find her back. Meanwhile, there’s Ray- an alcoholic paparazzi photographer who earns the bucks but, considers himself a failure for not ever getting recognized for his talent. The third person we encounter is Detective Broom, who is obsessed over a cold case from 17 years ago that he couldn’t solve.

At the centre of these three lives is Stewart Green- the man from Megan/Cassie’s past, who also happens to be the man whose disappearance 17 years ago links to the present disappearance of the man named Carlton Flynn, involving Ray (who has unknowingly photographed the missing man) and Broome (the detective on the case). As the show progresses, the bad and white characters turn grey and it becomes difficult to trust anyone in this murderous mess.

How are these three lives connected to that one man? What had happened to Stewart Green? Is he really back but, why? These questions and more are answered in this thrilling Netflix miniseries Stay Close, which keeps you so close to the mystery and yet, never reveals all the cards, asking you to guess and wonder what happens next.

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Daniel O’Hara’s adaptation of Harlan Coben’s Stay Close has all the elements required to be a thriller that impresses at every turn. It is gripping and compelling. However, it is also very cliched in terms of the revelations and creating the air of suspense which somehow makes them a little less impactful than they are supposed to be. With the OTT platforms flooding with thrillers every day, Stay Close is not something that challenges or changes the genre in any way. In fact, it is comfortable being the same as others, knowing exactly how to capture the audience but, also making the show a forgettable watch.

The actors are so brilliant that it is hard to take your eyes off the screen. Cush Jumbo is surely the star but, James Nesbitt is equally good as the obsessive detective and Richard Armitage’s eyes speak aeons. All the other cast members are stunning in their roles too. Except for the ‘Ken’ and ‘Barbie’, played Hyoie O’Grady and Poppy Gilbert, who are too brutal & hilarious at the same time to make for a substantial duo that murders.

Stay Close: Final Verdict

Stay Close can be your perfect binge companion that keeps you up all weekend long wanting to go to the end of the mystery. However, the series has its weak points by being predictable, at times and weird, when it comes to some theatrical villains. The climax is well propagated but, that does not mean it is an extremely shocking one though.

You can now watch all eight episodes of Stay Close streaming on Netflix.

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REVIEW OVERVIEW

Overall

SUMMARY

Stay Close isn't unpredictable but definitely one helluva binger worthy series to get through a rather long weekend.

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