TV Shows
Jacob Mendez
Jacob Mendez

“One Day”: A review of Netflix’s quiet hit. An excellent adaptation of the novel

  • “One day” is a series adaptation of the best-selling novel by David Nicholls. The title has been added to Netflix’s offer, and we are watching it in the main roles Ambika Mod (“It’s Gonna Hurt”) and Leo Woodall (“White Lotus“).
  • In 2011, a film adaptation of the same title was made. Then they played the main characters Anne Hathaway and Jim Strugess. The film gained huge popularity among viewers. The author of the novel was responsible for the script.
  • “One Day” is a very good adaptation of the novel. Leo Woodall deserves special praise, as after his appearance in “The White Lotus” he was not an obvious choice for the role of Dexter. On the screen, he presents a wide range of acting skills, surprising with each episode.

I was skeptical about the TV series version of the novel by David Nicholls called “One Day”. Years ago, I read the book fantastically, and the 2011 film with Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess in the main roles won my heart. But it turns out that the latest Netflix hit can easily stand next to the source material and its film counterpart.

Emma Morley and Dexter Mayhew meet at a graduation party. They spend the night together. Although nothing seems to happen between them physically, they develop a deep emotional bond that will last for years to come. Each episode is one day in the characters’ lives, year after year. Even though they go through life separately, the bond they established on July 15, 1988 remains between them forever.

The series “One Day” debuted “quietly” on Netflix. Previously, it had not been promoted intensively enough for a wide audience to hear about it. It gained popularity only after its debut on the platform – it turned out to be a perfect proposition for Valentine’s Day. It became the clear number one in Poland, overtaking the famous second season of the program “Love Never Lies” and the series “Griselda”.

Although my attitude before watching the series was not positive, the first episode changed my feelings 180 degrees. “One Day” is a faithful adaptation of the novel. Much wider than the film equivalent. The characters were created in a truly British atmosphere – they are not an idealized image of lovers for whom the feeling that binds them is a matter of life or death. They are individuals, they swear sometimes, they look like ordinary people we pass every day on the street.

The side stories were presented credibly. As I mentioned, Emma and Dexter lead separate lives, experiencing their own love ecstasies and professional problems. The relationship between them is the main plot, but the creators did not forget to develop the relationships and friendships shown in the background.

Of the two main characters, it is Leo Woodall who shines on the screen. Previously, I watched him in a supporting role in the season of “White Lotus”, where he played the role of a vulgar British man involved in an intrigue. In the series “One Day”, he brilliantly presents several faces: from a sensitive boy, through a lost alcoholic, to a mature man with emotional baggage. How does Ambika Mod fare? The actress known from the series “It’s Going to Hurt” does not stand out from her on-screen partner, but I couldn’t shake the thought that Anne Hathaway is my perfect Emma Morley.

“One Day” is a film adaptation worth watching. One may wonder whether the story itself is worth romanticizing – after all, it depicts feelings between people who don’t actually know each other. They have one event in common from years ago, they see each other once a year, they are clearly not honest with each other. This is an accusation that, in my opinion, should be addressed to the author of the novel.

The series “One Day” is perfect to watch in two, maximum three evenings. Episodes are 25-35 minutes long. After each of them, we are curious about what will happen between Emma and Dexter in the next year. This is an item worth watching, although people who have seen the 2011 film may feel bored – the series will not surprise them with anything new when it comes to the plot.

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