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As it races through a range of locations - Beirut, Tehran, France, Britain and the US - and initially also jumps around in time, Deep State is powered by a momentum hooked on Max's ethics and his need to protect his family.
The familiar sights and sounds - the arrogance and avarice of Americans, the inevitable presence of sharp objects on desktops during fights to the death - are presented with a businesslike restraint that makes them reasonably credible.
There's not much to fault in the execution that isn't nit-picking... We have seen enough of such stories that not every twist will prove a surprise, and as if to remedy this, many twists have been given twists of their own.
At this point, it's too late. Too much of Deep State is bogged down in shallow family characterization, and very few of the assortment of bureaucrats, field agents and generic Middle Easterners register as distinctive either.
The action is great fun and the show looks good, but there's little to grab onto even as one knows the show ought to be getting incrementally more "tense."
The first eight-episode season of Deep State underserves the strengths of its lead
Skip it. There are more interesting spy dramas out there, and ones that won't put you to sleep.
Cynical shows can be fun; "Deep State" is undercut by some atrocious acting.
There's plenty to be enthralled by that would deem the series worthy of a tune-in. The key is to just not go in expecting the next great spy show.
Mark Strong excels, and writing and filming likewise, as we move between Tehran, Beirut, the Tajikistan border and other locales not generally notable for their TripAdvisor thumbs-up emoticons. Get watching now.
Audience Reviews for Deep State: Season 1
Dec 30, 2019Excellent characters. Non-trivial, realistic plot line (vs. Homeland in later seasons). Filmed in diverse geographies which added to its distinctiveness. It's good.
Dec 24, 2019The plot for this season was so over the top it's unbelievable. I like the Max Easton character and his gravitas kind of makes up for the ridiculous plot lines.
Dec 06, 2019A controversial take on America's wars makes a different and twisty story. The serial does not try to vilify anyone in the MiddleEast which may not sit easily with many in the US in particular. The action parts are similar to other serials of the genre and add little new.
Oct 18, 2019Another example of the critics getting it completely wrong. This is a great show, with a very good story, and great acting. Mark Strong, is a terrific actor who really shines in this role. Im not big on spy shows much anymore, because of the same ole, same ole. This show is not that at all.
Apr 29, 2019Ever lived in the Middle East? Been through war zones, Everyone you know is either Embassy staff, military or ex-military fighting pirates off of Somalia, intelligence? No. Then you won't know that this is so real along with the PTSD weaved through the main characters, that just watching it triggers PTSD. Intense. Beautifully shot and excellent dialogue. Am guess the 'critic's have never been anywhere, done anything or know anyone related to the topics covered in the perfect series.
Apr 20, 2019Great show. mark strong is an amazing actor
Apr 12, 2019Still very watered down (when will they dedicate a season to Ukraine?), but always better than nothing and, above all, always better than "House of Cards". "Deep State": and you know who really plots against you. (Mauro Lanari)
Feb 24, 2019Scatter script, weird time jumps, Producers failed in tyring to use background music t save it. Fair acting. Camera work best thing.
Dec 10, 2018Same old Same old evil corporation stuff, but good acting and compelling characters.
Sep 13, 2018One good tv show can't wait for season 2 and 3. People say this and that about Spy shows this one has a nice pace good story. We need more spy story! PS the critics suck got a lot of tv shows canceled.