A story can have journeys outside of the creative realm. Take the example of The Horror of Dolores Roach, Amazon Prime’s latest web series.
It was released as a podcast back in 2018 and then converted into what it has become today. As a freaky comedy-drama, which involves shades of a serial-killer thriller, or a murder spree, The Horror of Dolores Roach smells of a unique idea.
The show has eight episodes, lasting for a total of less than four hours. Is it any good? Read my review to find out.
And, no, The Horror of Dolores is NOT A HORROR SERIES.
The Horror of Dolores Roach Synopsis
Dolores Roach gets out of prison after completing her sixteen-year jail term. What awaits her outside is a gentrified neighborhood and her missing boyfriend.
Petrified by life, she finds a welcoming friend in an old mate, Luis. He offers Dolores to stay in the basement of his empanada shop and work as a masseuse.
Just when her life starts to get back on track, Dolores’ one instinctive action triggers a trail of murders amid a ‘fleshy’ treat for Luis’ customers.
Directed by multiple individuals, The Horror of Dolores Roach stars Justina Machado (Dolores Roach), Alejandro Hernandes (Luis), Todd Freeman (Jeremiah), and Cyndi Lauper (Ruthie), among others.
Moreover, the show is based on Aaron Mark’s podcast of the same name. He is the one who has written and created it for television as well.
The Horror of Dolores Roach: Positives
Firstly, the concept itself is off-beat and scintillating. Picture a sweet lady turning into a killer, an obsessive and unloved man caught in the chaos, and an unsuspecting population consuming something far more sinister than they realize.
This blend of innocence and eccentricity is irresistible, creating a chilling atmosphere that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
The storyline is equally captivating. Murders are unfolding in the basement of a restaurant, and the chef, who also happens to be the owner, comes up with the idea of using the flesh of the victims to concoct a new recipe for his empanadas.
This twisted premise effectively turns the entire town into unwitting cannibals, adding an extra layer of dread and intrigue to the narrative. If this doesn’t send shivers down your spine, I don’t know what will.
Initially, I had reservations about the show’s narration, but by the time the series concluded, it proved to be brilliant, adding an extra layer of richness to the storytelling.
The Horror of Dolores Roach also manages to be incredibly fun and entertaining. It incorporates situational comedy and sarcastic monologues that inject a dose of levity into the dark and twisted narrative.
The situational comedy arises from the absurdity of the situations Dolores finds herself in, as well as the unexpected reactions and interactions between the characters.
These moments of levity provide a welcome reprieve from the intense and chilling moments, allowing viewers to catch their breath and even share a laugh amidst the macabre.
Furthermore, The Horror of Dolores Roach brings along an offbeat screenplay. Rarely do such unconventional settings manage to strike the right balance in delivering a wholesome viewing experience.
However, the Amazon Prime series succeeds in this regard, maintaining a consistent tone and effectively capturing the essence of its unique world.
Behind the captivating narrative and offbeat screenplay lies the fantastically intricate writing that breathes life into the show.
The characters are well-developed and engaging, drawing you deeper into their dark and twisted world.
It is filled with unexpected twists and turns that keep the pace engaging and never allow the show to become stagnant.
How are the Performances?
Justina Machado heads the pack with a standout portrayal of the protagonist, Dolores Roach.
Machado’s performance is compelling and multifaceted, capturing the transformation of a seemingly sweet lady into a complex and chilling character.
She naturally takes every small detail of the character and blends herself into them to serve a superior outing.
Alejandro Hernandes brings his exceptional acting skills to the character of Luis. I remember him from New Amsterdam’s ED and he is simply superb, displaying a range of emotions and nuances that make Luis captivating to watch.
Hernandes’s extemporized acting deserves rich praise, adding depth and authenticity to the role.
While Machado and Hernandes take center stage, the other actors in the series also deliver brilliance in their respective parts.
The Horror of Dolores Roach: Downsides
Though there is reasoning for everything that happens in the series, I still feel some of the ideas needed more furnishing.
Moreover, the eventual revelations could have been better conveyed. In fact, they are yet to answer a whole lot of questions, which demand a second season.
Should You Stream or Skip The Horror of Dolores Roach?
It is literally, a MUST WATCH.