After a dull due to the Oscars, busy Wednesdays are back at Netflix. At least three shows have been released on the platform today.
One of them is the Aussie series, Wellmania. It is based on the book “Wellmania: Misadventures in the Search of Wellness,” by Brigid Delaney.
The length of the show is rather short, with eight episodes, settling for a little under four hours. For the record, the last Australian series I watched was Class of ’07 and I loved it.
That’s probably one of the reasons why I chose Wellmania ahead of the other releases today. According to Netflix, it is a raunchy and witty show.
Now, before jumping to my review, here’s some information about the series.
What is the Story of Wellmania?
A food writer based in the US travels to Australia to surprise her friend and spend time with her family. While there, she loses her green card.
Further, a medical crisis cancels her visa. Now, she must get physically fit to travel back to America to live her dream.
However, there’s a lot she is forced to catch up on in Australia. Will she be able to grab the flight to the US?
Created by Brigid Delaney and Benjamin Law, Wellmania stars Celeste Barber (Liv), JJ Fong (Amy), Lachlan Buchanan (Gaz), Genevieve Mooy (Lorraine), and Alexander Hodge (Isaac), among others.
What Works for Wellmania?
Just like its name, Wellmania has a healthy concept, topped by uniqueness. A simple goof-up creates havoc in the life of the lead character.
We have heard that happening in every third comedy show. However, the kind of mishappening is somewhat quirky. It has the hook to attract the audience.
Moreover, the health angle elevates exclusivity.
Wellmania is filled with heartwarming moments. Their placement in the easy-going storyline is perfectly suited to give a fine binge-watching experience.
It has decent entertainment. Crude humor is acceptable while situational comedy tends to make a mark.
As an ode to the girl-gang energy, all credits in Wellmania are written in pink.
Additionally, the name stamp intro is accompanied by “You can call me the good-time girl.” I quite liked it.
How are the Performances?
Celeste Barber as Liv is the life of Wellmania and quite understandably so, for the series relies on her shoulders. She eccentrically drives the plot forward.
The actress’ aura defines the contours of the narration. And the fact that Wellmania depends upon Celeste’s unhinged display of skills bolsters its capabilities.
At times, she even manages to cover up for the flaws of the series.
JJ Fong plays Amy in Wellmania. Her character is mesmerizing and adds to the charming vibes. With Fong, it is not about the screen time, she produces gold from a limited assigned space.
Moreover, the naturalness of her speech is quite astonishing, specifically when she is with her on-screen partner.
All the other actors have done a splendid job to make Wellmania a decent package of entertainment.
What Doesn’t Work for Wellmania?
The series is slow and dreary in the middle phase. With an average length of thirty minutes for each episode, I was occasionally thinking how much of it is left.
And that’s a result of dreariness arising out of a bland storyline. The plot just doesn’t flow smoothly around the fourth, fifth, and sixth episodes.
Although I mentioned that Wellmania is entertaining, it isn’t exciting.
Furthermore, I feel the past narrative could have started earlier than it did in Wellmania. The makers missed a trick on that front.
Had it been advanced, the curiosity might have set in earlier and the weak spots would have been painted.
Should You Watch Wellmania?
It is binge-able, no doubt, but only if you have a taste for such shows. I cannot outrightly suggest it to you. Try an episode or two and then decide.
Will there be Wellmania season 2?
Going by the ending, yes, there will be a second season of Wellmania. However, as always, no official confirmation has come out yet.