Yesterday had all the appearances of being a normal day. I was off work so I went and walked across the new bridge that crosses the Mississippi River, went out to lunch with my dad, watched some football, and read for a little while, nothing out of the ordinary, but then last night my wife received a phone call from her sister and everything changed. They talked for a while about whatever sisters talk about; I don’t know I was in the other room reading my really good book I’ll tell you about later, but at some point the conversation naturally shifted to Netflix since that is what we spend the majority of our lives doing any way. Before the phone call we were stuck in a Netflix rut, re-watching shows that we’d already seen, but my sister-in-law gave my wife a recommendation that has changed my life completely, or at least made Netflix more entertaining again. Chances are you have never heard of this show before, and if I weren’t as generous of a person I might put up an ad blocking the rest of this article until you enter your credit card information and pay a nominal fee, but I don’t think that would be the right thing to do, plus I have no idea how to go about setting something like that up.
Ladies and gentlemen, readers of the blog, it is my sincerest pleasure to introduce you to the Netflix original series, 3 Percent. Set in Brazil, the premise of the show is a simple but captivating one; the entire country is living in poverty except for three percent of the population that made it through “the process” by passing a series of tests designed to reveal the best and the brightest, and reward them with life on an island paradise that is referred to as “the offshore.” The show opens in the slums and we see throngs of people making their way through dirty streets walking toward the building where “the process” takes place. So far each episode covers a couple tests, at the end of which, those who fail are eliminated from “the process”, a traumatizing experience as the contestant realizes they are doomed to their current life, which usually results in a lot of screaming and crying. I’ve only made it through a couple episodes so far, but I would highly recommend watching this show.
There are however, some downsides to the show. Since the show is set in Brazil the language spoken is Portuguese, which isn’t much of a problem as Netflix has a couple solutions in order to not exclude anyone. If you don’t mind reading subtitles you can activate those, or you can go the route that I chose and change the audio to English. Although the words don’t match up with the movement of the mouths it’s something that I got used to pretty quickly and don’t notice it anymore and definitely shouldn’t be seen as a deterrent to immersing yourself in this great show. The biggest negative in my opinion is the dialogue, which often times is really lame. I don’t know if it has something to do with how the Portuguese is translated or if the writers are really lazy or just bad writers, but that is something for me that was very noticeable and hard to get past. At times the things said are so simple and dumb, that it almost seems like a parody sketch where the actors are trying to be bad on purpose, but unfortunately it’s just the reality of 3 Percent. If you can get past the terrible dialogue then you are truly in for a treat. In my opinion the premise of the show is so fascinating that it more than makes up for some of the really dumb things that are said. The life and death urgency that is displayed throughout the tests will have your heart racing as you watch to see if your favorite character will make it past elimination and eventually live in paradise on “the offshore.” If you are stuck in the same Netflix rut that my wife and I were in, or if you just need a change of pace, I would highly recommend checking out 3 Percent. Enjoy!