We take possibly one final look at Tyrant as its finale rings in the end of its season.
Tyrant: Season 1: Episode 10: Gone Fishing: GRADE: B
Tyrant ends as it began, with Barry’s life hanging in the balance in Abbudin.
There is still no word at the time of this writing if Tyrant will return for a second season next summer, and if it does, Tube Talk will be there to review it, but let’s talk about season 1.
Honestly the drama that was naturally made here was spot on with Tucker and crew realizing, their coup was just as successful taking down Tariq, so hey let’s just let everything go, but Barry can’t let well enough alone and that’s what leads to his imprisonment by the end of the episode. He has to bring down Jamal, he must run Abbudin for its betterment. Sadly he forgot, how kinda spineless Hakim is after a couple cups of wine and confessing to Jamal.
Barry’s role as this show’s Michael Corleone proved troublesome at first thanks to one the most dead-eyed blank expressions I seen in a while and was honestly more like one the street workers but he evolved into Michael, even though he’s not the tyrant now, Jamal still reigns proudly over the country. Ashraf Barhoum’s performance is spot on here, mostly when the scene comes for Barry to be arrested, he shows genuine emotion over the heartbreak of the person he trust most betraying him hurts deeply. Jamal was already a broken person but this just further shatters his already shattered pieces.
The last few minutes where the aftermath plays out at the palace is great with the wonderful cinematography framing of the shots, most notably the shooting squad execution and the very last shot of the show with Barry sitting and willowing in his jail cell as a hopeful ray of light shines through. That ending was meh to me at first but coming around on a second viewing of the finale, I think it can work either way, but if the show does come back for a second season, I’m not sure how Barry could get out since treason is a serious goddamn crime and Leila is still pulling Jamal’s strings towards death, Tariq as well, though Leila seems to have the motivation of jilted lover still and man I really hope should a season two happen, they get her over that, QUICK!
I said that was natural made drama because it was, here is some artificially made bullshit! Another suggestion for season two, get rid of Jenna quick. There was honestly no reason to the character at all and she only served one purpose here which was to be a plot point and not and a fleshed out character. She and Emma go on one last shopping spree before they are to depart, but they get mugged and cause a hold up on the plane which gets them stuck at the American Embassy after Jamal puts a stop to Barry’s coup.
For as much as I rail on the children being bland, nothings of characters, Jenna is worse. There was no point to her being here until the finale, and even then its unnecessary. There are like a few different ways their plane could have been delayed, like maybe since Jamal already knew, have them stopped and way he got wind a terrorist attack was happening on the way to the airport and has to get them to safety, or just anything else since I wanna continue with the review itself.
Tyrant from the start seemed like it would seep itself more into family politics rather than give an examination on how politics itself might work and where the second was more favorable at the start, Tyrant slowly put itself together to make interesting with its family drama and work with that and actually develop its characters further. Again I make it no secret, Tyrant was a complete mess when it started by trying to have something to say about things in the Middle East rather than try to tell its own compelling story and flesh out its character, but once it got out its rough patch, I liked it a lot more and it suddenly became a show I can’t miss watching, even though it still had its own misgivings. The balance was one-sided and well it ways it kinda still is, but it on a much better side than it was at first.
Jamal, while still a horrible person has evolved somehow into an interesting compelling madman and Adam Rayner, well shit, I enjoy his acting now. Like once things started to really get bad for his character, that wants to do right, but often will the a horrible thing to do what is right. Often as is the case with a villain, but hey, Tyrant turned that around. The family drama on both sides of Jamal and Barry only really relied within the wives as Molly was trying so hard to adjust while still loving as Leila is just manipulative but played a larger role than Molly. The kids suck, I got nothing more. They are uninteresting, underwritten, and add nothing.
The direction got a lot more confident. The show was gonna look good off the get-go with its location, how can you poorly film expansive Middle Eastern landscapes?
Change was good for this show and while this honestly could work as its own one season thing, I am curious as to a second season what storylines could happen, but after two, I think the show has a bit of a shelflife after it. This can’t go on for much long, but now, I’m willing to stick with it.
FINALE GRADE: B
SEASON/SERIES GRADE: B-