Suzhal – The Vortex, which began streaming on Amazon Prime Video from June 17, is the platform’s first long-form scripted original series in Tamil. And in its inaugural attempt, it’s a clear winner for the platform. Suzhal – The Voretx was decidedly the talking point among chatteratti on social media platforms.
Created by husband and wife duo Pushkar and Gayathri, who made the now famous 2017 Tamil film Vikram Vedha, Suzhal – The Vortex is already anointed as the most engaging series of the year.
Directed by Bramma and Anucharan M, the 8-episode investigative drama stars Aishwarya Rajesh, Radhakrishnan Parthiban, Kathir and Sriya Reddy in central roles. The story revolves around the disappearance of a young girl and a factory fire. The first four episodes were directed by Bramma and the remaining four by Anucharan.
dark but bright
The story and its treatment keep you involved in every episode. Except for a short break during the episode that recalls the romance of two young people, the series is tense and never loses its focus or momentum.
While the performance of the main characters was solid, Kathir and Shriya Reddy as police officers were indeed standouts as they bring a rare vulnerability to their characters. It’s totally realistic without being boring or mundane. The entire series has been elevated by some notable scripts, as there is a believable weight to the characters’ on-screen methods. Even the suspense and plot twists are organic, keeping you guessing until the very end. The climax is not forced or rushed — the Achilles heel of most suspenseful thrillers.
Pushkar and Gayathri are known for playing with the moral grays of our lives, and here too they emphasize that nothing is what it seems on the surface. In their Vikram Vedha they also pushed forward the idea that point of view is crucial to what is considered right and wrong.
Besides all that, the only thing that elevates Suzhal – The Vortex from just being a well-told story to a remarkable series is the way it shows the backdrop. It gets the atmosphere — menacing but alive, dark but bright — beautifully correct.
O Mayana Kollai festival, which is one of the fascinating cultural and traditional events in Tamil Nadu, comes to life in all its glory resplendent on the screen in Suzhal – The Vortex. The camera, lighting and sound, all credited to Rahul Chaudhary, are the backbone of this series.
Another recent webseries in Tamil, Vilangu in Zee5, it also drew on the local festival and temple rituals as a backdrop for its story. And it is not by chance that both Vilangu and Suzhal – The Vortex are the two best web series of all time in Tamil.
It also underscores the point that web series, while aimed at smaller screens, can also be visual spectacles. In this sense, the two webseries changed the fundamental grammar of such series.
Suzha l-The Vortexfor the record, it premiered in over 30 languages on Amazon Prime Video.