Some tv-shows aren’t really hyped or marketed all that much before airing; they just suddenly appear in your life thanks to word-of-mouth advertisement. Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency is one of those surprise shows. For me, it was pointed out by a colleague. For you, hopefully this review will do the trick. This is not ‘one of the big shows’ but if everybody watching it can find some friends to also watch it, it might just get a lot bigger. And it certainly deserves that. But be aware: Dirk Gently is one of the weirdest shows you’ll see in a long time.
Titular character Dirk Gently is a so-called ‘holistic detective’. This means that everything is connected, or more eloquently put ‘the fundamental interconnectedness of all things’. He investigates his cases by doing, well, not much at all while he waits for clues and situations to come to him.
“My intuitions are rarely wrong but also rarely completely right.”
With this work ethic, Dirk Gently meets Todd Brotzman, a bellboy in the hotel where the gruesome murder of businessman and millionaire Patrick Springs took place. The murderer is thought to be a… hammerhead shark. No joke. Dirk stalks Todd into becoming his assistent and best friend, much to the chagrin of Todd. Nevertheless, they decide to team up to get to the bottom of this case, since Patrick Springs was the one to hire Dirk Gently in the first place six weeks ago. Yes, to investigate his own murder. I told you this is a weird show.
Samuel Barnett as Dirk Gently
A tv-series rises or falls with the main star and boy, does this show rise thanks to Samuel Barnett, who plays Dirk Gently. Barnett is mostly known for his work on stage and had a part in Penny Dreadful. Kudos to the casting department, because he is such a gem to find. The very talented Barnett has the best facial expressions and a ton of charisma to boot. He IS Dirk Gently. I hope this show will be his stepping stone to much more to come. At least there will be a second season of Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency, as we already know that’s in the making. Hopefully season 2 will come along soon, considering how season one ends with a big cliffhanger (sorry, slight spoiler there).
The rest of the cast also deserves high praise. Elijah Wood is by far the best known cast member, as the reluctant and cynical Todd Brotzman. He is the character the viewer will identify with the most, since he (also) thinks most situations are just too weird for words. But as he goes along with it all, he and Dirk eventually get closer. The girlpower in this show comes from Hannah Marks, Fiona Dourif and Jade Eshete. They play Todd’s challenged sister Amanda, crazy assassin Bart and security officer Farah respectively. All three women play their parts amazingly and bring their weird characters to life. It’s good to see three strong women on this show.
It’s not hard to decipher why Dirk Gently is such a WEIRD show. It’s based on/inspired by the books written by Douglas Adams. Adams also wrote The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and videogame Starship Titanic. If you’re familiar with any of this work, it will tell you just what to expect from this show: a lot of crazy. Dirk Gently is one of those shows you might end after just one episode because it makes such little sense but trust me when I say: keep watching. Everything is indeed connected. And why would you keep yourself from things like a murderous kitten, The Rowdy Three (consisting ofcourse of FOUR rowdy men), time travel or the made up illness Pararibulitis.
Sure, Dirk Gently has it’s flaws and some times it just doesn’t make any sense at all. But this is such a fun and crazy show with such a high pace. Besides, season 1 consists of only eight episodes so bingewatching them all will take no time at all. This is one of those shows you should just experience and when you have finished it, you too will take part in creating the buzz on Dirk Gently.
All episodes of Dirk Gently are available on Netflix.
Looking for more tv-series? Read our top 10 for 2017!