Netflix has teased its latest soon-to-be most-talked-about series: The OA. Although The OA drops Friday, Netflix has already rolled out an impressive, and creepy, marketing campaign designed to get some buzz going. It seems to be working.
As USA Today reports, Netflix doesn’t always promoting an original series just four days before it airs. It is an unusual move, to say the least, for the streaming service. However, it looks like The OA isn’t going to need much promotion. Considering the resumes of the people involved (more on that later), and the intensely compelling premise, it’s going to be, as Donald Trump would say, “Yuuuuuge!”
The OA was co-created by Brit Marling and Zal Batmanglij – names you may be familiar with if you’ve ever seen The Sound of My Voice, a darkly atmospheric 2011 mystery/thriller that explores a strange cult that worships a woman who claims to have come from the future, or The East, a 2013 psychological thriller about an underground anarchist society.
In The OA, Marling and Batmangalij team up again to tell the story of Prairie Johnson (Marling), a blind woman who returns seven years after having disappeared, inexplicably with her sight restored.
The formerly-but-now-mysteriously-no-longer blind woman isn’t talking – at least, not the the FBI or her family. Instead, she shares her story with a high school teacher and a handful of teenagers – and she may be recruiting them for a mission. Hmmmmmm….
The OA co-stars Phyllis Smith (The Office), Emory Cohen (Brooklyn), Scott Wilson (The Walking Dead) and Jason Isaacs (the Harry Potter franchise). Brad Pitt, formerly of Brangelina, Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner and Sarah Esberg of Plan B Entertainment join Marling and Batmangalij as executive producers.
TechCrunch writer Darrell Etherington,who describes himself as a sci-fi junkie was impressed with the trailer, and promised to give The OA a chance.
“The show looks spooky as heck… There’s lots of classical-sounding strings and a muted color palette, along with some tense moments, blood and what looks like it might be a holding cell for human test subjects so expect plenty of creepy twists and turns in this thriller of a series.”
— Variety (@Variety) December 12, 2016
Etherington also notes that Netflix’ social media marketing campaign, such as it is, for The OA has been raising eyebrows on social media.
“Netflix is also teasing this out with weird questions on Twitter like ‘Have you seen death?’ along with short video clips that resemble found footage of the main character apparently jumping off a bridge. Twitter uses are rightly pointing out that this is some pretty messed up stuff to push out without warning or disclaimer, and it definitely should’ve though twice about that particular marketing stunt.”
Ever since it entered the original content business in 2013, Netflix has been nothing short of a game-changer when it comes to quality TV. Netflix’ first original series, House of Cards, won critical acclaim and remains one of the most respected shows on TV. House of Cards was followed by such critically-acclaimed and award-winning fare as Orange Is The New Black, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Master of None, and Stranger Things.
Netflix will continue that tradition of bringing anticipated, critically-acclaimed fare moving into 2017, with the long-awaited A Series of Unfortunate Events, Marvel’s Iron Fist, and other original shows.
Given its creators’ and lead actors’ résumés, its slick production as revealed in the trailer, its growing internet buzz, and Netflix’ high standards for original content, it’s a sure bet that The OA will be a winner.
[Featured Image by Maxx Satori/Shutterstock]