Have You Watched “The OA”?

A few months ago, I discovered a show on Netflix called The OA, but I didn’t watch it. Instead, I thought it would be more efficient to read recaps about it, and I even wrote a blog entry that referenced the varying lengths of each episode.

In the comments of that blog entry, a friend urged me to actually watch the show. Then so did a few other friends. And recently I got a new TiVo that lets me watch Netflix on my TV, so a few days ago I needed something to watch, and I chose The OA.

I loved it.

Without spoiling anything, the basic premise of the show (introduced in the first few minutes) is that a woman who went missing years ago mysteriously reappears. Even though she was blind when she went missing, she can now see.

Here are a few things I loved about The OA, spoiler free:

  • The opening credits and song don’t play until 57 minutes through the first episode. It was unlike anything I’ve ever experienced (in a good way), and it’s really hard to describe why. It’s almost like the show lulls you into a rhythm, and then you’re jolted out of it when you realize a new level of the story has begun. I can’t get the song out of my head.
  • There’s a story within the story, and the characters within both are perfectly written, cast, and acted. It’s those characters that made me realize what I was missing out on when I only read the recaps.
  • Okay, this is going to sound weird, but there’s something fascinating about watching an antagonist who has such a perfectly conceived and executed plan. He’s even kind of sympathetic, and his research raises some questions that would make for interesting ethical debates.
  • The protagonist is also a great character, though you don’t know how reliable of a narrator she is. But as her story veers into something quite speculative, I found myself wanting to believe it was real so badly that it didn’t matter if it wasn’t real (in the context of the show). Though it would be great to have some confirmation in Season 2!
  • I had read that the final episode was somewhat controversial, and I understand why. But it moved me to tears. I really love when people come together in a time of need, especially if the thing they’re doing requires a leap of faith–it hits me in the feels.

If you’re willing to suspend belief for 6-7 hours and watch a brilliant show, I’d highly recommend The OA.

I’d like to make the comments of this post a place where people can discuss the show freely, so beware of spoilers. If you’ve seen The OA, what did you think? Do you have any theories you’d like to share?

10 Responses to “Have You Watched “The OA”?”

  1. RodeoClown says:

    I started watching it, not knowing what it was, but I ended up stopping part-way through the first episode. I was watching on the train, when all of a sudden there was a hard-cut to a sex scene, which kinda threw me off (also, you know, other people sitting near me…), and I turned it off at that point. I had no desire to continue watching though, the show felt completely joyless, and even though there was this mystery about this girl reappearing, the show hadn’t made me even want to find out what happened to her.

  2. Katie says:

    I’m so glad you watched it and loved it! I really enjoyed the characters and the experiences they have together, both in Hap’s house and in “the real world.” They’re all so different but make these little families where they can rely on each other. It’s a beautiful show to watch, and I felt really invested in what might happen.

    Have they confirmed that they’re doing a season two yet? I feel like they definitely left the door open with that last scene, and I’m really interested to see where it goes next.

    • Jamey Stegmaier says:

      Thanks for encouraging me to watch it! I hadn’t thought about it until you wrote this, but the show really is about families.

      Netflix has confirmed season 2! 🙂

  3. Daniel Newman says:

    I really enjoyed the OA. I didn’t have as much trouble with the final episode, as I’d already been pulled into the world of the show and had chosen to believe the protagonist rather than doubt.

    • Jamey Stegmaier says:

      I felt the same way. Though I wonder why those books were under her bed. Was she just trying to make sense of these things she had been subjected to?

      • Daniel Newman says:

        I think those were planted there to discredit her. Remember that when the dude who finds them comes downstairs he runs into the FBI guy (or wherever he’s from, it’s been a little while since I watched it). Why was he in the house? And the books looked brand new and unread in an Amazon box? Highly suspicious to me.

  4. Daniel Newman says:

    I want to rewatch it now, but it was my theory when I first saw it

  5. […] few years ago, I was transfixed by the first season of a Netflix show called The OA. It was weird, a little trippy, and it told two interesting stories: One about a group of people […]

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