The second season of After Life, which was produced by the first season of Ricky Gervais, Netflix, was released. On this occasion, we wanted to share an article that examines why this series is so loved by people.
Lying is the basis of narrative fiction
The narrator changes the reality when he writes, because he sees the world as it should, not as it is. This is the case from the moment the effort of narration began. In reality, people are not so brave or heroic. However, Homer said that in Iliad, everyone involved in the war became valiant, everyone strong and virtuous enough to receive help from the gods. Because Homer tells about the stress disorder experienced by an honest and war-returning man, he would be seen as a compulsory in his period and we would never be able to read Iliad.
This liar is also often a necessary thing. Like although J.R.R. Tolkien says that the lord of the rings series is not an allegory of anything, it is very understandable for a person who lived in the Battle of Somme to write the elves who lived in Rivendell forever and sang. Or it is quite normal for someone who saw the second world war to dream of a people farming and attending festivities in Hobbiton.
Normally, this “falsehood” can be accepted when an author or director uses it to describe his problem. However, the quality of the work decreases when the aim is to leave the storytelling and try to manipulate the audience. The biggest examples of this type of use are in romantic comedies. For example, a man loses his beloved wife. At first, they falter with funny images. He meets someone towards the finals, accepts his loss and starts a new peaceful life.
The problem with this story is that what is said is a complete lie. Yes, when people watch this type of movies, they leave the screen happily, but even a person who has suffered a little pain in reality knows that things are not going that way. First, that moment of confusion in real life is not so funny. Deciding to continue also requires much more energy than you think. For this reason, such films are of no use in practice because this clinic depressed the person who suffered from depression “go out and get two airs.” It is as useless as saying.
But honesty is not something to be desired, as we talked about in the example of Homer. This is the case even in normal human relationships. When someone asked her friend who dyed her hair, even if it was in good faith, it was “very bad.” because society accustoms people to lie. However, as we have seen from his conversations to his stand-ups, Ricky Gervais is a person who has adopted integrity as the basic principle. Of course, we don’t know if Ricky Gervais is true in his real life, but in his Oscar speech he expressed what everyone knows (a little bit wants to say). You can see the same situation in the stand-up called “Humanity”. In general, Gervais in his fake modesty after being famous and rich, Gervais said in his jokes that “yes, I have a lot of money. So what?” he had taken an attitude.
After Life, which started in 2019, is the product of a similar logic.
Because in the story that we just gave an example, the main character was not smiling at first, it had to be brutal but funny, but it had to be recovered in a short time. Tony, on the other hand, is a character who shows with all honesty how such a process can happen without any falsehood. The main difference of the series is actually here. While he tells the process, he is not trying to lie to you and sell his story. It is so honest that the scenes you watch after a certain point turn out to be a series and turn into a conversation where you sit and have coffee.
Now let’s see how the drama captured this naturalness and honesty.
The first thing to do is this; The series never gives solace. “These will pass too.”, “Don’t worry.” “Let’s get out, change the weather.” like things that won’t work. Because in a story that starts like this, Nemrut rejects the character friends’ offers to go out first. But one evening she “reluctantly” agrees to go out with them and, by chance, has the best night of her life. This is one of the moments of breaking in a normal story. However, this story is not honest. Because such pain does not go away with drinking martinis or a couple of people met. These may take the boredom of a person, but they are not a substitute for a person with whom they spend years together and establish intimacy.
In this series, let’s start yoga, meet new people, their ideas are rejected one by one first. However, if this was only what happened, the story would be too pessimistic. Instead, it is honestly demonstrated how the process will go and how it will be “really” good. Your therapist can tell you to be an “alpha male”, and people can drag you to attractive women you will meet. These may also seem to heal your life in the first place (which doesn’t even tell it in the story), but when a person finds something that makes him happy, he can recover, and that doesn’t happen all of a sudden. Because otherwise the process will change suddenly. In this series, the characters sit on the bench and pour out long, because it is shown that it will take time to recover in such a situation.
This is another beauty of the series. Normally all dialogues are written wisely in such a story. It is tried to make everything said beautiful and meaningful. However, trying too hard causes the written dialogues to sound synthetic. In addition, dialogue is the simplest mechanic to use to advance a story. For example, let’s say the character has to resign from his job for the story to progress. However, doing something like this will seem inconsistent because you wrote the character too timid. To keep the story going, you immediately write someone like a mentor and change the character’s decision with the advice that person will give. It looks both organic and allows you to give the story whatever direction you want.
There is no point to be reached in this series. There is more to explain a situation. That’s why the dialogues got rid of these forced directions. But what is said is still beautiful and wise. The difference is here; In the example we just talked about, what was important was not what was told, but how it was told. Here, because there is no effort to sell the series, a simpler style has been adopted. However, although the words used are plain, the series has very deep dialogues about life, death and relationships. Because the purpose of the characters here is not to amaze the audience. That’s why, instead of clever (but not actually) dialogues, you are watching simple people pouring in. You can see them everywhere.
For this reason, even if it follows the opposite direction, the series causes you to connect to the characters more than standard stories. Because in such stories, for example, fathers have a very broad life experience and give very good advice to their son. The father here lived a simple but happy life as much as possible. Yes, they may not have very different and remarkable words to say. But when we die, we realize from Tony’s speech that there is much more to learn from normal people. Because the things experienced by the characters in this series are closer to real life.
One point where the show is honest is the flow of events. This type of story begins close to zero. At the opening, that bad situation continues in a straight line. Then a moment of breaking (the more coincidentally better) is experienced and things rise in a curve. There is a short drop before the final, but this drop never reaches the zero point again. Then this bad situation resolves quickly and the story ends at the summit.
However, this is basically a lie. Because things never rise like a straight line in real life. Because life is not a story that is intervened from outside and should reach a certain point. This type is not following a straight rise as it is honest in its narration after life. There are constantly ups and downs. For example, in the second season, we see that Tony started to recover. Now he is trying to be kind to the people around him. However, despite this rise, as in the first season, it ends with Tony drinking wine and watching Lisa’s videos. Saying that everything would be good all of a sudden would make the audience happy shortly. But here the series acts more honestly and “things will get better, sometimes get worse, and sometimes you will find yourself at the point where you start, but every person has a problem and values people who are kind to you, and if you try to do something for them, it’s not as much as your old happiness. you still get to a good place. ” says.
As a result, the strongest point of the series is that it is completely honest with you
Because it is acceptable to change the facts in a fantastic production, but if you are basically telling a human story, doing this is simply a lie. Though this liar also makes his audience happy for a short time, but being honest when telling a story about the problems people face is much more important than making them happy shortly.