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Chaser TV Series Review by Kevin Nickelson


Published 4/16/2024

Rating : 9/10 Must Watch


Ahh, the burr in the personal saddle that is life’s mistakes and questionable choices. If only one’s existence was merely on celluloid for viewing by ourselves through our own optic nerves, we could take some form of editing scissors to snip out those choices we make that went wildly sideways in away we could not foresee entirely. Wouldn’t that be a supreme skill to have? Then again, what if the cuts we make in our world propel us down a new, even more terrifying road? We decide to reverse that decision about not having sex with that gorgeous girl or guy next door to having a fabulous, sweaty time….only to find they’re a serial killer thankful that you’ve gifted them a perfect victim.


These are the ‘what ifs’ that up-and-coming director Daniel Roemer examines with his latest science fiction suspenser series Chaser, now out on Amazon Prime. Eddi Sebastian, as portrayed by Russ Russo, is emotional damage in the extreme. He is the computer nerd in the college dorm who stares at his desktop pc with that near zombie-like expression while his roommate and friends hold the kegger party twenty feet away. Eddi is a loner, a third-rate video editor who is broke and minus all of the prospects that someone with a bright future might have. Eddi is fixated on the European actress who is the star of the editing project he’s been handed. Trouble is he is invisible to her as she obsesses more about career.


One night, his computer has technical issues and he finds a customer service number at the bottom of his modem. The 24 hour agency appeals mightily to him as he faces a deadline for completing his assignment, so he calls it. The voice of an agent named Hal answers and proceeds to wield a Svengali-esque influence over Eddi after a few conversations. In a way, this is a software patch to the young man’s life and sort of a reboot of his system. Our hero comes slowly to the awareness that he has been gifted by Hal with the otherworldly ability, via his revamped computer, to edit his life within a 24-hour window. He ends up bedding the beautiful Anabel and vowing to create the greatest video project ever assembled. Things go frighteningly awry as his edits have his life spiraling out of control and ever closer to the orbit of Anabel’s controlling, near-deranged boyfriend/agent Gar Madden, himself desperate to possess Anabel in all aspects.


Roemer’s decision to expand the tale to encompass eight episodes is an inspiration, as it allows for a more careful peeling back of layers in each character. Each segment provides a new face to be put on display. Credit also Roemer, story editor Suzanna Hammond and story consultant Rob Hemmick for creating a world where the suspense and interest are driven by pungent dialogue and fresh twists more so than just physical action. A refreshing reprieve from the assault of Hollywood lightheaded stunt fare that usually dominates. Intriguing that one of the series producers is Jeremy Howe, a co-executive producer on both Young Sheldon and The Big Bang Theory shows.


It does seem that Howe gravitates toward properties that have characters on the societal fringe and how they may be more real than those nearer the center. One hopes that the type of projects that Howe keeps connecting to contain the more honest and raw emotion evident in Chaser. Superb as Russo is in conveying that raw fragility and sympathy as Eddi, any story that even leans toward a take on good versus evil has to have an antagonist that matches performance level with the hero. Daniel De Weldon, member of the iconic Actor’s Studio and an artist that I have charted for several years, stands in the shadow of no one on either stage or film set. His Gar is equal parts pent-up rage and frightening psychosis (with a hint of scared little boy). De Weldon has a treasure trove of tools he brings from his tenure studying the work of Uta Hagen, Lee Strasberg and Konstantin Stanslavski.


Striving to be an epitome of the method actor, Daniel nails the heavy to a most terrifying degree. The emotional regression of Anabel to submissive appeasement seems real enough to suggest De Weldon’s turn was achieving a little too well on the set!


Chaser is a most enervating experience that is to be appreciated by fans of substance over style and performance-driven art. One can only hope for a season two!



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