Netflix’s THE LETTER FOR THE KING is Confusing and a Waste of Time for All Audiences
By Allyson Vannatta, Senior Writer
Netflix’s original series THE LETTER FOR THE KING is slow and probably won’t make sense unless you’ve read the book behind it. Though the series is rated as TV-PG and advertised toward families, it’s anything but safe for your child.
Loosely based off of Tonke Dragt’s 1962 novel titled, “The Letter for the King,” the series follows a teenage squire, Tiuri, who’s entrusted to cross the three kingdoms to get a letter to the king before it’s too late.
The letter contains a warning that the king’s son, Prince Viridian, is trying to overtake the kingdom with a magical darkness, a power he has collected by killing men who have said magical power within them.
While on his journey, Tiuri is joined by a girl named Lavinia who he met in a small village where he stopped to eat. The two don’t get along at first, but then sparks begin to fly when she saves his life from a man who claims Tiuri has the magical powers Prince Viridian wants.
The two are hunted by some of Tiuri’s fellow novice knights and a group of men called the red riders, who work for Prince Viridian, trying to steal the letter away.
All this might sound exciting, but it’s really slow and very unbelievable in the worst way.
First, the series is targeted toward children with its TV-PG rating. The series, set in medieval times, contains many battles with swords and knives, shows teenagers threatening to hurt one another with said swords and knives, and even shows people dying from being stabbed with a sword.
Furthermore, in the last episode of the series, two of the teenage boys end up kissing out of the blue for no reason at all.
Second, the show doesn’t give background on any characters, and just assumes the audience has read the book. There’s no character development at all, and the audience has no reason to root for these teenagers trying to get this message to the king.
Third, there’s a magical horse who knows what the humans are thinking and can communicate with them without speaking. The horse can also magically transport Tiuri anywhere without Tiuri knowing where he needs to go.
On top of this, the whole show is based off the magical darkness that the prince wants to use to overtake the kingdom. However, the audience has no understanding of the prince’s motives or desires.
Overall, the show is lackluster at best and contains excessive elements not suitable for families.