by Quincy Marks
Public Relations Manager
In just eight episodes, Little Fires Everywhere, based on the novel written by Celeste Ng, touches upon a wide array of current issues despite being set in the 1990s. The show takes place in Shaker Heights, Ohio, marketed as a picture perfect town where nothing could ever go wrong. The residents are rich, the schools are well funded, and the students attend Ivy League schools. From the surface, Shaker Heights is virtually a utopia; however, the secrets of the town are slowly exposed as the show progresses. The viewer watches as Mia and Pearl Warren, a Black mother and daughter duo, who are new residents to Shaker, face a slew of racist encounters. On the other hand, the viewer sees the Richardsons, a prominent white family in the community, unravel as they deal with broken dreams, abortion, and conflict. Throughout the show, Elene Richardson and Mia Warren go head to head because of their contrasting personalities and juxtaposing outlooks on life. However, both women are very unlikeable characters.
With a star-filled cast, most notably including Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington, the show is sure to grip anyone’s attention. The stellar acting and high production quality allows the audience to truly immerse themselves in Shaker Heights. Every character deals with their own separate problems, which allows the show to address various issues. The series doesn’t shy away from tackling challenging themes, such as the toxicity in the relationship between Lexi, Elena’s daughter, and Brian, a Black student at Shaker Heights High School, as Lexi refuses to take accountability for her microaggressions against Shaker Height’s Black community.
While most of the show was intriguing, the last episode was a bit disappointing. Instead of resolving the conflicts that had been building up throughout the entirety of the episodes, the ending leaves much to the imagination. Furthermore, instead of developing the characters present in the first episode, the show continues to add in new characters, leaving the viewer to watch half-baked characters. However, I think that the show saves itself from these half thought out characters with the full development of Elena and Mia. While it does have its faults, I enjoyed watching this series. If you are looking for your next show to binge watch, I highly recommend watching Little Fires Everywhere.
Photo courtesy Toronto Life