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The Idol Shatters Expectations, Sets Unprecedented HBO Series Record

What do critics think about The Idol?

The Idol Shatters Expectations, Sets Unprecedented HBO Series Record
Juan Carlos Saloz

Juan Carlos Saloz

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There is no doubt that, in terms of quality, HBO is the most important brand in television in recent years. Even though Warner has decided to move the label away from its main platform and leave Max as its name, HBO series continue to be a synonym of well-made television that is well received by the public.

However, the structure on which this idea is founded could be faltering, mainly because of a single culprit: The Idol. The series created by The Weeknd (Abel Makkonen Tesfaye) together with Sam Levinson, the showrunner of Euphoria, has premiered at the Cannes Film Festival. And it has done so with a brutal controversy: it has been accused of being sexist and pretentious. And, despite the occasional good review, in general it has left much to be desired.

So much so that The Idol has achieved an embarrassing record for HBO: it has premiered with the worst score for an HBO series on Rotten Tomatoes. Right now it has 27% positive reviews, but at launch it appeared with an approval rating of just 9%. On Metacritic the same: it currently has a 26 out of 100.

HBO’s worst series?

This leaves The Idol far from the worst HBO series… but below. The lowest ratings recorded by the production company are for The Nevers (49%) and The Time Traveler’s Wife (38%), which as you can see far outweigh The Idol’s widespread criticism. This has caused many to question the path taken by the platform.

Levinson, for his part, doesn’t heed the criticism. “I’m very proud of this series, and the way we’ve made it,” he told Deadline. But his criticisms range from it being “a Pornhub odyssey starring Lily Rose Depp’s nipples” to considering it far from transgressive.

Next June 4, the series premieres worldwide and we will be able to see if these criticisms are founded or rather come from critics who do not know how to put on the glasses of the average audience. Be that as it may, it is going to be something to talk about.

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Juan Carlos Saloz

Juan Carlos Saloz

Cultural journalist specialized in film, series, comics, video games, and everything your parents tried to keep you away from during your childhood. Also an aspiring film director, screenwriter, and professional troublemaker.

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