“Invisible City” is a Brazilian Netflix original series that came out two years ago now. The first season follows the story of Eric and his daughter Luna, who go through a rollercoaster of events that finally leads Eric to stab himself in the chest. Long story short, he was possessed by the central antagonist of the show, the “dry body,” who wanted to harm the entities and the forest. Season 1 had an interesting premise and was a retelling of Brazilian folklore with a modern twist. The underlying message is don’t mess with nature, or she’ll get back at you, and mixed in this fantasy setting, it was pretty smooth sailing. The mystery was enticing, making us wonder who these entities were. Our biggest qualm with the series was that they killed off our favorite character, Isac, leaving us bitter to watch season 2. Either way, there’s still a lot to learn, like what happens to Eric next. How will Luna survive, and what’s next for the forest?
After seeing the first three episodes of the show, it’s understood that the plot has left behind the story of season 1 to incorporate new entities and a new city. The events of season 2 take place two years after Eric essentially tries to kill himself to save his daughter. Now Eric is in a different city, having happened upon an illegal mining site. Luna and Eric finally find each other, only to be split up again. So at the end of the day, even if there’s an entirely new set-up, it’s still Eric trying to save Luna from the big, bad, scary world. Season 1 was quite short and didn’t allow us enough time to engage with each character and entity on their own, but its fast pace and fun effects made up for this shortcoming. But season 2 throws you into a whole new world just as fast without giving you any time to fully register what’s happening. There’s gold, there are curses, and there’s an owl-person who grants wishes like a genie in a bottle; it’s all a little bit too much. Eric’s character is just as confused, or possibly even more confused than he was in season 1. The Cuca-Inês is back because she took care of Luna for the two years he was missing somewhere in the ocean. Camila and Curapira are nowhere to be seen, and there’s no word of them either, which is a little bit disappointing because they were the entities we wanted to know more about. We have a new character like Isac named Bento, who is amusing and adds some flair to the show. It’s easy to lose track of how many new characters there are in the show, though.
It is interesting to see the interlacing of Eric’s personal story of finding and protecting Luna with that of the illegal gold miners. Of course, to add insult to injury, Luna is the key to the place where most of the gold is protected by the indigenous people. While Ines’s role is just as important this season, we don’t see enough of her. Although it is a show about protecting the environment, the messaging takes a back seat for more drama, mystery, action, and melodrama.
“Invisible City” is a fun show to take your mind off reality while being very rooted in the true ‘nature’ of our problems. It’s visually quite charming and has some beautiful moments with the entities in the frame. The pacing is quite fast, but for people who are short on time and want to quickly binge an interesting show with mystery and fantasy elements to it, “Invisible City” is a good choice. Additionally, it brings to light some interesting mythical creatures of Brazil that a lot of us outsiders may not even have heard of. Brazilian John Krasinski is rather fun to watch, even if he is confused for most of the show, and an endearing father who we want to root for. In season 1, we saw him as a skeptic who didn’t have any interest in his wife’s beliefs; now, he’s entirely changed, realizing he himself is a part of those beliefs. It seems season 2 is also following the pattern of season 1, where the first few episodes introduce us to the new entities and give us an idea of their powers, whereas the second half of the show is a full-swing action-packed set of events. The mysterious element of season 1 was what drove the series, but this time around, rather than a mystery, it is more about saving Eric’s daughter.
Overall, the show has a huge scope for an international audience who have a large interest in what the show has to offer, but because of its short run time and innumerable characters, it gets a little overwhelming at times and leaves a lot to be desired. We’re looking forward to seeing at least some of these loopholes covered and the second season ending in a more coherent manner. We would give “Invisible City” three out of five fantasy points for the Brazilian folklore and fantasy elements.