Netflix has been rolling out plenty of reality shows on its streaming platform. The sad part about this phenomenon is the lack of originality when it comes to the themes of the reality shows. Just several weeks ago, Squid Game: The Challenge was released, which was a reality-game version of a very famous Korean drama. Surviving Paradise on Netflix was devoid of substance. Love is Blind, Too Hot to Handle, Sugar Rush, Glow Up, and Is It Cake are some of the reality TV game shows on Netflix that were hit and miss.
The brand-new Netflix original, The Trust: A Game of Greed, is an addition to the plethora of shows in this genre, but just like before, it has nothing new to offer. This reality game show was released on January 10, 2023, and it is about a trust full of money being offered to 11 participants who come from various walks of life. The trust includes 2.5 million dollars, which could either be shared equally by the eleven participants by the end of the show or one of them could choose to eliminate one participant after every trust ceremony and end up with a bigger share.
This time around, the show is simple and not very complicated. So far, Netflix has released only four episodes. The next half of the show will be released in two weeks. Within the first four episodes, the viewers understood the premise of the show and what the end goal for the participants would be. Even if the setup is simple, the direction and trajectory taken by the makers are very similar to what we get to see in every other reality show. A fancy mansion that shelters the participants to party, form alliances, carry out discussions, give away justifications, and make the final decision on who should be considered for elimination, or the group would stay loyal to each other by not removing anyone.
There is hardly any fresh approach taken by the makers, and a lot of time in each episode is spent on participants conversing with each other. Every episode is 40 minutes to an hour long, which is unnecessary. Each episode could have been 10 to 15 minutes shorter to make the plot tighter instead of beating around the bush. The talk between the participants is only restricted to finding out who is up to a new game plan or if there is an elimination that is likely to happen at the end of the trust ceremony.
Bryan, Gaspare, Julie, Winnie, Bryce, Jake, Juelz, Tolu, Jay, Lindsey, and Simone are the participants who come from various backgrounds and are clear about their final goal. All of them have different occupations, but they need a certain percentage of the prize amount to kickstart their lives. A pre-game before the show kickstarts with the secrets of each participant being publicly shared to reveal who would be honest enough to own up to themselves or insecure about not wanting to reveal their true selves to the group yet. These pre-charades would only make sense if the actual game had some drama involved. One of them was already a millionaire, and it was only a matter of time until either person would come out or the team would eventually find out who it could be.
Each time, two participants are given two offers that would either benefit them individually or be an advantage to the entire group. These offers never made any sense when it came to their practical application. There were never any conclusions as to how these offers were utilized by the participants by the end, for it was the trust ceremonies that decided the fate of participants, not the offers given to them.
The show began with the group acknowledging everyone as family, but as the plot progressed, many were able to come to terms with who would be problematic for each of them going forward as trust issues sprung up. In the first four episodes, only two participants were eliminated based on trust issues. It messed up the equation of the group, as many wanted to take control of the narrative, but others were not in favor of it. Some loyalists wanted to treat the whole group as family for the result to be favorable and simple, while others were keen on causing clashes and drama.
The show was only becoming more and more vicious, and it was only halfway through the game but there were nine people left so far. Unfortunately, there was nothing new offered when it came to direction, drama, twists, and the creation of games to improve the engagement of the show. Just like in Surviving Paradise, the conversation would just tire people out, as if there were no other avenues left for them to explore in this game show.
The bland nature of the show is what makes it below average. The fourth episode ended on a cliffhanger that would entice the viewers and create excitement for the rest of the show, which would be released in parts. The vacation offered to Bryan and Julie by Gaspare was the right kind of break; the two were required only to realize they were the ones who had been given access to the vault to choose the offer.
The nature of The Trust: A Game of Greed is such that the end is very predictable. Even though the finale is three episodes away, the route taken by the makers allows the audience to foresee the result. Even though there was no elimination in the fourth episode, there are two main participants that would be on the radar to find out their intentions. The millionaire amongst them also reveals their identity only to the person who ended up having to justify their stand for not coming out at the beginning of the show.
The Trust: A Game of Greed is a below-average watch, even though the show is filled with good-looking people who are flaunting their style and showcase their leadership qualities. Besides that, the show is a dull affair.