Blood sisters, newly released by Netflix, has become one of the most talked-about Nigerian shows this year with a star-studded cast of Ini-Dima Okojie, Nancy Isime, Kate Henshaw, and Joke Silva, Ramsey Noah, and others, directed by Kenneth Kyang and Biyi Bandele.
The series tells the tale of two friends, Kemi(Nancy Isime) and Sara (Ini-Dima Okojie). They are on the run after Kemi murders Sara's abusive husband, Kola(Deyemi Okanlawon), in self-defence.
The four episodes of the series take us with them as they cover up the murder, run away from the police and bodyguard/ henchman of Kola's Mother, who carries the countenance of a mob boss.
There are a lot of things to talk about in this series. The gorgeous costumes and beautifully written plot are a few of them; in 4 hours plus, blood sisters cover intimate partner violence, the corruption of Nigerian Police and the possible effects of a dysfunctional family.
To capture them all, I will review each episode. If you haven't watched the movie, I'll spoil it.
Episode 1; "A very bloody affair."
This episode was everything that a first episode should have.
Pardon me, but I will mention the costumes in this movie many times because it is one of the remarkable things besides the plot. The episode opens with Kola making a drawing of Sarah in the middle of a very serious-looking meeting. (Which I thought was so awkward and unnecessary. Who draws in the middle of a session?)
Kola leaves the meeting, and we see a host of guests move into a hotel for his and Sarah's engagement. I am shocked and feel very old because the hot babes of the early 2000s, Uche Jumbo and Kate Henshaw, are mamas to grownups. I am also repulsed and enthralled by the relationship between Kola and his mother(Kate Henshaw). I am ecstatic that Kate Henshaw is the villain, maybe because she plays it so well.
Timeyin( Genoveva Umeh) cracked me up with this statement "Who do I have to fuck to get a drink around here". Later on in the episode, there is a fight that many people on Twitter think is poorly directed, a battle between the killer sent by Femi(Gabriel Afolayan) Kola's brother to kill him, and he efficiently protects himself without his cap even shifting. I don't think it was poorly directed, though.
Blood sisters wouldn't have even happened if the assassin killed him if the killer killed Kola, and then we wouldn't have had the movie. I wonder why Kemi thought it was a good idea to butcher the head of Kola's dead body, though. I guess it showed that they were amateur killers. Overall the writing and directing of The first episode were good, minus a few awkward moments here and there. It was an excellent start to the series.
Episode 2; "Run, sisters, Run."
While I watched the first episode, I kept saying they shouldn't have buried the body. Maybe I watch too much true crime. They do not cover their tracks well enough, which is proof that they are amateur killers and a photographer who has captured them puts the body into Kemi's car and begins to blackmail them. I thought the photographer was irritating, and I was happy when he was killed off; sadly, he added nothing significant for me, and his death was unceremonious.
If anything, his blackmail revealed to us a side of Kemi that was quite intriguing. I didn't expect her to know a drug baron, which impressed me. We also met officer Chicago(Wale Ojo), and I loved this character. The fact that he was struggling to shove his English accent down was a turn-off, but overall, this episode was a good enough sequel to the first one. I've only found what, for me, is a plot error with Femi and his wife(Kehinde Bankole).
The sexual tension between them is uncommon, especially for a middle-aged Nigerian couple.
Episode 3; "The Hunt"
Dogs unearth the grave that Kemi and Sarah should never have buried Kola in. This is unbelievable because we see them put a lot of effort into making the grave deep, and the dogs casually remove the blanket and Kila's decapitated head. There's a little bit of a story or directing flaw in this. I don't believe it was intentional. This discovery leads the police to question Sara and Kemi, and when Kola's mother, Uduak, finds out he is dead, she sends Sara out of the house and tells her henchman/bodyguard, Uncle B(Ramsey Noah), to find the killer of her son. I can't lie; Ramsey Noah's acting in this movie was impeccable, with very few words, but we got everything we needed to get from the performance.
Sara and Kemi are on the run in this episode, and they go from the slums in Makoko to the arms of an organ smuggler. I think they were too naive. Who relaxes in the house of a stranger? Very few people notice that the organ smuggler doesn't want Sara's kidney, the exact spot that Kola repeatedly hits. I didn't see it either until mum told me about it. I think that is such thoughtful and intentional storytelling. This episode makes me sympathise with my friends. They go through a lot in it, and we feel the stress they go through.
Episode 4; "The Catch"
The last episode is my favourite. Maybe because his friend(Daniel Etim Effiong) does the novel and noble thing of investigating his friend and shares that he is a woman-beater with officer Chicago, this is one of the most important themes of the show's story. He doesn't dismiss his friend and believes the victims; a quality countless #Metoo movements have been trying to get people to do so. I wish the series would have put out more episodes. But as a massive fan of open-ended stories, four ended perfectly well.
Genoveva's acting was a thing to behold.