OMNISCIENT is a new Netflix sci-fi series from Brazil (org. title Onisciente). It’s essentially a murder mystery set in a Black Mirror meets 1984 world. This Netflix series is a pleasant surprise in many ways. Read our Omniscient Season 1 review here!
Omniscient is a new Netflix sci-fi series. The show is yet another Brazilian series (org. title Onisciente) and it’s always interesting to see how well these will fair internationally.
For this new Netflix series, the set combines murder with a sci-fi world which does tend to draw a large audience. However, the story also needs to deliver and in the case of Omniscient, I think it will be an immediate hit or miss for most. I was very pleasantly surprised by episode 1, which means I was hooked from the beginning.
Continue reading our Omniscient Season 1 review below to know if this new Brazilian Netflix series is for you.
A murder mystery set in a Black Mirror meets 1984 world
It’s nearly impossible not to think about George Orwell’s iconic novel 1984 when watching Omniscient. After all, surveillance is prevalent in the society portrayed and also key to much of the plot. However, the main plot point is actually a murder mystery.
Obviously, it shouldn’t be a problem to solve a murder when a society is watched 24/7. However, this is also still a corrupt world with many problems still unsolved. In other words, very much like Orwell’s dystopian 1984 which you really should read if you haven’t already.
Also, since there is a lot of tech involved with the plot and world of Omniscient, the stories from the Black Mirror anthology also comes to mind. There are certainly elements that feel like they could have been in a Black Mirror episode. In fact, some of them even have been part of stories from that brilliant series.
Recommended reading: Find our reviews of various Black Mirror seasons and movie events here >
The surveillance drone in Omniscient is the size of a fly and follows you everywhere. This means the place is very safe since no one can do anything without being caught. There are essentially no violent crimes (in theory, anyway) and people leave their belongings unlocked or unwatched since no one can steal without being caught.
However, this is on the “inside”. There is still a world “outside” this safe part of the city. On the “outside”, we see a Brazil similar to the one we know. There are no drones and plenty of crime. Also, there is freedom, which becomes increasingly obvious as the story in Omniscient progress.
Brazilian series on Netflix
There are already quite a few Brazilian series on Netflix. We’ve reviewed a few of them as well since they’re often genre productions or true crime documentaries. In other words, they’re right up our alley in terms of content.
The true-crime documentary Killer Ratings is definitely worth watching if you want a “real life” look at how things work in Brazil at times. You have to be pretty tough to handle yourself and it speaks volumes about both the struggles and strengths of the Brazilian people.
Also, the Netflix series The Chosen One (org. title O Escolhido) is another success for the streaming service with season 2 released in December 2019. Check out our season 1 review of The Chosen One here >
My point is simply that if you enjoy Omniscient (org. Portuguese title Onisciente), then you have a lot more Brazilian series you could check out on Netflix. Including the former series by Omniscient creator, Pedro Aguilera. More on that in the final section of this review.
The cast of Omniscient
The actors in Omniscient probably won’t be all that familiar unless you’ve watched a lot of Brazilian TV series in recent years. However, one exception would be Jonathan Haagensen who starred in the movies City of God (2002) and City of Men (2007).
While Jonathan Haagensen might be the face most recognized internationally, Carla Salle is the main star of this new Netflix series. She portrays the tech employee, Nina, who is trying to outsmart her own surveilance drone in order to investigate (and hopefully, solve) the murder of her father.
Nina (Carla Salle) has a look that immediately made me think of the title character from French megahit movie Amélie. She’s smart and brave but also needs to deal with a world that’s quite different from the one we know.
Watch season 1 of Omniscient on Netflix now!
Pedro Aguilera is the creator of the new Netflix series. He previously created the series 3% (2016-2019) which was also a Netflix production but essentially built on Pedro Aguilera’s first version of 3% from 2011. Back then it was made as a three-part web series released on YouTube.
Every network in Brazil rejected it when the show was pitched to them, but Netflix picked it up. With Omniscient, Netflix has clearly decided to keep working with Pedro Aguilera. It certainly also makes sense to focus on Brazil as a market since the country is huge.
If you like a good sci-fi series with a murder mystery in a tech-heavy world, then Omniscient is definitely worth checking out. Just six 45-minute episodes mean you can watch the entire season in less than five hours. All 6 episodes of Omniscient are out now.
Omniscient Season 1 is out on Netflix globally from January 29, 2020.
Creator: Pedro Aguilera
Stars: Carla Salle, Sandra Corveloni, Jonathan Haagensen, Guilherme Prates, Marcello Airoldi, Luana Tanaka, Marco Antonio Pamio
In a city where citizens are monitored 24/7, a tech employee must outsmart her surveillance drone in order to investigate a murder.