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Good Morning, Verônica Review 2020 Tv Show Series Season Cast Crew Online
Stars: Tainá Müller, Camila Morgado, Eduardo Moscovis
Netflix series Good Morning, Veronica (Bon Dia, Veronica) adapts author Raphael Montes’ novel about an undervalued police clerk investigating two domestic abuse cases — undervalued because she’s a woman, and because her cases involve violence against women. The Brazilian series clearly tackles relevant subject matter, but can it do so in a dramatically compelling fashion?
Opening Shot: The camera slowly pans upwards on a family sleeping in the same bed — mom, dad and a little girl.
The Gist: The sleeping mom is Veronica (Tania Muller). She’s also the clerk at the Sao Paulo police station, working under chief Wilson Carvala (Antonio Grassi), who happens to be her godfather. Carvala oversees perhaps the sloppiest TV police force ever, evident by the scene that unfolds: The grieving father of a murder-rape victim sits in the office. Two cops say they should usher him out before the perpetrator arrives. But they don’t. An upset woman, Marta Campos (Julia Ianina), sits in Carvala’s office; he dismisses her. Officers drag in the rapist, the angry father pulls a gun on him, a detective knocks it out of his hand, and the weeping Marta picks it up. Veronica urges her to drop it. But before she can intervene, Marta shoots herself in the head.
This being the 21st century someone filmed the incident and put it on the internet, and Carvala’s not happy. Veronica stands blankly, traumatized. She’s spattered with blood. Carvala tells her to go make some coffee and wash her face, then groans that this is his last year before retirement. Priorities. He reluctantly agrees to let Veronica look into Marta’s situation.
Elsewhere, Janete (Camila Morgado) and her husband Claudio (Eduardo Moscovis) return home. She sits down gingerly, cuts the ER bracelet from her wrist. He hands her a pill and a glass of water. Many women miscarry, he assures her, and one day she’ll give him the son he wants. The episode trades moments of Claudio’s scary, domineering vibes and Janete’s cowering subservience with scenes from Veronica’s investigation. Veronica has a breakthrough, believing Marta was roofied and abused by a serial creep she met through an online dating service; Carvala refuses to discuss the incident with TV reporters, but Veronica steps in, sharing a phone number and urging women facing domestic abuse to call her. Janete jots the number down, hiding it in a puzzle book so Claudio won’t find it.
Meanwhile, a young woman arrives in Sao Paulo, having left her mother and baby daughter behind to search for a job. Janete approaches her, offering her a housekeeper job. She’s overjoyed. They walk to the car, where Claudio tases her and tosses her in the back.
Our Take: So far, Good Morning, Veronica is well-intentioned and reasonably poignant in its approach to topical material. But it’s not particularly convincing in the execution of the plot, which is rife with contrivances and situations that stretch our suspension of disbelief a hair too far. The key sequence in the police station is especially egregious in its lack of logic, and I’m not sure if it’s an indictment of the characters or the writers. The episode also clings to a few crime-series cliches, none more tiresome than the gruesome coroner’s-slab postmortem scene in which we get a yucky, exploitative close-up shot of the hole in the side of Marta’s head.
But Muller renders the Veronica character with enough earnestness to keep the production afloat. The episode hints at some of her past trauma, and I’d be surprised if it doesn’t have something in common with Marta and/or Janete’s situations. She’s a solid protagonist with a righteous point-of-view, primed and ready to carry the series’ feminist themes. It’s trying to hook us by taking advantage of our morbid fascination in Claudio’s sinister deeds; here’s hoping such content veers away from grim exploitation. It sure seems like Veronica is primed to be a conscientious, morally prudent hero.
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