Chambers is a new horror/psychological thriller Netflix series created by Leah Rachel and initially, I was incredibly excited about it. I love horror and I also love Uma Thurman. So when I heard “horror series starring Uma Thurman” I knew I absolutely had to watch it and that I would love it forever. Except that’s not what happened.
Now, premise wise, Chambers held a lot of promise. Teenager Sasha Yazzie (Sivan Alyra) suffers a sudden heart attack and almost dies, but her life is saved via a heart transplant. Something is wrong with this heart though. Not physically, but spiritually. Sasha begins to see haunting vision of the heart’s previous owner along with other inexplicable things, leading her deeper into a conspiracy that goes back a long, long time.
To an extent this is a story we’ve heard before — a conspiracy is unveiled by the sudden death of someone else. Yet, what made Chambers sound unique to me was this idea of Sasha’s literal heart seems to hold memories of its previous owner. It’s not like Sasha is seeing the owner’s ghost or witnessed the owner’s death. No, it’s this idea that the heart’s “owner” Becky (Lilliya Reid) is actually still a little bit alive within her heart. There’s even a line in the first episode where Sasha’s uncle Frank (Marcus LaVoi) says something along the lines of Becky living on within them. Except for Sasha it turns out that’s a very literal statement.
I’m not really sure what to think of Becky’s parents, Nancy (Uma Thurman) and Ben Lefevre (Tony Goldwyn). The premise is there’s a conspiracy so, of course, I’m suspicious of everyone Becky knew. There are certain things about Nancy and Ben that seem weird, but mostly they just seem like grieving parents. This is the first episode, true, but I have no idea what I’m supposed to feel for them. Should I be sad? Should I be worried about what they’re planning? Are they even planning anything? There was so little…well…anything in the first episode. Including Uma Thurman. While she was amazing as always during her screen time, I was super disappointed in the lack of Uma Thurman.
The first episode didn’t really make me care about Sasha, either. In fact, I’m more interested in her boyfriend, TJ (Griffin Powell-Arcand) and her best friend Yvonne (Kyanna Simone Simpson). I really liked both of them and enjoyed them every time they were on screen. For a main character, Sasha was easily overshadowed. This is nothing against the acting of Sivan Alyra, either. Her acting was great … when she actually got to act. Most most of the time Sasha was just blank, silent, staring off at nothing for no reason. It was very Bran from Game of Thrones-esque but she doesn’t have the excuse of everyone who’s ever existed memories flowing through her mind 24/7.
Though it’s a show I want to see through to the end, it’s more so due to my own curiosity than being hooked. Simply put, the first episode of Chambers was interesting enough that I kept watching, but ultimately it fell flat.
OVERALL SCORE: 5.5 / 10