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Bad Sisters—Saving Grace

In this Apple+ Irish comedic mini-series, we see four of the five Garvey sisters—Eva (Sharon Hogan who is also the creator and producer), Ursula (Eva Birthistle of “Last Kingdom”), Bibi (Sarah Greene) and Becka (Eve Hewson of “Behind Her Eyes”)—in the difficult position of wanting to save their sister Grace (Anne-Marie Duff) from her emotionally abusive and pathologically  narcissistic husband,  John Paul (Claes Bang).  Each of them attempts to murder him…unsuccessfully.  Bad Sisters, in fact, opens with John Paul’s death. We know he dies, but we don’t know who killed him or how.  It must be one of the sisters!  Or one of the sympathetic male friends, perhaps, who wants to help them?

Under mysterious  circumstances, John Paul is found dead and a life insurance investigation begins with two totally ineffectual half-brothers desperate to save their departed father’s insurance company from financial ruin (played hysterically by Brian Gleeson and Dylan McCormack).  Each of the five  Garvey sisters – including the clueless but sweet Grace – have ample reasons, motivation, opportunity and means—for murder.  Eva—the oldest sister who raised her four siblings when their parents die—is determined to protect and defend, no matter what the cost. 

This revenge comedy has some ridiculously unbelievable scenes, totally unexpected and often funny.  Other times, John Paul is so “on the nose” wicked that he is completely repulsive and annoying.       The over-the-top villainous husband, John Paul, reminds this viewer of the sadistic Perry Wright (Alexander Skarsgaard) in “Big Little Lies”.  Yet it is the marriage, secrets, lies, and sisterhood which prevail and make “Bad Sisters” a winner.

Bad Sisters gets bogged down, sometimes, with the inept sisters-turned-murderers often acting in farcical ways that slows down the pace and takes away from their self-sacrificing for a bigger cause:  independence and self-respect.

Even with the occasional flaw, this is an entertaining, –as well as amoral—caper not quite “cozy mystery” but definitely empathetic portraits of women who have each other’s backs and won’t betray each other, no matter the personal cost.

Hope there is a second season!  How do they move on after the aftermath that occurs in the finale?

Availability:  Apple+ streaming

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