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“Every revolution calls for a counter-revolution”. And this is how Christian’s forced utopia ended up failing, suppressed by reactionary forces and conservative thrusts. The last two episodes of the second season of the Sky Original TV series co-produced by Sky Studios and Lucy Red with the collaboration of Newen Connect aired last night on Sky Atlantic and streamed on Now, and are available on demand. And they don’t seem to want to close the parable of the holy beater at all.
In Rachel’s past
In a fifth episode that opens with a bridge between Rachele’s past and present, showing us her first experience with drugs but also the birth of a friendship and the character of Virginia, we witness the return of violence, guns, of death in a City-Palace which now also has a prison already equipped with all the distortions typical of the penitentiary system. And while Christian sets off on his own feet along the path of self-destruction that others have prepared for him, Rachele seems to be the only one stubbornly trying to row against the tide.
A GIFT THAT IS CURSE
Edoardo Pesce continues to perfectly embody the role of the reluctant messiah, the simple man who has been fobbed off with a gift that is actually a curse. He is full of doubts but is forced to hide his fragility behind a patina of ostentatious security, because in the suburbs there is no room for a leader who does not know how to command with an iron fist. Inevitably, however, he falls prey to bad advice masquerading as good intentions, the victim of false allies and former friends.
THE TEMPTATION OF RACHELE
There would be Rachele, to cling to, but she too is led into temptation by Matteo (Claudio Santamaria), who convinces her to “stop swimming” to “let herself be carried away by the current”. So Rachele retires to her apartment, throws herself on the sofa in front of the television, without ever getting up. Her depression is framed in a short but perfect scene, with the camera following her describing a 180-degree angle around her, with time-paced montage cuts exploiting the obstacles that the lens encounters in front of six in drawing the its semicircle.
A GREAT FRIEND SILVIA
Silvia D’Amico is perfect in embodying the pain, suffering, tribulation of a woman who has fought all her life, who seemed to have finally found her corner of happiness and who now feels betrayed and abandoned. Her desperation proceeds through a climax that marks the finale of episode five, leaving the viewer hanging on an agonizing cliffhanger, which is resolved at the start of episode six with an anticlimax that slows the pace and sets the stage for the grand finale.
THE BLONDE AND THE BLACK
If within the confines of the City-Palace Christianity is by now a reality embodied by the group of faithful/fanatics led by Michela, outside them the war by proxy continues to move between superior forces, with Il Biondo (Giulio Baranek) and La Nera (Laura Morante) who move their respective pawns on the chessboard. As already happened in the first season, Il Biondo is the protagonist of a memorable dialogue with Christian, to whom he offers two alternatives: flee or stay and face the terrible consequences of a hypothetical passion. “What is better?” asks the protagonist, but Il Biondo continues to leave him all the weight of free will: “For you, is the sea or the mountains better? Bottura’s camouflage or mother’s lasagna? Totti or Del Piero is better”. “That’s easy,” replies Christian.
And in the end, beyond Matteo’s revelations, it matters little to understand whether Christian is a messiah or an antichrist, what matters is his humanity, his “I just wanted to do good” whispered to Rachele and reiterated to Biondo. It is impossible not to be on his side, not to see the good in him, regardless of the interests of those who maneuver him and those who hinder him. Because the enemy cannot be a slightly ignorant boy who, having received the power to work miracles, strives in every way to use it in the most altruistic way possible, the problem, if anything, is fanaticism in all its forms, power with all its faces, the manipulated who rise up to manipulators.
THE FIGHT FOR CITY-PALACE
Veering forcefully towards drama in its finale and continuing to play on an ambiguity that is wealth, Christian’s second season amazes the viewer with the continuous evolutions of its characters. And while the Nera’s plan is finally revealed, Matteo challenges his reflection in the mirror to three-seven and Christian, like Jesus, is betrayed by the kiss of those who love him, the story takes an unexpected but perfectly logical direction, leaving the door open to an ending yet to be written. What is clear is that the balance of power, in City-Palace, is bound to change once again. And that the war for the salvation of the Roman suburbs is not over yet.