Equinox – thoughts and impressions expressed in an unequal manner


Among the many TV shows 2020 gave us, "Equinox" packed that extra punch and made it a favorite among those of us who take our dark, supernatural and the twists with a little dash of hometown glory, also known as grinning from ear to ear when something is set in our fair Romania.
Here to tell us more about "Equinox" is Miriam with her personal in depth review.

review written by Miriam Mircea

Very slight spoilers ahead, read at your own risk.

The date is January 4th, 2021. New year, new good shows, that are worthy of my time, attention and eventually, research.

I have spent my whole last night watching the new and fresh Danish series called ‘Equinox’ on Netflix and somehow, my Romanian blood, my history teacher education and my passion for Scandi or Nordic noir created an amazing symbiote, at least in my mind.

Just to slightly rewind my story: I have been an avid consumer of twisted, original, strange and to some, creepy literature, films, music and series. I am a die-hard Twin Peaks fan and I firmly believe that the labor of love that Lynch has given birth to will forever haunt the collective creative consciousness, only to reappear under different current manifestations.

I have deeply fallen in love with ‘Broen/ Bron’. It was love at first view. I cannot describe it, but those series made me truly grasp the genius at work of the Scandinavian writers, producers, actors and everyone else involved. I was more than happy to try out Netflix’s suggestion, a six-episode series, released at the end of 2020, and bearing one of my favorite Latin words as a title: Equinox.

After having literally devoured all of the episodes, I was left craving for more and with some comments to make with regards to Romania’s apparently weird but solid guest role in the series.

As always, it was all impeccably acted and written, with the right amount of gasps from my side, sprinkled with a dash of empathy, sadness and much understanding for the main character’s issues.

But before I get into that, a little something about me: I am an expat, living in Germany for the past 10 years, a Middle Ages history teacher, an enthusiast of my culture’s lore, traditions, mysteries and aura of darkness ( cue: Transylvania, Dracula, vampires and so on).

Upon hearing and seeing that Romania would make a very unlikely appearance in the series, I have to admit that I was dreading some dusty, old vampire reference, but to my surprise, it was not that.

In fact, I am not sure why my country did become the backdrop for an essential plot twist, but nevertheless, I was glad. As a patriot of some sort, I was positively surprised to see the gorgeous scenery that depicted my homeland, even if I do not know if they have ever filmed there. I will only mention that to me, at least, Romania had transformed itself in those episodes into what a slice of Heaven would look like, complete with Nirvana level.

Now, because Romania took upon it the role of a silent, ancient Greek chorus, that gave the viewer vital information, set the scene and offered the ability to connect better with the story, I was very intrigued as to why there was no mention of our luscious, rich folklore linked to deities, beliefs, and ultimately, to Easter as a well-loved and worshipped period for Christians. I believe that ultimately it was a wise decision not to dip too deep into a completely different pool of mentalities.

In my humble opinion, that is exactly the thing: there is so much to say about the unlikely marriage of paganism and Christianity, that someone would find the information biased or incomplete. In modern times, better keep our fingers outside of that cookie pot…

And yet, I wanted to do some reading and re-educate myself about some of our traditions and celebrations, in order to perhaps give readers a little bit of a taste of our cultural richness.

The Equinox episodes reveal in a step-by-step manner the main plot, a topic that is beautifully presented, in a raw, prehistoric fashion, laced with flashbacks dipped in an orange-red shade of horror. I, personally, have found that color combination reminiscent of an egg yolk…

I do not wish to compare this production to other series or even to ‘The Da Vinci Code’ as it was done by a reputable European newspaper. Instead, I believe that each episode is able to stand alone. The acting, the rhythm and even the OST were spot on. Exactly like a rich, warming soul food.

As previously stated, Romania is the backdrop for a few episodes and I was relieved that it was painted as a realm where one could escape reality and find what they were looking for. We, as a nation, as a collective mind and soul, need more of that.

As a mind note, I would have loved to see a small hint of our beautifully spooky myths and folk tales, albeit not having much connection to the cardinal story.

Referring to this topic, our equinox- related customs are fascinating, one could find some resemblance to what is portrayed during the show, especially regarding the focus on the duality of god-goddess, life-death, spring-winter, eternal never-ending dances staged by the Universe itself.

For instance, to touch briefly upon one aspect of our folklore, our spiritual traditions see the equinox as one of the four stages of evolution, the creation, in tight relation to the Sun cult, specific in most archaic societies.

Watch ‘Equinox’ with a mind clear of other influences and let it take you by the hand and guide you into the mind of the characters and in the abyss of life itself.

link to watch Equinox on Netflix here.