First Impressions: Netflix series Safe unveils hard truths behind a quaint, gated community

Set to hit Netflix soon is Safe – a drama television series set in a gated community where people are not as they seem. The series stars Michael C. Hall of Dexter fame as a father of two daughters, widowed after the passing of his wife from cancer. His character, Tom, juggles his profession as a paediatric surgeon with his newly single-father status. After a secret party sends his eldest daughter missing, he embarks on his own frantic investigation of the people in his community to find her.

Spoiler alert: a lot of them lie. Split second decisions lead characters to do things that will shock and surprise. This starts from the get-go in episode one. It is ‘safe’ to assume this is how it will continue for the remainder of the season.

Tom spends time talking to everyone he can get his hands on and even hacking in to his daughter’s phone to read her text messages. He checks her social media history and raids her closet at one point. Still seemingly far away from finding her.

All the while Tom had already romantically started seeing Sophie (Amanda Abbington) whose profession happens to be a detective sergeant. Hello, Tom, why didn’t you go to her in the first instance? Hang on, why didn’t you just call the police? Do you have something to hide Tom? Oh… maybe you do.

Although the story is immediately engaging, it starts to play off a little like a daytime soap opera. Characters and their stories aren’t fully explored, and the backstories are a little brief and muddled. But that might be the whole idea. As Sophie so aptly suggests – how do we really know anyone?

Safe is created by bestselling writer Harlan Coben and written by BAFTA and Emmy Award winning writer Danny Brocklehurst (Ordinary Lies, The Driver, Shameless) and might just be worth watching, to see how it all plays out.

This piece is based on the first two episodes of the eight-part series.

Safe is set to launch on Netflix in Autumn 2018.