Having been treated to both “Spin” and “Deutschland ’83”, courtesy of Walter Presents, a few weeks ago I decided to delve into one of their other series on All 4, watching an entire series online being completely new to me. I quickly decided on “Heartless”, having briefly seen an advert for it on TV and I have to say that watching it has been quite the journey.
The first five or so episodes of “Heartless” are amazing. At the centre of it all are Sofie and Sebastian, played by Julie Zangenberg and Sebastian Jessen; while the latter is perfectly fine, it is Zangenberg’s portrayal of Sofie that is the main draw of the series. With a very unique face and the fact that she rocks a pair of Converses like no other, she is always engaging, wonderful to watch and her scenes with Emile (Julie Christiensen) are perfectly played. On that subject, the series is at its best when featuring these two characters; watching their relationship develop is fascinating, their chemistry is perfect and they certainly make the series worth watching, giving “Heartless” it’s unique, sexy atmosphere.
The series is also very visually appealing; the effects are excellent and for the most part, it seems as though there is constant fog/mist flowing through every scene and episode. Quite early on, we are treated to a visually laudable scene in a lake that is certainly ambitious and memorable. The “burning” scenes are wonderful as well.
For the most part, the story is very interesting and “Heartless” successfully manages to balance the whole vampires/witches element with modern teenage angst; we see Sofie and Sebastian struggling with both their curse and their natural, human desires and wants. If the series does set up some threads that aren’t fully resolved, it doesn’t really matter since there is enough going on to hold our interest.
However, the series does unfortunately peter out towards the end and the final three episodes are perhaps not as good as the first five. I’ll try not to go into too much detail for fear of spoilers, but the final episodes lose their edge somewhat, the story becomes slightly lazy/uninteresting and the grand finale is something of a cop-out. There is actually a great scene involving Emilie and Pieter in the forest but besides that, the final instalments don’t quite live up to the promises that the opening episodes set up. Even the relationship between Sofie and Emilie gets a bit boring, unfortunately.
Having said that, the very last few seconds introduce a juicy little twist that possibly sets up another series.
In summary, “Heartless” is, for the most part, a dark, atmospheric, exciting, sexy, engaging series with a terrific central relationship between the two female leads and many other thrilling, tense scenes. Sadly though, the final episodes let it down somewhat.
Final Verdict: ★ ★ ★ ★