The White Lotus is a series of dark dynamics in the scope of paradise

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HBO Max

Here is the thumbnail for The White Lotus featuring Sydney Sweeney, Steve Zahn, Connie Britton, Jennifer Coolidge, Brittany O’Grady, Fred Hechinger, Natasha Rothwell, Murray Bartlett, Jake Lacy, and Alexandra Daddario.

A tropical vacation, an opulent honeymoon, and a commemorative getaway are three separate storylines simultaneously occurring at The White Lotus resort. Filled with an insurmountable level of building tension and substantially dramatic incidents that unfold, the guests at the resort are all coming to conclusions about themselves, each other, and the paradise they reside within.

This past July, the HBO Max series The White Lotus premiered and maneuvered its way into my queue of programs I cycle through. The star-studded cast immediately enticed me as their travel was inaugurated on a stormy beach in the thumbnail advertisement for the show—it looked mysteriously tempting. As the first episode commenced, a wallpaper stained in rotting fruits and dead fish scored by eerily hypnotic music rolled out the opening credits and welcomed my entrance into the limited series.

At the beginning of episode one, a boat coasting through the Hawaiin coastline delivers the guests—the Mossbacher family, the newlyweds, Rachel and Shane Patton, and Tanya McQuoid, a woman mourning her late mother—to The White Lotus Resort. Just before the boat arrives at the shoreline, the character archetypes are made acquainted. I was able to see the subtleties of their mannerisms from a distance and get a smidgeon of insight into their personalities. As the separate parties step off the boat into a wasteland of paradise, the tumultuous week ahead begins at the fingertips of the concierge, Armond, greeting them along with a few other resort employees.

With each episode being an hour long, nothing was short of action and uncertainty. I was enveloped in every character’s storyline and grew to know the actions and thought processes of each individual. As I watched the episodes crawl by, the week that transpired among the guests was quite transformative. Everything that occurred pained me to watch and experience, but the discomfort only led me to yearn for more dramatic situations to flow through my bloodstream. Each passing episode continually configured new plot points and fresh sets of problems to light on fire; they grew innumerably worse and infectiously more addicting.

What compelled my great love and reverence for this show is the unforeseen character arcs that befall. Some characters take an astonishingly contrary to expected moral paths in both positive and negative manners. By the end of the series, I loathed a few characters, cried for the others, and felt elated for the rest. Not one character was static, not one storyline lacked intense dynamics.

Each passing episode continually configured new plot points and fresh sets of problems to light on fire; they grew innumerably worse and infectiously more addicting.”

One of the more nuanced tones of the show is a look into the lives of the seemingly faultless guests who are living out their lavish lifestyles in this luxury locale. Although none of the main guests are directly associated with one another, they all are in circumstances of exorbitant wealth and privilege. The episodes carry out a general theme of how money cannot buy happiness as each individual person has their own faults and issues with how financial standings interact with their wellbeing. A coinciding undertone was how the aforementioned riches resulted in exploits for the non-wealthy. As the viewer, I noticed how the guests and hotel employees who did not come from affluent backgrounds were impacted by those who embody that boundless prosperity. 

There are just so many complexities and layers to every bit of dialogue and to every operation of those who dwell at The White Lotus resort. I laughed at the satirical junctures, winced amongst the ensuing unrest, and felt a kaleidoscope of emotions as the theatrics came to fruition. 

Quite some time has passed since my viewing of The White Lotus, but my love for this show has not been mitigated in the slightest. This show cured my Sunday blues and urged me to feel sanity in my own life. My dramatics surrounding my obsession with this series might seem suffocatingly embellished, but they are quite literally my earnest truth—therefore, it is only a matter of time before I get swallowed by the virulence of The White Lotus yet again.