Lockwood & Co. Season 1 is a Ghostly Good Time

Sommerleigh Pollonais, Senior Writer

Plot: A tiny startup, run by two teenage boys and a newly arrived, supremely psychically gifted girl, Lockwood & Co. are a renegade trio destined to unravel a mystery that will change the course of history.

Review: I’m always up for some ghostly shenanigans, but I honestly had no idea what to expect when sitting down to check out Netflix’s latest YA adaptation, Lockwood & Co. Having never read the books (or even knowing they existed) my review of the series thus far won’t be able to compare the two. But what I can say is as a newcomer to this world where ghosts exists among the living and everyone is aware of this, Lockwood & Co. makes for a pretty entertaining time.

I fart in your general direction

Now I did do a little digging into the original material after checking out this first (and hopefully not last) season, to find out a bit more about this intriguing tale. And based on what I read, Lockwood and Co. tells the story of a world where after an event known as “The Problem” all the dead, both recently deceased and otherwise, reappeared to start not only haunting the living but also causing them physical harm by way of “ghost stares” that could put one into a coma or, worse, kill the living just by touching them. It’s later discovered that some young adults have the ability to either see, hear or sense the presence of these ghosts and so they’re trained to fight them off with the hopes of banishing them back to wherever they’re coming from.

Which brings us to the first of our three leads — Lucy Carlyle (Ruby Stokes) is one of the few that can not only sense ghosts, but can also see and listen to them, with the latter trait being rare amongst her kind. After tragedy strikes Lucy heads for London, and with her options extremely limited (she never fully “graduated” from her ghost training academy) she stumbles on an ad that leads her to the charming, cocky and a bit too reckless, Anthony Lockwood (Cameron Chapman). Being the type who has trouble following the rules of their society, Lockwood started his own agency. And with the assistance of his knowledgeable friend George Karim (Ali Hadji-Heshmati) they hire Lucy and work as a team to stop the different types of ghosts from wreaking havoc on London, while also trying to solve the mystery of what triggered The Problem to begin with.

This new Echosmith video looks lit!

So let’s start with the good stuff first. Lockwood & Co. plays like a mix between the Harry Potterverse and Goosebumps. The world building, while a bit vague, is still quite intriguing, with the living basically having adapted to the fact that ghosts exist and in doing so have created rules to live by and protect themselves. For instance, iron and silver are everywhere, including in the swords that all the ghost-hunters walk around with, the same way a police officer would carry a gun. Grenades are packed with items such as salt and no one goes out at night because that’s when the dead are most active. Cursed items are valuable in this world and can be sold on the black market (because they’re illegal) and special containers are used to house some of them Ghostbusters-style. All of these touches make for a world that looks a lot like ours and yet blends well with the supernatural elements of the story.

Another positive aspect is how dark the stories themselves are. I honestly thought this was going to be a series geared towards teens but from the very first episode Lockwood and Co. establishes a world that’s sophisticated, dark and thrilling enough to keep older fans of this type of genre invested. I know I sure am!

America Chavez? What are YOU doing in this series?

As for the weaker aspects of the season, I did roll my eyes from time to time when the lead characters would do and say things that didn’t just come across as irresponsible or dangerous, but just downright foolish. As a horror fan it’s always hard to root for someone when it looks like they’re actively seeking out their own demise, and in more than a few of the episodes Lucy, Lockwood and/or Karim would make decisions that didn’t fit at all with their characters, considering these are supposed to be three people who know exactly how dangerous their world is. Call it bad writing or bad storytelling but moments like these can make it hard for viewers not to throw their hands up in defeat and walk away, so I hope the writers tighten up on them.

The world building as I mentioned before is quite good, but it does feel a bit incomplete in some places and I’m guessing there’s a lot that was left on the cutting room floor. For instance, we see a lot of different potions being used in the show with no real explanations as to why. And from my research into the novels, there are details such as the streets having channels built into them for running water (fans of the supernatural will know this is a way to keep ghosts away) that doesn’t come up in the show. It’s something that happens a lot with book adaptations but hopefully we’ll get to explore a bit more of this world properly as the series goes on.

There is certainly a lot of dirt. I would even go so far as to call it…dirty

While a bit rough around the edges, Lockwood & Co. is most definitely worth checking out if you’re a fan of detective mysteries and the supernatural. They need to focus a bit more on the details of this world to truly make it all come alive, but the overall story is engaging and thrilling enough to keep me invested in what’s to come. And at the very least if this series doesn’t work out, I can be grateful it introduced me to a new series of books that sounds amazing.

Score: 7 out of 10

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2755F829-2EEC-4A68-B6F7-F963F48C9D92 Sommerleigh of the House Pollonais. First of Her Name. Sushi Lover, Queen of Horror Movies, Comic Books and Binge Watching Netflix. Mother of two beautiful black cats named Vader and Kylo. I think eating Popcorn at the movies should be mandatory, PS4 makes the best games ever, and I’ll be talking about movies until the zombie apocalypse comes.

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