Counterpart premieres January 21st on Starz.
By Ariba Bhuvad
It’s quite fitting that Starz’ upcoming drama, Counterpart, is set in Berlin, seeing how the German word “doppelganger” encapsulates the very core of this show.
Showrunner Justin Marks has created an epic, pulsating, and mysterious drama that is brought to life by its lead, Oscar-winner J.K. Simmons (Whiplash), who plays Howard Silk. His character leads a mundane, uneventful life in a United Nations spy agency based in Berlin. Silk is a “stick to the routine” type of guy, repeating every aspect of his day without fail, including visiting his comatose wife in the hospital with flowers.
Silk’s world is thrown for a loop when he discovers the organization he works for is protecting a “crossing”. This crossing, he comes to learn, is a portal to a parallel dimension referred to as “the other side”, created by accident during the Cold War in the midst of an experiment. This dimension is a literal copy of the world he knows, including himself. Upon meeting his doppelganger, he is thrown into a world of mystery, suspense, and murder. As he learns to cope with this knowledge, he finds himself trusting the only person he can: himself.
Counterpart does a phenomenal job exploring a range of themes and questions including self-identity, love, destiny, and the most important of all: what if? The drama infused into this series will have you on the edge of your seats, particularly while watching Simmons simultaneously play two completely opposite versions of himself flawlessly.
Counterpart also stars Olivia Williams, Harry Lloyd, Ulrich Thomsen, and Nicholas Pinnock. It was written, created, and produced by Justin Marks (The Jungle Book), alongside producers Gary Gilbert and Jared Horowitz (La La Land). Come January, this will be THE show to watch.
I give Counterpart an A.