The messy action drama takes too long to tell its story.
Prince and Alex are in the Special Forces together and are not only colleagues, but also brothers-in-law. During a mission in Afghanistan, things go wrong and Alex has to make the decision to leave a man on the team behind. This creates a huge rift in the group and especially between Alex and Prince. Some time later, Prince’s wife is kidnapped in South America by the local cartel. It’s up to Prince and Alex to get her back.
The opening sparks immediate interest and shows the humanity of the profession, as well as the moral issues associated with it. Unfortunately, it’s only sporadically re-explored and what’s left is a very slow story. Subsequently, there is often noticeable ambiguity about the events, while the premise is very straightforward. It also doesn’t help that the series consists of three parts. It is also unclear why this was chosen.
Anyone hoping for an action-packed ride with a setup like this will be coming home to a rude awakening. Momentum is often hard to find and the story moves forward at times. That doesn’t have to be a problem as long as the characters are well developed, but that’s not the case at all. Amber is a layered character that develops in an interesting way, but unfortunately Alex and Prince get a lot more attention, whose personalities don’t go much beyond tough guys who would do anything for their loved ones.
They’re not fleshed out any further, which is great considering the length of the series. From time to time, fleeting references are made to events from his past. Some development could have easily been tied to that, but it’s not being done. Also, Michiel Huisman’s performance is wooden. He still doesn’t seem completely comfortable in fully English roles. Luke Evans does a good job with his tough-guy growl, but he doesn’t have much else to do.
The slow pace stems from an attempt to delve into the consequences of Prince and Alex’s actions on the tense relationship between Colombia and Venezuela. Kudos for the attempt to make the story a little more layered, but unfortunately the courage to go through with this is lacking. Your toes dip into the water, but you never dive to the deep end.
Everything that happens beyond that is underexplained. How can Prince and Alex take certain actions without experiencing the consequences at the time? How can the two ask for help from the highest levels of Colombian politics? A subplot arises about Prince wanting to run for the Senate, but how or why he apparently needs no explanation. The lack of all these details not only makes the whole amazing, but above all very messy and incoherent.
Only in the last episode are the truly fascinating moral questions discussed. If these had been introduced at the beginning of the series this could have worked very well, but in the final phase they just don’t have enough time to fully develop. The last episode also ends with an anticlimax. The story of echo 3 It would have been more appropriate for a movie. No trained, muscular American hero can save these ten episodes.
echo 3 can be seen in AppleTV+.