CHENNAI: The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has proved to be a boon to streaming giants and the usual string of holiday movies and shows have captured a captive audience due to stay-at-home measures still in place in many countries.
One of Netflix’s latest offerings in the festive feel-good category is “Dash and Lily,” a series comprising eight short episodes. It is based on Rachel Cohn and David Levithan’s novel, “Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares” and was repurposed for TV by Joe Tracz.
In true teenage style, it is a little sweet, a little sour, with laughs and tears along the way.
Cynical Dash (Austin Abrams) and bubbling-with-optimism Lily (Midori Francis) find themselves all alone in their respective homes having been abandoned by their parents, who go off on holidays they have been dreaming of for years.
The plot kicks off when Dash finds a notebook written by a mysterious girl at his favorite bookstore in New York.
What follows is a mad dash across the city as the pair communicate via the little red notebook, leaving it at various spots throughout the city for each other to find.
What is more, Dash and Lily find that the notebook helps them discover things about themselves — it becomes a voyage of self-discovery and both realize that had they met face-to-face, they would have never been able to reveal so much.
Other characters, such as Lily’s stern grandfather and Dash’s friend who works at the bookstore, add variety to the narrative and they have also been smartly written.
While the series offers a novel take on teenage romance, there is not very much that is new or unexpected about the storyline.
The performances are nothing to write home about in this saccharine story, but New York, in all its festive season flair (the series was shot in December 2019), stands in as an appealing lead character and will, at the very least, offer travel-starved viewers the chance to enjoy winter in the Big Apple.