Bottom Line: If you are looking for a fast-paced, adrenaline-fueled action Thriller, look elsewhere. The plot of Vetala plods along, revealing its mysteries layer by layer and rewarding viewers with the patience to follow along. It’s an fantastically interesting ride for those who can make it through the slow points. My best advice is to take the time to watch this show all the way through. It’s designed for that type of viewing, and the structure works best if you see it as a coherent whole.
A supernatural thriller about a hostile, yet conflicted spirit from the pages of Sanskrit mythology, and the succession of people it travels through.
Season One follows Lily Callahan and Alex Reed, two college reporters who have become targets of The Syndicate, an organized crime group responsible for the trafficking of illegal guns. Alex’s obsession with exposing the city’s gun trade places both Lily and him in harms way, giving rise to The Vetala.
The Vetala hails from the Baital Pachisi stories, first written in the Indian book Brihatkatha of Gunadhya, first century A.D. The British explorer, writer and poet, Sir Richard Francis Burton (1821-1890) translated eleven of the Vetala stories from Sanskrit into English in 1870, and titled them Vikram & The Vampire. Burton believed this collection of tales and legends was the inspiration for The Arabian Nights, a book he would also famously translate along with The Kama Sutra.
The plot moves slowly and methodically for a series with five minute episodes, at times you wish they would throw a few more carrots to the hungry audience. (Pacing 3)
The series is beautifully shot, with some well done effects and good use of gore. (Polish 4)
The show has a really rich background history, which makes it sad that the early episodes don’t take more time to explore it. Too much screen time is given early on to elements of the story that aren’t particularly relevant to the overarching plot nor character development. (Novelty 3.5)