If you love a solid, fast moving family drama like Bloodline or Good Girls, then Greenleaf is for you. With more skeletons in closets than a haunted house on Halloween, Greenleaf is totally addictive. Billed as a Netflix Original, it did originally air on the Oprah Winfrey Network in the US in 2016 with record viewing numbers. There are currently five seasons, all of which are available on Netflix.
So what is it all about? Greenleaf is the name of a family that has a sprawling Memphis megachurch. Having stayed away for nearly 20 years, Grace Greenleaf, returns with her own daughter, following the death of her sister Faith. The story goes that Faith had been abused as a teenager, by their Uncle, Mac McCready. When nobody except Grace believed her, Faith went off the rails and a disgusted Grace left the family and headed to Arizona. But now Faith is dead and Grace is back to uncover the scandalous secrets and lies of the family and finally bring the truth out into the open.
This show is so well cast. Keith David (They Live) plays Bishop James Greenleaf, the father and head of the church. As a character he is constantly torn between his faith and profit. Lynn Whitfield plays Mae Greenleaf, the family Matriarch and first lady of the church. She is a doozy. As characters go she has almost no redeemable features. She is manipulative and underhanded and despite all her biblical preachings, has almost no moral compass. Merle Dandridge plays Grace. Her attempts to navigate the family waters to unearth the truth are difficult. With a father who adores her, a mother who hates her, and an Uncle who will at nothing to silence her, she has her work well and truly cut out for her.
Her only real ally is her Aunt, Mavis McCready. She is played by Oprah Winfrey and unlike her ultra-religious (but awful) brother and sister (Mac and Mae) she is content to run her bar and help Grace bring Mac to justice. And as if Greenleaf couldn't get any better there are also other family members in the mix with their own sets of problems.
Greenleaf has it all. Greed, corruption, deceit, infidelity and family drama in abundance. It is totally addictive and an absolute winner.