Boasting an all-star cast, Nine Perfect Strangers is the hit Hulu / Amazon drama series based on the novel by Liane Moriarty. The premise of the show is that a group of strangers all end up at a very exclusive and expensive wellness retreat, Tranquillum House, run by Masha Dmitrichenko (Nicole Kidman).
Masha is Russian and her methods are eccentric but apparently work so our Nine Perfect Strangers, who all have issues of their own, are using this health resort as a last ditch attempt to get themselves back on track.
So how exactly are the Nine Perfect Strangers and what is wrong with them? The nine guests arrive at the same time, and as the group begins to interact they start to learn more about each other.
First up is Frances Welty (Melissa McCarthy, The Starling). A highly successful author, Francis last novel bombed, her publishing house wants to drop her and to add insult to injury, she was also recently catfished. Basically, Frances has had enough.
Next up is Tony Hogburn (Bobby Cannavale), a washed up pro-footballer whose entire career ended when he blew his knee out. Turning to opioids, he is battling addiction having already lost his wife and daughters who no longer speak to him.
The couple who appear to have it all are Jessica and Ben Chandler (Samara Weaving & Melvin Gregg) so quite why this Insta perfect couple need to be there is only revealed further into the series.
The Marconi family is drowning in grief. Napoleon (Michael Shannon), his wife Heather (Asher Keddie, Offspring, Stateless) and their daughter Zoe (Grace Van Patten) are there to try and move past the devastation of losing their son.
Then there is Carmel Schneider (Regina Hall), a woman who is on the brink of a breakdown since her husband left her, married a younger woman and whose children now want to go and live with their father.
That leaves us with Lars Lee (Luke Evans) the last of our stressed city dwellers that are hoping to escape to Tranquillum House. A journalist, he is there posing as a client but whose real reason is to write an expose about the secluded retreat.
Given that Nine Perfect Strangers is a psychological thriller/drama, all is not what it seems in the remote health resort. The resort's director is the mysterious wellness guru Masha. Her method promises healing, self improvement and total transformation. But only if her guests demonstrate absolute commitment to the retreat's unconventional methods.
Of course Masha isn't just there to heal people. Nope, she has a hidden agenda which is revealed slowly through the eight episodes of the show. The problem for her is that when you bring nine very different people together, at the same time, for ten days, they not only have competing needs but they talk to the other guests.
So what is Masha's endgame? As Tranquillum's unique protocols escalate, the treatment intensifies and under Masha's care old wounds are opened. Life for the Nine Perfect Strangers becomes very uncomfortable as they are confronted by their own mortality.
Is Nine Perfect Strangers Any Good?
Nine Perfect Strangers promises a lot. You can't have a show that stars Nicole Kidman, Melissa McCarthy (The Kitchen), Bobby Cannavale, Michael Shannon and Asher Keddie and not have high expectations.
We also know that a tv series based on one of Liane Moriarty's books is an almost guaranteed success – think Big Little Lies.
The premise is excellent, the on-screen chemistry is amazing – especially between McCarthy and Cannavale – and the build-up is intense. However, it is very slowly paced, revelations are few and far between and other than one near death experience there isn't much of the ‘psychological thriller' that we are promised from the outset.
Subplots are wrapped up quickly and neatly – too neatly actually. In fact, the whole of Nine Perfect Strangers is wrapped up in such a neat bow that you're left almost disappointed in the ending.
Or maybe the creators, John-Henry Butterworth and David E. Kelley, simply wrong-footed us on purpose so we never saw the ending coming. Either way, it seems to have worked as Nine Perfect Strangers has set the record for the most watched Hulu Original ever.
Will There Be A Season 2 Of Nine Perfect Strangers?
It is highly unlikely that there will be a second season of the tv series. Over eight episodes our nine strangers evolve and grow and we do see how everything pans out for them.
On that basis, there really is no story to tell unless we get a new health and wellness resort, new guests that need a total transformation and a new guru – all of which is highly unlikely.
It's not all bad news though. Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon have optioned the film rights to Moriarty’s 2016 novel Truly Madly Guilty. Plus, an adaptation of her fifth novel, The Husband’s Secret, will star Blake Lively, who is also executive producer. More recently producer David Heyman seized the TV rights for Moriarty’s next book, Apples Never Fall, six months before its publication date.
Is Nine Perfect Strangers on Netflix?
The short answer is no, Nine Perfect Strangers is not on Netflix. It was a Hulu original and was aired worldwide on Amazon Prime with a new episode dropping weekly. All eight episodes are now available if you fancy a binge!