Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Netflix's Russian Doll Is Funny, Moving, and Sometimes Existentially Terrifying: It Could Be Described as a Kind of Video Game, or Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Story, or Puzzling, Claustrophobic Escape Room

Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Netflix's Russian Doll Is Funny, Moving, and Sometimes Existentially Terrifying: It Could Be Described as a Kind of Video Game, or Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Story, or Puzzling, Claustrophobic Escape Room

Article excerpt

Nadia Vulvokov is a 36-year-old New Yorker. She smokes two packs a day and has the rasping voice to prove it. Her halo of wild red hair frames a face that is at least 63 per cent smoky eye. She splits her time between designing video games in her dark apartment, beer in hand, and cocaine-laced nights of debauchery with bougie art hipsters in boldly designed yeshiva conversions--even on Sundays.

She chews the inside of her mouth. There's a glint of playful cruelty in her eyes, but also a vacancy. She is physical and exuberant, but every gesture and interjection comes with a smirk of irony. She's living every day as if it's her last. And every day is her last.

On her 36th birthday, Nadia skips out on her own party ("Staring down the barrel of my own mortality always beats fun," she quips), is hit by a car, dies and wakes up back at her birthday party. She relives it again and again, dying in a freak accident each time, no matter how carefully she tiptoes down stairs or triple-checks the road before she crosses. …

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