Netflix‘s latest block buster dives into the murky waters of the 1990’s rave scene in Ibiza and Getintothis’s Jane Davies checks it out whilst reminiscing.
We can’t physically escape to Mediterranean shores at the moment, but White Lines, Alex Pina’s no holds barred account of mid 90’s rave culture, has brought a bit of Ibiza madness to our living rooms, streaming over Netflix.
the show starts of whith a fairly grusome premise; a mummified corpse is discovered in the Spaghetti Western terrain of Almeria in Spain, it is identified as British DJ Axel Collins (Tom Rhys Harries), missing since 1996.
Over the course of ten episodes, his sister Zoe (Laura Haddock) sets out to investigate and bring the perpetrator to justice.
A dark and intermittently violent whodunit, it seamlessly flits from 1996 to the present day, helped along the way with lots of 90’s club classics and breathtaking cinematography.
White Lines throws up a myriad of sub plots and misadventures through the colourful and dramatic exploits of Axel’s three ex-pat friends; David (Laurence Fox), Anna (Angela Griffin) and Marcus (Daniel Mays).
Twenty or so years down the line, we learn that Anna is an elite party planner of the sexual variety.
Marcus, Anna’s ex husband and Axel’s best friend, is a washed up DJ who has been supplementing his flagging career with a spot of drug dealing.
David, a reformed ex- heroin addict plays the obligatory Ibizan guru/new age hippie complete with alternative therapy retreat.
It becomes clear that Axel has made a great deal of enemies on the island in the short time in which he was there, making Zoe’s task almost impossible.
Pina successfully captures the mood of mid 90s Ibizan super clubs with their foam parties and swimming pools, snake charmers and stilt walkers, although pizza and flamingo shaped lilos weren’t around in 1996.
Axel’s 24th birthday party scenes draw parallels with that of the notorious 90’s Ibiza club night known as Manumission with nude trampolinists bouncing around centre stage.
Inevitably drugs play a huge supporting role in the proceedings.
The two club owning families on the island; the Martinezs and Calafats endure an uncomfortable co-existence with each other and the drug barons who they allow to operate on their respective patches.
Drugs are so prevalent even Marcus’s dog accidentally sniffs a line of cocaine and ends up incapacitated in his swimming pool.
Lighter moments in the film evolve around flirtatious and humorous exchanges between the Calafat’s head of security and enforcer Boxer (Nuno Lopes) and the indecisive Zoe.
Do we find out the identity of the killer? Will there be a second series?
There are certainly enough unanswered questions by the end of the current series to warrant a second run.