After the popularity of horror anthology shows like Black Mirror and the Twilight Zone revival, Amazon Prime decided to follow suit. However, this time, the show takes a deep dive into the world of the internet few visit…or return.
Dark/Web tells the story of a computer programmer named Molly who disappears. Before that happens, she sends out mysterious e-mails to a group of old friends. Together, they hope to find her, but they also read stories she wrote about how people use the internet for many reasons including dating, ride-sharing, getting fame through Instagram, or finding a transplant heart through illegal means. The stories always wind up with very dark endings. Here’s the trailer…
Michael Nardelli helped create the show. He writes most of the eight episodes and plays James, one of Molly’s friends. He says he and his brother Tim and co-producer Mario Mascione grew up on Twilight Zone and Outer Limits, and wanted to do something similar. “Luckily we eventually realized the best container for all of it,” he said, “was the dark web because it’s real. We were all fascinated by it. There’s tons of stories coming out of it every day. It’s relevant. It’s topical. I fell like it’ll generate terrifying stories for years to come because it’s un-policed and not going anywhere.”
Noemi Gonzalez, who plays Molly, says her character is very unique, and her attempts to make things right will affect her destiny and her friends. “She is complex and she is full on conviction,” she says. “She’s very layered, obviously, the fact that she can write these dope things.” She was careful not to reveal too much, but compares Molly to a super hero.
The cast is mostly newcomers, since it’s produced by a small independent company. It has some familiar faces including Gabriel Luna (soon to be in Terminator: Dark Fate) Julie Benz and Robert Davi.
The cast also includes Clare Kramer, a favorite with Buffy fans. She’ll be featured in an episode that looks at online dating. She says she’s never done it, but did some research on what it’s like. “When I approached playing her, it wasn’t about my own experiences,” she said, “but what it would be like if I was going through these things.” She pointed out that people looking at other people’s online presences isn’t too far off from online dating.
Kramer has been very busy in the online world, including co-founding Geek Nation and producing a podcast. She also knows how people use the internet to connect with others. “You can reach like-minded groups of people that you can’t reach in person,” she says, “You can reach groups that you can affiliate with, whether it is sexual orientation or a group that you are interested in the same movies religiously with. There’s very positive usage of the internet and it is a connector of people.”
On the other hand, she says people use the internet to troll on people, movies or anything else. “As an artist, I think you really have to be cognizant of who you’re reading a review from, and you have to be cognizant of the positive and the negative comments,” she says. “One thing that having a voice online does, not necessarily with reviewers but in general, is that it gives a certain anonymity to the person. (And) when you have that anonymity you are less responsible for your voice or your actions. It’s really important not only for yourself to recognize that but when you are reading opinions not to take them either way too seriously as an artist, because it’s just access to way more opinions than we had 20 years ago.”
All eight episodes of Dark/Web are now available on Amazon Prime