Thank you, Andy Burns! My boss, knowing that I love all things that go bump into the night, had recommended that I watch a horror series on Netflix. I was immediately hooked and watch all eight episodes in two days. What did I like about Brand New Cherry Flavor and why do I want you to watch it? Check it out
Before I explain what Brand New Cherry Flavor is about, we need to talk about its creator, Nick Antosca. Mr. Antosca is an American film and television writer, and novelist who also created and was the showrunner for one of the best horror anthology series on television: Channel Zero.
Channel Zero was featured on the Syfy channel from 2016 to 2019 when Syfy foolishly cancelled what was a true classic fright banquet for we horror aficionados. I gave up hope of ever finding another series as good as Channel Zero…that is until Andy recommended Brand New Cherry Flavor.
Brand New Cherry Flavor is an American horror series created by Nick Antosca and Lenore Zion and based on a Todd Grimson novel of the same name. The series stars Rosa Salazar, Catherine Keener, Eric Lange, Manny Jacinto, and Jeff Ward. There are eight episodes in this season…which covers the first 6o or so pages in the book…so I am praying to the Netflix Gods that there is a second, third, and even fourth season to relish.
The series begins with Lisa N. Nova (Rosa Salazar) arriving in early 90’s LA with her first movie short. She has an appointment to meet with a famous producer, Lou Burke (Eric Lange). He wolfs down his lunch as he makes his offer to produce Lisa’s short into a full feature film with Lisa directing. Lisa, who was born in Brazil, and who has never seen her mother, is ecstatic about the prospect of her hard work being successful, but her joy is short lived, because as we all know…Hollywood does not treat its female filmmakers equal to their male counterparts.
Lisa stays with her friend Code (Manny Jacinto) and his girlfriend, Christine (Hannah Levien) until Lisa is able to get her own apartment. She becomes friends with the very handsome Roy Hardaway (Jeff Ward) who tries to coach Lisa in the trials and tribulations of working in movie land.
After Lou makes a pass at Lisa, she rebukes him, and all hell…and I literally mean all hell breaks loose. Lou hires someone else to direct Lisa’s film. Lisa is blackballed from her own film. This is when Lisa meets up with a mysterious woman known as Boro (Catherine Keener).
Catherine Keener is amazing as the Voodoo witch/demon who whips up guinea pig stews and keeps a few zombies on hand to do her dirty work. We don’t learn until the sixth episode what Boro truly is…and what a story this is all on its own. When Lisa asks Boro for help, there is a payment which involves vomiting up live kittens. Don’t ask. Just watch.
I do not want to reveal too much about the series, but let’s just say this: once Lisa decides to seek revenge on Lou Burke, everything goes sideways, and quickly. You have to be very careful with curses because they have a nasty habit of backfiring. No one is safe, not even Boro. Innocent people are dragged into the feud between Lisa and Lou including Lou’s young son, Jonathan (Daniel Doheny) and Mary (Siena Werber) the actress who starred in Lisa’s short film.
When Lisa realizes that the mystery about her missing mother and the nightmare creatures, who have now planted themselves firmly into her life, are connected…Lisa books a flight to Brazil. Watch Brand New Cherry Flavor on Netflix. As for me, I am heading out to Barnes and Noble to buy the book.