So Mr OneBigStressball and I have recently gotten into watching documentaries together – because as you know within every couple there must be a series you watch together no matter what and there is never an excuse for one person to skip ahead of the other, lest a fight ensue and silent treatment begins until the other has caught up on episodes.
We’ve been exhausting the crime documentaries that Netflix has to offer, and were intrigued by the new ‘Dark Tourist’ that was being advertised as a new Netflix Original.
I am usually a fan of Netflix Originals, and persuaded Mr OneBigStressball to start watching this series with me, as we ourselves are drawn to the weird and wonderful things the world has to offer, and have been cannibal-cave hunting ourselves at one point.
In a nutshell, Dark Tourist is a series in which New Zealand reporter David Farrier trots his way around the globe to various tourist destinations and attractions that are, let’s say, off the beaten track and are aimed at tourists who have a particular taste for the extraordinary.
Tours round radioactive sites in Japan; visiting white supremacy neighbourhoods in South Africa; a birthday party with a group of vampires; as well as a house where you go to to endure hours upon hours of torture and humiliation… you name it, David Farrier will show you where to go for it.
This series is great – most of it is light entertainment, opening the viewer’s horizons to attractions abroad they’ve never even thought could exist, let alone wanted to go and visit… but there is an underlying element of darkness to it.
Farrier explores the mindsets and opinions of people who are making money still, 55 years on from his death, from the assassination of JFK. He questions who in their right minds would go on a tour where they’d be exposed to radiation levels more than 5 times the level of that in Chernobyl, and he delves into the world of people who genuinely wholeheartedly believe they are vampires and require the blood of other human beings to be able to survive. Not to mention he hangs out with the real life right-hand-man of Pablo Escobar. Yep. The actual hitman who was employed by the Pablo Escobar.
I have to say though, with his geeky and boyish manner of interviewing people, and his daringness to hurl himself into uncomfortable situations and just get stuck in, David Farrier’s documentary rings similar to those of Louis Theroux, all of which I have binge watched many times, including his latest film My Scientology Movie . He even gets called out at once point by a Charles Manson fan as a Louis-lookalike, and it’s true, they look very similar indeed.
Dark Tourist is a series that will leave you wondering whether or not you want to go off and do normal touristy stuff on your next holiday, or if you want to be a bit quirky and go and worship the Saint of Death or watch a real life exorcism, and I can 100% confirm that if you are a Louis Theroux fan and don’t really mind the Kiwi accent, you will thoroughly enjoy it.
Has anyone else seen it?