What makes Netflix's Bodyguard so successful? An intimate viewing

Essay, 2019

25 Pages, Grade: 1,0

Mela Z. (Author)

Abstract or Introduction

What makes Bodyguard so successful? — An intimate viewing

When, in due time after watching, Netflix’s Bodyguard simply didn’t fade out of my mind, it made me a little uneasy. I felt compelled to try and find out what was so compelling in there. The investigation then became a bit of an obsession in itself, which no doubt ran away with me sometimes, turning into some dubious lanes here and there. Nonetheless it was enjoyable, as I hope it is for you, too, to read.

Without knowing the whole first season (six hours), none of this will make sense to you. So watch first, then enjoy reading the thematic and psychological theories about it. For plot theories or discussion of realism/plausibility of the action parts: look elsewhere!

My purpose was to look for meaning (staying in the characters’ points of view for a lot of the time) rather than to find fault. The meaning offered by a completed work is usually not identical with what was intended by its makers. And meaning doesn’t always ermerge by design; sometimes things just fall into place. Every interpretation that’s well reasoned is justified (and can be challenged by further argument). This is just one viewer’s view.


Part I: The main character p. 2

assumes that underneath the bodyguard’s professional demeanor there is a very sensitive and even childlike soul, and it shows up in his body quite a lot if you know where to look. We delve into reading the bodyguard’s mind and body, and end up being a bit unsure about who protects whom here but being a lot surer about our humanity.

Part II: The relationship p. 11

tries to draw near to what gets this unlikely pair together at all—a theory being that for him it is a very bodily need (but not primarily a sexual one) associated with his stress disorder. This part further points out that their relationship is visually described by two (beautifully handled) guiding themes: the touch of their hands and their (partly only symbolic) embraces.

Part III: The finale p. 21

describes a striking analogy between the bomb vest around David’s body and his inner mental powder keg of trauma, hurt and the stress of covering it up. It deals with death, tombs and the underworld (a bit like in Greek drama); and after having been there: getting back to life.


What makes Netflix's Bodyguard so successful? An intimate viewing
University of Art and Design Linz - Kunstuniversität Linz
Catalog Number
ISBN (eBook)
Bodyguard BBC Netflix TV series interpretation
Quote paper
Mela Z. (Author), 2019, What makes Netflix's Bodyguard so successful? An intimate viewing, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/476900


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