Review: 'Straight Forward' Season 1: Crime Thriller Armed With Heart + Twists

“Straight Forward” is as its title suggests a direct hit on the senses. It has it all. Action, intrigue, romance, and fantastic scenery by way of its Denmark/New Zealand setting. You really cannot go wrong with this eight-episode crime thriller.

The show about cons and theft has stolen this viewer’s heart. As a fan of the genre, you sometimes fear it can lose its charms. However, “Straight Forward” is a prime example of why it remains such a favorite. The Acorn TV series gets it all right. From small-town swindling to international adventure, every avenue is covered.


Without giving too much away, “Straight Forward” follows Sylvia (Cecilie Stenspil). A career con-woman and mom to a teenage daughter. After a devastating twist, she decides to take revenge against the crime boss responsible.

Said crime boss, Ravn (Mark Mitchinson), does not take it well and his own hopes of retribution set in. Sylvia has a talented team behind her and complicating matters for her, so does Ravn. Who is keeping score? Everyone. Including an eager cop.

Many commonly treaded plot threads from the subgenre of con games are explored here. The rebellious teenage daughter who never does what she is told. As well as the con artist with a heart of gold. How well these motifs are approached is what makes all the difference when it comes to a series’ quality. “Straight Forward” nails it head-on.

The series is fun, suspenseful, and engaging. There are elaborate and subtle cons that play throughout. All of them destined to keep viewers on their toes. Cecilie Stenspil’s performance makes rooting for Sylvia, and against all of her foes come naturally. All of which is not as easy as it may sound.


As a whole, the show is extraordinarily well-cast. Actress Maria Boda having the particularly tricky task of playing Sylvia's daughter, Ida, who is not-so-likable on paper. Boda somehow manages to make you empathize with Ida’s point of view. All the while, leaving you with the hope she can come to her senses.

It is an impressive feat that every actor is not capable of, and “Straight Forward” benefits from her turn greatly. Likewise, Huss, the integral computer genius on Sylvia’s team provides a terrific spine for the series. Actor Arlo Green portrays him with multiple layers. A hacker with equal parts, heart, and smarts.

Stopping short of ten episodes, the show manages to never lose its momentum. It has a cohesive handle on its pace. There are no scenes that drag or fail to contribute to the story. Another notable rarity.

Enough positive things cannot be said about “Straight Forward.” It is gripping and makes for an immersive binge-watching experience. I cannot help hoping there will be more in store.

Rating: 8.5/10

“Straight Forward” Season 1 is currently streaming on Acorn TV.

[Featured Image by Acorn TV]

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