The Continental: From the world of John Wick, an explosive series to watch
After unveiling its official trailer at the end of August, the exciting three-act, 90-minute series, The Continental: From the World of John Wick, which explores the origins of the iconic assassins’ hotel in the famous world of the big-screen hero played by Keanu Reeves, is officially released today, 22 September, in Canada on Prime Video.
The Continental: From the world of John Wick, an introduction to the world of famous films
A word of warning before we begin, speaking of the famous actor, no you won’t see Keanu Reeves or any mention of the John Wick film series, other than some famous phrases from the series, but I’ll let you be surprised. Set 30 to 40 years before the films, the series is seen through the eyes of young Winston Scott, played by Colin Woodell who takes the place of the talented Ian McShane, who is drawn into the hell of 1970s New York to confront a past he thought he’d left behind. Winston then embarks on a deadly race through the hotel’s mysterious underworld, in a harrowing attempt to take over the hotel where he will eventually take his throne, not without difficulty. Charon’s character, played by Ayomide Adegun who reprises the role of the late Lance Reddick, is a welcome addition.
The Continental: From the world of John Wick: Two eras influencing each other
The story of The Continental: From the World of John Wick takes us back in time to 1955, where we get a glimpse of Winston Scott’s youth (the events of this period will have a major influence on what happens next), and to the 1970s, where most of the action takes place.
At the start of the series, we find Winston Scott in London, after a traumatic event that has put him in the crosshairs of the law, drinking Louis XIII and meeting important people—if you’ve followed the series at all, you’ll know that Mr. Scott is a great fan of cognac. The handsome, intelligent, calm and composed young man is a shrewd businessman who thinks outside the box, and that’s how it will be throughout the series. It’s when an underworld kingpin from his past, Cormac (played by Mel Gibson), sends him in search of his estranged brother Frankie that he makes his somewhat forced return to the Big Apple.
The secondary characters
It is with them that Winston will make or break the alliances necessary to his plan and his survival.
You may be wondering what happens to Charon when we meet him as a young man, he is Cormac’s trusted assistant. Over the course of the series of events, Charon’s loyalty will be put to the test and he will have to choose between his protector and a family he could find.
Speaking of Cormac, he’s an intimidating force, ruthless, brutal, but capable of charm, he’s a New York City mobster and he’s the current manager of the Continental Hotel. Cormac has a history with Winston and Frankie Scott, and when Frankie (Ben Robson) steals an object of immense value to Cormac’s superiors (the High Table), Cormac drags Winston into the world of crime. We follow Cormac as his desperation grows and his madness and anger boil over.
Speaking of Frankie, Winston’s older brother and a born killer. While Winston became a successful London businessman, Frankie joined the army and was sent to Vietnam. On his return, Frankie becomes one of Cormac’s most trusted men, before stealing a priceless artefact from the heart of the Continental Hotel, triggering a plot that will reunite him with his brother Winston. Little does Frankie know that his act of defiance will alter the balance of power at the Continental Hotel for years to come.
Other important alliances are at the heart of the story, including the one with Miles and Lou. Lou is an intelligent, fearless martial arts expert who runs the dojo that her father left to her and her brother, Miles. Unfortunately, the dojo is a money pit and Lou reluctantly agrees to work with her brother in his dangerous arms smuggling ring. Always a pacifist, Lou refuses to use firearms, but that credo is about to be put to the test. Miles, on the other hand, is tough, loyal and intelligent. He’s a Vietnam veteran who got into arms dealing while fighting overseas in a war he didn’t want to fight and for a country that didn’t respect him as a black man. Miles sells arms with his comrades Frankie and Lemmy, as well as with his sister Lou, who is not very enthusiastic.
Of course you’ll discover other alliances that will have an impact on the series, but I want to let you discover some of them for yourself.
A summary of the first episode without spoilers
As I said earlier, it begins in 1955 in New York, where we see young Frankie and Winston in troubled waters. Later we find the two brothers, one in New York, at the Continental, and the other in London. While Frankie is being hunted by Cormac for stealing a precious object from the Continental, Winston is brought back to New York by Cormac to find his brother. In search of his brother, Winston borrows a Mustang, a nod to the original film series. It’s not necessarily a happy reunion, but it ends on a high note, at least not for everyone.
A summary of the second episode without spoilers
In the follow-up episode, Winston recruits a team to take down Cormac and The Continental following a serious incident in the first episode. As they travel through the treacherous underworld of the Great Table, they evade an NYPD detective who manages to infiltrate The Continental. To carry out their plan, they need an infiltrator in the hotel and the help of an underground gang, the basis of what you saw in the John Wick film series. Cormac, warned of their intentions, risks thwarting their plans…
A summary of the third episode without spoilers
Winston’s team fractures as they struggle to carry out their plan… not to mention the other enemies lurking nearby. Cormac’s men kidnap Winston but he and his team manage to launch an all-out assault on the hotel. Just as Winston is about to succeed, Cormac loses his head and threatens to blow up the place to stop him taking the Continental… To be continued.
The music in this series is incredible and you’ll find some great hits from the ’70s that will immerse you in the more than perfect atmosphere, not to mention the style of dress of the characters, both female and male. In short, The Continental: Based on the World of John Wick is a total success, in my opinion, even if I was already a fan of the atmosphere created in the previous chapters.
The first episode is out this Friday, September 22 in Canada, France and several other countries on Prime Video (and on Peacock in the US), and the following two will then be broadcast every week. Each episode lasts around 1 hour 30 minutes and is packed with action. There’s very little downtime, and plenty of action and twists and turns.
You can participate in The Continental experience in New York until October 8, 2023, get your tickets here.