Beef is a satire on the demands and pressures from modern day living can have on a person. In this case can have on two particular persons who happened to accidentally cross paths when their cars had a near miss in the parking lot of a depot outlet. That simple incident led to an ugly road rage reaction that would then trigger a chain of events that ultimately change the lives of these individuals forever.
Beef is a stunning television series unlike anything I’ve seen before. It’s strange, it’s unpredictable, it’s humorous, it’s heartbreaking, it’s mind-bending, and it’s simply fantastic! It has a largely Asian cast because the tale focuses on the Asian American community in California. The acting is awesome throughout, as is the storyline. The personalities and interactions feel so real and natural that it’s almost like witnessing a slice of life. This is due in large part to the series’ great writing and its delivery through some topnotched performances. Steven Yuen (who we originally saw in The Walking Dead) has never been better and turns forth a career-best performance here. He is matched with an equally awesome performance by Ali Wong as the other partner in crime in this tragic tale of uncontrolled anger. They are supported by a cast of Asian actors who are all so natural and believable in their roles. I had no idea there were so many outstanding Asian American performers out there!
Beef is about much more than two losers venting their rage on each other. I feel sorry for people who are unable to see beyond this and thus miss out on the opportunity to see one of the best television series available today. It ingeniously exploits this primary plot to gradually uncover a smorgasbord of modern-day social problems, particularly the effects on Millennials (those born between 1980 and 1990), also known as Generation Y. Its take on life is frequently brutally honest, conveyed with a dark humour that makes it all so digestible. The characters are all so multi dimensional. Everyone has their own good and bad points. Someone nice can still be awful at times and vice versa. That’s being human. To top it all off, the story has enough twists and turns to keep us all guessing what will happen next.
Beef is without a doubt one of my favourite series of the year, and I hope it receives the accolades it deserves when the awards season rolls around.