With most of the world living in poverty and hunger, and with the constant threat of violence, only a select few are permitted to live in the paradise promised at the Offshore.
Netflix’s 3% is a Brazilian series that follows a handful of protagonists as they compete for the chance to escape their dystopian nightmare and live the good life with the wealthy 3% of the population.
The process to be selected to get to the Offshore involves mental, emotional and physical challenges and most of the population treat the process as a religious experience to achieve a lifetime of happiness. However, not everyone believes in the process and a faction known as the Cause is working to prove the process is unfair and that the best resources should not be hoarded by a minute portion of the population.
While watching the series the audience learns why the different candidates are trying to pass the process and also how dark this test can be. While thousands of people participated in the process, not all of the rejected candidates are able to make it out alive. In watching this series the viewer is faced with question of merit, who has it and how we determine if a person is worthy of living in a utopia.
The series also explores classism and the human drive to strive for something more, while examining the methods individuals use to get ahead in life.
This show has all the interesting components to make it a captivating series; it just falls short of being a great show despite employing a last-minute plot twist. Unfortunately, the plot lags and meanders and fails to keep the viewers in their seats. Instead of bingeing on this series I would suggest more of a casual viewing for those who enjoy a dystopian tale.
Note this series is in Portuguese and is available with English subtitles or voice-overs. The show is rated TV-MA with eight 45-minute episodes.
Those who enjoyed the 3% might also like Travelers, another dystopian series on Netflix. Travelers follows a group of people who come from a nightmarish future to prevent a series of incidents that lead to the planet’s demise.