Sweaty Gerard Depardieu is watchable but Netflix’s Marseille is a hot mess

This cliched French political drama is close to an undercooked soufflé

Gerard Depardieu: poor lighting and bad make-up leave him looking like a crumpled Yorkshire pudding that’s been put into a suit

Gerard Depardieu: poor lighting and bad make-up leave him looking like a crumpled Yorkshire pudding that’s been put into a suit

When writing about Netflix’s new French-made political drama Marseille, I wanted to avoid the kind of lazy caricatures of French life or society that are ubiquitous to such discussions.

Then, 15 minutes into the first episode, Gerard Depardieu’s character shrugs while comparing the strain of a bureaucrat’s life to that of juggling a wife and a mistress. It quickly becomes clear that I can’t avoid those dog-eared tropes about the French because, zut alors, Marseille makes no such effort itself.

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