Love, Music, and Complexity: “SHE Must Be Obeyed” Offers a Mixed Bag of Entertainment
Before we dive into the melody of the series, it’s important to acknowledge the star power it brings to the forefront. Featuring industry veterans like Patience Ozokwor, “SHE Must Be Obeyed” pays homage to the golden era of Nollywood, instantly evoking memories of beloved classics. The lineup of seasoned actors adds a layer of nostalgia that fans of the industry will undoubtedly appreciate.
Musical films have been somewhat of an anomaly in Nollywood, a genre still finding its footing compared to the well-established tradition of musical stage plays. Despite the challenges, a few exceptions like “Lara and the Beat” and “Palava” have demonstrated the potential of this genre. “SHE Must Be Obeyed” steps onto this stage with the promise of a unique experience, bridging the gap between music and storytelling.
The series unfolds the life of Siyanbola Adewale, known as SHE and played by Funke Akindele herself. SHE is a multifaceted character, seemingly good on the surface but concealing a toxic and unfriendly side. She’s thrilled by the success of fellow female artiste Tito (Vee Iye) but is also quick to scheme her downfall.
Beyond the glitz and glamour of the music industry, “SHE Must Be Obeyed” delves into the darker aspects of fame and ambition. Childhood trauma and its lasting effects come into focus, offering viewers a deeper understanding of SHE’s relentless drive for the spotlight. It’s a compelling exploration of how personal history shapes our pursuit of success.
One of the series’ undeniable strengths lies in its musical performances. These scenes are portrayed with meticulous attention to detail, featuring impressive choreography and spot-on lip-syncing. They provide an immersive and authentic concert-like experience, enhancing the viewer’s engagement.
However, the series falters when it comes to dialogue and character development. Some lines feel forced and cliché, failing to effectively advance the plot or deliver humor. While the cast delivers decent performances, some actors struggle to fully connect with their characters, resulting in moments that lack authenticity.
“SHE Must Be Obeyed” is a mixed bag of entertainment. On one hand, it succeeds in shedding light on the toxic side of the music industry, exploring themes like jealousy, obsession, and childhood trauma. It offers viewers catchy soundtracks that mirror the protagonist’s obsession with the spotlight.
On the other hand, the series often feels chaotic and disorganized in its storytelling. It introduces numerous characters but primarily revolves around SHE, leaving the audience with limited emotional connections to the supporting cast. The plot progression occasionally feels illogical and abrupt, leaving viewers with a sense of confusion.
Despite its musical focus, the series disappoints in terms of visual and audio quality. The lighting can be harsh, and the audio occasionally lacks precision, surprising considering the subject matter’s connection to the music industry. The series misses an opportunity to create a visually and sonically captivating experience.
In the grand scheme of Funke Akindele’s impressive filmography, “SHE Must Be Obeyed” stands as an ambitious but flawed project. While it attempts to tackle weighty societal issues, it struggles to deliver a cohesive and engaging narrative. It serves as a reminder that exploring serious subject matter doesn’t automatically guarantee a great film.
As an influential figure in Nollywood, Funke Akindele has earned her stripes, but perhaps it’s time for a creative hiatus. “SHE Must Be Obeyed” feels draining to watch at times, and a break might provide the filmmaker with fresh inspiration and perspective.
“SHE Must Be Obeyed” is a series that swings between moments of entertainment and frustration. It’s a symphony of ambition that doesn’t always hit the right notes but still offers glimpses of musical brilliance. As the credits roll, viewers are left with a cacophonous mix of emotions, much like the music industry that it attempts to dissect.
“SHE Must Be Obeyed” is currently available for streaming on Prime Video. Whether it’s a harmonious masterpiece or a discordant cacophony, that judgment is ultimately in the ears of the beholder.
Release Date: September 29, 2023
Runtime: 1 hour per episode
Streaming Service: Prime Video
Directors: Funke Akindele and Abdulrasheed Bello (JJC Skillz)
Cast: Funke Akindele, Nancy Isime, Abdulateef Adedimeji, Akah Anani, Veeiye, Waje, Patience Ozokwor, Rachael Okonkwo, and Mike Ezuronye