In January I read Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald and was thrilled to discover Amazon was producing a series based on the book. Season one of Z: The Beginning of Everything is now available via Amazon Prime. The first season is 10 episodes and each episode is 30 minutes long.
Christina Ricci stars as Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald, the youngest daughter of a judge in Montgomery, Alabama. Despite her strict upbringing, Zelda has a definite mischievous streak.
To me, Christina Ricci will always be Wednesday (The Addams Family) or Roberta (Now and Then). I was having a tough time seeing her as Zelda. I felt like I was watching Christina Ricci temporarily dressed up as someone else.
Swedish actor David Hoflin plays F. Scott Fitzgerald. You may recognize him from his role as Mark Skokie on American Crime.
I was expecting the person who played Fitzgerald to be much more charismatic and alluring. I found Hoflin's portrayal to be a bit annoying, especially in the scenes where he is sparring with Zelda.
My favorite character in this first season was Scott's friend, Townsend, played by Corey Cott. He was sweet and charming and seemed to have a more sincere connection and chemistry with Christina Ricci as Zelda.
The series stays very true to the book, with one exception. In the novel, in the first few weeks after Scott and Zelda meet, he throws her an 18th birthday party, which is her first glimpse into the lavish lifestyle she would lead with him. For the show, they decided to omit this, which felt like removing a key building block in the foundation of their relationship.
Season one follows the couple from their first meeting, to their wedding, to their move to New York, to a summer in Westport, CT and then back to Montgomery (when they've completely run out of money).
In the final scene, Zelda reveals that she is pregnant. When the credits rolled, I found myself hoping this was just the first of multiple seasons. I want to see Zelda and Scott's time in Paris, Scott's relationship with Earnest Hemingway and the couple's life once they welcome their daughter, Scottie.
If you're looking for a new series to stream, this is a quick and easy binge. The best part of the show is the costumes and scenery, which will have you longing for an invitation to a 20s-themed party.