“Elite” Season 6 Review: It Could Have Been an E-Mail

Elite season 6 review Isadora
Isadora trying to hold on to hope in Elite Season 6

Having watched the entire eight-episode-long Elite season 6, all I can think about is how everything that happened could have been summarized in a single e-mail sent out to those still watching the series.

Spoiler Warning: This review of Elite season 6 contains spoilers. Consider yourself warned!

Trigger Warning: This review of Elite season 6 talks about sexual assault, rape, domestic violence, abortion, and gay bashing!

The premiere episode of the sixth season opened with another possible murder as we see Ivan getting gravely injured during a hit-and-run outside a club. We don’t know who was behind the wheel and the narrative throughout the rest of the season jumped from that moment onwards to the past as the writers slowly revealed the true culprit.

Was I surprised by the final reveal? I sure was! But that still didn’t do enough to repair the lackluster writing featured in the rest of the story. One of the things that became very clear was how the writers were trying to take a more mature and serious route by talking about some hard-hitting issues involving sexual assault, homophobia, racism, and domestic violence. The current season also toned down the sex scenes. However, it also became very clear that you won’t find any deep conversations. The issues were definitely raised, but only at a surface level.

With Samuel dying in the previous season, the sixth outing had Ari, Mencia, and Patrick trying to experience normal school life with their murderer of a father in jail. Benjamin’s all about making Ari realize how important it was for him to be set free so they could be a family again. He needed his kids to speak in his favor. It was Ari’s time to assert herself on her younger siblings and get them to do what Benjamin deemed right.

I liked seeing Ari trying and failing to cope with Samuel’s death and being weighed down by the pressure Benjamin put on her. Ari’s storyline provided opportunities for some good character work. However, the writers seemed interested in something else. They showed Ari drowning her sorrows in alcohol, going through an abortion storyline, and having a crush on Nico, a “new” student who also happened to be a transgender man.

The writers had Nico and Ari at odds with each other in the beginning due to Ari basically being casually homophobic with him. I liked how Nico called Ari out on her behavior and how he wanted to be seen as more than just a transgender person. But then again, the writers didn’t really give Nico much to do instead of constantly reminding the audience that he was was indeed transgender. Nico’s entire storyline was embroiled in his experiences as a transgender teen. Like what more was there to Nico? The writers of Elite surely won’t be telling you.

The same held true for Cruz and his journey of publically coming out as a queer soccer player. Every word Cruz spoke was related to his queerness. His coming out story led him to be booed during a game and eventually he died during a gay bashing outside his house. I understand the importance of showcasing the homophobia present in sports, especially in soccer (a very timely issue during the FIFA World Cup happening in Qatar), but still, the whole thing could have been handled better. In a sense, it felt like Cruz existed for a couple of episodes and then killed off just to drive another wedge between Ivan and Patrick.

Seeing the writers continue to show Patrick and Ivan’s romantic relationship as “love” was, frankly, nausea-inducing. I’m sorry, but in my opinion, there’s no “love” present in a household where Patrick has slept with Cruz and his son Ivan with Cruz still having feelings and making a move on Patrick. I’m surprised Elite didn’t go all the way and made those three an incredibly messed up throuple!

The only thing I liked about the Cruz/Patrick/Ivan situation was that after Cruz died, Ivan couldn’t make himself continue being in a relationship with Patrick. Ivan knew that Cruz’s death wasn’t Patrick’s fault. However, he couldn’t make his heart understand that, at least, not during that particular moment. Ivan needed a break from Patrick because seeing his face made him remember Cruz.

Did I feel sorry for Patrick for one second? Hell to the no! I don’t feel anything for a self-destructive force like Patrick. He played a role in breaking up Omar and Ander. And again, who the heck sleeps with their boyfriend’s father and then acts as if it wasn’t a big deal? Patrick needs therapy.

Heck! All of Benjamin’s kids need therapy. They are walking-talking personifications of toxicity. They are unable to properly manage their own emotional baggage and instead of seeking help or doing some self-reflection, they are incredibly okay with destroying others. The way Ari was all into hooking up with Ivan (again!) knowing that it would hurt her own brother was just wow. She even got pregnant in the process. Like, I said… toxic!

You have no idea how relieved I was when Elite season 6 ended with Benjamin and his kids leaving. Hopefully, they are gone for good. The entire season 6 of Elite could have been a single e-mail stating that Benjamin and his spawn had been written out of the show and the world would have been better for it.

As for the rest of the characters and the hard-hitting storytelling the writers tried to do through them, Isadora’s character arc involved some heavy stuff after she realized that her rapists won’t be seeing justice for what they did to her in season 5. The scenes where those three men walked around the school as if nothing had happened and how other students questioned Isadora’s account were quite disturbing and realistic. Even Isadora’s parents didn’t really believe her.

It made sense for Isadora to take matters into her own hands to get revenge with the help of her friends. But when all was said and done, Isadora didn’t really gain justice herself. She had to wait for one of the three men to come clean to the police. A bulk of that depended on a new character named Didac. Seeing the likelihood of Isadora ever receiving the justice she deserved hinge on her relationship with a new love interest Didac felt weird. It also depended, as I just mentioned, on one of the men (who was also Didac’s friend) confessing to the police. It was as if Isadora didn’t really have any agency to get what she was owed.

The only scene I liked from that storyline was how Didac told his friend that if he (Didac) was actually a good person, he would have dragged his own childhood friend to the police station for what he did. Didac felt bad that he wasn’t brave enough yet.

Countless men around the world know how their friends, siblings, or other people they are close with have sexually assaulted women, but a majority of them don’t want to get involved in helping those women seek justice. And that’s just an unfortunate truth.

The domestic abuse storyline was introduced through two new characters, an online celebrity couple named Sara and Raul. The writers gave Mencia something to do by having her link with Sara and Raul and realizing that something’s off about them.

With Isadora’s storyline focusing on vile men, I would have liked the writers to do something different and reveal that it was Sara who was physically and emotionally abusing Raul, especially when domestic abuse storylines in media where men are being abused by women are close to nonexistent. But oh well, it looks like Sara and Raul are here to stay after how the show ended. Here’s hoping Sara gets the help she needs now that Mencia’s gone.

Racism was talked about through Bilal and a new character named Rocio. And while I’m all for the racism Black individuals face, especially in spaces filled with non-Black and incredibly rich folk, as with every other issue being talked about in Elite season 6, the writers didn’t really say anything. There’s a difference between creating three-dimensional Black or PoC characters experiencing racism and making racism the only defining part of said characters. Sigh!

Anyway, Elite season 6 ended with a cliffhanger that could mean even more deaths in the upcoming season 7. If for some reason you are interested, you can go ahead and watch the eight-episodes-long sixth chapter on Netflix. It was released on November 18, 2022.

In some good news, the seventh season will be bringing back the OG character Omar. And yes, as of now, I do plan to watch the seventh season of Elite.

It can’t get any worse than this, right?… Right?

Author: Farid-ul-Haq

Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.

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