Barracuda Queens

Barracuda Queens



This loosely-based-on-a-true-story mini-series is just about good enough to while away an afternoon, but not for much else


TV Show

Crime, Drama
Alva Bratt, Carsten Bjornlund, Izabella Scorupco


The Bling Ring this is not, but Barracuda Queens is still a bingeable watch about rich girls who rob

What it's about

Five young women embark on a spree of burglaries targeting their wealthy neighbors in order to pay off a steep party bill

The take

The most obvious cultural reference point for Barracuda Queens is The Bling Ring: both tell the based-on-real-life stories of a group of (mostly) wealthy young women who rob rich people’s houses. But where Sofia Coppola’s movie was rooted in a very specific era and explored the fascinating generational and psychological quirks that drove its disaffected teen burglars to do what they did, this Swedish Netflix series, at least in the first four episodes viewed for this review, makes only a half-hearted effort to evoke its ‘90s setting and takes a much soapier, less forensic approach to its story.

Here, the young women’s gateway into crime is the sky-high bill they rack up after a debauched weekend away. In need of cash to pay it off quickly, they convince themselves that they’re only robbing their wealthy neighbors to solve that problem, but other motivations soon arise. The women — who are mostly university-age, but seem closer to the protagonists of a teen drama — eventually begin to target people they have petty grievances with (like a love interest who spurns the ringleader after a one-night stand) as well as those who have wronged them more seriously (including a rapist, who gets off bizarrely lightly). The adrenaline rush of it all proves addictive for the gang, too. What’s more, for Mia (Tea Stjärne), the only member of the group not from a wealthy background, there’s also a Robin Hood-ish appeal to the burglaries, although this aspect regrettably takes something of a backseat to the girls’ escapades in the show. 

Between the gang’s crime spree and their unbelievably dysfunctional home lives, there’s enough broad drama here to keep Netflix’s autoplay function in good use. Even if it doesn’t provide keen insight, sharp nuance, or a remotely realistic plot, the show does go beyond a surface-level approach by exploring something of the girls’ inner lives, the class dynamics of their friendship group, and the shallowness of their parents’ milieu. At three hours total — and with an opening scene that teases a dramatic rise-and-fall story ahead — it all makes for a very bingeable, if ultimately forgettable, watch.

What stands out

The show takes a very loose approach to adapting the true story on which it’s based, which actually involved a group of men. In making the story about a gang of mostly spoiled rich girls instead, Barracuda Queens puts the thieves’ entitlement at its center, making it a more compelling watch than a faithful telling might have been. The girls are blind to their privileges, but the show itself is aware of that: throughout the series, we get a sense of the disconnect between Mia’s reality and the rest of the girls’, while casually racist comments from some of the parents about their domestic staff indicate that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. In keeping with Barracuda Queens’ breezy overall approach, these dynamics aren’t explored with real rigor, but the show’s efforts to reckon with its characters’ shortage of self-awareness do give it some of the introspection that the girls lack.


Add a comment

What did you think? Who should watch it?




Thursday’s Widows

The Real Housewives of a gated community in Mexico and the mystery of their husbands’ death



A level of attention to aesthetics usually reserved for the most elaborate films, mixed with a complex and relevant story, make this series from Turkey unmatched in its quality



A psychological thriller that provides insight on what drove so many young people to ISIS.



Norway's most expensive show ever is a timely thrill ride with a grim geopolitical premise.



A well-acted fact-based thriller about untangling the grip of a close-knit community


Escape at Dannemora

Based on a true prison escape story, this slow-burn suspense thriller features once-in-a-lifetime performances by a star-studded cast


The Looming Tower

A well-written thriller miniseries about the rivalry between the CIA and the FBI and how they failed to prevent 9/11.



A coming-of-age series about a teenager torn between her Romani family and her hip-hop ambitions


Wild Wild Country

Almost too outrageous to be true – this captivating true crime docuseries tells the unlikely story of an Indian cult in America


Love After Music

A fascinating biopic mini-series about the Argentine rockstar Fito Páez


Curated by humans, not algorithms.

agmtw logo

© 2023 agoodmovietowatch, all rights reserved.