‘The Resort’ Is the New Summer Mystery That Could Be the Next ‘White Lotus’

Did you love the dazzling rom-com Palm Springs? Similarly, are you obsessed with Cristin Milioti’s endless charm in projects like How I Met Your Mother and Made For Love? Were you a big fan of The Good Place? And, most importantly, Booksmart hive, do you wish you owned one of those Jared wearing a Jared wearing a Jared shirts?

If you answered yes to any of the above — or even if you’re just looking for a damn good mystery saga — the perfect show has arrived. Peacock has just launched The Resorta thrilling combination of mystery and rom-com, starring internet faves like Cristin Milioti, William Jackson-Harper, Skyler Gisondo, and Nick Offerman.

The Resort comes from Palm Springs co-writer Andy Siara, and hints of the trippy Hulu rom-com lurk in every suite of the new series. Replace carefree Andy Samberg with a jittery William Jackson Harper, and that cavernous time portal with a murder at an abandoned resort, and you’ve got this new show. The first three episodes are already on Peacock, with more coming weekly on Thursdays. In other words, here’s your next great summer binge.

In the series, Emma (Milioti) and Noah (Jackson-Harper) are a couple trying to revive their relationship by taking a trip to the Mayan Riviera. By the back half of the first episode, they stumble on a different way to revive the spark. No couples therapy needed. They’ll solve a decades old disappearance case instead. Relationship goals!

Emma finds a missing Motorola Razr belonging to Sam (Gisondo), who disappeared from a different resort nearly 15 years ago. (This made me think: Is there some creep out there that found my old Motorola Razr and is now stalking me? Where did all of our Motorola Razrs go?) Perusing through deleted messages and photographic evidence on the phone, Emma and Noah make a big detour on the trip, heading to the now-defunct resort where Sam and his new lover, Violet (Nina Bloomgarden), went missing.

Apart from the glorious cast, the big draw of The Resort is the menacing-yet-luxurious aesthetic of the abandoned hotel. There is something so alluring about a deserted, possibly haunted hotel. The Resort navigates between the 2007 version of the Oceana Vista, back when it was bustling, and the destroyed, apocalyptic 2022 version.

The show’s central relationships — Noah and Emma; Sam and Violet — also kept me hooked. After 10 years together, things are stale between Noah and Emma. Nothing’s wrong, but nothing’s really right, either. They love each other, but they don’t really like each other, and they’re far too tired to part ways and start dating all over again. We see less of Sam and Violet, though their fresh, youthful spirit is a great contrast to the other pair.

Neither couple is quite as captivating as the enemies-to-lovers in Palm Springs; still, with The Resort, Siara proves that he has a knack for drafting romance arcs void of any boring clichés. And he once again found a way for Milioti to show off her star power di lei. The actress is a fiery ball of boredom and intrigue in both mind-bending saga.

Viewers will undoubtedly make a connection between The Resort and The White Lotus, HBO’s 2021 smash hit from Mike White. While the basic premise is similar — a murder case casting a dark shadow over a glamorous paradise — the tones of the respective series are strikingly different. Whereas The White Lotus is a sharp satire, The Resort leans more into mystery and eeriness. It’s certainly not as meme-able as The White Lotus; alas, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Peacock began rolling out The Resort with the first three episodes last week, teeing up the core mystery of the saga. In all honesty, with each episode coming in at around a half-hour, it’s a bit of a long set-up, but the pay-off is worth it. Get through the winding exposition of the show and you’re in for a great twist in Episode 4, which comes out Thursday. You’re going to need to watch the series to fully understand — but think Memento.

It’s also another series that makes the case for finally shelling out for a Peacock subscription.

In the thick of summer, Peacock actually has the best programming for chill nights in the cool breeze of AC. After you binge The Resort (which will have new episodes every week through the end of August), Peacock has the entire Below Deck collection streaming, with new episodes of this season’s Below Deck Med docking weekly. You’ll also find Love Island USA on the platform, a perfect summery vibe to carry you through the hottest weeks of the year.

The Resort has chosen to end most of its weekly releases on cliffhangers, too. With a weekly release pattern — unlike other suspenseful series, sorry Stranger Things—The series has presented itself as one of the summer’s most gripping thrillers. And with a tinge of romance, too? It’s what we deserve.

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