I do not know yet, I am conflicted about this. Was waiting with anticipation for:
Comrade Detective aka Tovarasul militian (previously named Iron Fisting, good riddance of that title that sounded like brutal porn)
6 episodes for Amazon. A police show spoof, shot in Romania in Romanian. Then all dubbed in English.
When you get Florin Piersic jr.(Gregor--- Gregor ???! Anghel) to be dubbed by Channing Tatum, there's reason to be proud. For Piersic, who's doing a real serious job.
But the screenwriters of this novelty concept series (as novel as Woody Allen-s 1966s Whats up with Tiger Lily whre he spoofed a Japanese film), haven't done their Romanian/RSR / 80's communism homework seriously. At all. So for Romanians this might be offendable and bad or just dumb. Of course we're just the stand-ins of this spoof series, and I don't know if the American audience bought that it "was discovered" and dubbed after 5 years of digging for it and with the cooperation of "Romanian Film Archive". And yes, it would have been cool to have a series like that in those years. But we didn't. And if we did it sure wouldn't look like this.
RULE #1 of parody/spoof- Know thy subject (and like thy subject as well).
And yes, we're happy this is not Comrade Detective from Moscow but Nikita, Joseph, Ivan and other names are just poor bullshit (all credits of Romania crew is made out of Animal names, up to director Bebelus Pisicuta, -Baby Pussy more likely, or Puss), sorry but in Romanian it spells & sounds just like crap ..and NOT funny) and the captions in Romanian look like they are done with Google Translate. It's obvious their references were Russian (USSR) and any other than Romanian. Plus the buddy cop influences of 80's flicks- 48 Hrs., Red Heat, even Seven (a dinenr scene is lifted directly from there).
Production values are great -and there's a catch, that is where the professionals in the film industry had greenlight and it worked, and btw, who gives a shit in America if it's Dacias with the 4 numbers licence, or b&w TV's and the right uniforms, but they could hire a consultant to improve the accuracy of the plot and names and other anachronisms or goofs- (remember the case of War Dogs last year and Albanian being spoken in Romanian ?, the Bucharest /Budapest syndrome- yep but Holly wood doesn't give a fuck, right?) and it's cool to see Gabriel Spahiu in a white suit with a big white hat (Cuban Fedora !)- an extended cameo and a reminder that great talented Romanian actors have made a career (and money to built houses and shit ;) in playing whatever 9th banana in whatever production is thrown here by any company-and yes, we'll take it. No shame in it, also no glory...
The Cool stuff- The Reagan mask (via Point Break ?), well it adds up to the Reagan era (was it really a Reagan mask on the time of his administration ?), the surreal Jordache jeans plot, the Marx Communist party book (signed by Marx -probably Groucho ;), the Monopoly game, the mention of Nadia Comaneci and the obsession of gymnastics and...wrestling, the music of Adrian Enescu (from Ringul 7 more).
-Va urma=to be continued...(there are 6 episodes to watch, anyway, ep.2 a vast improvment over ep. 1)
-it gets better and better and finally, its a subversive surreal little gem. And funny.