ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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​​​​​​​Changing Ways of Watching Content

But Has Anything Changed?

Kaleidoscope stands out for narrating a single story using multiple episodes that can be watched in any manner or order, pushing the boundaries of non-linearity.

The over-the-top platform Netflix launched a new web-series titled Kaleidoscope in January, claiming to redefine the idea of series-watching. The single-season show is considered unique as its episodes can be watched in any order or sequence, departing from the traditional way of watching something. The episodes, therefore, are not numbered and do not have specific titles but are randomly assigned the names of different colours. Though the creators of the series suggest that its viewers keep the “white” episode for the end, it is still not compulsory. It will convey a single story of a heist even if its episodes are watched in any order. However, considering how the events are put forth in every episode, one wonders whether such a non-chronological way of watching makes any practical difference to the viewing experience of the series or in the world of films and digital storytelling.

Created by Eric García and starring Giancarlo Esposito and Rufus Sewell, Kaleidoscope garnered criticism for using a clichéd and “annoying” storyline. Though there are numerous ways of watching the series, some critics feel that howsoever it is watched, it would give the viewers the same feel and experience, beating the purpose of non-linearity. While the storyline seems interesting to others, it is ultimately the only possibility and novelty of a non-linear viewing that makes the series unique for them too. The “violet” episode of the eight-episode series narrates something that happened 24 years before the heist, stating the robbers’ motivation. The “green” and “yellow” episodes depict incidents six and seven years before, focusing on how the robbers planned to execute the heist. While the “orange” episode deals with what happened three weeks before, all the episodes also touch upon lost love, vengeance, rebellion, and complex relationships between multiple characters. Similarly, the “blue” and “red” episodes tell the story of incidents three weeks and five days before, highlighting the final rounds of preparations. The “pink” episode shows what happened to the robbers the day after the heist, while the “white” captures the entire act.

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Updated On : 19th Jul, 2023
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