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Netflix series Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness is like a terrible cutscene you can’t skip

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I love Resident Evil for a lot of reasons. The survival horror, the puzzles, the atmosphere, the settings. But the plot? Rarely. Maybe never. This is a series that is dense with lore, spanning every medium imaginable, yet repeatedly fails to tell a compelling story. In the games, that’s fine: you know once the ponderous cutscenes finish you’ll be picking the controller up and fighting a giant tentacle monster. But in Infinite Darkness, a 4-part animated miniseries available now on Netflix, there is no game to escape into. It’s a long cutscene you can’t skip, and it feels like a return to the series’ worst habits after RE7 and Village worked so hard to breathe new life into it.

Set in 2006 between the events of Resident Evil 4 and 5, Infinite Darkness reunites Leon S. Kennedy and Claire Redfield—although the pair don’t share much screen time, which feels like a wasted opportunity. After a hacking attempt on the White House, followed by a contained zombie outbreak, Leon is sent to investigate. Meanwhile, Claire is helping refugees as a member of the human rights agency TerraSave, and discovers evidence of bioweapon experiments in the fictional war-torn country of Penamstan. These two plot threads are linked—which is explained in detail by the many scenes of people standing around in dark rooms talking to each other.

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