For whatever reason — probably going to point toward laziness — I don’t get around to binge-watching a whole lot of shows online. But when Juventus announced that they have collaborated with Netflix to do a documentary series based around the 2017-18 season, I pretty much had only one option that was going through my head.
The first three episodes of “First Team: Juventus” were released on Netflix on Friday. And yes, I binged it, watching all three of the 40-minute episodes in one watch without much of a break at all. (My laptop did almost die due to a low battery, so there was also that.) And seeing as I was pretty much already in the tank for this weeks before it was made available to the general public, my thoughts haven’t changed on it now that I’ve seen it.
It’s good. It’s really, really good.
You should go watch it. Go watch it now.
Go steal somebody’s password if you can. (Just kidding. That’s probably something Netflix doesn’t want us to be talking about around here.)
But, no matter how you watch the first three episodes, it’s not like I’m going to be sitting here giving a negative review of it.
See? Totally in the tank.
Netflix doesn’t hide showing Juventus players during some of this season’s low points. They’re there for the 3-0 loss to Barcelona in the Champions League group stage opener. They’re by Paulo Dybala’s side after he missed the last-minute penalty kick against Lazio that saw Juventus lose their first home league game in two years.
You obviously get the good because it’s entertaining, but you get adverse situations, too.
But the good is pretty damn good.
The obvious part that people will be interested in is the aforementioned behind-the-scenes access that those of us following Juventus from places far from Turin won’t get at all. Seeing Max Allegri break down film with the rest of his coaching staff was a short yet informative clip about how the management side of things prepare for a match in this age of technology being so plentiful. Same goes for each time they showed Allegri talking to — or, a good portion of the time, screaming at — his players during the day’s training session.
You get to see how Claudio Marchisio makes his cup of coffee after a training session and how much he enjoys sitting in a quiet home while his kids are still at school and his wife is out running errands.
You get to see Gonzalo Higuain talk about his latest return to Naples to face his former club. (And then the reception he gets when he scores what proved to be Juve’s game-winning goal in the 1-0 win over Napoli on Dec. 1.)
You get to see Federico Bernardeschi look like a total hipster, continue to learn how to play the acustic guitar and describe how important his two bulldogs are to him. (He also makes fun of himself for not knowing how to cook at all, so that was funny.)
You get to see Miralem Pjanic’s son, Edin, talk about how he ate pasta at school and tell his dad that he’s just as good of a goalkeeper as the G.O.A.T., Gigi Buffon. Then you get Mire’s reaction to his son’s exuberance about his goalkeeping qualities.
I mean, if you’ve seen any one of Mire’s posts on social media where he shows Edin playing ball then it’s hard to notice the difference between Buffon and young Pjanic. Edin most definitely has some game at his young age.
For me, the most enjoyable part of the first three episodes was listening to Buffon, Marchisio and Chiellini talk about their respective careers and what Juventus means to all of them. One of the biggest themes is obviously if this truly is going to be Buffon’s final season of his legendary career and everything that comes along with that. There might be a little too much “WOJ IS NOW PLAYING UH OH” kind of vibe to it, but whenever you get to hear Buffon talk about being the captain of the club and his simple life mottos, then you go along and listen no matter what.
There have been a lot of really good documentary-type of series done before, and I had high hopes that “First Team: Juventus” was going to be the next in the line. The first three episodes were truly worth binging in the middle of the night and left me wondering when the hell the fourth one was going to come out.
I’ll be in the tank no matter what. It’s not like the first three episodes left me wanting more.