The slow-burning, tension-filled airplane hijacking drama “Hijack” is the latest real-time serial drama from AppleTV+ and marks the debut series for Idris Elba and his production company, Green Door Production. The first two episodes were released on June 28, 2023, and the first season comprises seven episodes.
Created by Jim Field Smith and George Kay, “Hijack” is a fast-paced thriller series that somehow manages to be detail-oriented enough to keep viewers engaged in the hijacking story, rather than highlighting plot hiccups or logical questions.
Thriller series, especially those involving major events like hijackings or terrorist attacks, tend to take significant logical leaps to heighten the tension. Ideally, the storyline would be as tight as a drum, allowing viewers to stay engaged in the action without being distracted by plot holes.
Weaving Every Detail of Emerging Characters
“Hijack” concludes with its strongest episode, boasting a star-studded cast. Apple TV Plus has scored a major success. The show’s finale is fitting and ties up every last detail, even calling back to the first episode.
Every role drives the story beautifully. Idris Elba’s bold and precise performance as the lead is the heart of “Hijack.” The supporting cast is equally effective in keeping the plot engaging.
The airplane passengers, though passive, create tension in several scenes. The hijackers, filling every line, maintain a calm atmosphere aboard the aircraft, which is frustratingly gripping.
The ground situation, aware of a hijacking with specific motives, continues to negotiate and plan to save over 200 passengers, despite casualties.
Isn’t it Boring Just on the Plane?
Setting the story within the confines of a plane might seem monotonous in some scenes. However, perfect diversions are provided by detailed depictions of ground conditions and Air Traffic Control. The negotiating characters perform their roles well.
In terms of special effects, the team does a fantastic job, making everything believable. All props are, of course, not done in an actual flying aircraft.
Some scenes are set in an airport, and the escort by fighter jets adds a bit of an adrenaline rush, especially during the climactic landing.
An Unexpected Resolution to the Hijacking
The last two episodes bring surprises, and it’s unlikely anyone would guess a new character’s involvement in the chaos. It’s not just on the plane; the connection with the ground negotiations adds to the thrill.
A character named Amanda, introduced in the penultimate episode, is the biggest surprise of the series. Her presence isn’t a plot twist but expands the hijackers’ clever game.
Ultimately, the hijackers’ motives and goals are revealed. It seems implausible, with lives lost, including the captain. The final negotiations between Sam and Amanda, and their joint effort to land the plane, are heart-pounding.
Episode 1 [Recap & Review]
The inaugural episode of “Hijack” takes off at Dubai Airport. Kingdom Flight 29 is set for a 7-hour journey to Heathrow in London. The aircraft is piloted by Captain Robin Allen (Ben Miles) and First Officer Anna Kovacs (Kaisa Hammarlund).
Episode 2 [Recap & Review]
Episode 2, titled “3 Degrees,” escalates the series’ tension as it delves into the infiltration of the hijackers who begin to take control of the aircraft. The real adrenaline surge comes when Sam (Idris Elba) decides to fight back, delivering on the high-stakes tension promised in the show’s marketing.
Episode 3 [Recap & Review]
The main conflict in Episode 3 of “Hijack” is best explained through the concept of Schrödinger’s cat, illustrating that multiple possibilities could be true. It highlights the constant duality until an investigation reveals the actual truth.
Episode 4 [Recap & Review]
Episode 4 of “Hijack” presents a calmer narrative compared to the intense drama of Episode 3. Despite all the unfolding events, the episode lowers the level of suspense and tension, which seems odd considering the series’ context.
Episode 5 [Recap & Review]
In Episode 5, passengers on Flight KA29 are tantalizingly close to hope, almost within reach. A major plot twist reveals that Stuart and Lewis are brothers, and a fake emergency landing orchestrated by Sam is part of a larger tactic.
Episode 6 [Recap & Review]
Things get increasingly complicated in Episode 6, as the passengers plan to retaliate against the hijackers. This hour marks a critical point in thwarting the still-mysterious hijacking plot. Meanwhile, a woman suddenly stands up, retrieves a gun from her bag in the restroom, and upon exiting, shockingly shoots the captain.
Episode 7 [Recap & Review]
The final episode, Episode 7, introduces a new hijacker, Amanda Taunton, a flight consultant, who takes control of the cockpit. With the terrorists subdued, a greater problem emerges: a new hijacker locked in the cockpit, steering the plane into danger. Sam is convinced that the hijacking should have been over by now.