Class, the Indian adaptation of the Spanish series Elite, is a Netflix series that explores the collision of class, culture, and values within a high-end school in Delhi. The series follows three new students, Dheeraj Kumar Valmiki, Saba Manzoor, and Balli Sehrawat, who gain a scholarship to Hampton International School, which is populated by incredibly privileged, spoilt, and arrogant kids.
The series begins with an investigation into a death, and through flashbacks from various points of view, a story unfolds, gradually getting pieced together. The lives of Koel Kalra, Sharan Gujral, Yashika Mehta, and Dhruv Sanghvi see a churn when the designer borders of their insulated worlds become porous to these three teenagers. As the lives of the students and their families collide, secrets come tumbling out of closets, friends become foes, and jilted lovers become vengeful.
One of the strengths of Class is that every character is flawed, and the viewer cannot easily attach empathy to any group or individual. The series avoids preaching or over-compensating on the side of the less privileged. Instead, it creates an immersive world of haves and have-nots, of entrenched prejudices embedded in Indian culture – whether about community, class, caste, or sexuality.
The colour palette, music, production design, and cinematography work seamlessly together to create an easy-breezy dialogue apposite to Gen-Z. Kudos to the sound design team, especially, for working in ambient sounds, background classroom chatter, and party moods.
As complex as the children’s lives are, their parents and the Delhi policemen, who are investigating a murder that rocks Hampton International, are archetypes. The series directors, Kabir Mehta and Gul Dharmani, have created a heady, vivid, often outrageous Delhi milieu, which seamlessly adapts to the eight-episode series.
Full marks go to the young actors at the forefront of this crime drama, who give their roles a truly lived-in feel. The parts they play are ones they will hopefully reprise in forthcoming seasons.
In conclusion, Class is a must-watch series that delves into the collision of class, culture, and values within an Indian high-end school. The series is well-produced, well-directed, and well-acted, with every character being flawed, and the viewer not being able to easily attach empathy to any group or individual. If you are looking for a crime drama that immerses you in an easy-breezy dialogue apposite to Gen-Z, then Class is the perfect series for you.