The Staircase: An absorbing true-crime drama elevated by outstanding performances

A still from The Staircase, currently streaming on HBO Max (Image Via HBO Max/Youtube)
A still from The Staircase, currently streaming on HBO Max (Image Via HBO Max/Youtube)

The Staircase, the HBO Max true-crime drama miniseries, has been getting a lot of praise from audiences and critics since it arrived with three episodes on May 5 (Thursday).

The limited series was created and written by Antonio Campos and Maggie Cohn. It is reportedly based on Jean-Xavier de Lestrade's highly acclaimed 2004 documentary series of the same name.

Starring Colin Firth and Toni Collette in the lead roles, the miniseries tells the story of the mysterious death of Michael Peterson's wife, Kathleen Peterson, and its aftermath.

The show also stars Rosemarie DeWitt, Parker Posey, Juliette Binoche, Sophie Turner, Odessa Young, Dane DeHaan, Patrick Schwarzenegger, Olivia DeJonge, Michael Stuhlbarg and more.


A major takeaway from HBO Max's The Staircase

Colin Firth is remarkable as the lead character Michael Peterson

Oscar-winning actor Colin Firth has done a marvelous job in portraying the lead role in The Staircase, Michael Peterson. His approach to the character so far has been realistic and intriguingly arresting.

Firth is exceptional from the very opening scene of the miniseries, when Michael makes the 911 call and breaks down after the dreadful death of his wife, Kathleen. His portrayal of the character in these three episodes speaks volumes of his craft and talent.

Firth's reactions in the scene where the truth about Margaret and Martha's mother's death is revealed are so realistic that the audience is bound to be in awe.

Hence, it is safe to say that Colin Firth is the perfect fit for the lead character of Michael Peterson.


Toni Collette as Kathleen Peterson is riveting

Critically acclaimed actress Toni Collette has also been remarkable as Kathleen Peterson in The Staircase. She has captured the spirit of the character with undeniable subtlety.

Her on-screen silence speaks volumes as she portrays a loving wife who is aware of her husband's needs. The actress is incredibly gripping in the scene where Michael presents her with a massage.

The audience is bound to feel for her, considering the way she has put herself in Kathleen Peterson's shoes.


Apart from Colin Firth and Toni Collette, the other actors are Juliette Binoche as Sophie Brunet, Sophie Turner as Margaret Ratliff, and Rosemarie DeWitt as Candace Hunt Zamperini.

The cast also includes Parker Posey as Freda Black, Odessa Young as Martha Ratliff, Dane DeHaan as Clayton Peterson and Patrick Schwarzenegger as Todd Peterson.

Watch The Staircase, streaming from May 5, 2022, exclusively on HBO Max.

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Edited by Rachel Syiemlieh