The recent success of the All or Nothing NFL and college football series have earned the Amazon original a new season revolving around Premier League club Manchester City. The love for soccer in the UK’s second largest city provides an exciting backdrop for this series.
Instead of using the traditional reality show shaky camera techniques, this series immerses audiences in the world of these players without giving them headaches.
Hearing what players regularly say to one another humanizes athletes that society regularly looks upon as gods.
Through All or Nothing, we realize they are people too who laugh, cry and have fun. One moment they will be talking about music they listen too or how they felt when a new player came in and gave them an energy boost.
In addition to this, there are some truly emotional moments. After many hard-fought wins, the team creates a mosh pit, jumping around and chanting. The show does a fantastic job of making the audience share these feelings with the players.
I personally did not care much for European football, but decided to try this show out because I had enjoyed the previous NFL and rugby seasons.
All or Nothing may had not centered around my interest, but was extremely entertaining. The ins and outs of a football club are fascinating to compare to that of American football.
In addition to showing the back and forth of players and coaches, I found myself getting attached to the players. I realized that I was rooting for Manchester City, liking when they did well, or feeling bad when an injury came along.
One of these injuries was Benjamin Mendy who was hurt early in the season, and many of the show’s episodes feature his recovery. To see how athletes who are superhuman, yet so fragile and susceptible to setbacks is eye-opening.
All or Nothing also shows the unsung heroes that make the club click. From the ladies who wash and sort the players’ cloths to the “kit guy” who organizes player’s uniforms, this documentary could not have done a better job revealing the glue that holds together the club.
With all these positive elements, All or Nothing does have some flaws. Between games, I thought they spent a little too long on off the field scenes. As fascinating as it was, I wanted the editors to focus more on the matches rather than between them.
In addition, they constantly skip over matches and focus on big games. It is impossible to focus on all 32 games of the Premier League season on top of the tournaments. However, they could have reasonably covered more matches with deeper storylines. Because of the lack of games, some storylines suffer of dullness.
By far the best part of the show is manager Pep Guardiola. The energy he brings to the team and the show is unparalleled. The dialogue he has with his players is fascinating and absolutely hilarious at the same time.
Overall, All or Nothing delivers an entertaining adventure, while not hesitating to be a legitimately authentic. It’s good camera work and well-documented stories are a good formula for an entertaining ride.