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Western Animation / Undone

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"Just... Try. But Don't Try. Try Without Trying."

Undone is an animated surrealistic comedy-drama/psychological thriller/mystery series created by Raphael Bob-Waksberg and Kate Purdy (both of Bojack Horseman fame) for Amazon Prime. The rotoscoped show premiered on September 13, 2019, and features Rosa Salazar as the protagonist Alma, while also costarring Bob Odenkirk, Constance Marie, Angelique Cabral, Daveed Diggs, and Siddharth Dhananjay as the supporting cast.

Undone tells the story of Alma Winograd-Diaz, who after surviving after a car accident, finds that she can connect with her long-deceased father Jacob and starts to develop abilities to manipulate time and space. With these newfound powers, Alma tries to uncover the mystery of her father's death.


Tropes Associated With Undone:

  • Ambiguous Situation: There's a distinct possibility that Alma has simply inherited her grandmother’s schizophrenia, which her behavior would certainly look like to an outside observer. Notably, having larger than usual brain ventricles, which according to Alma's father is a sign of having shamanic powers, is something than can also be observed in schizophrenic patients.
  • Brick Joke: Jacob tries to remember the name of Farnaz's boyfriend and suggests, amongst others, "Darold", which Alma doesn't think is an actual name. Several episodes later, it turns out it was the boyfriend's name.
    • When Jacob tells Alma that Farnaz had a boyfriend, she automatically says that it is always the boyfriend who was involved in the murder. Several episodes later, Sam says the same thing to Alma. But in this case, he wasn't.
  • Cliffhanger: Season 1 ends with one. Just as Alma is about to give up, something happens, but it is unclear if it is actually Jacob returning.
  • Coordinated Clothes: On Halloween 2002, Alma and Becca were dressed up as Dorothy and Toto, respectively. As an adult, Alma scoffs at couple costumes.
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  • Daddy's Girl: Alma. She seems much more affected by her father's death than her sister, and flashbacks reveal he favored her - though this may be partly due to her innate time travel abilities.
  • Dead Person Conversation: Alma and her dead father Jacob.
  • Driving Question: What exactly happened the night of Jacob Winograd's death? And was it a murder as Jacob claims?
  • Guinea Pig Family: Jacob experimented on Alma when she was a child.
  • "Groundhog Day" Loop: Alma is trapped in one in episode 2.
  • Heel Realization: Jacob in "The Halloween Night", when he realizes he is responsible for the accident that killed Farnaz and him.
  • Internal Reveal: Alma tells Sam exactly what is going on with her despite her father's insistence she doesn't.
  • Mental Time Travel: Jacob possesses his past self on the Halloween Night he died in order to prevent his death.
  • Mixed Ancestry: Alma and Becca are Jewish on their father's side and Mexican on their mother's side.
  • Murder-Suicide: Jacob drives his car into a ravine, killing himself and Farnaz in the process.
  • Neurodiversity Is Supernatural: Geraldine’s schizophrenia is explained by Jacob a result of her time travelling abilities.
  • Never the Obvious Suspect: The most promising suspect, Charlie Vanderhorn, had actually no part in Jacob's death.
  • Rotoscoping: The entire show is animated in this style, and it's gorgeous.
  • Reality Ensues: Sure, doing a prolonged ritual of dancing to the point where you witness the crucial moment to save your father as a vision in a mirror might allow you to travel there and resolve a major issue of plot, but don't be surprised when you get back you are lying on the ground with a bleeding scalp wound surrounded by shards of the mirror and fired for erratic behavior and endangering children by doing a mirror dive at a day care.
  • Secret Keeper: When she learns that Sam hadn't told Alma about their break-up (the result of losing her memory after the crash), Becca keeps the secret in exchange for Sam shutting up about her affair with the bartender. Both secrets are later found out by Alma, anyway.
  • Set Right What Once Went Wrong: The entire purpose of mastering time-travel.
  • Through the Eyes of Madness: Almost the entire series, if you assume that Alma is simply schizophrenic.
  • Unstuck in Time: Before Alma is able to control her abilities, she never knows when or where she will appear.
  • Vomit Discretion Shot: Alma during a night of drinking.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • Alma gives Sam an epic one when she learns that Sam had moved back into their home after she had moved out which she forgot due to her car accident.
    • Both Camila and Farnaz hold Jacob to account for experimenting on Alma without Camila's consent.
  • Womanchild: Alma is 28 years old, and while she does have a steady job and boyfriend she really has no plans or ambitions, preferring to drink and live unpredictably for the rest of her life. Her friends and family confronting Alma about her immaturity is what leads to the car accident that kicks off the plot.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: A major thematic element of the entire series:
    • Averted when Alma is cutting carrots and possibly when getting her father to take a different path on Halloween night, 2002. The ending of the first season is ambiguous if this lead to her father's survival or not.
    • Played Straight when Alma blurts out just before the wedding that Becca has been sleeping around since her engagement to Reed causing him to cancel the wedding. Alma is able to replay the scene and avoid revealing the secret, and then Becca just tells Reed anyway days later causing his family to get the marriage annulled.

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