The War Next-door 2021 Tv Series Review
Opening Shot: A shot of Mexico City. A woman driving an Uber offers sex toys to two people — a woman and a much younger man — making out in the back seat.
The Gist: The woman who is in the back seat takes complete offense and opens her door to get out, even though the car is in the middle lane. A truck comes by and shaves off the door. The driver, Lenor Salcido de Lopez (Vanessa Bauche), is properly incensed, and goes after the woman for restitution. In the middle of the busy city street, Lenor grabs the woman’s bag — a Balenciaga — and sees a raffle ticket for a contest where the winner wins a mansion.
Lenor can use the space; her whole family — kids Tere (Elyfer Torres), Pablo (Armando Said) and Janet (Isabella Patron), her ex-con brother Tomas (Christian Vazquez) and her mother Dolores (Sara Isabel Quintero) — is crammed into an apartment, and her husband Genaro (Pascacio López) just lost his job. Lenor wants to throw a party for the first communion for Janet, but Jani isn’t even sure she wants to take communion. Lenor thinks that winning the raffle will give them the space they all need, but she is realistic about her chances. That is, until she checks the winning ticket number online and sees that she’s won.
The whole family celebrates as they move into the mansion, which they have to live in for at least six months. Next door, Silvia Espinoza de los Montero (Ana Layevska) is planning a sedate event with a monk that will be shot by a local magazine. Her family — husband Ernesto (Mark Tacher) and kids Crista (Loreto Peralta) and Diego (Marco Leon) is just along for the ride. She’s annoyed by the hubbub, and when the two women see each other, they realize that they both have an unsettled score from the Uber incident.
But first, Lenor sets about to try to ruin Silvia’s party. First, she tells Pablo and Tomas to kidnap the monk, but they kidnap the priest for the communion instead and get him drunk. Some of Tomas’ “friends” start partying at the Monteros, luring Ernesto and the kids away. Silvia confronts Lenor, because she knows the ticket was in the purse Lenor stole after the accident. But Lenor has her own blackmail; dash cam footage of her making out with her daughter’s boyfriend.
Our Take: The War Next-door is a silly show that’s full of physical comedy and slapsticky moments. Also, the premise that this loud and boisterous family happens to win the raffle to get the house next door to Lenor’s mortal enemy is, well, convenient. But the show has built itself some story possibilities within its first half hour that will be fun to explore.
First, there’s the rivalry between Lenor and Silvia, which will likely go far beyond just money and class. Lenor keeps calling Silvia “Blondie” and there will likely be lots of times where the two of them will fight tooth and nail and others where they may find something in common.
But the more intriguing stories are with the families. We can see that Silvia’s family feels completely suffocated by her constant status seeking, and the moment they get a taste of what it’s like to open up a bit, they’re going to dive in head first. We see Pablo hitting on Crista (with the help from his uncle putting angels’ heads in his pockets), and we see Ernesto getting a s3xual charge out of pulling the fuses from the Lopez’s junction box.
The earnest moments are also earned, like when Jani asks Tomas about whether she’s allowed to doubt whether God exists. That issue might be one that gets explored as the show goes along, considering how religious a family the Lopezes are. Genaro’s job situation — or lack of it — is something that will be fun to explore, as will the growing realization by Lenor that the family is going to have to work twice as hard as they did before just to be able to afford to live in the mansion (after all, utilities aren’t paid).