Suzhal: The Vortex is a 2022 Indian Tamil-language crime thriller television series created by Pushkar–Gayathri for Amazon Prime Video. Set in the fictional town of Saambaloor set in Tamil Nadu, the series is an investigation into the case of a missing person which unravels and rips the intricate social fabric of the small town. It stars actors R. Parthiban, Kathir, Aishwarya Rajesh and Sriya Reddy.

Suzhal: The Vortex
GenreCrime thriller
Created byPushkar–Gayathri
Written byPushkar–Gayathri
Directed byBramma G
Anucharan Murugaiyan
Starring
Music bySam C. S.
Country of originIndia
Original languageTamil
No. of seasons1, Season 2(TBA)
No. of episodes8
Production
CinematographyMukeswaran
EditorRichard Kevin
Running time40- 50 minutes
Production companyWallwatcher Films
Original release
NetworkAmazon Prime Video
Release17 June 2022 (2022-06-17) –
present

The series was directed by Bramma G and Anucharan Murugaiyan and produced by Wallwatcher Films.The first season consists of eight episodes and it started streaming from 17 June 2022.

The series features music composed by Sam C.S., cinematography handled by Mukeswaran & editing done by Richard Kevin, and production design by Arun Venjaramoodu. A second season is being planned.[1]

Premise edit

Season 1 :

In the town of Sambaloor set in Nilgiris District, Tamil Nadu, lives a community that worships Goddess Angalamman. The community celebrates a festival over 10 days every year, and it is in these 10 days that this story unfolds. What starts out as parallel stories of kidnapping and arson, later unfolds into childhood trauma and conspiracy.

Season 2 :

When a distinguished lawyer and senior activist, Chellappa, who had advocated for Nandini's defense, is discovered murdered, Sakkarai is summoned to aid the grieving family. Against the vibrant tapestry of the grand Ashtakaali Festival in the quaint town of Kaalipattanam, the investigation gradually exposes buried secrets from the past, which loom ominously over the present.

Cast edit

  • R. Parthiban as Shanmugam
  • Kathir as Sub-inspector Chakravarthy “Sakkarai”, Nandini's friend
  • Aishwarya Rajesh as Nandini (Shanmugam's older daughter)
  • Sriya Reddy as Inspector Regina Thomas
  • Gopika Ramesh as Nila (Shanmugam's younger daughter)
  • Fredrick Jhonson as Adhisayam (Regina's son)
  • Harish Uthaman as Trilok Vadde
  • Prem Kumar as Vadivelu (Regina's husband)
  • Elango Kumaravel as Guna
  • Nivedhithaa Sathish as Lakshmi (Sakkarai's fiancée)
  • Indumathy Manikandan as Devi
  • Latha Rao as Selvi (Guna's wife)
  • Yusuf Hussain as Mukesh Vadde
  • Nitish Veera as Pushparaj
  • Santhana Bharathi as Kothandaraman
  • Mekha Rajan as Dr. Sanghamithra (psychiatrist)
  • Palani Murugan as Eeshwaran
  • Soundarya as Malar (Nila's friend)
  • Ajith Koshy as DSP Manimaran
  • Navneeth Krishnan as Gani
  • Yashwanth Babu as Mani
  • G Ajith Kumar as Kandipan
  • Hareesh SS as Dheena
  • Sasi Kumar as Arivu
  • Arun Pandiyan as Muthu
  • Prasanna Balachandran as Sundaram
  • Mona Kakade as a hospital doctor

Episodes edit

SeasonEpisodesOriginally released
18June 17, 2022 (2022-06-17)

Season 1 edit

No. Title Directed by Written by Release
1 "Hoisting the Flag" Bramma G Pushkar–Gayathri 17 June 2022
Shanmugam is the head of the labor union protesting against their factory's management, headed by Trilok Vadde. Police under Inspector Regina Thomas and her close associate Sub-Inspector Chakravarthy (Sakkarai) try to keep the protestors in check. In return, Trilok partly finances a bike for Regina's spoiled son, Adhisayam. Regina's husband is a little unhappy about the entire setup. Adhisayam is headed on a trip to Moonaar with his friends. Sakkarai gets engaged to Lakshmi, a nurse.

Shanmugam's notices his daughter Nila is not concentrating on her education and reprimands her. Nila seems extremely upset. She goes missing that night. The same night, the factory catches fire and suspicion naturally falls on Shanmugam and police detain him. While investigating the cause of the factory fire, Sakkarai finds out Nila was actually kidnapped.

2 "The Myth" Bramma G Pushkar–Gayathri 17 June 2022
Trilok twists the arm of Regina and asks her to formally arrest Shanmugam. But Trilok's father Mukesh, who trusts Shanmugam, interferes and facilitates his release.

News of Nila's kidnapping becomes official. Nila's sister Nadhini, who is also Sakkarai's school friend, helps him with the search. Sakkarai finds out Nila was being stalked by a young and apparently rich boy. Police investigation also led them to Malar, who Nila met last before being abducted. They try to question her, but Malar's family appear to be hiding a secret and doesn't cooperate. But after persistent pressure Malar reveals to Sakkarai and Nandhini that the guy stalking Nila is actually Regina's son, Adhisayam.

3 "The Procession" Bramma G Pushkar–Gayathri 17 June 2022
Shanmugam and family confront Regina about Adhisayam kidnapping Nila. Regina tries to calm them down by playing his innocent sounding voice messages he sent just that day. But Malar insists Adhisayam has tried to misbehave with Nila. Regina tries to call Adhisayam, but can reach only one of the other friends. She strongly asks them to return from Munaar right away.

Fire investigator Kothandaraman questions Trilok about the history of the factory and its financials.

Regina tracks Adhisaysm's phone and finds out he had called Nila several times the day she went missing. Since none of the boys are returning phone calls, Sakkarai offers to go to Munaar to investigate. He is surprised to find Nandhini there, who is also looking for clues on Nila. With help from local police, they track down Adhisayam's van and his hideout. They catch all the friends, but no sign of Adhisayam or Nila.

4 "The Immersion" Bramma G Pushkar–Gayathri 17 June 2022
Shanmugam and his group lose patience and force their way into Regina's house. Nandhini and Sakkarai return just in time to stop them, and reveal Adhisayam and Nila are actually in love with each other, and eloped to Mumbai. From the phone he got from the other boys, Sakkarai plays a series of voice messages Adhisayam had recorded for Regina. Adhisayam recounts his romance with Nila through those messages, and mentions they decided to elope because of the personal enmity between Regina and Shanmugam. Sakkarai opines to Nandhini personally that he always thought of Adhisayam as a happy-go-lucky guy, but these messages appeared to come from a wiser person. Regina and her husband blame each other, but Shanmugam seems to repent for his mistakes.

Police check the train schedule. They find the names of Nila and Adhisayam on the reservation charts, but on a train to Guwahati, and not Mumbai. Ticket inspector cannot recall them either.

Meanwhile, an idol is immersed in the local lake as part of the Mayana Kollai festival. Little kids are shown jumping into the lake and swimming underwater around the immersed idol. We also see the dead bodies of Nila and Adhisayam at the bottom of the lake, hugging each other.

5 "The Looting" Anucharan Murugaiyan Pushkar–Gayathri 17 June 2022
The bodies of Nila and Adhisayam are recovered and taken to post mortem, where it is discovered that Nila was pregnant, and the deaths were caused by slitting of the throat with a sharp object. Time of death is estimated to be around the same day Nila went missing.

Trilok visits Regina to offer his condolences, and offers to help any which way possible. Fire inspector Kothandaraman meets him there and warns if an inspection of the factory is performed, that could discover an unmaintained item, which would invalidate insurance claims. Trilok leaves in a huff.

Regina visits Shanmugam and requests the last rites of both Nila and Adhisayam be performed together, and Shanmugam and family agree. Sakkarai notices Nila's tutor Pushparaj looking for something in her garden. Pushparaj realizes he is being followed and escapes in his motorbike. Sakkarai searches around the garden and discovers Nila's hidden cellphone.

He unlocks the phone with Nandhini's help, and they find out Nila was quite active on social media, contrary to their beliefs. The also find out Nila was obsessed with the disappearance of another local girl Ammani, several years ago.

Police trace Pushparaj's bike near the venue of a procession for Mayana Kollai. Shanmugam's brother Guna is playing a major role that day. Sakkai catches Pushparaj there and finds out he was looking for the phone because it contains pictures of him being intimate with Guna's wife, Selvi. Pushparaj claims Nila had taken those photos, black mailed him to the tune of Rs. 2 lakhs, got the money and left with Adhisayam accompanying her.

6 "The Trance" Anucharan Murugaiyan Pushkar–Gayathri 17 June 2022
Lakshmi suspects Sakkarai has romantic feelings towards Nandhini, but he assures her there is nothing like that. Regina is not handling her loss well, and her marriage is strained.

Vadde's and their accountant Vadivelu (Regina's husband) discuss the company cannot survive unless the damages are covered by insurance, and Kothandaraman's report is crucial. Kothandaraman investigates the burnt down factory with Sakkarai and Guna, and discovers a few items not in compliance. The office who investigated from the police side, admits his report was completely based on Trilok's suggestion. Guna develops asthma symptoms and leaves the factory. Sakkarai suspects if the attack was triggered by anxiety over the investigation.

Sniffing dogs lead police to some caves near the lake, where they see signs of a ritual and traces of blood, and suspect if the kids were sacrificed for Mayana Kollai. Sakkarai finds a tent where a recluse called Eswaran lives, and discovers a box with Rs 2 lakhs. Police arrest Eswaran and interrogate him. They find out Ammani was his sister, and became deranged after she went missing. He admits Nila and Adhisayam offered his Rs 2 lakhs to kill someone, which he refused, but still snatched their money. Forensic reports confirms the traces of blood in the cave is from a goat and Eswaran is probably innocent.

Sakkarai and Nandhina find out the DNA analysis of the fetus in Nila's womb reveals it is not Adhisayam's. Doctor suspects Nila was subjected to sexual abuse. Nandhini passes out on hearing this.

7 "Firewalker" Anucharan Murugaiyan Pushkar–Gayathri 17 June 2022
Nandhini seems to be recovering in the hospital, but suddenly remembers something and passes out again. Nandhini's psychiatrist visiting from Coimbatore mentions she has been conseling her for some time and Nandhini has some bottled up emotions that she is not venting. Sakkarai is constantly monitoring her recovery, much to the chagrin of Lakshmi, who is a nurse in the same hospital.

Kothandaraman, having spotted a can of thinner at the burnt factory, suspects that could have been used to start the fire and investigates local paint stores. He seems to find a lead.

Police use dummies and determine the cliff from where the bodies of Nila and Adhisayam could have been thrown into the lake. They also find a long bladed knife there, with blood stains that match that of the victims. Sakkarai thinks Nila must have somehow coerced her abuser to meet her at the cliff and tried to kill him with Adhisayam's help. But the abuser must have killed them and escaped.

Investigation of Nila's social media profile leads Sakkarai to believe someone is stalking everyone in her kho-kho club. He goes to the school to dig further, and finds the Trilok there, who happens to be the club's sponsor. He is shown touching and hugging girls in the club and Sakkari get hold of a bottle with his finger prints, hoping they will match those on the knife found at the cliff. He also finds out Trilok has a guest house and breaks in. He is shocked to find large prints of pictures that he saw earlier on Nila's phone. He presents the info to his superior, but gets berated for breaking in without warrant. Finger print results are not conclusive either.

Frustrated, he shares the info with Regina and Shanmugam and leaves to monitor Trilok's guest house. He sees Trilok leave with a woman, and follows them. Trilok drops the woman at Mayana Kollai is accost by Regina and Shanmugam on the way back, who beat him up blue. Sakkarai follows the lady and finds out she is a transgender person, and just a friend of Trilok. She also reveals Trilok is gay, and has no interest in women. Convinced, Sakkari rushes back in time to stop Regina and Shanmugam from killing Trilok.

8 "The Silence" Anucharan Murugaiyan Pushkar–Gayathri 17 June 2022
Nandhini has a counseling session with her psychiatrist. Later, she dreams about Nila being abused. Suddenly she sees herself in Nila's clothes being abused and wakes up with a jolt.

Trilok is unconscious at the hospital with his father recollecting how hesitant Trilok was to take over the factory. It is revealed Trilok was never interested in money. Kothandaraman confronts Mukesh Vadde with his findings and accuses him of conspiring with Regina (who bought the paint thinner) and Shanmugam (who used the thinner to start the fire). Mukesh admits the charge and explains they did that to get the insurance money to compensate the employees, and their children. He repents for his sins, and mentions karma already got back to all three of them. Regina and Shanmugam turn themselves in for assaulting Trilok. Kothandaraman concludes his report recommending an insurance payoff.

Nandhini is missing from the hospital. Sakkarai learns from her psychiatrist that Nandhini was also abused as a child, but his identity is buried deep in her mind. Lakshmi suggests the same person could have molested both Nandhini and Nila. Sakkarai finds out Nandhini came to his house and took his gun. He is now convinced Nandhini is planning to kill her molester.

Sakkarai goes to Nandhini's house to look for clues and sees Selvi alone there. Talking to her, he finds out her husband Guna was out of reach around the same time when Nila went missing. Selvi also mentions Nandhini and Nila used to spend a lot of time with their uncle when they were young, but stopped as soon as they reached adolescence. Sakkarai realizes Guna was the person abusing them and tries to trace his phone.

Nandhini is at the cliff with the revolver, and Guna arrives there to meet her. He mentions Nila had called him to the same spot the day when she went missing, just like what Nandhini did now. Apparently, Nila and Adhisayam tried to kill Guna with the knife, and during the fight, Guna had killed them. He manages to soft talk Nandhini into a trance, but Sakkarai arrives and fights him. Nandhini wakes up from her trance and empties the gun at Guna. At the same time, Mayana Kollai concludes with the Goddess killing the demon.

Music edit

The music is composed by Sam C. S. The first season consist of 13 songs.[2]

Season 1 edit

Suzhal – The Vortex (Original Series Soundtrack)
Soundtrack album by
Various Artists
Released13 June 2022
Recorded2021
GenreAmazon Original Series Soundtrack
LanguageTamil
LabelAmazon Music
Singles from Suzhal: The Vortex
  1. "Duvaa Duvaa"
    Released: 14 June 2022
No.TitleLyricsSingersLength
1."Maaya Maaya"  2:38
2."Duvaa Duvaa"Kaber VasukiSam C. S., Andrea Jeremiah, Jonita Gandhi, Lavita Lobo, Arivu3:28
3."Naan Unnodu Dhaan"  2:08
4."Suzhal – The Whisper of the Vortex"Kaber Vasuki 2:01
5."Yaen Marandhaai"Vithya DamodaranSrinisha Jayaseelan2:44
6."Yennai Sidhaithaaye"  2:24
7."Hey Kannaa" Bhuvana Ananth1:50
8."Oorellaam Poo Pookka" Bhuvana Ananth1:56
9."Father's Remorse Theme"  1:24
10."The Quest for Truth Theme"  1:12
11."The Goddess Descends Theme"  2:22
12."Darkness Engulfs the Soul Theme"  1:33
13."The Suzhal Roar"  0:51
Total length:26:12

Release edit

The series has been released in over 30 languages through subtitles and has been dubbed in Hindi, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Polish, Portuguese, Castilian Spanish, Latin Spanish, Arabic, and Turkish.[3][4][5][6][7]

Reception edit

Saibal Chatterjee of NDTV rated the series 4 out of 5 stars and wrote, "The Vortex sets a benchmark that will take some doing to emulate".[8] Logesh Balachandran of The Times Of India rated the series 4 out of 5 stars and wrote, "Suzhal is an intense investigative thriller that has a lot of surprises in store, making it a perfect bingewatch for the weekend".[9] Divya Nair of Rediff rated the series 4 out of 5 stars and wrote "Even though each episode is about an hour long, you won't even blink".[10] Srivatsan S of The Hindu wrote, "A terrific star cast makes this layered series all the more effective", further adding that, "this is a rare series where the sum and parts are equally great".[11] Nandini Ramnath writing for Scroll.in called the series "a nail-biting thriller about secrets & deceptions".[12]

The series received criticism from Manoj Kumar B of Indian Express, who though praised the series for seemingly "being like a huge jump by the standards of Tamil soap operas", also criticised it for not being good enough to match the global standards & stated that the "show's creators have barely scratched the surface with this format of storytelling".[13] Janani K of India Today rated the series 2.5 out of 5 stars and wrote, "Aishwarya Rajesh, Kathir's series sucks you right in but fizzles", though she praised the climax by writing that, "Pushkar and Gayatri’s Suzhal imparts a much-needed message in the climax, which is relevant to society".[14]

Awards and recognitions edit

S.no Name of the Award Category Nominee Result
1 HT OTT Play Awards 2022 Best Screenplay (Series) Pushkar–Gayathri
2 OTT Play Changemakers Awards 2023 Inspiring Performer of the Year Aishwarya Rajesh
3 E4M Awards Best thriller-horror show on web OTT platform Suzhal: The Vortex Silver
Best Webseries Tamil Suzhal: The Vortex Silver
Best Writer Pushkar–Gayathri Silver
Best Editor Richard Kevin A Gold
Best Cinematographer Mukeswaran Gold
Best Performance Female (Regional) Sriya Reddy Bronze
Best Performance Female (Regional) Aishwarya Rajesh Bronze
Best Performance Male (Regional) Kathir (actor) Silver
Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Male) R. Parthiban Silver
4 Asian Academy Creative Awards India National Winner 2022 - Best drama series Suzhal: The Vortex
5 Indian Telly Streaming Awards Best Director - Regional Series Bramma G and Anucharan Murugaiyan
Best Actress Sriya Reddy
Best Supporting Actress Aishwarya Rajesh
Best Regional Series 2022 Suzhal: The Vortex
6 Afaqs Vdonxt Awards 2023 Best Music Video ''Duvaa Duvaa'' from Suzhal: The Vortex Gold
7 Adgully Screenxx Awards 2022 Best Content - Thriller Suzhal: The Vortex Gold

References edit

  1. ^ "EXCLUSIVE: 'Suzhal – The Vortex' makers didn't expect 'people from industry would watch it so quickly'". Zee News. Retrieved 29 September 2022.
  2. ^ Suzhal - The Vortex (Original Series Soundtrack). Archived from the original on 23 June 2022. Retrieved 23 June 2022 – via YouTube.
  3. ^ Remley, Hilary (8 June 2022). "'Suzhal: The Vortex' Trailer Reveals an Intense Tamil-Language Mystery". Collider. Archived from the original on 9 June 2022. Retrieved 9 June 2022.
  4. ^ Balakumar K. (8 June 2022). "Tamil series Suzhal – The Vortex to be available in 30 languages on Prime Video". TechRadar India. Archived from the original on 9 June 2022. Retrieved 9 June 2022.
  5. ^ Whittock, Jesse (7 June 2022). "'Suzhal – The Vortex' Trailer: First Look At Amazon's Debut Long-Form Tamil-Language Drama Series". Deadline. Archived from the original on 9 June 2022. Retrieved 9 June 2022.
  6. ^ Ramachandran, Naman (3 June 2022). "Amazon Prime Video India Reveals Tamil Original 'Suzhal – The Vortex' at IIFA (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Archived from the original on 9 June 2022. Retrieved 9 June 2022.
  7. ^ "Tamil thriller 'Suzhal – The Vortex' is made for a global audience, says Amazon". The National. 4 June 2022. Archived from the original on 9 June 2022. Retrieved 9 June 2022.
  8. ^ "Suzhal – The Vortex Review: This Tale Of Religion, Crime, Blackmail And Tragedy Has Rare Elemental Power". NDTV. Archived from the original on 28 June 2022. Retrieved 20 June 2022.
  9. ^ "Suzhal: The Vortex Season 1 Review: Suzhal: A riveting, extremely well-written investigative thriller". The Times Of India. Archived from the original on 17 June 2022. Retrieved 20 June 2022.
  10. ^ "Suzhal: The Vortex Review". Rediff. Archived from the original on 20 June 2022. Retrieved 20 June 2022.
  11. ^ S, Srivatsan (17 June 2022). "'Suzhal: The Vortex' review: A terrific star cast makes this layered series all the more effective". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Archived from the original on 19 June 2022. Retrieved 20 June 2022.
  12. ^ Ramnath, Nandini. "'Suzhal – The Vortex' review: A nail-biting thriller about secrets and deception". Scroll.in. Archived from the original on 19 June 2022. Retrieved 20 June 2022.
  13. ^ "Suzhal: The vortex of colourless and odourless narration". The Indian Express. 20 June 2022. Archived from the original on 20 June 2022. Retrieved 20 June 2022.
  14. ^ "Suzhal The Vortex Review: Aishwarya Rajesh, Kathir's series sucks you right in but fizzles". India Today. Archived from the original on 20 June 2022. Retrieved 20 June 2022.

External links edit