Damsel’s Biggest Complaints Prove It Should Have Been A TV Show
5 mins read

Damsel’s Biggest Complaints Prove It Should Have Been A TV Show


  • Damsel suffers from underdeveloped characters due to time constraints.
  • The story’s structure was criticized for spending too much time in the cave.
  • Damsel’s flaws prove it would have worked better as a TV show for better character development.



Despite its best efforts to be an exciting fantasy adventure movie, Netflix’s Damsel hasn’t been a hit with critics and most viewers, and their biggest complaints prove the movie would have been better as a TV show. Directed by Juan Carlos Fresnadillo, Damsel takes viewers to a fantasy, medieval-like world to meet Elodie (Millie Bobby Brown), the daughter of Lord Bayford (Ray Winstone), lord of an unnamed land facing poverty. To help their people, Bayford made a deal with Queen Isabelle of Aurea (Robin Wright): Elodie would marry her son, Prince Henry (Nick Robinson), and Bayford would receive gold.

However, the deal had a horrifying twist that, even though Bayford was eventually told about it, he decided to carry on with the wedding. Right after the wedding, Elodie was taken to a different location for a ritual, in which she was made royalty through a blood ritual and thrown into a cave as a sacrifice to a dragon as part of another deal the kingdom of Aurea had with the dragon. What followed were Elodie’s efforts to survive and get out of the cave, but her story fell short, in big part because it shouldn’t have been a movie.


Damsel’s Alternate Ending Would Have Done Justice To Elodie & Her Original Plan

Netflix’s Damsel could have had a very different ending, which would have done justice to what Elodie truly wanted before being tricked.

Netflix’s Damsel Had Potential – But Its Biggest Complaints Prove That It’s Rushed

Millie Bobby Brown with a sword in Damsel

As the story of Damsel was made into a film, it suffered the consequences of time constraints.

The fantasy genre gives plenty of creative freedom to writers and filmmakers, but it’s also very easy for these stories to fail and not achieve their full potential. Unfortunately, this is the case for Damsel, which didn’t have enough time to properly develop its characters and the overall story. The world of Damsel had potential, being a fantasy world where creatures like dragons (who can talk) and glowing slugs with healing powers coexist with humans, but as the story was made into a film, it suffered the consequences of time constraints.

At the time of writing, Damsel holds a 55% critics score on Rotten Tomatoes, labeling it “rotten”, with a 69% audience score. Among the reasons why Damsel’s reviews were so low are the story’s structure, as it spent way too much time in the cave, how badly it underused its biggest stars (namely Angela Bassett, who played Elodie’s stepmother), and that the story was rushed, particularly towards the end. The world of Damsel could have been explored a lot deeper along with its characters, especially Queen Isabelle and Prince Henry, as the movie spent so much time with Elodie and the dragon that the real villains were underdeveloped.

Damsel’s Flaws Prove It Would Have Worked Much Better As A TV Show

Elodie looks over a cliff face in Damsel

This format would have given the writers of
enough time to properly develop its characters.

Damsel would have had better chances of succeeding had it been made as a TV show rather than a movie. The biggest complaints about Damsel are its underdeveloped characters and how rushed it felt towards the end, which could have been solved if it had been a TV show. This format would have given the writers of Damsel enough time to properly develop its characters, explore the backstory of Aurea and the dragon, spend more time with Henry and Elodie as they got to know each other, and show more of the bond that was ultimately created between Elodie and the dragon.

If Damsel expands with a sequel, it’s unlikely that it will be turned into a TV show in order to avoid the mistakes that plagued the first movie, but it could learn from them and give it a better structure. Damsel is not a bad story and had a lot of potential, but its biggest enemy was its feature-length format.

Damsel Netflix Movie Poster


A dutiful damsel agrees to marry a handsome prince, only to find the royal family has recruited her as a sacrifice to repay an ancient debt. Thrown into a cave with a fire-breathing dragon, she must rely on her wits and will to survive

Juan Carlos Fresnadillo

Release Date
March 8, 2024

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