Maid is an inspiring tale of human resilience even under dire conditions. The series centers around Alex, a single mother whose struggle for survival in poverty is an eye-opener for viewers. Maid boasts beautiful acting from Margaret Qualley as Alex and Andie MacDowell as her mother Paula who each give memorable performances that showcase their acting chops and skillful versatility; Nick Robinson makes for a striking villainous presence as Alex’s abusive ex-partner Sean.

The show is also brilliant for its refusal to romanticize Alex’s situation or that of those living similar lives. A money tracker shows just how quickly her small earnings from house cleaning and government assistance disappear, serving as an eye-opening reminder that even minor setbacks like losing a shift can send someone careening out of control.

Additionally, the show uses Alex’s clients’ private lives as examples of their alienation to her; her visits to rich people’s homes reveal nightmarish childhoods or seemingly ideal couples that hide heartache behind facades.

At its heart, Season One also expertly shows how bureaucracy and lack of funds can suffocate victims of domestic abuse. Alex’s relationships with her mother and Sean remain emotionally complex throughout, refusing to settle for straightforward villains or simple solutions.

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