We’ve become so accustomed to comic book adaptations infiltrating every level of film and television, that it’s impossible to keep track of them all. One of the many under-the-radar efforts to emerge over the years was Brazil’s The Awakener, which proved so popular it spawned a small screen sequel series.
Adapted from the O Doutrinador run created by Luciano Cunha, the basic setup finds former federal agent Miguel Montessant taking to the streets to dispense vigilante justice and fight back against the corrupt politicians and businessmen seeking to make themselves even richer at the expense of the working class population.
The feature-length version arrived in November 2017, and was generally well-received by those both familiar and unfamiliar with the source material. It didn’t quite launch a sprawling cinematic franchise, though, but a seven-episode continuation did premiere in September 2019 to continue the adventures of our intrepid protagonist on TV.
The Awakener was never going to make much of a splash in a marketplace dominated by Marvel and DC, but it has managed to experience some success on a global streaming platform. Per FlixPatrol, the movie has battled back against systemic injustice to stake out a spot on the iTunes global most-watched charts, and it may encourage a new audience to track down the episodic follow-up to get their fix of the street-level savior.
Not every superhero-inspired story needs a $200 million budget and splashy CGI to win over a crowd, and the world of grittier and more grounded tales is perhaps just as vibrant and colorful, if not even more so.