Tyrant Review: “What The World Needs Now” (Season 1, Episode 6)


Tyrant may have  looked like it was beginning to lose some of its steam in the previous episode, but “What The World Needs Now” may as well have been titled, “What The Show Needs Now.” The writers hit it out of the park with a surprise ending that will change everything for the main characters, and possibly incite even more chaos than what Abbudin experienced under its former leadership. All viewers can do now is sit back and wait to see how things work themselves out.

We’ve watched the transition that Jamal (Ashraf Barhom) has undergone as he is guided by his younger brother as opposed to being under the calculating influence of his uncle, but the end of this episode leaves that in question. The brash man we met in the pilot seemed to have been finding a middle ground between his desire to come across as powerful and his ability to actually be strong. But, after “What The World Needs Now,” it is clear that there is still a lot of room for character development in his case.

The series has now crossed over into a dangerous territory which may or may not pay off. Jamal has asserted himself in a way that can not be taken back and that presents a new issue for his regime. It’s uncertain whether his recent act will sabotage his attempts to gain the admiration of the people, or help it soar to a new high. Although Barry (Adam Rayner) would definitely not approve of his tactics, or of Jamal letting his anger get the better of him, but if this event is spun a certain way, the outcome could be exactly what Barry was hoping for when he encouraged Jamal to allow for free elections – as awful as that may sound.

Sheik Rashid (Mohammad Bakri) served a very deliberate purpose on the show – to drive a wedge between Barry and Jamal. Barry’s council is the greatest asset that Jamal has at his disposal at the moment. Without it, Jamal is prone to acting without thinking, as exhibited by him lashing out at the Sheik.

Tyrant seemed to be heading down a very specific path with Jamal at the helm, and Barry directing him. There was a clear cut ending in sight where Jamal becomes the great leader Abbudin needs, and the world needs him to be, and after that is accomplished to Barry’s standards, he heads back to his life in California and chalks this trip up as a win. It’s pretty safe to say that that ending has now been put on an indefinite hold.