Unfazed by the withering reviews for their direct-to-Netflix film The Gray Man, the Russo Brothers are back with another spy thriller for Prime Video. Citadel is a six-part series starring Priyanka Chopra Jonas and Richard Madden (from the television shows Bodyguard and Game of Thrones).

Two episodes have been premiered on Prime Video. The rest of the episodes will be released on a weekly basis until May 26.

Citadel has been produced by Amazon Studios and the Russo Brothers’ AGBO, with David Weil serving as showrunner. The series will have spinoffs in different countries, including India. Raj & DK (The Family Man, Farzi) will direct the Indian spin-off, which stars Varun Dhawan, Samantha and Sikandar Kher.

The first two episodes introduce us to Nadia Sinh (Chopra Jonas) and Mason Kane (Madden). Here are three highlights from the first two episodes.

Action, action, action

In a high-speed luxury train dashing through the Italian Alps, we meet Nadia Sinh (Chopra Jonas) and Mason Kane (Madden). Nadia and Mason belong to a global agency called Citadel and report to their handler Bernard (Stanley Tucci).

Nadia and Mason are a mission to retrieve a briefcase containing nuclear codes. That mission is ruined by a shadowy rival agency called Manticore, but only after some spectacular action on the train.

More bone-crunching action follows eight years later, when Nadia and Mason are reunited. Whatever else Citadel achieves, it is likely to feature numerous instances of its leads battling their way through impossible situations. As for the plot…

…It’s early days yet

While it’s clearly not possible to judge the show’s merits on the basis of two episodes, it’s fair to say that Citadel won’t be remembered for its boilerplate storyline. Mason, who saunters into a highly protected facility and walks away with a single briefcase containing every single one of the Citadel agency’s secrets, nails the problem when he complains, “We’re in the plot of Dumb and Dumber.”

We can expect twists, characters who are not who they claim to be and betrayals – par for the course in a spy thriller.

Look out for the scene-stealers

Chopra Jonas and Madden are perfectly adequate in action mode. But for more heavyweight performances, look in the direction of American veteran Stanley Tucci, whose Bernard knows more about Citadel than he is letting on. British acting legend Lesley Manville plays Dalia, the United Kingdom’s Ambassador to the United States whose connections to Manticore make her an important player.

Citadel (2023).