lukeirvin’s review published on Letterboxd:
The Playlist, now available to stream on Netflix, tells the journey of Spotify founder Daniel Ek through the process of building the Spotify business and battling the music industry. The series is composed of 6 unique episodes, each from a different perspective, but all joining in the end.
As someone who has a love for music and technology, I really enjoyed this series. This brings similar energy that The Social Network does, which I love.
The episodes each build out the layers upon the creation of Spotify as well as the battles with both the record labels and artists themselves. The series starts off with the initial battle between a record label and the digital downloading service The Pirate Bay. The disruption that The Pirate Bay brought opened up a world of new business ideas that Daniel was able to adopt early on.
The Developer episode is my favorite, naturally, as I am a software engineer by trade. I was able to connect a lot within this episode with the constant desire to know how things work and how to solve complex problems.
The one aspect of the series that could cause some confusion is around The Artist. The character Bobby T is actually a fictionalized character for the series. But there is much more around this one particular character as she actually represents all artists and the problems they encounter both from the traditional career sense and issues within Spotify and its business model.
Overall, it's a very entertaining and insightful series into a major tech business that I think many will enjoy.