'The Snow Girl's' Completely Original Story Is Captivating Viewers on Netflix


Feb. 2 2023, Published 11:21 a.m. ET

Snow Girl
Source: Netflix

As Squid Game and a variety of other hugely popular foreign language series have shown us, Netflix is not just for English-language content anymore. The latest foreign-language series to become a massive hit on Netflix is The Snow Girl, or La Chica De Nieve in the original Spanish. The show's massive success has left some wondering whether its riveting crime story is based on a true story or not.

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What is 'The Snow Girl' about?

The Snow Girl tells the story of Ana and Alvaro Martín, a couple whose daughter Amaya disappears. The show, which is only six episodes, explores the investigation into her disappearance.

The show is set in 2010, and Ana and Alvaro lose their daughter during the Three Wise Men parade after she gets lost in a crowd. From there, we are introduced to an inspector and an aspiring journalist named Miren who both investigate the case.

The Snow Girl
Source: Netflix
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As the case unfolds, we also learn more about Miren's history, and the ways in which this case begins to bring up memories from her own past. It's a riveting show featuring a fairly substantial ensemble, and many who have watched it have been struck by the realism with which the case at the show's heart is treated.

Is 'The Snow Girl' based on a true story?

In spite of its realism, The Snow Girl is not actually based on a real case. The series instead drew inspiration from a novel of the same name that was written by Javier Castillo and published in 2010.

Castillo apparently took inspiration for the story from his own life. When he was out with his wife and daughter one day, he felt a pang of anxiety after his daughter let go of his hand, and he briefly considered how he would feel if she vanished.

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That anxiety and fear spurned him to write The Snow Girl, which may be why the emotions of both parents feel so grounded and realistic. Although that emotion may translate well from the page to the screen, some of the details around the series have been changed quite substantially from their origins in the book.

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The most significant change is likely the setting. The show is set in Malaga, Spain in 2010, while the original book took place in New York City in 1998. They also changed the missing girl's name from Kiera to Amaya.

These changes obviously have an impact on how the story unfolds, but they may also mean that there is opportunity to adapt this show into English if there's enough demand.

The Snow Girl is just one of many projects that Netflix has produced that are designed primarily for international audiences. When those projects also catch on in the U.S., it's almost like a bonus for the streamer, which is creating content all over the world with the goal of increasing its overall subscriber base by tapping markets that are not completely oversaturated with streaming services.

The Snow Girl is now streaming on Netflix.

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