The 90s, baby!
Grab your walkman, pop in some Oasis or Alanis Morissette, and get ready to take a trip back to 1996 with Netflix’s new comedy, Everything Sucks! The show is 90s nostalgia at an all-time high. From the music to the clothing, if you experienced the 90s at all, you’ll definitely start to reminisce once “Wonderwall” hits your ears.
The show takes place in the real town of Boring, Oregon in 1996. Luke O’Neil (Jahi Di’Allo Winston) is your typical nerdy, ambitious, and naive freshman. Luke falls in love with Kate Messner (Peyton Kennedy), the tall, shy sophomore member of the AV Club. Along with his friends McQuaid (Rio Mangini) and Tyler (Quinn Liebling), the trio decides to join the AV Club as Luke looks to win over Kate. However, it’s clear that Kate is dealing with issues over her sexuality after she develops a curious crush for Emaline Addario (Sydney Sweeney). Taking a page out of Freaks and Geeks playbook, the stereotypical Jocks vs. Nerds is not the central rivalry as the AV Club vs. Drama Club is the main event. All of this is going on while the single parents, Luke’s mother Sherry (Claudine Mboligikpelani Nako) and Kate’s father, Principal Ken Messner (Patch Darragh) try to connect with their children, but end up developing feelings for each other.
Everything Sucks! tugs the nostalgia strings hard, sometimes too hard during the beginning episodes. The simple “boy tries to impress girl” storyline is overplayed, but the Kate’s issues over her sexuality and the chemistry of Luke and Kate allows this show to find its groove in the later episodes. It’s a fresh take on a coming out story. This show has been drawing a lot of comparisons to other period projects such as Stranger Things, Freaks and Geeks, Full House, and Degrassi. Everything Sucks! doesn’t have the compelling story lines or character development as Stranger Things or Freak and Geeks, but the half hour comedy kept me more than occupied with enjoyment throughout the 10 episodes.
There are times where you don’t have to critically analyze a show with a fine-tooth comb. There’s no need to with a quick and easy show. Sometimes, you can just sit back, enjoy 90s nostalgia, and fly through 10 episodes with a smile on your face. That’s why Everything Sucks! doesn’t suck at all.
Let me know what you think on Twitter @danny_giro.