Show and Tell

Zoe Laporte, Web Editor

Happy February! While it’s the shortest month and my birth month, this February feels like its dragging a little bit. So, to help matters, I finished “End of the F***ing World” on Netflix. The show started in January, and all I can say is: Wow.

“End of the F***ing World” (the title makes sense – I promise) follows two British teenagers, James and Alyssa, after they’ve run away from their normal lives.

This show definitely is not for everyone: It’s British, it’s about teenagers doing dumb stuff and making bad decisions, and its tongue-in-cheek humor can be a little much at times. However, the characters and plot twists are extremely well done.

Warning: This review will be heavy with spoilers. If you don’t want to spoiled, please waste a couple of hours watching this show. It is only eight episodes long and each one is shorter than a half hour. It is a very quick, but a very good, watch.

I’ll start the review with something I didn’t like: the ending. I don’t understand why every 2018 Netflix original has to have bad endings. This show’s finish wasn’t necessarily “bad,” but it gave little to no closure to the situation of James and Alyssa. I doubt there will be a second season, because the last two seconds of the show led one to believe that  a death made a return impossible, but I have hope that maybe the creators will give us a solid conclusion.

A great aspect about the show is how genuinely likable every single character is – except for Alyssa’s stepdad; he’s kind of awful. He’s just there and makes gross comments to Alyssa. Ew. Stop. I was pleasantly surprised at how much I liked James in the end James is introduced as a character who’s essentially on his way to becoming a serial killer. so I had many doubts about him in the beginning. Don’t worry – he doesn’t actually turn out to be a serial killer. He grows and changes into an almost-normal kid. His evolution from future murderer to regular person is almost heartwarming.

But I wonder if the show creators were going to make the serial killer bit more of a major plot-point when the series began. They make it clear to the viewer that James has some serious issues that will never be resolved, but why? Halfway through the series, and after killing an actual guy, he loses the whole serial killer thing pretty quickly. Was that intended to show that his personality changed after enduring so much with Alyssa? Alyssa didn’t really change, so why did James? I have many questions. A part of me thinks this is some plot hole that everyone forgot about. Maybe again, it is an intentional choice for his character.

The show has some seriously good pacing. Everything leads to the end and hurts your heart while it does. I’ll just say this: The part when Alyssa realizes it was her mom, not her dad, sending the birthday cards every year shocked me. I never suspected that from Alyssa’s mom or dad. The show is suspenseful in a sense that you know something bad is going to happen, but you’re not sure how or when. It’s crazy. I love it.

I think that the show explains a universal human condition – temptation to leave whatever we’re doing  for something new.  But doing that often doesn’t well, and neither does“End of the F***ing World.” Maybe the show serves as a deterrent to those wanting to run away from their lives? I don’t know, but I think that even if something doesn’t end well, it may be worthwhile to try it.

After I finished the show, I started watching the Netflix-original documentary series “Dirty Money.”  The film showcases major U.S. financial scandals. I’m watching episode one about Volkswagen selling cars labeled ‘clean diesel’ that were not, in fact, clean. Enlightening!

Next on my list: I hope to start watching “Altered Carbon” and “The Confession Tapes,” both on Netflix.