By RILEY PALSHAW
Published May 27, 2020
“Outer Banks” is a Netflix original series full of classic teenage adventure that has continued to rise in popularity since its release in April…and for good reason.
This show follows the journey of John B. (Chase Stokes) and his best friends Kiara, JJ and Pope, as they take on the task of finding a legendary stash of gold, which may or may not be linked to John B.’s father’s disappearance, which happened nine months prior. This action-adventure series takes a different approach to the lives of modern teens, showing that it is okay for teenagers to step away from school and society and get out into the world with their friends.
Within the 10 episodes that make up the first season, the plot takes many twists and turns, and mysteries are revealed, one secret at a time. With a captivating plot, one that includes police chases, rivalries between Kooks and Pogues, and romance, it is easy to tell why “Outer Banks” was ranked as the most popular item on Netflix and still remains in the Top 10 even two months after its release.
One aspect of “Outer Banks” that makes it different from most modern teenage adventures, like “Spider-Man: Homecoming” or “Goosebumps,” is the absence of technology, specifically cell phones. At the very beginning of the first episode, a hurricane hits, knocking out all cell towers and leaving the characters without their phones until the towers are repaired. This sense of not being tied to a device and allowing oneself to be free and adventurous with friends is what makes “Outer Banks” so appealing to modern teens. It is hard to find a teenager without their phone constantly on them, and the idea that you can have fun without a phone is a message that teens respond positively to.
Besides the storyline, I also can’t get enough of the loving cast, specifically Chase Stokes, Rudy Pankow, Madison Bailey, Jonathan Daviss and Madelyn Cline. The strong and inspirational friendships that these actors portray on the screen is directly translated to real life. The sense of family that this group of friends creates is what makes me so invested in what happens on and off the screen.
Although “Outer Banks” is overall a spectacular production, it does have its drawbacks. Like any action-filled series, sometimes characters are put in positions where they need to make an important decision, whether it be where to hide, where to run or what to do. And just like other films and series, sometimes you don’t agree with a character’s decision, and you’re left thinking, How stupid could they be? Or Really? You had to choose to do that? There are times when some characters, usually JJ or John B., make a decision that seems irrational or not well thought out, and as a viewer that can be frustrating. Luckily, the good outweighs the bad for this Netflix series.
After watching “Outer Banks,” you’ll be begging for a second season, and lucky for you, Jonas Pate, the creator of the show, plans to shoot four or five seasons.