Culture of Pop

Review: ‘Between’ Premieres on Netflix

This week Netflix premiered their new drama Between. Netflix will be adding episodes of the show weekly, rather than allowing the bingewatching format.

Between tells the story of a town called Pretty Lake where a mysterious plague causes everyone over the age of 22 to die, leaving the young people to figure out how they’ll live their lives in a quarantined town with no adults. The premiere episode focused on the early days of the plague,  as people began to die slowly. Between‘s biggest strength is that its theme rings true. The young people in this series are shocked by the events, while the waning older population continually tells them they’re overreacting even as the bodies keep dropping. The way the adults denied the sense of urgency in a changing world felt very relevant and very reflective of this cultural moment. In particular, one wealthy man in Pretty Lake becomes completely preoccupied with protecting his property, even as many people, including his wife, have died.

The other strength of Between besides the commentary is its main character, Wiley Day. A pregnant teen who starts off cynical and naturally becomes moreso as the situation escalates, Wiley is the heart of the show and an immediately gripping character. She’s played wonderfully by Jennette McCurdy from iCarly and its spin-off Sam & Cat. While at times this show felt like a mixed bag, everything about Wiley is on point and I’m excited to watch more of her. The fact that they had the sense to make her the protagonist out of everyone in the ensemble makes me inclined to be optimistic about this show.

There’s a large ensemble of characters introduced in this episode. That could end up being a strength, but it also seems possible that with only a six episode season, not every character will get their due and we’ll end up wondering why some of the storylines weren’t cut.

Based on the first episode, Between seems promising. There’s certainly enough there to keep me interested and I think it could potentially be a good show for fans of The 100 to fill the void with over the summer.

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