The Society is a new series on Netflix. The genre is mystery laced with drama and thriller elements. The basic premise is reminiscent of both Lost and Under the Dome with a Lord of the Flies vibe. Watch Season 1 on Netflix and read our review here!
The Society is a new Netflix series in the thriller-drama-mystery hybrid genre. All main characters are high school students since they find themselves returning from a school trip to an abandoned town.
This alone means the premise of The Society will remind you of other shows. Partly Under the Dome since they’re cut off from the rest of the world. But also with a touch of Lost since things are somewhat different in this small town they’ve know so well all their lives. And, obviously, we’ll get a touch of Lord of the Flies.
We’ve watched the first half of Season 1 for this review. Watch all 10 episodes on Netflix and read more about the series in this review!
The teenagers of a small town
Look, we might as well get into it right away; Yes, all the main characters in The Society are teenagers. They’re high school seniors just shy of graduating. In other words, they’re both ready for and eagerly awaiting leaving their small town.
Suddenly, they find themselves trapped in their hometown with just each other and no contact with anyone else. Also, they can’t seem to find their way out since the town is suddenly surrounded by forest that never seems to end.
A cast consisting only of teenagers can be trying at times. They’re on the brink of adults while not having much actual experience with “adulting”. There is quite a lot of teen drama and angst, but for the most part, they do try to be smart about their situation.
Of course, being unsupervised with access to everything in the stores, there is also a lot of drinking. And a lot of sex. As far as the latter part goes, it’s treated pretty damn brilliantly with a very casual focus on safe sex and contraception. When those scenes arrive, you can easily believe that the creator was a big part of Party of Five which also often dealt with various real-life matters.
However, I will say that I’m surprised that everyone in this town is so slim and fit. Nobody seems to really be overweight. And most characters are white. Then again, it does take place in a small town in New England.
The cast of the Netflix series The Society
There are so many characters that you will probably be very confused about their names at first. It certainly took me a few episodes to remember most of them.
The most interesting characters for me, are played by Olivia DeJonge (Better Watch Out, The Visit), Natasha Liu Bordizzo, Kristine Froseth (Apostle), Sean Berdy, Alex Fitzalan (Slender Man), José Julián, Salena Qureshi, and Kathryn Newton (Big Little Lies, Paranormal Activity 4).
Also, Grace Victoria Cox has a very interesting character. She was recently in Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile and was also in Under the Dome.
However, halfway through, I have to say Toby Wallace has become a bit of a standout star for me. I can’t wait to watch him in other movies and series later on. You’ll see, Toby Wallace will definitely get your attention as well.
On the downside, I am not fond of the character played by Jacques Colimon. I think I’m supposed to feel that he’s the good boy but he just really irritates me. He’s too smooth and also too selfish. And just so damn pretty and doll-like almost while supposedly having had a very rough life. I like the actor, but really don’t care for his character.
A refreshing approach to stereotypes
While there are quite a few stereotypes, it is actually very appropriate for a high school student focused story. After all, if there’s one place where stereotypes are alive and well (and people get pigeonholed) then it’s those pesky high school years.
However, it’s also very refreshing that “the jocks” are not the bad guys. Instead, they focus a lot on being a team and trying to use their strength and physicality to keep the peace. Instead, the “bad guys” tend to be those that think they can now get away with anything if they use brute force.
Also, it’s very believable that the girls are quick to get together and realize that without rules, brute force will rule and then the girls will be in danger. So, they try to get people together to create normalcy and a team spirit.
It doesn’t always work as expected and people do die. Not always at the hand of someone else. Remember, since they’re alone (and trapped) in their small town, they also don’t have doctors around.
Watch season 1 of The Society on Netflix!
The new Netflix series was created by Christopher Keyser who has written for shows like Party of Five. More recently, he also wrote on Tyrant (FX) an The Last Tycoon (Amazon Prime). Obviously, these shows are very heavy on drama, but The Society feels first and foremost like a thriller series.
Of course, there is lots of drama as well (we are dealing with teenagers) and thriller elements, since they’re trapped alone in some version of their home town. One of the other writers working on episodes is Anna Fishko. She’s both a writer and producer for Fear the Walking Dead and the two earlier mentioned Christopher Keyser series.
Eight different directors have been onboard to make the 10 episodes. However, one director made three episodes while the rest each made one. The director responsible for three episodes is Marc Webb. He recently directed Gifted (2017) and before that even made the Marvel movie The Amazing Spider-Man (2012). He is also one of the executive producers of The Society.
If you enjoy a good mystery thriller series – and can live with teen drama along the way – then The Society should be very entertaining for you.
The Society Season 1 is out on Netflix worldwide from May 10, 2019.
Creator: Christopher Keyser
Stars: Rachel Keller, Gideon Adlon, Sean Berdy, Natasha Liu Bordizzo, Olivia DeJonge, Toby Wallace, Alex Fitzalan, Kristine Froseth, Jacques Colimon, José Julián, Salena Qureshi, and Kathryn Newton.
A group of teenagers struggles to survive after they’re mysteriously transported to a replica of their wealthy town with no trace of their parents.