Netflix Originals: Worth the Hype?


Chenoa Gentle , Writer

Netflix has been coming out with original series and movies since House of Cards released in 2013, but lately Netflix has been publishing more movies for teens. So, are these movies and series worth the hype?

One of the most recent movie releases to pique the interests of many viewers is the Netflix-released teen comedy romance The Kissing Booth, which debuted in early May of this year. The movie follows a regular girl next door who has a crush on her best friend’s brother. Many viewers thought it was a decent movie, despite some cheesy plot lines and its forbidden love trope. Junior Hadley Rosengrant commented, “I was SUPER close to watching it, but then I kind of thought the plot and the trailers looked a little dumb.” However, there are still many people who give the movie positive reviews.

Not too long after they released The Kissing Booth, Netflix released teen hit To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. On paper, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before seems very similar to The Kissing Booth, both in writing and style, but it was far more of a success with Netflix viewers. Cast member Noah Centineo, who plays main character Peter Kavinsky, even made it on the Today Show, along with other pop magazines like Vulture and Insider. Even Time wrote an article, titled, “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is the Perfect Millennial Take on Boy Meets Girl.” Many more positive reviews were given to the movie. Sophomore Maggie Brown stated that, “[It was a] brilliant movie with incredibly talented young actors and a sweet message,” and even went as far as saying, “Netflix is bringing back the rom-com nearly single-handedly.” Many other teenage and young adult viewers are feeling the same way. After all, who wouldn’t love a classic reference to Sixteen Candles?

Moving on to Netflix original series, young adventure story Anne with an “E” has been quite a success since season one. Anne with an “E” follows an orphan girl, Anne, along with her friends and family on their adventures in 19th century Canada. CBC News states that Anne with an “E” got confirmation for a third season, even though some viewers felt that Anne was “pretentious and obnoxious.” Prior to Anne with an “E,” Netflix was living off the high of award winning Stranger Things. “Who hasn’t heard of Stranger Things? It’s a brilliant, suspenseful pop culture phenomenon that’s geared the public towards streaming more than ever,” continued Maggie Brown. But, like any good show, some offer negative reviews. “Stranger Things is a really good show, but all of the hype made a lot of people dislike it,” said Senior Alex Hyunh. Overall, fans of both shows are demanding further seasons, despite critics’ hate.

Netflix originals have been on the rise lately, especially in the rom-com department, and there are many more to come. Some honorable mentions from students include series like The Guernsey Literary, Dear White People, On My Block, Daredevil, and rom-coms like Alex Strangelove and Set It Up.  In summary, Netflix originals are taking audiences of all kinds by storm. “They’re setting the bar really high for the quality of the media and making us think more about the value of production that goes into TV and movies. They’re a huge step towards creative autonomy in the industry—no one has to worry about cable TV slots or lackluster budgets,” Maggie Brown concluded.