So, I was scrolling through my Twitter feed when I came across a video of what appeared to be a prank pulled on some school students which caused them to…well, soil themselves. I was laughing my ass off while simultaneously feeling bad for those kids, as for a split second, I thought it was real. It took me a minute of researching to learn that it is from a Mockumentary called American Vandal. Thinking to myself that this would be some type of comedy, I quickly went to Netflix to check it out, of course starting from Season 1 to Season 2. This was one of the most engrossing series I’ve watched in a long ass time.
To give you an idea of what this series is all about for those of you who may not be familiar with American Vandal:
American Vandal is an American mockumentary television series created by Dan Perrault and Tony Yacenda that premiered on September 15, 2017 on Netflix. The series is a satire of true crime documentaries such as Making a Murderer and Serial. In October 2017, Netflix renewed the series for an eight-episode second season, that premiered on September 14, 2018.
True-crime series are gaining popularity on TV so, of course, there was bound to be a satire of the genre. “American Vandal” takes a look at the aftermath of various high school pranks. Aspiring student documentarian Peter Maldonado takes it upon himself, with help from friend Sam Ecklund, to investigate the cases and find out exactly who is responsible for the crimes. After looking into vandalism at a public high school, Peter and Sam head to a Catholic school after the cafeteria’s lemonade is contaminated with laxatives. In the style of the genre it lampoons, the series leaves viewers wondering who the real perpetrator is until the very end.
As I said, I went to check it out after seeing that video on Twitter so I could have some good laugh but instead, I got this mockumentary that took itself so seriously that I lost myself in the world and I was playing along to try and figure out the culprit behind the crimes. Thinking about it now, that video that showed all those kids shitting themselves could’ve been a marketing ploy to get more viewers, and if that’s the case then kudos, you got me!
In the first season, Peter and Sam tried to solve the mystery of who sprayed paintings of dicks on 27 cars. Yep, I ain’t bullshitting here. I spent the last four hours of my life watching two teenagers try to solve a dick mystery with the utmost seriousness. The twist and turns, the uncovering of more dirt, and unexpected surprises were the most entertaining for me. Every actor played their character extremely well, so well that I actually caught myself asking “wait hold up, is this based on something that happened?” And that’s why I think it’s amazing. American Vandal’s biggest joke is that it takes itself seriously while discussing these ridiculous crimes with a gripping and insightful mystery.
Season 2 took it to the next level. At every point, I felt like I was certain that I knew who committed the crime, but every time I was thrown for a loop. So the bases for the season is as follows:
Season 2 of the Emmy-nominated and Peabody Award-winning true-crime satire follows documentarians Peter Maldonado and Sam Ecklund as they bring their investigative skills to an elite Catholic school where someone has been taking poop-related pranks to new heights.
The second season follows Peter and Sam as they investigate a new crime at a Catholic private high school after their cafeteria’s lemonade is contaminated with laxatives by someone calling themselves “The Turd Burglar”.
The pacing was fine until the last couple of episodes, where it felt like it just suddenly rushed itself. I don’t know how to explain it but that was the only weird gripe that I had with the season. Other than that, it was great. I can’t really say too much in this review for sake of accidentally spoiling it but I assure you, you’re gonna be well entertained watching two high schoolers I think, (don’t quote me on this) try and solve a mystery about poop.