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Yellowjackets Season 1 DVD Review

“Yellowjackets” has plenty of potential but moves too slowly.  

In the 10 episode premiere season of Showtime’s “Yellowjackets,” the series takes place in 2 different time periods primarily- 1996 and 2021. In 1996 a girls high school soccer team crashlands in the wilderness while en route to a game. As they struggle to survive and find ways out of their predicament, bad things begin to happen whether it be a wolf attack, the discovery of a dead body, or troubling behavior within the group of individuals. In 2021, 4 of the now adult survivors (Misty, Natalie, Shauna and Taissa) of the crash are attempting to move on with their lives while also investigating mysterious postcards, a possible murder, an alleged reporter and a blackmail. 

There’s been no shortage of buzz around the now Emmy nominated “Yellowjackets.” Not only is it an engrossing dark psychological thriller with horror elements about trauma, the past, age, human fragility, and secrets, but it’s also a complex female character led ensemble drama. It can also be a rather frustrating series. It’s apparent that the series has more than a few influences as it frequently comes across as a combination between “Lost,” “Lord Of The Flies,” and “Alive,” but there’s enough originality here to elevate the series as a whole. There’s a lot of ideas ripe for exploration (particularly the cannibalism and cult angles), but the problem is the debut season has a severe lack of forward movement. This is the type of series where all the big story moments happen in the first and last episode of the season. Obviously, things happen in episodes 2-9, but it’s bogged down by a lot of teen melodrama, character drama (which isn’t as engaging in the 2021 timeline aside from anything involving Misty) and plot set-ups. The show should already be delving in deep to the cult and cannibalism aspects by the time the season finale rolls around, but it’s barely scraping the surface so far.

What really keeps one invested in the show is all the little mysteries within it. What’s going on with Taissa’s sleepwalking? What are the cult symbols all about? Is Lottie psychic? What is the fate of characters like Van and Ben? You really want to know the answers to these questions.

The cast is stacked with talent such as Melanie Lynskey, Juliette Lewis, Christina Ricci, Jasmin Savoy Brown, Ella Purnell, Rekha Sharma, and Sophie Thatcher. While everyone turns in a quality performance, there are a few standouts. Melanie Lynskey has been an underrated actress for decades now both in film and television so it should come as no surprise that she delivers another layered award worthy role. In terms of the younger cast, rising star Sophie Thatcher steals the show as the younger version of Natalie. The best overall performance though comes from Christina Ricci as the adult Misty. It’s not hard to see why Ricci received an Emmy nomination for this role as she’s at the top of her game here as the conniving, unsettling, upbeat and deeply creepy as the adult version of Misty. 

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 16:9. Grade: B+

Audio Track: Dolby Digital 5.1. Grade: B+

Extras:
* “Favorite Scenes”- Cast and crew talk about their favorite scenes.
* “Female Lens” talks about the female perspective of the series.

July 15, 2022 - Posted by | DVD review | , , , ,

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