New Stories

Stream Your Heart Out: American Vandal

by Rob Carlson

Genre: Comedy-Drama

2 Seasons

(8 episodes, 30 minutes)

“American Vandal” season two is streaming on Netflix and demands to be watched by any fans of satire or mystery.

Season two runs a tight eight episodes, each of which hovers around the 30-minute mark. It’s feasible to get through in one or two days.

It’s hard to compare season two to the labyrinthian first season. It still boggles the mind that someone sat down and wrote season one of “American Vandal,” because it all seems so realistically coincidental. Its payoff is much less obvious than season two’s. It’s easier to suspend disbelief because the viewer doesn’t really know what to expect, since we aren’t familiar with the creators or any of the actors.

What season two lacks in mystery, it makes up for in production quality. Don’t get me wrong, there are still plenty of left turns in the case of the Turd Burglar, but not like in season one.

The creators really lean into that Netflix money this time around. To be fair, the first season was adapted from a tiny-budget web series, and all the money Netflix initially gave them went to open and end credits and a few scene reshoots. All that polish is now applied to the entire series. The setting is expensive. The criminal incidents are practical and impressive. The cast is better, specifically the lead.

Travis Tope plays Kevin McClain: a boy I swear I hung out with in high school, for better or worse. His character arc is the most attractive aspect of the show, as far as I’m concerned. Kevin’s personal story is the real mystery of season two.

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