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Why You Should Give In and Watch Outer Banks

Photo by Daniel Öberg via Unsplash

Perhaps you’ve seen Outer Banks holding strong in the Netflix Top 10 for weeks now, but you’re appalled at the thought of taking the plunge. Maybe it’s too mainstream for you, and you’d prefer not to watch yet another unrealistic, cheesy series about teenagers. To you I say that I admire your persistence, for I myself could not resist the urge.

I finished Outer Banks in about 4 days. It was a compelling reward at the end of grueling days of working from home, the perfect backdrop to my evening ice cream. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy it, and I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t my favorite thing I had seen in a while. Before you say I have zero taste and awful discretion, I beg you to hear me out.

Let’s make no mistake about what this series is. It’s the story of a band of absurdly good-looking teenagers as they struggle to uncover a massive loot of gold hidden somewhere in their town. Sure, it’s a little out there. (Okay, it’s very far out there.) Ariana Romero’s April 15 piece in Refinery29 proclaims that the band of primary characters “looks like an old school Hollister ad come to life,” and I agree. It doesn’t help that the protagonist’s name is “John B,” (played by Chase Stokes) and the other characters actually call him that. Yes, they call him that for the entire season.

What I would like to highlight here is that Outer Banks is also a story about socioeconomic and social tension, about domestic abuse, and about the pains of coping with loss. Caught between the world of “Kooks” (wealthy residents whose wardrobes seem to consist of only vibrant polo shirts) and “Pogues” (working-class dwellers whose homes are decidedly less glamorous), the characters must come to terms with their own places in the hierarchy.

Better yet, Outer Banks is exciting. It’s action-packed and chock full of nail-biting moments across all ten episodes. I got scared, I got upset, I got emotional, and I got the urge to slather on some sunscreen and pretend my backyard was the beach.

The show has garnered a great deal of media attention and hordes of adolescent fans. The @obx account on Instagram has 1.9 million followers, while Madelyn Cline (who plays Kook Sarah Cameron) tops that with 3.3 million followers on the app.

The series has also inspired a trend on video sharing platform Tik Tok where users sport an outfit in John B’s classic style, complete with a bandana, a backwards baseball cap, and a barely-buttoned printed shirt.

If you’re sitting at home wondering if you should watch Outer Banks, I encourage you to go for it. Enjoy the secondhand adrenaline as our characters chase (stokes) after their ticket to a new life. Chances are you won’t be looking for an abandoned shipwreck this summer, but there’s no harm in enjoying the rush as others do so.

What’s your verdict? Take the poll below to let us know what you think!

Photo by Daniel Öberg via Unsplash

  • Is Outer Banks a total sham or the perfect summer binge?

    • total sham
    • perfect summer binge

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Written by Megan Pontin

Enthusiastic word-collector, avid pancake-consumer, and experienced hammock-lounger. Student at Cornell University.

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