Vol. 15, No. 09 – Jan 26 – Feb 8, 2022 – Movie Review

Streaming Spotlight by Cindy Summers
Yellowjackets – Showtime Original Series

4 out of 4 palm trees

In Yellowjackets, an extremely talented high school girls soccer team is involved in a plane crash in the Ontario wilderness on their way to nationals after having won their state championship. They survived on their own for 19 months until they were rescued, and some never made it home due to the accident and incidents that happened along the way including cannibalism (I don’t consider this a spoiler as it is actually the opening scene in the first episode, though presents questions regarding who was involved and who became a meal for the team).

The crash happened in 1996, and picks up on the lives of several key players 25 years later in 2021 as they attempt to put the past behind them and try to lead normal adults lives promising to keep what happened in the woods only between them regardless of the public’s relentless pursuit to find out the truth. The story bounces back and forth between to the two timelines as viewers discover the terrible challenges they experienced to survive and how it forever changed their lives.

Teen Shauna (Sophie Nélisse) was team captain Jackie’s best friend and pregnant with Jackie’s boyfriend Jeff’s baby, which she discovered after the crash while in the woods. Shauna (Melanie Lynskey) ended up marrying Jeff after returning home and was living the life of a settled housewife, though very suspicious of her husband’s continual late nights at the office.

Teen Misty (Samantha Hanratty) was intelligent but socially awkward and a bit of an outcast with the team where she was assistant to the assistant coach. Though helpful with emergency medical knowledge to deal with the serous injuries that happened in the crash, she seemed to sabotage things to keep her new found role of importance in the group. Misty (Christina Ricci) worked in a nursing home, but had strange hobbies like being part of an online crime solving group and was repeatedly caught undermining some efforts with issues the group faced as adults.

Teen Natalie (Sophie Thatcher) turned to drugs, alcohol and sex to deal with her troubled home life and tragedies of the past. Nat was the rebel of the group, and started a romantic relationship with Travis that continued into their adult lives. Natalie (Juliette Lewis) just got out of one of her many trips to rehab and ended up connecting with Misty, who shared she had found Travis who unfortunately, apparently committed suicide right after Nat reached out to him, though Natalie was convinced he was murdered.

Teen Taissa (Jasmine Savoy Brown) was not the team captain, however was the leader of the team and was often first to try various rescue attempts, finding a lake so they would have water which also led them to an abandon cabin to use as shelter, though it had an unexplained dead body in the attic. Taissa (Tawny Cypress) went to college, then to law school and created a good life for her, her wife and son, though decided to run for state senate causing pressure on their relationship and triggering some negative things from the past related to her time in the woods.

Together they were working to solve who was blackmailing them and how did they learn about the secrets meant to be left in the woods. The teen actors are dead ringers for their adult counterparts, and each episode answers some questions while creating many others. The Season 1 finale left viewers anxious for Season 2, scheduled late fall/winter 2022, and was actually pitched for 5 seasons, which actor Melanie Lynskey (Shauna) has already signed on for, though producers didn’t commit to Season 2 until the middle of Season 1 after it gained traction.

Rated TV-MA 10 – 1hr Episodes

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