Season 1, Episodes 1-8
Jeff Lemire’s Sweet Tooth comic book series is one of the best books from DC Vertigo. It’s beautifully written, with art that feels raw and is perfectly suited for the post apocalyptic nature of the series. About a young half deer/half human or Hybrid, little Gus goes in search of his true family against the backdrop of a global pandemic that has every new baby born not as a human but as a Hybrid. I’ve always thought that a TV show or movie adaptation of this series would be worthwhile, as well as an incredibly difficult task.
Que Robert Downey Jr? Sure why not, but more importantly que Netflix, and que the idea that this harsh and at times depressing and utterly cruel comic series can be a light and heartwarming TV show. The idea that Sweet Tooth can be for young audiences, it can be fun and funny, and bright and down right delightful. It can be all those things but it also can be serious and tackle issues that can be both heartwarming and also cause the tears to flow. Sweet Tooth from Netflix is one of the best tv shows of 2021, comic book or not, and more importantly it can be watched by the entire family and can bring new readers to the amazing comic book.
Where this show shines and episode after episode it became more and more clear is with our Gus. Christion Convery as our antlered hero is perfect. He is bright, hopeful and brings out the innocent kid in all of us as we watch. He knows nothing except what his Father has taught him, and his wide eyed optimism towards the world he inhabits is a breath of fresh air every scene Gus is in. Followed along, or more, Gus is following him, Nonso Anozie as Tommy Jepperd is big, he’s brash and is pessimistic. A perfect foul for young Gus. As the Big Man, we see how those who are scared from the past can be turned to the light and brought back to caring about others when for so long caring for just themselves.
Every cast member, every character has room in every episode to breathe, from Bear, to The General, Aimee and Wendy. What show creator and writer Jim Mickle has done with this series is special. I found that every character mattered. Every decision they made, mattered. The world around them felt alive and reactive to the characters who inhabit it. That brings me to how beautiful the show looks. From sets to landscapes, the colors are bright and big. I love how everything little Gus was trying to accomplish felt like he was a leaf being blown across the country on a giant wind. Nothing ever fazed him in completing his goal, and everywhere he and Big Man went, from the mountains to the trains and to the city escapes, all along the way everything looked amazing on screen. CGI was used for sure, it’s noticeable in a lot of places but filming in New Zealand for a show based in America, I can understand it.
A show about a pandemic, characters wearing masks, hand sanitizer, people dieing. The timing of this series is not lost on me. Coming out just as the world seems to be going back to the closest thing to normalcy we have seen in over a calendar year. I’ve heard and read that some people don’t want to see THE or A pandemic portrayed on screen because we have all lived it the past year, but in Sweet Tooths case, I think it works. I think it gives us insight to a level of the pandemic that was lost on us. How something that should have brought us together pushed us further apart. As said by the great narration from James Brolin. I think the more the series goes along, which I hope is beyond this one season, everyone will see how everything is different, how the Hybrids, and The Sick, and The Great Crumble are all an extension of the fantastical nature of the great comic book series, not our own lives.
Sweet Tooth On Netflix has enough for fans of the comic book series that will keep this season fresh and exciting, and for non fans and the uninitiated this series will be loved by a lot of people. It’s great for the whole family and during this beginning of the end of the pandemic that has gripped our world for over a year, the beginning of the Sweet Tooth’s journey couldn’t have come at a better time.