Daybreak Josh Wheeler (Colin Ford) has a murder history. But what sets him apart from Harry Potter, Katniss Everdeen, or any of the dozens of youthful protagonists who have fought through their own apocalyptic YA stories is that he thinks his life in terms of "killer Origin Story." Ferris Bueller- inspired moments, the new Netflix Zombie Comedy regularly shatters the fourth wall and delivers a self-assured series in which the characters are as pop-cultural as their audiences. The recent effort to target teens hungry for bingable content offers a cumbersome mix of winking comedy, scary thrill, satirical social commentary, and serious teenage narration, and it's equally exciting and exhausting.
from the source material that inspired it. Brian Ralph's cult-hit comic strip Daybreak ̵
The Image of an Exploding Mushroom Cloud About Glendale, California is the truly disturbing moment in a series that focuses on frothy, bloody fun. The show flashes back and forth between the sepia-toned apocalyptic present and the beginning of the school year, breaking the gap between asking who his youthful characters were in high school earlier and who would become them in a world without rules. Daybreak draws heavily on the playbook of Buffy The Vampire Slayer and uses its genre premise to boost the dynamics of the high school experience. In this case, the difficulties of forging a tribe of high schools are literal. Cafeteria Lunchroom cliques have morphed into neighborhood clans, from the popular "Disciples of Kardashia" to the nerdy "STEM Punks" in full Steve Jobs cosplay. Now it's called "Turbo Bro Jock" (Cody Kearsley). They wear absurd leather outfits and travel in a fleet of souped-up vehicles, but although Daybreak is the first to admit that they're Mad Max wannabes, that does not create a cribbing feel less one-touch. The concept of jocks as tyrants is just one of the many places where Daybreak lazily warms up the tropics of the 1980s, though it is desperate to be a state-of-the-art Gen Z series.
The fair cuts a bit better with its leads. A proud loner, Josh jokes that the Apocalypse is the best thing that ever happened to him. He is a former C student who thrives on this new reality thanks to his natural Canadian survival skills. However, as he still has to deal with bloodthirsty ghoulies, mutated animals and these deadly Scots, he reluctantly teams up with 12-year-old pyromaniac Angelica Green (Alyvia Alyn Lind) and pacifist jock-bully Wesley Fists (Austin) Crute) , In the first five episodes selected for critics, the protagonists exchange their narrative duties in episodes that deal with their past through their favorite popculture lenses. Instead of Josh's quirky direct address, Angelica favors the setting of a Martin Scorsese gangster drama as Wesley unfurls his journey through his love of anime and kung fu films and takes on a suitable celebrity cameo to tell his story.
The constant change A plethora of tones and perspectives give the series a burst of energy, but Daybreak still feels like a lot of style with very little substance. The show loosely revolves around Josh's search for his future girlfriend Sam Dean (Sophie Simnett), the British classmate he has not seen since the atomic bomb exploded during their school's football game. It is a tedious mission that characterizes the aimless nature of storytelling Daybreak . This is a show that lives or dies from it, how much the audience connects with their bizarre characters and their efforts to form a new tribe, which they slowly build in an abandoned shopping center modeled on George Romero Dead.
The young performers deliver everything they demand, giving their roles a brilliant CW shine. (Josh looks strangely handsome and attuned to someone who was supposed to be a high school outsider.) But only Austin Crute as Wesley raises the material he gave, and provides a witty, but solid account of a nerdy black footballer with one new fund moral code and a secret romantic past. The other outstanding achievement comes from the former Ferris Bueller himself, Matthew Broderick, who plays the sunny Principal Burr. Although at first glance it looks as if Broderick was just there for a brief, knowledgeable performance (as Michael J. Fox in Netflix's Youthful Movie See You Yesterday ), he actually plays one surprisingly big role in the flashback storylines. Broderick undermines the frenetic energy of the series with a gentler comedy tone that acts as an effective contrast.
Sensitivity aroused. He brings a welcome level of sincerity, for example in a gag over the school's nut-free campus. Unfortunately, the same is not true for sensational jokes about a character who "identifies his sex as a seahorse". Despite her penchant for pop culture called "Droppen," Daybreak greatest influence remains unspoken; It mixes the storytelling of teenagers to feel good with a provocative disrespectful tone that brings to mind Ryan Murphy's teen shows. Daybreak is shot as Glee with action scenes instead of music numbers at 11.
Unlike Rachel Berry, the action sequences in Daybreak are unfortunately never entirely sing. The show tries to hide with creative camera work and bombastic musical clues that the action scenes actually contain very little. Instead, Daybreak brings his readiness to deliver cruel images to a standstill. Limbs fly, smaller characters are regularly upset, and Krysta Rodriguez, a high school teacher who has become a demonic witch, has some disturbing body-horror elements. (Kudos to Rodriguez for their commitment to a truly bizarre role.) The violence and cursing in Daybreak have an R rating advantage, though their comedic sensibilities are definitely younger.
The Biggest The problem with Daybreak is that for any solid joke or hilarious visual gag, there is an attempt to lose the irreverent timeliness, or a tribute that feels lazy rather than smart. The mile-per-minute pace of the show can never disguise the fact that it's built on a fundamentally unstable ground. Like many previous Netflix series, Daybreak strategically ends episodes on cliffhangers to encourage viewers to automatically move to the next one. (It's even meta enough to call this binge-baiting practice what it is.) Although Daybreak is definitely observable, it feels like you're on a candy bag fall. It gives the audience a sugar boost, but without substance.
Daybreak is best when the creators rely on their most absurd impulses. The fifth episode moderates the show a little as the group of survivors decides to throw homecoming dance defeated by the Apocalypse. The idea of children joining together after adults destroy the world is a much more up-to-date message than any of their 1980s teething back or Gen Z disrespect. With the remainder of the season heading in that direction, Daybreak might perform with a comedic voice that feels like something other than pastiche.
The first season with 10 episodes of Daybreak  launches on October 24 on Netflix.