I know what you did last summer… you came out of lockdown and rushed to the pub the second Boris allowed it, only to be back at zoom quizzes and homemade banana bread by October. Well, the group of teens in Amazon’s newest hot hit, I Know What You Did Last Summer got up to a whole lot more than us – but looking at the consequences of their unfortunate actions, we think another lockdown would be more appealing.
Writer for The Guardian, Lucy Mangan defines the series as “Amazon’s addictive reimagining of the hit 90s film”, with a “pacy plot offering plenty of potential killer-candidates” and “jump scares with just enough emotional and psychological realism…to keep us invested”.
If this is trash TV, then it’s the kind of trash that is stored in a soft-close, motion sensor bin, with a little alarm that beeps when it’s full. As Mangan states, it provides a “vanishingly rare sense of pleasure that comes with knowing you are watching something that is just a bit better than it needs to be”, i.e., trash TV that’s actually good. Although here it incurs an Aristotelian moralistic debate – kind of. The lines between good and bad become blurred with a series featuring some of the least likeable Gen-Y characters and a narrative with “a level of far-fetchedness that is admittedly hilarious”, as Adam White says in The Independent. But this is guilty pleasure watching that we’re talking about. You wouldn’t understand, Aristotle.
However, whilst the series is never short of gore and gripping turns, certain critics do insist that it lacks credible characters, with White describing them as “resolutely charm-free” and “like dubiously written cast-offs from Euphoria or the Gossip Girl reboot that no one watched” (apart from us – check out our review here). But, the saving grace with a slasher series is that no matter how likeable or unlikeable the characters are – you best believe that they will be dropping like flies as the series progresses.
The Hollywood Reporter’s Daniel Fienberg hits the nail on the blood-soaked head, admitting that “in its sea of logical flaws” like “mediocre performances, some bad directing choices and an evasive approach to its chosen genre”, it’s still “captivatingly confusing”.
First shown October 2021.