If you haven’t yet watched The Wilds on Amazon Prime, you should really check it out, because season 2 is coming soon, and there is a lovely romance that you don’t quite expect (but kinda do).
Season Two is, yes, less girl-centric, but it’s not the dreaded Lord of the Flies where they spend all their time on the new guys.
Let’s Not Hear it for the Boys
When the last season of The Wilds aired, it came with a bunch of wild reveals. Someone was dead, someone lost a hand, the girls were rescued (or were they?), and oh yeah, boys. Boys on the island.
When that reveal was made, most of Team LezWatch made faces and complained. We didn’t want a ‘boy version’, because that was just Lord of the Flies and we know where that ends. The idea of handing over the conch to a bunch of dudes on the island was totally unappealing. There are hundreds of movies and shows about dudes on an abandoned island, or being used for an experiment, and it’s not that those aren’t good stories (some are), but that we wanted something new! Something that was us, that we didn’t have to try and project ourselves on.
Does the new season start out with the dudes? Yes. Does it stay with the dudes? Nope! By ten minutes in, we’re back to the girls where two are being more than friends and the others dealing with the shark scene, while setting up signal fires and an SOS. Meanwhile, the overseers (remember them?) talk about the boys and point out the boys failed! So even though the new season cuts back and forth between the groups, we go in knowing the boys kinda suck at this experiment.
The other thing is they actually made some of the boys interesting characters. They did the same as they did with the girls, giving them depth and layers and quirks that make sense while being amusing at the same time.
At the end of the day, the reality is the part with the guys is what a lot of us did not want nor did we really care about it. It’s good they do a speed-run through them, and show them failing and how it happened, but again, I didn’t need it. It’s what I would expect, having lived in this world.
Girls Just Wanna Find Truth
While the boys collapse under the weight of their circumstances, the girls begin to fight over the revelation that one of them was in on the experiment the whole time. They know something’s up. Their fights are more about what is the best way to address the fact they know something’s up and someone’s spying, without making it known they know.
Of course this means the first episode of the season ends with a revelation that hooks you and keeps you watching.
They don’t delay the ‘when will the girls meet the guys?’ much, which lets us see how different the groups went from day one. At first we see the guys struggling like the girls did, but just like the girls had a secret spy, we know the guys must as well.
On top of that, the dudes run right into the obvious penis related problems. “Are you looking at my dick?” problems. When the groups connect, the girls take their full 50 day experience and apply it to the boys, who really do fail at every aspect of team building, working together, and taking time to understand each other. They barely understand themselves at that point, though, so it’s really not that big of a reach.
Speaking of understanding themselves, Toni and Shelby have a ways to go with that (they’re teenagers, eh?) but they get places. Oh and we finally learn what happened to Shelby’s hair!
Where the Wild Things Aren’t
The best news is the show remains able to deliver on the premises of what the actual fuck is going on. Unlike shows like Lost that drown in their own mythos, The Wilds presents the morally grey adults toying with kids and we start to get the idea of what the experience was meant to do.
After teasing the hell out of us for 7 episodes, it’s the final episode of the season that unpacks and turns everything on its head. We learn what happens to cause the boys to fail, how the girls actually succeeded, and who the hell is playing whom in all this! The reveal was a delight.
We get to see how the groups do interact with each other, how they tie together, and with the right lead, how they win.
Or do they?
Reach Out and Scream Base
The finale is a 90 minute run, with stumbles, to a conclusion that really puts so many confusing layers back on the story, you feel like it’s going one way when it all hits a setup for season three!
The end is a giant “wait WHAT!?” along the same tone as the first season. It’s a full setup for season 3 in multiple ways, and while it does that annoying thing where you still have questions, you feel like there’s a road for answers.
Tune in May 6th, on Prime Video, for season two of The Wilds. It’s about to get real wild in here.