Review of the Netflix original Big Mouth.
Awkward, super uncomfortable and extremely crude. It’s safe to say that Netflix’s Big Mouth is definitely not workplace friendly or safe for kids. It is exactly the type of show that would have made me blush uncontrollably as a preteen. Nevertheless, this is the type of show that I wish had been around while I was going through the extremely complex maze that is puberty.
Granted, I may not have appreciated it at the time, but as a 20-something year-old woman, this show evokes major flashbacks for me. From the Lizzie McGuire-esque scene where Jessi tells her mom she wants a “real” bra, to Nick questioning the size of his manhood in comparison to his friend Andrew’s, this show has something for everybody to relate to.
There’s no denying that puberty is the most awkward time in a young person’s life. As if trying to fit in as a preteen isn’t awkward enough, throw raging hormones into the mix and you’ve got one confused and angsty kid.
This show goes there. Big Mouth is dirty, inappropriate and at times straight up embarrassing, exactly like puberty itself, which is why it is so incredible.
I’m not going to lie, ten minutes into the first episode, I was questioning whether or not this show was simply a series of disgusting jokes about puberty. However, after binge watching all ten episodes of the first season in less than 48 hours, I can confirm that it is much more than simply a string of dirty one-liners.
Although the show starts off from the male perspectives of Nick Birch and Andrew Glouberman, we are soon introduced to Jessi and Missy, their female counterparts. Not only does this show present situations from the perspectives of either sex, but we are also introduced to hilariously accurate characters that embody puberty itself. For example, Andrew is often accompanied by the hormone monster, the raunchy and disrespectful Maury. Contrarily, the girls are coached through awkward situations by their version of the hormone monster, Connie, the hormone monstress.
This is a show that breaks boundaries. It talks about the things that nobody wants to talk about, the embarrassing parts of puberty that we have all gone through at one point in our lives. I mean, the fact that puberty itself is personified in the show by a literal monster should be enough to sell it.
Moreover, the show isn’t simply vulgar without a purpose. In fact, this may be one of the best sex-positive shows of our time. The writers of this show clearly know what they’re doing, because between the disgusting bits, there are also some educational aspects.
There’s one episode in particular that deals with the issue of girls feeling pressured by their male partners to perform certain sexual acts. During this episode, a group of people at a party come together to call out an overly obnoxious guy for trying to pressure his hook-up into performing oral sex on him. It is a very powerful display of how easy and rewarding it can be to stand up for yourself and those around you when you see something that makes you uncomfortable.
This scene acknowledges the cultural norm for girls to perform oral sex on their partners without expecting anything in return, even if they aren’t comfortable doing so. This is a real issue that girls today are facing, regardless of their age. Moreover, it is often a social taboo to speak out against this, even though it is so common. This show acknowledges this issue in a humorous way, yet it gets the point across and isn’t insensitive to the topic at hand.
This is only one example of the many important lessons that are portrayed through the at times dirty, yet relatable humour of Big Mouth.
I can’t express how excited I was to see that it was renewed for a second season. Hopefully, the following season will continue to cover important topics and will be just as relatable for those who choose to watch it. I can say for certain that I will be among those who binge watch the entirety of season two in one sitting, just as I did with the first.