Top 5 Shows to Watch If You Like “Outer Banks”
Outer Banks, Netflix’s sun-soaked teen drama that pits the haves against the have-nots on the picturesque coast of North Carolina, is a soapy melodrama about John B (Chase Stokes) and his friends’ search for lost treasure during one fateful summer. Our Top 5 list of recommendations features shows that are also set in picturesque locales, explore young love and are also filled with more soap than a case of Irish Spring.
1. Dawson’s Creek
Netflix advertised?Outer Banks?as?Dawson’s Creek?meets?The Goonies, which if you’re trying to appeal to today’s youth, might not have been the best idea; have today’s teens seen either of these pop culture touchstones? If not,?Dawson’s Creek?should be the first stop after watching?Outer Banks. Set in the small town of Capeside, Massachusetts (but filmed in Wilmington, North Carolina), the coming-of-age drama follows Dawson (James Van Der Beek), an aspiring filmmaker; Joey (Katie Holmes), his best friend and love interest; Pacey (Joshua Jackson), his other best friend and Joey’s other love interest; and Jen (Michelle Williams), the New York transplant who lives next door, who is also Dawson’s love interest, as they experience the triumphs and challenges of growing apart, growing together, and growing up. There are a lot of hormones in one place, but the WB classic took a view of teens that shows rarely did at the time, which is that their problems were just as important and just as serious as those adults were facing. This often translated to Dawson and his circle of friends speaking like adults ? sometimes pretentiously so. And while there is no search for lost gold, just a great show about the trials of young adulthood,?there will likely never be another show like it.
The best thing about?Outer Banks?was easily its setting, which made everyone who watched it immediately want to escape to the Carolinas (although the show was set in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, it was filmed outside of Charleston, South Carolina). The Italian drama?Summertime???yes, sorry, you’ll have to read subtitles for this one ? is equally picturesque, possibly even more so, and also features an all-consuming love story. Inspired by Federico Moccia’s books and set on the Adriatic coast, the show follows Summer (Coco Rebecca Edogamhe), who longs to escape her hometown but worries about the strain it would put on her family, and Ale (Ludovico Tersigni), a former motorcycle racer who decides to explore what else life has to offer after a bad fall, as they embark on a soapy summer romance in a small beach town. While?Outer Banks?appeared to exist only at magic hour,?Summertime?sizzles in the sun, with bold, bright colors that make the seaside town’s clear water even more inviting. You’ll want to escape into its romantic world immediately.
If the working class teens fighting against the one percent was your favorite part of?Outer Banks, you might enjoy the dramatics the teens get up to in?Ragnarok, a Norwegian Netflix series with an environmentalist message buried inside a story that pulls from Norse mythology. The show follows Magne (David Stakston), who is the second coming of Thor, as he fights against the Jutul Corporation, which is run by other figures from Norse mythology who look like posh and impossibly beautiful humans. They are the embodiment of corporate malfeasance and, as Norway’s fifth-wealthiest family, representative of the one percent. But their factories are also polluting the beautiful and picturesque town of Edda, Norway, and Thor just ain’t about that.?Ragnarok?might not be the greatest show ever made (honestly, if you love?Outer Banks, that likely isn’t a problem for you), but it’s only six episodes and a breeze to watch.
4. The O.C.
Outer Banks?wasn’t the first teen soap to feature a pretty rich girl falling for a hunky guy from the wrong side of the tracks, nor was it the first to do it on a sandy beach with a rich ex-boyfriend screaming and punching people. No, that honor goes to Fox’s?The O.C.?(honestly, it probably wasn’t the first either, but go with it). Set in the wealthy town of Newport Beach, California,?The O.C. follows Ryan Atwood (Benjamin McKenzie), a teen from a broken home who is adopted by his public defender (Peter Gallagher) and his wife (Kelly Rowan), gaining a quick-witted but socially awkward brother (Adam Brody) and privileged girlfriend (Mischa Barton) along the way. While no one will ever be able to explain how Brody’s Seth was ever seen as a dork, the show was the perfect blend of humor, melodrama, and heart. Never better than it was in that brilliant first season, which moved at the speed of light and was backed by an excellent soundtrack, the fourth and final season was a triumphant return to form. I’m not saying it’s because the show finally cut the dead weight, but I’m not?not?saying that either.
5. Blood & Treasure
A search for buried treasure drives much of the story of?Outer Banks, and if the thrill of action and adventure is what you’re looking for, CBS’s?Blood & Treasure?should be the next show on your list. The series follows an art enthusiast (Matt Barr) who teams up with a fugitive (Sofia Pernas) to catch a terrorist who funds his endeavors through stolen treasure. That sounds like a TV exec threw a lot of keywords into a bowl and pulled them out to build the premise, and it’s entirely possible that’s what happened. But with a nice dose of mythology, a global scale, some fun performances, and the obvious influence of Indiana Jones, the series is the perfect low-key binge for summer. While it might be predictable, that is also part of its charm; it doesn’t require a whole lot of brainpower, and it’s easy to sit back and allow yourself to fall into the show.