Keep Your Friends Close and Your Enemies Closer: ‘Get Even’ Is the Addictive Teen Soap We Need Right Now

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Image courtesy Netflix.

If you ever wondered what would happen if Nancy Drew crossed over with Gossip Girl and added just a dash of Skins, Get Even is here to answer that question. A smart, devious, and addictive new series that has crossed the pond from the U.K. and made its way to Netflix, Get Even is perfect for fans of smart and engaging teen dramas. It’s got mystery, sarcastic teens, a diverse cast (hallelujah, a rarity for the genre), and even secret societies. The best part? The 10 half-hour episodes are the perfect binge watch.

Get Even follows Kitty, Margot, Bree, and Olivia, four teens who secretly form the “Don’t Get Mad” (DGM) group to expose the bullies and liars in their lives. They aren’t friends, calling themselves “coworkers in the department of vengeance,” but their talents meld well together. No one knows they’re the ones behind the revenge pranks that occur around their school, since they don’t mix socially, but their fun is soon upended by a murder that occurs. Whoever the killer was falsely framed the DGM for the crime, and now everyone from the police to fellow students want to find out who’s really been behind the secret society. The four must unite to find the real killer and clear their names.

Image courtesy Netflix.

To me, a great teen drama has to have compelling characters, a propulsive plot, a unique style or setting, and just the right amount of absurdity (after all, where’s the fun in watching otherwise?). Get Even has all of those things. The best of the genre makes you care about the characters. Each girl in the series has her own interesting story, from struggling with sexuality to pressure from parents. The four actresses who lead the series are all excellent, and the supporting cast also has plenty of opportunities to shine. The mystery at the heart of the series gives it a thriller pace, with many twists and turns on the way to the culprit that keep the audience guessing. For American audiences at least, the setting of an English school creates a new atmosphere for viewers to get lost in, like The O.C. did for Southern California and Gossip Girl did for New York City. And of course, the pranks carried out by DGM add a wish-fulfillment element that borders on implausible without ever crossing the line. Anyone who enjoyed A’s machinations on Pretty Little Liars but wished they were more realistic will adore this show. It also has a great soundtrack, which while not required to reach the top tier of teen soaps definitely gives the series bonus points.

Image courtesy Netflix.

But the best part of Get Even isn’t how it masterfully uses genre conventions to its advantage. It’s how it breaks down barriers and stereotypes so inherent in typical teen shows. An inappropriate relationship between a teacher and student is portrayed as predatory and creepy, not a romantic ship. There are same-sex relationships given equal weight and screen time as the heterosexual couples. The diversity of the cast is just a part of the world, not something constantly called out by the characters. It’s a welcome step forward, showing that people of all backgrounds deserve to have their stories told while also getting to take part in more typical sexy teen thriller hijinks.

Get Even is based on a series of novels by Gretchen McNeil, so even without a second season officially greenlit, there’s plenty of story to be explored. Hopefully, American viewers finding the show for the first time on Netflix will give it the added boost needed for the BBC to renew the series. It’s a unique show that provides a perfect world to escape into. You can watch the trailer for the series below!

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By Jules
I am a nurse and dedicated nerd from Boston, MA. When I'm not at work, I'm rewatching old favorites like Supernatural or discovering my new obsessions (too many to count!). When not fangirling, I can be found reading, writing, or listening to a true crime podcast. You can find me on Twitter @juleswritesblog for more nerdy nonsense.
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