Season two of ‘Big Mouth’ lands on Netflix today, and if you haven’t already seen season one, go watch it, and then watch the second. In fact, with each season having ten easy-to-watch episodes of approximately 25 minutes in length, it should be the show you binge on this weekend.
Created by Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Mark Levin, and Jennifer Flackett, and based on Kroll and Goldberg's tweenage years, the show follows a group of 7th grade students (the equivalent of 1st year here) as they go through the horrors, wonders, and many embarrassments of puberty. To make matters worse, the characters are haunted by Hormone Monsters – the grotesque but hilarious Maurice (Kroll) and the sassy Connie (Maya Rudolph in all her fabulousness) – who encourage them to indulge in the instincts they are discovering.
The show manages to capture puberty accurately and is hilarious in its execution and relatability. Highlights of season one include an episode where Jessi (Jessi Klein) gets her first period – while wearing white shorts, no less – while another follows a drama-filled boys’ and girls’ sleepover, and another sees Andrew (John Mulaney) become addicted to porn. The third protagonist is the series is Nick (Kroll), who is on the cusp of puberty without being quite there yet.
In season two, Nick continues to struggle as one of the less developed boys in his class while Andrew’s masturbation tendencies continue to be perverse. Jessi, meanwhile, is acting out as her parents are going through a divorce. Adolescent-related topics looked at in the return of the show include shoplifting, ‘pantsing’, slut-shaming, and trying drugs for the first time. New characters include Gina (Gina Rodriguez), who the boys become enthralled by for a single reason (every class had one); and The Shame Wizard (a perfectly cast David Thewlis), whose exact function is initially confusing but he really comes into his own by episode eight.
While season one is definitely stronger and more focussed, devoting each episode to a single rite of passage rather than forcing storylines on the characters, it is worth sticking through some of season two’s earlier, weaker episodes, as you are rewarded with great content later.
Season one has a stronger pilot but season two’s episode about “boobs” provides insight as well as laughs. Later on in the relatively cruder season, an episode dedicated to the provisions of Planned Parenthood includes a very funny ‘The Bachelor’ parody as well as a thought-provoking story about a character who gets an abortion. There are also some great musical numbers to look forward to, the best one being about ‘Guy Town’, which describes life for the single men who share an apartment complex.
‘Big Mouth’ has covered much about coming of age and will likely struggle to find relevant plots if it continues for another season. What we have from it so far in any case is smart, witty, and never heavy-going. To reiterate, watch it over a weekend and you’ll find yourself much entertained.