DAVID BIANCULLI

Founder / Editor

ERIC GOULD

Associate Editor

LINDA DONOVAN

Assistant Editor

Contributors

ALEX STRACHAN

MIKE HUGHES

KIM AKASS

MONIQUE NAZARETH

ROGER CATLIN

GARY EDGERTON

TOM BRINKMOELLER

GERALD JORDAN

NOEL HOLSTON

 
 
 
 
 
WET HOT AMERICAN SUMMER: FIRST DAY OF CAMP
July 31, 2015  | By David Bianculli

Netflix, 3:00 a.m. ET

 
SERIES PREMIERE: This eight-episode prequel series is based on a 2001 movie comedy that, at the time, earned only $295,000 at the box office – but since became a cult favorite for fans of a certain generation (i.e., the generation after mine). The concocters of the original, Michael Showalter and David Wain, enticed all the original actors – many of them now major stars, such as Paul Rudd, Bradley Cooper, Elizabeth Banks and Amy Schumer – to return for a Netflix prequel. So these folks are playing even younger versions of the characters they played on screen 14 years ago, which, like everything else in this holiday-camp romp, gleefully strains credulity. (Poehler’s character, for example, is supposed to be underage.) All the action in these eight episodes takes place on the first day of camp during the summer depicted in the Wet Hot American Summer movie. All the old faces are here (and even older now), but there are plenty of new characters, too – played by such fun-loving good sports as Jon Hamm, Chris Pine and Lake Bell. Rudd does the best of anyone here, with his commitment as total as his Bill Murray-type casualness – but it’s genial fun for the entire day of camp. Even though, it should be noted, there’s a surprisingly high body count for a summer-camp film that’s not part of the horror-movie genre. For a full review, see Ed Bark's Uncle Barky's Bytes.
 
 
 
 
 
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