Way back in 2001 a little movie was made called Wet Hot American Summer. It is a satirical comedy spoofing the summer camp movie genre. “The film is based on the experiences Wain had while attending Camp Modin, a Jewish camp, located in Belgrade, Maine, and Showalter had at Camp Mohawk in the Berkshires in Cheshire, Massachusetts.” (Via Wikipedia)
The movie takes place in 1981, at Camp Firewood on the last day of camp. It is quite raunchy and not one to watch with the kids. It does however have brilliantly timed jokes and over all is quite silly. At the time of its release it bombed. But as tends to happen with movies and shows such as this, slowly a cult following took it up. Due to the critical success of many of the cast members (such as Bradley Cooper, Amy Poehler, Paul Rudd, and Elizabeth Banks to name a few) a whole new audience discovered this movie.
Due to the success in later years and a dedicated cult following, 14 years later Netflix released Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp with the original cast reprising their roles. Which makes the prequel series a bunch of actors in their 30s-40s pretending to be in their teens. Much as they did 14 years earlier but in then in their 20s and 30s. We’ll just say some of the actor have aged better than others. The Netflix series isn’t quite as raunchy as the original movie, but it is by no means tame either. It follows in the footsteps of the movie well. The comedy is spot on and I found myself laughing out loud during all eight episodes.
I have been a fan of the writers, David Wain (who plays Yaron in the Netflix series) and Michael Showalter (who also plays Coop in both the movie and the series) since way back in my high school days when they were on The State, a short lived comedy sketch show that aired on MTV. A few of the cast members of The State are in the movie and series; such as Joe Lo Truglio, Michael Showalter, and Ken Marino.
If you don’t mind dirty jokes, some swearing, and vulgar language go check out either the series or the movie (both are available on Netflix and you don’t really need to watch the movie first). The show is overall silly and if you find any of the actors I have mentioned above’s comedy funny at all, you will very much enjoy Wet Hot American Summer.
Both of the below trailers are more on the R rated side than the G side, so be warned to not watch if young impressionable ears are nearby.
Here is the trailer for the new Netflix series.
Here is the trailer for the 2001 movie.