In a crowded area of postapocalyptic dramas, critically acclaimed Netflix sequence Candy Tooth stands out as a lot for its hopeful tone as for its endlessly optimistic half-deer, half-boy protagonist, Gus.
Candy Tooth follows 10-year-old Gus (Christian Convery) as he leaves the protection of the remoted forest camp he grew up in and units off on a journey throughout the plague-ravaged nation to search out his mom within the firm of a mysterious loner named Jepperd (Nonso Anozie) who has secrets and techniques of his personal. The primary season of Candy Tooth premiered June 4 on the streaming service, and earned reward from critics and basic audiences alike with its story of a virus that tears the world aside and the emergence of half-human, half-animal youngsters — like Gus — who would possibly maintain the important thing to humanity’s future.
Though it’s set in a world filled with dying and uncertainty, the place a extremely contagious virus has lowered humanity to pockets of determined survivors and extremists motivated by greed and corrupt ideologies, Candy Tooth unfolds via the views of Gus and different survivors who discover causes (and objective) to remain hopeful.
In accordance with filmmaker Jim Mickle (Stake Land, Hap & Leonard), who developed Candy Tooth from Jeff Lemire’s comedian ebook sequence of the identical identify, the standard expectations for postapocalyptic tales and the realities of our present, pandemic-shaped lives each impressed and reaffirmed, respectively, the choice to present the Netflix sequence a extra hopeful, lighter tone than its style friends and its supply materials.
“On the time [when we were developing the series], round 2017, I used to be within the temper for each watching and telling a bit extra hopeful story, particularly in instances of darkness,” Mickle instructed Digital Tendencies. “The fairy story facet of Candy Tooth supplied a brand new means to have a look at what the world would possibly seem like in a postapocalyptic America, so it began organically from these early concepts, and from Gus within the comedian ebook, who supplies the perspective on every little thing.”
“However when you have been to do it straight from the comedian ebook, it might most likely really feel like a documentary now,” he added, “or like so many issues we’ve seen within the style already.”
The sequence’ distinctive spin on the style additionally extends to its characters, whose narrative arcs not often take them within the instructions one expects, and supply loads of surprises — even for followers of the Candy Tooth comedian sequence.
The present casts Dania Ramirez and Stefania LaVie Owen as Aimee Eden and Bear, respectively, two characters who don’t exist within the comics, however play key roles in each Gus’ journey and the better world, the place the half-human “hybrid” youngsters are feared — and even hunted — by the dwindling, totally human inhabitants. Aimee is a former therapist who discovers her true calling when she supplies sanctuary for hybrids, whereas Bear is the orphaned chief of a kid military within the postapocalyptic world.
“Because the present evolves, so does Aimee, and to be part of a message that’s so stunning is absolutely … It’s only a very selfless sort of function,” says Ramirez. “Lots of instances I’m taking part in a badass or somebody very motherly and candy, however to have the ability to mix the 2 and be this badass Mama Bear warrior, who’s not solely defending hybrids, but additionally instructing them and studying from them, that feels so particular to me.”
“I’d by no means learn a personality like Bear ever,” agreed Owen. “I’m used to taking part in the sister of someone or the daughter, however [Bear] is such a person. She’s misplaced her household, and he or she’s created her family. She’s a really empowering character who is aware of who she is, however ultimately realizes perhaps she doesn’t. … I really feel like lots of people undergo that. They really feel like they know their id and who they’re, after which one thing occurs and so they don’t. I like so many issues about Bear.”
Whereas some forged members embraced their characters’ variations, it was really the similarity along with his character that stored sequence star Convery enthusiastic about placing on his antlers to play Gus every day.
“We’re virtually the identical individual,” laughed Convery. “We’re each hopeful and optimistic and optimistic, and love bitter candies and operating and leaping and nature. I might go on and on.”
And it’s the limitless optimism from Gus that gives one of the direct hyperlinks between the Netflix sequence and Lemire’s unique Candy Tooth saga, which performed out throughout 46 points revealed from 2009 till 2013.
“The world has modified a lot since I did the ebook, [and] lots of the issues within the comedian ebook have sort of come true in that point between the comedian and the present, however on the finish of the day, I believe [the show] has the identical coronary heart that was within the comedian,” Lemire instructed Digital Tendencies. “Gus remains to be the identical optimistic character, and the present finally ends up getting lots of the identical beats. The comedian’s story wanted to be introduced differently, although, and I used to be actually open and sympathetic to that.”
With the primary season of Candy Tooth having fun with the form of crucial acclaim that places it among the many best-reviewed reveals on Netflix, the query now turns into, “What’s subsequent?”
The streaming service has but to resume Candy Tooth for a second season, leaving the present’s followers anxious concerning the fates of Gus, Jeppard, and their mates after a very intense season-ending cliffhanger.
“Once I first bought the function, I had an extended dialogue with Jim Mickle about my character’s arc and the best way that’s going to unfold all through Candy Tooth,” stated Anozie. “We’re solely simply starting that arc, so on the subject of a brand new season, you’re going to need to ask subsequent Netflix about that.”
Season 1 of Candy Tooth is accessible now on Netflix.