Netflix's New Original 'Scrotal Recall' Is So Much Better Than Its Attention-Grabby Title
Netflix has been on a tear lately with their original programming, which is great for us as viewers. It means that for every Marco Polo, there’s also a House of Cards, a The Killing, and an Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. It also means, though, that there’s a lot to keep track of. So while we were all fawning over Daredevil, the small British comedy Scrotal Recall slipped by most of us. Or maybe it didn’t slip by. Maybe you were one of many people who got an email telling you Netflix recommended something called Scrotal Recall and you spent the rest of your day wondering how your life choices had led to this.
While that title may not inspire you to give it a shot (or does it? I don’t know your brain), the show itself is surprisingly good. It’s a Netflix original but also debuted last year on Channel 4 in England, and while I don’t fully understand how that works, I’m just happy the show is here now. It’s centered around Dylan, played by Johnny Flynn, who looks like the reincarnation of Charlie Hunnam’s Undeclared days.
When Dylan finds out he’s tested positive for chlamydia, he sets out to get in touch with every one of his previous sexual partners. It’s the right thing to do, for their health, but there’s also a bit of “why am I so bad at love?” thrown in, which makes it sort of an STD-driven High Fidelity. Each episode is dedicated to a different woman, with most of the show existing in flashback, giving us the story of each sexual experience. Along for the ride are Dylan’s best friends Evie (Antonia Thomas) and Luke (Daniel Ings, whose sleazy, bro-y, ultimately lovable and complex character is arguably the very best thing about this whole show). While Evie’s quiet, desperate pining over Dylan may take the heaviest of hands, the relationship between the three is an explosion of love and chemistry. The show is funny and smart, and there’s just enough grossly honest and emotionally stunted sex talk to fill a tiny (tiny!) part of the hole You’re the Worst has left in us. But because I know what you all like, I’ll give you what is probably the best selling point for this or any show, and that is this tag from IMDB:
I’m not sure if there will be a second season of this show, but there definitely should be, if only because the first season didn’t seem quite fully realized. When I sat down to watch the show this weekend, I didn’t look ahead to see how many episodes were in the first season, and it turns out there are only six (while Dylan’s list of partners is significantly longer). And while I understand possibly not wanting to dedicate a full 13 or however many episodes to a new show, I can’t help but feel that this particular story needed a longer arc. Maybe they just wanted to make sure there was enough material for a second season (and they did end on a decent cliffhanger). But while I wanted to see Dylan make his way through the entire list, and was disappointed to realize abruptly that I wouldn’t get that satisfaction in one season, I don’t know if six episodes was enough of a hook to make sure we come back.