Before diving into our Twisted Metal Season 1 review, we’re going to make something very clear: Zero things that work about this series could ever even come close to being decent without the hard work of writers, actors, and every single member of the crew. So, in case anyone wanted to know where we stand here, our place is—and will remain—on the side of striking WGA and SAG-AFTRA members.
Got it? Good. Now, for our actual thoughts on the series itself.
When this show was first announced, looking forward to it was kind of a no brainer. Forget the video games the show is based on—blasphemy, we’re sure. But whatever…we said what we said—in this house, we don’t turn down the opportunity to see the likes of Anthony Mackie and Stephanie Beatriz in…eh. Anything, really. Throw in Neve Campbell, and we’d literally watch paint dry as long as all of these names were there. Thankfully, though, Twisted Metal is definitely not that level of boring. Not even close.
Instead, the series is mostly what the teasers made it out to be. It’s fun, often mindlessly so. And we mean that in a good way because not everything claims, much less needs, to be anything other than just…something to watch. There’s plenty of action, and there are more than enough opportunities to laugh at the absurdity of it all. And since that’s, more or less, what we signed up for, we’re satisfied.
Also of note: Any good roadtrip had better have a killer soundtrack—and this show’s first season most certainly does. Not only is the nostalgia there, but the way some of these songs are used is such a treat. No, Evanescence’s “My Immortal” will never be the same. And yes, Twisted Metal Season 1 somehow managed to get itself in on this summer’s Barbie hype with that “Barbie Girl” sequence. Brilliantly and—as always—hilariously so, in fact.
But that’s not to say that there isn’t substance here at all—far from it. Unexpectedly, in the midst of all the goofiness and the video game style bloodbaths, Twisted Metal Season 1 also has a real sort of heart. That comes, mostly, from the partnership between Mackie’s John Doe and Beatriz’s Quiet. Sometimes, though, it’s there in the backstories, as well as the characters’ occasional chances to pause and live in the moment. There are some chances at dreaming, reflecting on what the future could be if this all works out, too. Again, this type of show absolutely shouldn’t be able to deliver on these emotional beats. But it does…and that’s down to the talent bringing the story to life.
And this story, outside of a milkman facing a series of increasingly-dangerous obstacles on his quest to deliver a package on time, is really about letting go. Letting go of trauma, of loss, of grief and guilt. Above even that, though, it’s about finding our home—on the road, with another person…wherever, whatever, it takes.
More on Twisted Metal Season 1
- When Neve Campbell asks you to do something, you do it. Even without any potential reward aside from getting to say “yes, ma’am” to Neve Campbell. She’s so good in this…as a surprise to absolutely no one.
- “I can make people’s desires, their dreams, their every wish come true.” Obviously.
- This show really says ACAB over and over again, and I’m 100% here for it.
- “There are some things I wish I could forget.” Same.
- Stephanie Beatriz brings so much emotion to Quiet, even and especially, when she’s…quiet. So, given what her first words are and when they come up, the authenticity and pure hilarity are able to count that much more.
- “Just to be clear, I fucking hate you.” “Same.” If we didn’t already feel a certain kind of way about where this was headed…
- That poster for A Knight’s Tale almost broke me. Anyone else?
- …and then, immediately, Blankman cracked me the hell up. Genius.
- “It’s just the first time we’ve talked without a motherfucker or a fuck you slipping in there.” “Fuck you, motherfucker.” “That’s better.” I love them.
- Granny Dread is a total icon, and episode 4 had no business kicking me in the feels like that.
- “First of all, weight doesn’t equate to health. Second, objects fall at the same speed regardless of mass. Everyone knows that. Except you dipshits.” Oh, ok. ACAB and fuck fatphobia. 10/10, no notes.
- “The only reason we’ve made it this far is because we’ve had each other.” An AI could not drop this kind of truth in the middle of all this mayhem. Some tech bro could try to make it so, but it would fall flat.
- Stephanie Beatriz. Episode 6. That is all.
- …until Anthony Mackie. Episode 9. That speech.
- Cute effect with the sitcom-style title card in 1×07.
- t.A.T.u. Faith No More! Cake! The youths will never understand.
- “You didn’t tell me she was so hot.” I’m gonna need 10-15 business days to recover…Someone, write fic. Please.
- I would, once again, like to say yes. Neve.
- The ending is kind of dragged out? But also, that sets up another season. Fair deal for WGA and SAG-AFTRA, followed by news of another season…when.
All 10 episodes of Twisted Metal Season 1 are now streaming on Peacock. Thoughts? Hoping for more? Leave us a comment!