If a werewolf transforms in the middle of a university quad in the middle of the day and people are around, does anybody notice? Apparently not, according to The Order, a batshit new Netflix show and my new obsession. This exact scene happens in the third episode to our hero, Jack, though to be fair he doesn’t undergo a full transformation; he just stands there, bloody and bruised, in a silk robe groaning as the new werewolf in his veins threatens to take over his body. I’d like to think I’d be perceptive enough to take notice. The money shot is when the camera zooms out and shows two people walking towards him from behind, but also a dead students memorial tacked to a nearby tree.
Yes, teens actually die in The Order, a show about werewolves and magicians, and werewolf magicians, that I binge watched last week in two days and have not stopped thinking about since. Mostly: Why is this show so addictive? When is the second season coming out? How is nobody at this school questioning the crazy shit that’s happening?
Here’s a quick rundown of the plot: An angsty white teen who looks like Titanic-era Leo-but-not-as-cute-but-still-cute finds himself in two rivaling secret societies at the fictional Belgrave University. One of them is the Hermetic Order of the Blue Rose, aka just The Order, a hierarchical, ancient-seeming group of magic-practitioners who take themselves too seriously and wear badly-made paper mâche masks. The other is the Knights of Saint Christopher. They are werewolves, who protect normal humans from the evil magic doings of The Order and also love to play beer pong. Jack inadvertently finds himself in the middle of it playing double agent for the Knights, because the leader of The Order is trying access dark magic that could end the world. And, of course, Jack is trying to avenge his mother’s death.
If none of that makes sense to you, that’s okay, because it doesn’t make any more sense once you start watching. In The Order, people aren’t turned into werewolves by being bitten; rather they are swallowed by and fused with an entire wolf hide. The werewolf transformations are so hilariously bad they’re hardly fully shown on screen because it would just look like the Chuck E. Cheese rat but a wolf.
The campy absurdity is so wonderfully heavy-handed, it makes The Order feel like the newest in the ‘80s rewind trend of shows (Riverdale, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina), where teens are put in actual serious and life-threatening situations, while all the adults just don’t really care. Also, my roommate kept asking me if young-Leo was actually young Kevin Bacon.
It truly is the characters that make up the heart in this show, including not-young-but-close-enough-Leo, whom I was worried would be a tiring protagonist, but was pleased to find him worthy to rally behind. Specifically, I’m talking about Adam DiMarco’s Randall Carpio, the bumbling, heart-of-gold RA who is, of course, a werewolf, and a Super Hot blessing to this series. (Please peep him in the whole of Episode 8.) As is Devery Jacob’s Lilith, a raging emo and feminist werewolf icon. The friendship that develops between the werewolves is truly heartwarming, and crucially, also the most realistic part of the show; It helps the series from veering too deep into its own ridiculousness.
Frustratingly though, you should know that the showrunners end season one on an extremely horrible cliffhanger. So I am demanding for season two to come out immediately. It actually doesn’t make any sense and I am furious. You are welcome to DM if you’d like to rage together. In the meantime, I’m going to watch all of Adam DiMarco’s entire filmography, you are also free to join me there, too.