'Everything Sucks' vs. 'On My Block': Which Netflix series should you be bingeing?

'Everything Sucks' vs. 'On My Block': Which Netflix series should you be bingeing?

Let’s face it. Your time is limited.

With an overwhelming slew of series launching every week on streaming services, premium channels and – apparently – regular ass network television, it’s impossible to keep up with everything. Chances are you’ll have to make some difficult choices based on little more than some buzz and an educated guess. We all know there’s nothing worse than buckling down for some mediocre entertainment when there’s something much better waiting in the queue.

Allow me to assist you with that.

Netflix premiered two brand new original series, within a month, that fall under one blanket genre. Everything Sucks (released 2/16) and On My Block (released 3/16) check a lot of the same boxes, both essentially coming-of-age stories that walk the line of comedy and drama with a unique twist of originality.

So which is better? Which should you be investing your time in? For simplicity’s sake, I’ve broken the comparison into three major categories with one final verdict. Let the battle begin.

Original Concept

Both series feature a unique backdrop to an otherwise overdone genre. For Everything Sucks, we’re time-warped back to the land of the 90s, where grunge and ska still ruled supreme. It’s essentially a throwback look at the teen dramas from that era. From the music selection to the outfits, these damn millennials love their nostalgia. (I was born in 1990…)

On My Block sets their present-day adolescent tale in the rough streets of inner-city Los Angeles. A group of Freshmen struggle with first kisses and friendship betrayals all while the influence of crime and gang culture loom over their heads. It felt like a newer experience than Everything Sucks which basically read like a Freaks and Geeks spinoff.  

Point: On My Block

Characters & Chemistry

This category was a walkoff for On My Block. The cast of kids was probably my favorite since Stranger Things; each bringing a strong individual performance while playing off each other well. Ruby (Jason Genao), Monse (Sierra Capri) and Jamal (Brett Gray) shined the brightest, but there wasn’t a weak link on set. Tremendous acting all around.

Everything Sucks was more of a mixed bag. While certain characters jumped off the screen, others were a bit flat. I really enjoyed the performance by Luke (Jahi Winston), but failed to feel the chemistry with his group of friends. The drama-club pairing of Emaline and Oliver was too over-the-top (maybe intentional?) and the Tyler and McQuaid characters were fairly one-dimensional. I enjoyed the parent duo of Ken Messner (Patch Darragh) and Sherry O’Neil (Claudine Nako) but it wasn’t enough to edge out On My Block.

Point: On My Block

Bingeability

I set out to watch both of these series for the purpose of writing this review. I’m also a completionist who feels the need to finish whatever show I’ve started, no matter how bad. With that in mind, On My Block was a much easier binge than Everything Sucks. In terms of length, the two are comparable; ten 30-minute episodes. But I felt myself looking forward to every episode of On My Block, while parts of Everything Sucks felt like a chore to get through.

They’re both short enough to bust out in a few days without too much effort. But it was pretty obvious that On My Block had a leg up in the overall entertainment department. Everything Sucks had its moments and these are both worth a watch at some point in your life, but if you are wondering which to tackle first, the answer is clear.

Point: On My Block

VERDICT: ON MY BLOCK

Happy bingeing. 


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