Series: Back Stabber

We were given a chance to review an episode of the Amazon series, Back Stabber.

"Oh. My. God. This would be a perfect
time for a slasher to show up.
So many thirty year old
teenagers in one place!"
We were recently given a chance to review the online series, Back Stabber. Playing like some type of mid-level tribute to the '80s teen comedies that infused my youth, this little demo is an impressive piece of work that of course features far too old actors in their twenties playing teenagers. While it would be easy to poke fun at that fact, it's reasonable to assume the creators knew exactly what they were going for. Unlike so many of those lower budget media entries, the actors here have a natural quality and actually have a great chemistry that definitely sets them apart.

Where the actors offer up their best, the music and editing leave a little to be desired. Most of the soundtrack seems canned and overtly melodramatic for this series. Music should tie scenes together and have an emotional impact. Here, it seems out of place in a lot of areas and doesn't really enhance but becomes more of a distraction at times. Also, some of the dialogue gets lost in a slightly muddled mix in a few areas. With a more original sounding soundtrack and a more focused context of speech between characters, this could be a lot better. The actors aren't bad for this type of independent series and seem to be into the material they're working with.

The episode we saw is definitely setting up a larger story that's quite apparent and relative to the youth of today. The actors here are attractive but not too made up or sensualized . Adding to the positives of the series is a mixed crew of characters from different ethnic and sexual backgrounds. Considering the times, Back Stabber could definitely have a wide viewership if they fix a few of their minor stumbling blocks and nail it home with some better writing. It's not that this is bad, it's just a little on the mediocre side and has definite markings or flaws relative to their lack of a bigger budget. With financial backing that would allow them to up the production values, this could be a Gossip Girl type of soap for teens. The talent is definitely there. They just need to take advantage and push a little bit harder. 

For teenagers, this would probably be of interest considering the "back stabbing" topic at hand. There is nothing here that I wouldn't let my teenage daughter watch and it poses a moral question that will take hold in upcoming episodes. This wouldn't be something I would watch on a regular basis, but kids definitely would. Back Stabber has heart. With a little work, this could be really good.