The 1996-set Netflix teen comedy is initially shocking because it looks so derivative of Freaks and Geeks and, in part, Stranger Things, says Matthew Gilbert. "But, long story short, I forgive the series, and I think that, ultimately, it manages to have an appealing voice of its own. Instead of faux-Freaks and Geeks, I’m now thinking of it as post-Freaks and Geeks," he says. "Slowly, the story line finds its own way to portray the difficult aspects of adolescence and the social pressures of high school. Everything Sucks! may not be original, but it has a beating heart, a sense of humor, and at least one distinct theme — a sophomore girl named Kate, gracefully portrayed by Peyton Kennedy, who is beginning to accept that she is a lesbian."