"It’s a tricky feat to be as sweet but also as smart and observant as Netflix’s Never Have I Ever," says Kevin Fallon. "That’s important praise because of the fact that it actually feels like you’re watching teenagers and their bubble-boiling lava field of emotions, anxieties, and mistakes unfold on screen. And it’s done without losing the television filter—wittier dialogue than anyone would ever actually speak, slightly exaggerated circumstances—that makes watching TV, well, fun. It’s kind of funny that the second season of Never Have I Ever came out last weekend amidst what seems to be Gossip Girl reboot mania. The two series are like polar opposites of the teen TV spectrum. There’s always been pop-culture tension between teen soap provocateurs like Gossip Girl—and The OC, Dawson’s Creek, and Beverly Hills, 90210 before it—and the more grounded fare, sometimes dismissed as juvenile, like Never Have I Ever." Fallon adds: "Real and relatable are interesting concepts when it comes to teen series. While Never Have I Ever doesn’t shy away from the realities of partying, sexually active teens, it’s hardly the pearl clutcher that’s become the de facto depiction of Gen Z on TV in the likes of Riverdale, Euphoria, Generation, or, now, the Gossip Girl reboot. Is it more realistic to portray teenagers as having narcotic-fueled orgies in between sneaking into clubs, lying about their ages on sex apps, and throwing raves so gritty and depraved you’d think you accidentally turned on a Tarantino movie? Or is the sunny universe of Never Have I Ever—or, in a similar vibe, Netflix’s Sex Education—a more informative reflection of the times? As if the youths weren’t already terrifying enough, the impossibility to discern an accurate picture through pop culture makes them all the more intimidating." ALSO: Never Have I Ever is a s how about nerds that doesn't do justice to nerd culture.