Who drew the dicks? “American Vandal” is a Netflix satirical crime documentary that explores the lives of high school students and teachers in the wake of a legendary school prank. After twenty-seven faculty cars were spray painted with, ahem, ‘phallic images,’ one student is immediately blamed. Dylan Maxwell (seen above), problem student and known dick-drawer, is unanimously believed to be the vandal and is expelled from school. However, the swift hand of justice dolled by the school is questioned by Hanover High School sophomore Peter Maldonado. Peter and his broadcast journalism cohort, Sam, create the docu-drama series American Vandal to assess Dylan’s possible innocence and the prejudices of the school system over the eight-episode saga.
Beyond the blunt humor of the subject matter, the show is genuinely funny and relatable. American Vandal was co-created by Dan Perrault (Screen Junkies writer known for Honest Trailers) and Tony Yacenda (known for Pillow Talking). A rare nod to the casting director for this series, Wendy O’Brien, is in order, for pairing characters with the actors that bring them to life. The creativity of the team created an engaging and unique drama. The talent behind this show makes it hilariously relatable, exemplified by the doc team’s evidence which is primarily composed of interviews, videos, and snapchats.
Preceded by the now iconic “Making of a Murderer” and other ‘true-crime’ documentaries, American Vandal pulls no punches as it satirizes the genre in spectacular fashion. I hesitate to call the series a mockumentary because, while the humor of the vandalism itself is apparent to the audience, the characters are grounded in sincerity. No stone is left unturned as the lives of the student body and faculty are made public in an attempt to uncover the vandal. You can find the trailer here. However, for a true taste of the show, I recommend this video, which shows an analysis of an intriguing and potentially critical piece of evidence.
Follow this satirical gem to satiate that burning question: Who drew the dicks?