Freeform adds yet another young adult television series for the summer to air alongside fan favorite Pretty Little Liars. I don’t know about you but there’s something about a murder mystery type of show that gets this platform going and it works!
Dead of Summer takes place in the 1980s when a group of teenagers take on the role of camp counselors at Camp Stillwater. The camp itself has been closed for years until Deb Carpenter (Elizabeth Mitchell) decides to open up for business. But of course, nothing is all rainbows and butterflies back at the camp. Ghosts appear, deaths happen, eerie vibes are felt everywhere and it’s evident something horrific happened on the campgrounds.
The series is created by some familiar names: Edward Kitsis, Adam Horowtiz, and Ian B. Goldberg. All Once Upon A Time viewers can rejoice because that can only mean one thing… Familiar faces such as Frozen’s Anna AKA Elizabeth Lail who plays the lead character Amy Hughes. Another former OUAT actress you might recognize is the Snow Queen herself who now plays the camp owner. Last thing to note are the flashbacks. OUAT is very keen on telling a character’s backstory throughout one episode. The same happens in Dead of Summer and it’s awesome.
The show definitely has a Are You Afraid of The Dark? meets Holes vibe. The series starts off with a flashback from 1871 where some angry men with pitchforks go after a man in a cabin screaming out “What did you do?” Cue a cutaway to dead bodies floating in the water. What an opening, am I right? You’re automatically left asking, “Uh, okay. What?”
From there, we see the seven camp counselors appear on the screen, each having their own story which, trust me, gets interesting as each episode passes. The casting is a solid one with both new fresh and familiar faces:
The show is supposed to be set in the ‘80s but it’s a far cry. I’ve watched my fair share of ‘80s flicks to get a pretty good understanding of the decade, but man, the show could have tried harder! I felt more of a ‘90s vibe the whole time. That was the number one thing that stuck out to me.
If you’re looking for your summer’s new guilty pleasure, Dead of Summer is the one. It’s bound to keep you guessing what exactly is going on at the camp during its present day and what happened in the 1800s. I’ll be pretty bitter if the reasoning for everything is a huge disappointment. The way the series is building up, I’m hoping for one gruesome, unexpected ending.
Dead of Summer premieres new episodes every Tuesday at 9 pm on Freeform.