10 July 2018 | kitellis-98121
Mildly diverting, but filled with mixed messages and an unclear agenda.
It's hard to decide whether this series of cautionary tales succeeds in its goal, or if it's just another exploitation of people's misery for the purpose of entertainment.
Clearly targeting a teen audience, it is probably far softer than it needs to be in order to be a truly effective deterrent. Teens are certainly a group who need to be cautioned. They frequently make terrible decisions, and rarely learn from their mistakes until much later in life. So it is a shame that the opportunity for scaring them straight is somewhat lost due to (what I suspect) is a desire from the producers to "protect" their young audience from anything "upsetting". Therefore, the end result is very sanitised, watered-down, safe, and in most cases has a happy ending.
Yes, despite how crazy it sounds, they end almost every episode with a happy ending - which negates the whole purpose of the warning. The episode about the girl who became a porn star was barely even a caution. It was very nearly a recruitment film for the porn industry, and it made her decision to do porn seem like a very, very good choice. The only negative to come out of it was a slightly spoiled relationship with her parents, but since they are painted as terrible people throughout the episode, it doesn't seem so much like a loss as a relief. She ends up rich and famous with an Ivy League education, no debts, and a very happy, celebrated life, where she overcame all adversity to reach her goals on her own terms. I applaud her, but it doesn't exactly fit the title of the series.
Hers is probably the most obvious case of the "bad" choice actually being a "good" one, but nearly every story seems to say between the lines, "if I hadn't made that bad decision, then none of these great things would be happening now." Teens won't be cautioned by this. If they watch it at all. Which I doubt. So I guess it's really just rubber-necking in disguise.