This Maverix Season 1 review is spoiler-free.
Say what you want about Netflix being the world’s leading streaming platform, but who’s thinking about kids? Sure, there’s a whole suite of kids’ movies and TV on the platform, but it’s usually relegated to a child-friendly protected area where you can’t see the paw patrol for the trees. It’s good for little children, but not for those who are at the difficult age – like mine, in this case – where they are still technically children with childlike sensitivities, but also believe that they are just little adults and should be treated as such. You can’t show kids that age a teenage drama, god, so what do you do? Enter something like Maverixa new Australian youth series that appears straight from the homepage and is about the rough rebel sport of motocross.
I was immediately called back Malibu Rescueall one season and two feature films of it. Maverix operates on the same basis, with the same cast of photogenic youngsters forced to bond and learn important moral lessons as part of an impending competitive main event, which in this case is to do the national motocross championships . Motocross is important to this show as it is important to Alice Springs, the birthplace of Australian motocross racing and the setting for all ten episodes.
This cultural specificity is a rather nice element, and as long as we are talking about Malibu Rescue, Maverix doesn’t have his sense of the shiny Americanized airhead. It’s a grittier show, at least in the texture of its setting and characters, which are vastly more sulky and deal with a few additional issues. It still adheres closely to the same well-worn pattern of both sports dramas and moralistic children’s stories, so the overall effect is about the same.
But anyway, these characters. The ostensible protagonist is Scott Griffin (Darcy Tadich), whose famous father of motocross legend Griffo (Rohan Nichol) founded a racing academy with the intention of taking a team of tears to national championships. Said tears include Kaden (Sebastian Tang), whose only trait seems to be cynical about everything, Jenny (Tatiana Goode), the obligatory type of woman in a man’s world, Richie (Tjiirdm McGuire), whose parents strict have insisted that the only way for him to stay on the team is to maintain his school grades, Bear (Sam Winspear-Schillings), an insufferable social media daredevil and influencer with an absent father, and Angelique (Charlotte Maggi), the one who has mostly already grown old from all the macho bluster and competitive bickering and just wants to move on. Do all of us.
It’s a decent cast of characters played by capable young actors who understood the mission, even if the mission is basically to play a cover band on the genre’s greatest hits. Expect arguments, ill-advised efforts against authority, training montages, team building exercises, heart-pounding moments of togetherness and, eventually, the drama of the final race, like all major sporting events. basically comes pre-packaged with the dramatic stakes.
And it’s fine, honestly. I’ve long been out of target audience for this sort of thing, but I know a decently put together story when I see one, and Maverix is a pretty solid version of what it tries to be. He’s not interested in being more than that, which is fine. Young children – especially young boys – will likely enjoy it, and if it sparks some interest in motocross, that can’t be a bad thing either.
You can stream Maverix Season 1 exclusively on Netflix.
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