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Public school kids save the world


James Pardon/Netflix

Public school kids save the world
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The last survivors of a worldwide catastrophic event just want to get through a boring field trip, but end up saving the world in Netflix’s new kids’ series The Last Bus. Improbable?—yes. Predictable and full of clichés?—yes to that too.

Egocentric inventor billionaire Dalton Monkhouse hatches a plan to save the world from all the humans who are destroying it, by destroying all the humans (all except himself, of course!).

Our heroes are students at a British public school, and they check off most of the boxes on the required list of characters for a kids’ drama—a bully who turns out to be a coward, a sassy teen girl with a heart of gold, a geeky technophile whose inventions might save the day, a kid caught up in the wrong crowd who has to make tough choices.

Thankfully, the British producers and writers spared us the more complex intersectional characters that have become the norm in many American series aimed at this same audience.

Although the series is rated TV-PG for fear and fantasy violence, most viewers will not find the show frightening. Writer Paul Neafcy portrays the annihilation of most of the world’s population without any guts or gore, and the cartoonish character of the villains renders them mildly amusing instead of scary.


Marty VanDriel Marty is a TV and film critic for WORLD. He is a graduate of World Journalism Institute and CEO of a custom truck and trailer building company. He and his wife, Faith, reside in Lynden, Wash., near children and grandchildren.

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