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Thursday, January 26, 2017

'Feral' S1 DVD: Memphis Gay Boys Version of 'Girls'

 tla releasing once again brings it home regarding the January 24, 2017 DVD release of the first season of the Memphis-based eight-episode web series "Feral." The worthy aspiration of the streaming service to be the gay Netflix and that site being home to the (oft-reviewed) uber-awesome international gay-themed art-house films from releasing prompted violating a cardinal rule of Unreal TV regarding streaming content by first watching "Feral" online ahead of the dekko premiere.

The awesomeness of "Feral" stems from the trials and tribulations of gay 20-something Memphis housemates struggling filmmaker Billy and almost starving artist Daniel being relatable regardless of where you fall along the Kinsey Scale and where you live. Further authenticity comes from Memphis-based director Morgan John Fox making the series semi-autobiographical.

The following YouTube clip of the "Feral" S1 trailer fantabulosuly showcases the sensitivity and related Millennialist vibe of the series.

Although 20-something viewers will only compare this show to the HBO series "Girls" and "Looking," those of us old enough to remember the early days of the Showtime premium channel will also consider "Feral" a more dystopian version of the early 2000s drama "Queer As Folk." This groundbreaking program depicts the daily lives of a group of gay men making their way in a straight (and moderately oppressive) world.

The relatability of "Feral" commences with a highly erotic series opening scene in which Billy and equally adorable object of his affection Carl conduct an increasingly flirtatious mirroring acting exercise that will prompt a pleasurable response from every dekko subscriber. One spoiler is that massive baggage slows down the journey on the road to this true love.

The central plot in the pilot in which Billy discovering evidence of drug use by housemate Jordan, who is living there based on Daniel vouching for him, results in crossing Jordan off the lease. This leads to a hilarious search for a compatible "gay or gay-friendly" roommate. The ensuing freak parade is funny because it is true.

The chosen one being both an initially casual acquaintance who bonds with the boys artificially quickly and having some ambiguity regarding the full nature of his sexuality at least through the end of the fourth episode is another "ripped from the headlines" element of "Feral." The sister of this newbie attempting subtlety regarding dancing around the subject while helping her brother move in adds to the fun.

On a larger level, Billy and Daniel must work McJobs and other find ways to acquire the necessities of life while pursuing their inter-related professional and personal dreams. The pursuit of the latter results in Daniel suffering serious consequences from waking up with Mr. Right Now but being completely lost. Folks who can say "been there, done him (or her)" can relate this time.

The final analysis based on the first four  episodes is that "Feral" is an entertainingly accurate portrait of your life in your 20s with people who are most likely more attractive and witty than you and your friends playing your parts.

Anyone with questions or comments regarding "Feral" is encouraged to email me. You can also connect on Twitter via @tvdvdguy.