A “snowflake”, according to the voiceover in this new reality series, is “a young person who is considered overly emotional, easily offended and dramatic.” This definition isn’t quite at Piers Morgan levels of derision, but a catch-all for spoiled “kidults”. The “snowflakes” here are 10 bratty 20-somethings, tricked by their fed-up parents into attending a wilderness camp to toughen them up. (Apparently, they’re told they’re being sent to a five-star resort.) All these 20-somethings live at home, rent-free, apparently unable even to load a dishwasher, most of them fully supported financially.
Eight American and two British 20-somethings must live together at what Netflix describes as a “back-to-basics camp” in the Lake District of Cumbria, which most of us would consider glamping: tents the size of small cabins on raised platforms with stretcher beds and wood-burning stoves. “Wilderness training” will hopefully teach them how to behave like fully functioning adults, with a motivational $50,000 cash prize.
Worse than the lack of hot water for this group is the fact that there is no Wi-Fi; more than one of these Gen Zs is a wannabe influencer. Under the tutelage of former army combat engineer Matt Tate, and Joel Graves, a former navy explosive ordnance disposal expert, these brats will hopefully develop skills in adaptability, teamwork, resilience and other self-help buzzwords.
Having had to abandon most of the luggage they’ve brought – hair straighteners, make-up, Gucci jackets and all – and then watch it be blown up by Matt and Joel (a highlight of the series), the whining begins in earnest. And of course, the weeping.
Among the contestants are 24-year-old “chaos queen” Deandra, whose attempts at leaving home fail every time; med school dropout Randy, 23, who dreams of a career as a pro-wrestler; and 20-year-old “party girl” Devon, who is failing her college classes but hasn’t told her mum. There are two cheeky Brits – Liam, who has never done any housework, and Rae, who seems quite pleasant – and a couple of others with few discernible personality traits: the worst crime of all for this format.
There is the requisite “villain”, though: 26-year-old Solomon, who is funded by his wealthy parents (his mum recently bought him an electric BMW, and he spends $500 a week on “personal grooming”), and who grew up with nannies and maids and has never done a chore in his life. It’s hard to determine how much of Solomon’s “personality” is genuine, but at least he provides some much-needed drama in this lackluster series, which starts out so favourably – designer clothes up in flames! – but soon peters out faster than a Gen Z doing the dishes.