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‘Don’t Look Up’ and ‘Search Party’ offer competing visions of end-times satire
Jan 15, 2022 | Fast Company
Picture - ‘Don’t Look Up’ and ‘Search Party’ offer competing visions of end-times satire

What a privilege: to survive the end of the world long enough to debate the accuracy of movies and shows created during, and about, the end of the world.

“They would never do that,” one might say, from the comfort of quarantine, watching actors whose nostrils have become docking stations for cotton swabs. “That’s so us,” one might tweet, watching a fictional depiction of social media activity around a planet-destroying asteroid. It’s cold comfort to interrogate apocalyptic satire for a few hours, as a little break from stewing about the apocalypse itself. A pair of recent entries in this bleak subgenre offer competing satires of our climate- and COVID-19-ravaged moment—and implicate viewers in different ways.

Netflix’s Don’t Look Up hit the Twitter discourse the last week of December like a star-studded asteroid. Nobody was safe from the takes, least of all the film’s creators, who went heavily on the defensive. For anyone who somehow missed that conversation, Don’t Look Up is director Adam McKay’s allegory about climate change, in the form of an Armageddon-esque disaster movie. It’s about the hydra-headed monster of politicians, corporations, and media outlets who together thwart scientific efforts to alert the world of its impending doom.

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