Big Mouth season 6 lacks the charm of past seasons
When Big Mouth was released in 2018, it quickly won viewers over with its crude yet loveable humour and honesty. The animated Netflix show perfectly captured the vulnerability, drama and intense emotions known by anyone who has ever been in middle school.
Now in its sixth season, Big Mouth, much like its theme song, is going through changes- just not the good kind. The newest season has all the boisterous energy of previous seasons and none of the charm.
Fans were excited for the return of the main characters as they continue at the fictional school Bridgeton Middle. However, season 6 dedicates significant screen time to the children’s ‘Hormone Monsters’, animal-like characters who represent puberty.
Take Hormone Monsters Maury and Connie, voiced by Nick Kroll and Maya Rudolph respectively. Maury’s pregnancy and Connie’s initial disinterest in mothering the baby is somewhat of a main plotline in season 6.
Amusing as it is to watch a male Hormone Monster deal with pregnancy, this plotline would’ve been more fit for Human Resources, the spin-off that Netflix has already released about the creatures of Big Mouth.
In fact, the plotline with Maury and Connie seemed to get almost as much screen time as some of the main characters this season. The relationship between middle schoolers Jay (Jason Mantzoukas) and Matthew (Andrew Rannells) was much anticipated by fans. Despite the boys’ secret feelings for each other being a focal point of the previous season, their relationship didn’t receive as much attention in season 6. Given that viewers spent the entirety of season 5 rooting for them, the lack of screen time once they actually got together was disappointing.
Even with these flaws, season 6 of Big Mouth explores worthwhile topics related to puberty and growing up. With episodes titled ‘Vagina Shame’ and ‘Rice Purity Test’ that explore ideas of body insecurity and purity culture, season 6 tackles major topics with humour and unflinching honesty.
Especially refreshing was the introduction of Elijah (Brian Tyree Henry), an asexual character who dates Missy (Ayo Edebiri). As expected for a show about puberty, Big Mouth is filled with sexual themes. By focusing on a character with minimal sexual urges as he comes into terms with his asexuality, season 6 sheds light on an experience that is often overlooked by the media.
That said, just because the season portrays important topics doesn’t mean it’s done well. As a whole, season 6 lacks the nuance of former seasons. Viewers have noticed missed opportunities that would’ve made for deeper exploration of topics rather than presenting them in a formulaic way.
These topics could also have been explored using less musical numbers, which there were far too many of this season. While the lyrics of songs in past seasons were at least funny, such as season 1’s ‘Life is a Fucked up Mess’, the songs in season 6 were long and forgettable. Besides, Nick Kroll has many talents- comedy and acting, to name a few, but singing is not one of them.