‘Outer Banks’ Season 3 SPOILER Review/Recap – The End of a Great Adventure
When you think about El Dorado these days, you think about the unparalleled treasure it holds. You’ve seen it in The Road to El Dorado – one of the best animated films of the century – and now you will see it in Outer Banks. The road to the greatest treasure ever discovered in Outer Banks took three seasons, but now it finally makes sense. The second season of Outer Banks ended with the Camerons winning again. Ward had the Cross and the gold, and the Pogues were off on a deserted island called Poguelandia. There were a lot of layers in the second season, and thankfully the same is true with season three. Outer Banks has established itself as the premiere “teen” show, and it’s partially because of how good the writing has been. Which leaks over into this season.
Outer Banks has always been about taking risks and doing what you think is right. Opposites attract, and the ragtag group of John B (Chase Stokes), JJ (Rudy Pankow), Pope (J.D.), Kiara (Madison Bailey), Sarah (Madelyn Cline), and now Cleo (Carlacia Grant) is back on the adventure again. They have found a way to live and survive while all having each others’ backs. Things go awry when they see a plane flying by the island. They light a fire and are “rescued” by Portis, a pilot flying to the West Indies. They think he’s a pilot for Ward, and end up crashing the plane which basically leads them to a trap.
One of the Pogues gets kidnapped, and the race for a new treasure begins. This season introduces our main villain Carlos Singh (Andy McQueen) and reintroduces Rafe Cameron (Drew Starkey). This sets up the rest of the season as Carlos explains to Kiara and Rafe that he needs the cross to find a bigger treasure. This leads the Pogues and the Camerons on the biggest adventure in the show yet, to El Dorado to find the greatest hidden treasure known to man.
Also, we get a great reunion with John B and Big John (Charles Halford). This is something that was important during this season. The father figure dynamic for both John B and Sarah was an incredible plot point. The use of fathers and how they act/react to their children’s choices, and just the fact that these two men were stuck in their ways was interesting.
The hunt for El Dorado leads the Pogues back to Kildaire. Topper is still chasing the dream of being with Sarah. Kiara’s parents still want her to stop hanging with the Pogues. Pope’s parents are introduced to Cleo and accept her into their home, as they all try to encourage Pope to return to school. Rafe is back in Kildaire as well, and he is on a mission to separate himself from his father. There’s a lot going on this season but it’s all simple subplots that are easy to keep up with which is why Outer Banks is so entertaining. Even if you don’t know the legend of El Dorado it works out.
There are some noteworthy moments this season. Topper and John B’s feud comes to a head. Kiara is finally sent away to camp for a bit. Rafe tries to get his father killed, and Sarah cheats on John B. Big John’s place in this show is kind of a wild card because the difference between him and his son is incredible. One is greedy, and the other wants to do everything with the family he never had. The more you remember the family dynamic of Outer Banks, the more season three makes sense. Each decision and each step has the mindset that they have to stick together.
The writers’ room again put together another great season. Dynamic but simple writing, with a very easy-to-follow plot. Shannon Burke, Josh Pate, Crystal Garland, and Joey Elkins did amazing with the scripting this season. This may have been the boldest and most ambitious of the three seasons. There was never any hint at El Dorado in the first two seasons, so this was a jump. It worked out though. They make you dislike characters you love and question if some characters are actually the bad guys. This is what makes a show like Outer Banks so great, pure writing masterclasses.
Sometimes having different directors can ruin a TV show, as it does with movie franchises. For Outer Banks, it worked out perfectly. Jonas Pate, Valerie Weiss, Darnell Martin, and Gonzalo Amat all use their different unique styles to create such a good season. There’s some good acting this season that mostly comes from the supporting cast. Marland Burke, Samantha Soule, McQueen, and Starkey stuck out to me this season. Cline, Stokes, J.D., and Bailey were definitely fun to watch this season. Character development is important, and each actor showed us some development.
Everything coming together is how a TV show prevails. It’s all about driving home the plot, and after three seasons we finally reached the end of the road for the El Dorado plotline. Now we see things like the Marvel Cinematic Universe and other film franchises building universes. This could be the same for TV shows as well, building a plot that lasts for three seasons rather than each season being just one after the other makes for more fun.
Outer Banks has always been about adventure, and this season was the biggest adventure yet. We go from the West Indies to North Carolina, to South America, and make it makes for a wild ride. They also use the end of this season to essentially set up what Outer Banks will be in future seasons, a group of young adults going on treasure-hunting adventures. They ultimately make plenty of sacrifices and find the gold, but they also get a new adventure to find Black Beard’s ship at the end of the season.
Outer Banks has become one of Netflix’s most polarizing and popular shows. It’s a very fun adventure show that takes you on wild rides, twists, and turns. The fact that they found a new route to go is incredibly fun and intriguing. It’s a great beginning and a great ending that every fan can appreciate. The North Carolina nods stand strong as we enjoy this amazing story based in its Outer Banks. There are plenty of reasons to enjoy this show, and I hope as I have, you find one as well. – Rascal F. Kennedy
Rating – 9.5/10
Outer Banks is now streaming on Netflix.