Netflix “Inside Job” Review

Arthur Graham, Contributor

Netflix’s newest hit adult animation, “Inside Job,” has managed to find itself in Netflix’s Top 10 in the U.S. Today. This adult animated comedy follows the protagonist Reagan, through his wacky day to day interactions at her government job. This series features notable voice actors: Lizzy Caplan, who is known for her role in “Now You See Me” and “The Interview”; along with Christian Slater, who’s known for his roles in “Heathers” and “Mr. Robot.” Furthermore, the show explores a multitude of different phenomena that have transpired in the last year, and included an episode with Jeff Bezos as well.

The quality of animation is reminiscent of “Gravity Falls,” a popular Disney Channel show that ran from 2012-2016. Alex Hirsch, who served as an executive producer for this show and was the creator of “Gravity Falls,” more than likely had some influence on the animation style, which ultimately paid homage to his previous work. Apparently, Hirsch was also influenced by “The X Files,” the popular science fiction show of the early 90s. This is evident by the tone and themes addressed in each individual episode. Additionally, Hirsch is accompanied by the show’s screenwriter, Shion Takeuchi, who also wrote and worked on “Gravity Falls” as well.

When comparing the two works, “Gravity Falls” and “Inside Job,” it is very interesting how they parallel one another. Takeuchi and Hirsch both seem to be interested in conspiracy theories because it seems to be a recurring theme within their work. Between the show, they place a particular emphasis on the “Illuminati” and the some of the shady on-goings of the government. In a way, I feel as though this provided them with a sequel that could carry more of an adult undertone. With the inclusion of area 51 aliens, cyborgs and human animal hybrids allowed for a more creative and fun take on what it is the “government is hiding,” Additionally, all of these ideas culminate to create the overarching idea that the show is based around; the fact that the government has a lot to hide and most people are completely unaware of how bizarre things truly are.

The show takes a look at what it’s like to work within a hidden faction of the government through a satirical lens. In one of the first couple of episodes, we learn that there is a “puppet government” and that all decisions made by the government is secretly forwarding the agenda of an elitist oligarchy, and that all of our politicians and celebrities are reptiles that are a part of the Illuminati. Personally, I found the satire in this show to be quite amusing, the idea that politicians are secretly lizards who are a part of a sex occult. Also including an entire episode where Jeff Bezos was presented as a more clown-esque character allowed for a lot of more subtle humor. Bezos was presented as a character that lacked intellectual depth and self-awareness as well. I am interested in seeing how he will respond to seeing a character who was so clearly used to be emblematic of a larger idea. Clearly the goal was to present Bezos as a businessman who just happened to get lucky by creating a profitable business, and that he really has no clue on how to create and maintain an “ethical workplace.”

In certain points of the show, they do begin to address some serious themes of trauma, imposter syndrome, and complex family dynamics. Reagan, our protagonist, is depicted as a young, millennial with a complicated family dynamic. Her parents are divorced, yet for some reason are obsessed with one another, and place her in the middle of a majority of their feuds. Since most marriages end in divorce, I am sure this experience and sentiment could be shared among a majority of the audience.

Overall, I would recommend this show to anyone who enjoys adult animation with a more sophisticated sense of humor. I enjoyed the fact that the show made a lot of popular culture references that were easily identifiable for any young person, as someone who rarely watched “Gravity Falls,” I was really impressed with the content of the show and how the story was executed. I think that most young adults will really enjoy this cartoon and would appreciate all of the creative insight it has to offer.

I think that most young adults will really enjoy this cartoon and would appreciate all of the creative insight it has to offer