Netflix’s docuseries This is Pop hit the streaming platform today. The series consists of eight episodes of 44 minutes each and features famous artists like Boyz II Men, T-Pain, Ludwig Göransson, Hozier, and others. Chelsea McMullan, Jared Raab, Simon Ennis, Reginald Harkema, Dylan Reibling and Lisa Rideout have directed different episodes.
The official synopsis of Netflix This is Pop reads – Uncover the real stories behind your favourite pop songs as this docuseries charts the impact of the festival scene, Auto-Tune, boy bands and more.
In the first episode, called The Boyz II Men Effect, we meet the band members of Boyz II Men, who were the heartthrobs of the early 90s. With their smashing music and personalities, this young Black boy band made the world fall in love with their music and broke many records. But after years of fame, they were not that blockbuster again. You’ll find out what happened from the band members themselves.
This Is Pop‘s second episode is called Auto-Tune. As the name suggests, the episode highlights the invention of auto-tune and how some singers used it to make their voice stand out during the late 90s and early 2000s. Rapper T-Pain faced lots of flak when he sang using the auto-tune. The hate was such that T-Pain reveals Usher said something to him once on a flight that slipped him into depression.
The third episode of the Netflix docuseries is proof that talents come from every part of the world. The episode called Stockholm Syndrome covers why and how Sweden became music’s stealth superpower. It’s an intriguing episode that features popular artists like ABBA members, Ace of Base, and Ludwig Göransson.
Country Goes Pop talks about how lines between country and pop music blurred with the entry of Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson and Lil Nas X. The fourth episode takes us back to an era when country artists and fans weren’t okay with pop making its way in country style music. But eventually, things changed, and today, people just enjoy music for what it is rather than digging deep into the genre.
This is Pop’s episode fifth and sixth are called Hail Britpop and Festival Rising. Episode five highlights the rise and fall of UK Bands, and episode six shows how music festivals became a crucial activity in pop culture. My most favourite episode in the Netflix docuseries is What Can a Song Do? Artists like Hozier, MILCK, Chuck D and others talk about the impact of music on society and various movements in the world.
Over the decades, art (in this case, music) has played a significant role in demanding rights and bringing change. Whether it is the fight against racism, sexism or LGBTQ equality, some songs have provided the required impact. Music has helped reach people’s messages loud and clear to those trying to oppress them. The episode is mind-boggling and makes you realise deeply how much impact a song can really have on a person/group of people.
The last episode is called The Brill Building in 4 Songs which focuses on the Brill Building songwriter. Some of the most popular songs were written in the Brill Building during the 1960s. Without revealing much in my This is Pop review, I would describe the Netflix docuseries as well-made, sensational and terrifically executed. As someone who enjoyed pop music without any idea of how complicated and vast its history is, I was amazed.
This is Pop Review: Is it worth watching?
The Netflix docuseries are a must-watch for those who love music and are fans of the pop genre. The internet might have an ample amount of information in what’s shown here. But listening and watching the artists talk about their success, downfall, change and impact of music is a superlative experience.
This is Pop is currently streaming on Netflix.