The Beautiful Irony of Netflix’s “Death to 2021”


Alara Walcott, Staff Writer

The real world sequel to “Death to 2020,” “Death to 2021” follows the same satirical outline that made viewers love, and hate, “Death to 2020.” Satire is a new wave of comedy that I first saw with the Onion, a fake news site often mistaken for real news, and in Netflix’s other end of 2021 film, “Don’t Look Up.” Satire is a way to poke fun at some of our more serious events, which “Death to 2021” does beautifully as the film explores this year’s events with celebrities, professionals, and ordinary people alike. These actors and actresses, the most recognizable being Hugh Grant, play off beat versions of themselves. These figures are meant to be everything from professionals working towards COVID solutions, to ordinary citizens explaining away about what they discovered this year on a smaller scale. 

The film most often jumps from news footage to each interviewee, making for smooth transitions and an evergoing source of stimuli. In my opinion, this is what the film does best, highlighting every unforgettable and forgotten event in an easy to follow succession. “Death to 2021” explores the Jan. 6 insurrection, the ongoing climate crisis, and the resurgence of COVID in a light hearted manner, but not without reminding us all what these issues really mean. With the wide array of interviewees, it was a welcome relief to capture how I was thinking and feeling this year, which is well summed up by saying, “What just happened, and what’s next?” 

Truly a force to be reckoned with, “Death to 2021” perfectly criticizes all that is wrong with the world from the perspective of less than professionals, such as you and me. This film is what you need after a year of uncertainty. While not offering any real certainty, you will find comfort in the absolute uncertainty of everyone else, strangely enough. This may not be for the politically sensitive or the socially absent, but rest assured, this film pokes fun at every group there is. To end this review on an equally satirical note, and with it being our third year since Covid began, the third time’s the charm!