From my recollection of an E3 years ago that I attended, there had been plans to turn Twisted Metal into a media franchise outside of gaming. It had a recognizable mascot in Sweet Tooth, cars, combat and a catchy name. Years past, and nothing came of the series until out of nowhere, it was announced that the game would be turned into a series for the streaming service Peacock. I just happened to subscribe to Peacock for Premier League, so I figured I would sit down and catch an episode to see how it went. What I expected and what I got, were widely different.
Now I should start with the fact that my exposure to Twisted Metal is very limited. I rented a copy of the PS3 Twisted Metal from a Redbox kiosk. That was the one Twisted Metal that it seems most fans hated that one so I picked the worst possible game in the franchise to play. I know that Twisted Metal is about car combat, and the aforementioned Sweet Tooth. That is it, so I wasn’t sure how that would translate to a TV show.
All that being said, I sat down with my wife to watch the first episode of Twisted Metal, and to my complete surprised, we were completely hooked within the first 10 minutes. There were great laughs, car combat, and a quick and dirty setup that made the world feel interesting and fleshed out. It seems that the world as we knew it fell apart in 2003, with law, order and common utilities all went to crap. Large cities, trying to save themselves from the chaos, became walled off safe zones, protecting those inside from the horrors of the outside world. Milk Men, of which our John Doe (Anthony Mackie) is one, deliver packages between these cities. Milk Men endure the dangers of the road, transporting goods between cities. Milk Men in this world don’t have a long shelf life, so when John Doe is offered a chance to become a permanent resident of New San Francisco, he jumps at the chance and from that point, the show moves at a brisk pace.
Throughout the ten episodes of Twisted Metal, you are presented with a colorful cast of characters that give us some great friends and nemesis. Others in the cast include Quiet (Stephanie Beatriz), Agent Stone (Thomas Hayden Church), Raven (Neve Campbell), and of course Sweet Tooth (voiced by Will Arnett, played by Joe Seanoa). All of the characters have great banter with one another, and play off of each other nicely. I really liked all the characters in the show, even ones with smaller parts like Chloe Fineman’s Mary, a fellow Milk Man, that is upset that John left her for someone else.
The big thing about Twisted Metal, at least for my wife and I, was how digestible the show was for us. The episodes are normally about 30 minutes in length, and they don’t waste a lot of time with filler. Each one is packed with items that flesh out the world, build characters and interactions between said characters, and the factions that now rule the world. We loved learning about the Lawmen, or the Holy Men, or even the Vultures. Twisted Metal appreciates your time, and wastes none of it. And of course, they do set up a second season for people to get excited for that definitely leans into the concept of the game.
I can easily recommend Twisted Metal for anyone to watch. It is funny, action packed, and never seems to step off of the accelerator from start to finish. The biggest stumbling block I see here for the show is that it is on Peacock, which does not have as much market presentation as say, a Netflix, or Disney Plus. As someone that already subscribed, it was a no-brainer to check it out. That said, I am sure you can find yourself a seven day trial out there somewhere, and Twisted Metal would definitely be worth the time.