Netflix Review: All American


Chloe Ford, Writer

The opinions, viewpoints, and beliefs expressed in this article are those of the author and do not represent the opinions, viewpoints, or beliefs of the Titan Times newspaper, Tuscarora High School or Frederick County Public Schools.


All American, a CW show that premiered its first season in 2018 and premiered it’s second season in 2019, later releasing onto Netflix in 2020. Based on a true story inspired by pro football player Spencer Paysinger, All American is a ravishing teen sports drama that follows cultural differences, and families who live completely different lifestyles that end up colliding together. This show has an amazing rate of 96% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes, and you can watch it today all on Netflix. 


All American follows the life of a high school teenager Spencer James (played by Daniel Ezra) who lives in Crenshaw California with tons of loving families around him, but his neighborhood is also run and influenced by gangs. Growing up in this neighborhood is all Spencer knew. Going to an underprivileged school, and watching drive by shootings are “another day in the neighborhood,” a line from Spencer in the first episode of the first season. Spencer James played for the Crenshaw football team as a receiver, and a pretty great one at that. Crenshaw is his home, people he loves to play for, until he meets the head football coach for Beverly High School in Beverly Hills. Since the football season already started, coaches aren’t allowed to recruit anymore players from other teams, but for Billy Baker (head coach at Beverly) that’s exactly what he wants to do with Spencer. But, since recruiting isn’t allowed to happen Billy had to find a loophole, so what does he do? He moves Spencer into his own home in Beverly Hills so he could officially be in the school district and play for the school. That’s when it all starts, Spencer’s life just went from being surrounded by underprivileged kids, to being surrounded by over privileged kids. 


As the show continues and the plot thickens, Spencer has to find a way to adjust to life of glamour in Beverly Hills but still keep his heart in his home South Crenshaw. But Spencer isn’t the only character with a story. Almost every other main character plays a big role in the show with their stories and their struggles too. So if you aren’t into sports, don’t worry because the show has a great deal of drama in high school, relationship drama, and cliffhangers that entice you to keep watching. Without giving away too much, some of these stories and struggles within some characters include, relationships, addiction, depression, broken home life, getting wrapped up in gangs, and experiencing racial profiling by police. All of the stories developed into each character by the writers shape the show and keep the plot always interesting. 


All American is filled with drama and interesting plot turns that you cannot resist. The show is filled with struggles of living a different life, trying to commit to the love of football, losing loved ones around you to gang violence, being pressured in by gang violence, trying to find peace in a broken family, trying to make it out in the real world as a teen, dealing with racial profiling by police, and much much more that you don’t want to miss. 


I would give All American a rating of 5 out of 5 stars. The cast and characters keep me interested and the plot and storyline never has a dull moment. If you haven’t already, I would definitely recommend adding All American to your next watch list.