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The Outer Banks in a “Sloop John B”

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It has been quite a while since we’ve shown love to the VW Bus here at the blog, but I saw one recently that was utterly inspiring. Netflix has a new show, Outer Banks, about a group of teenage treasure hunters at the North Carolina coast who get caught up in a murder mystery and plenty of hot tension between the island’s haves and have-nots while cruising in the summer sun in a classic VW.

The main character, John B Routledge (an obvious nod to The Beach Boys’ tune Sloop John B), is an adventurous 17-year-old ne’er-do-well from the wrong side of the island, and his three friends are a diverse cast of equally intrepid outcasts. John B’s father went missing a year earlier in search of a legendary 19th-century shipwreck full of $400-million worth of gold bars.

The teens are a savvy group of surfer-sleuths who spend a great deal of time cruising around the island in John B’s classic, rusted VW Bus. A good number of scenes feature the patina-finished van with its roof rack full of surf boards and essential adventuring tools wheeling around town and threatening to fall apart like a rusted, tropical Mystery Machine. More than a few times, the group is on the run from dangerous fellow treasure hunters or local law enforcement only to make a rattling, last second getaway dive into sliding side door of the VW and take off, engine backfiring and bolts rattling into the island sunset.

If you overlookedOuter Banksdue to its young cast or its initialDawson’s Creekfacade, you’d be missing out on one of the most exciting adventure shows of the summer. So, I highly recommend that you take a ride with John B and company in his rickety Bus to a whole island’s worth of mystery and action in the warm summer sun. It might just take you back to those fond memories that you and your friends made as kids tooling around town in a beat-up van.

-Trey Fennell



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