‘Mortified’ Coming to Netflix

This week, Mortified launches a brand new TV show, available on Netflix. The show is largely based on stories from the podcast, so listeners can finally put faces to the voices they have laughed and cried with for years.

The Mortified Guide is a six-episode comedic docuseries that looks at the biggest issues of adolescence — from first loves to fitting in to dealing with your neurotic family — as adults share their childhood writings and art in front of total strangers.

Each hourlong episode tackles one childhood theme, exploring that theme from a variety of adolescent experiences — from the hilarious to the heartbreaking.

The series features footage of Mortified stage shows, animated shorts, documentary segments, special guests and other surprises.

An official selection of the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, this uniquely candid series celebrates the awkward insecurities that shaped us all.

“One of the fun things about having made Mortified for 15 years is getting to play in ALL of these creative sandboxes — theater, podcast, TV, books, radio. Each medium has its own unique way of relating to an audience. While most of the TV series features content that has never been seen or heard on the podcast, every so often we include stories heard on Radiotopia, as a treat to our podcast fans,” said Dave Nadelberg, founder of Mortified.

Read on for more about some of the podcast episodes that are being remixed for the show, described by co-creators Dave Nadelberg and Neil Katcher in their own words.

Podcast Episode 3 — Kevin: Final Frontier

Appears in Netflix episode 5: “The Mortified Guide to Pop Culture”

As soon as Mike, the director and showrunner of The Mortified Guide, heard episode three of our podcast, he was determined to put Kevin in the series. The episode features the teenage diary of Kevin, a high school Trekkie who badly wanted a girlfriend. In the series, we were able to go beyond the stage and showcase Kevin at home, where his Star Trek obsessions are even more evident.

Podcast Episode 17 — Katie: Saving Katharine Hepburn

Appears in Netflix episode 5: “The Mortified Guide to Pop Culture”

Katie’s letters to the famed Hollywood legend Katharine Hepburn remain one of our favorites from the podcast, and we’re thrilled to share with a wider audience.

Podcast Episode 26 — Robert: Holy Love Triangle

Appears in Netflix episode 2: “The Mortified Guide to Family”

Robert is one of those participants who has a ton of material to mine. In the podcast, we feature audio of Robert’s attempt at romance as a teenager. In the series, we share a totally different set of his journals — focused on his frustrations with being a Korean immigrant growing up, and his attempts to adapt to American culture.

Podcast Episode 63 — Harry Potter Fan Fiction

Appears in Netflix episode 5: “The Mortified Guide to Pop Culture”

We did an episode of the podcast that featured a woman, Naomi Ko, who wrote Harry Potter fan fiction growing up. Specifically, for reasons that become clear in the performance, she wrote homoerotic Harry Potter fan fiction. While we loved the podcast version, the TV series version of this story lets the audience see the manic energy that the performers bring to it.

Podcast Episode 36 — Tyler & Janelle: Love, America Online Style

Appears in Netflix episode 1: “The Mortified Guide to Love & Sex, Vol. 1”

An episode featuring the online chat transcripts between two teenagers, one who is madly in love with the other.

Podcast Episode 46 — Jill: Dear Grandpa

Appears in Netflix episode 2: “The Mortified Guide to Family”

The diary of a grieving teenage girl who misses her grandpa so much, she dedicates every entry of her journal to him. Which is obviously very sweet. However, most of her entries are about making out with boys. The result is a surreal juxtaposition of heart and hormones.

Podcast Episode 54 — Don’t F*ck with Emiko

Appears in Netflix episode 3: “The Mortified Guide to Fitting In”

Emiko wrote an epic rant against the scourge of popularity. It’s a blistering attack and taps into the teenage rage that so many kids have experienced.

Podcast Episode 58 — Forbidden Crushes Part 3: My Secret Gay Crush

Appears in Netflix episode 4: “The Mortified Guide to Growing Up Gay”

Layla grew up in Scotland and demonstrates how being young, or awkward, or, in her case, closeted, is an experience that is confined to a specific country.

Podcast Episode 43 — Boys DO Cry

Appears in Netflix episode 1: “The Mortified Guide to Love & Sex, Vol. 1”

One of the fun aspects of making the series was getting to do more animation. Mortified has experimented with animation for over a decade (we made an animated short, “I Hate Drake,” to promote our debut book). We worked with several animators on the show. Among them, an artist named Carolyn Figel, who directed a hilarious animation based on Russell Mill’s diary about getting his first kiss, which was initially heard in episode 43 of the podcast. We loved the way she adapted his journal entries into animated sequences.

You can stream the new series on Netflix, or purchase it on Amazon.

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