Welcome to my new set of show recommendations here on Stareable! I’m Meaghan, and every Monday, I’ll be bringing you a new (or old!) science fiction and fantasy web series that I’ve watched with some info on why you should check it out.
But before we dive into my first recommendation, a bit About Me
My name is Meaghan Cassidy, and I’m a high school senior who enjoys spending lots of time (more than necessary) watching webseries, particularly in the genre of science fiction and fantasy. I’ve been a huge sci-fi nerd, especially cyberpunk, since I was a kid. My favorite shows in the genre are Person of Interest and Dollhouse, and my favorite books are Ready Player One by Ernest Cline and Zeroes by Chuck Wendig. In the other free time that I have, I enjoy performing in musical theatre, reading books in one sitting, and not finishing things I write. You can find me on Twitter @spatulawilwheat.
- Creators: Aaron Hann & Mario Miscione
- Where to Watch: YouTube
- Starring: Shane Spalione and Alexia Dox
- Overview: College students competing in a strange reality TV show get more than they bargained for.
- Fun Fact: Each Vault room you see is the same room, decorated differently, and mostly shot in the creators’ living room.
- Tags: sci-fi, mystery, dramedy, thriller, captioned, female and male leads, diverse supporting cast, binge-worthy, strong/smart female character, defying stereotypes, plot twist, big life questions
Now, anyone who has spent 5 minutes talking about webseries with me knows that The Vault is my #1 favorite sci-fi sho, so, what better way to start this little recommendation series off? In the creators’ own words,
The year is 2016. TV sucks. Ratings - at least at one major network - are at an all-time low.
Enter “The Vault,” the greatest reality television competition in history… Or at least that’s how they’re selling it. A 24/7 game show that offers more questions than answers. The contestants, college students chosen from all over the country, will have 7 days to uncover its secrets and win a multi-million dollar prize. But once they’re locked inside, they’ll discover a game that’s bigger and stranger than they could have ever imagined.
It’s funny to read the synopsis now that it’s been almost two years since the supposed start of the show, considering that it released its first episode in 2010. With that in mind, you might think you’re getting yourself into a long, drawn out, time eating series. When something runs for 4 years, that’s a reasonable assumption. Actually, The Vault only has 16 episodes, and clocks in at just under 4 hours with all bonus content included. As thrilling as it was waiting for new episodes, the release date of each episode was a mystery large enough to compete with the plot of the show. Luckily, you can binge it all right now-- no waiting required.
Henry, our main protagonist and “operator” of The Vault, is extremely fun to watch, given the fact that he seems completely unprepared and unreliable for the job he’s been given: directing communication between every person on the show. Alex, the leading lady, also has a major role in the puzzle, second only to Henry. Equally as awkward, the two stumble through the mysteries of The Vault and its stark white rooms, each with stranger objects than the last. With the help of Eric, Ben AKA “Fortune Cookie Guy”, “The King”, and “Bike Guy”, the group slowly learns how all 150 contestants of the show play a small part in figuring out the big picture. The awkwardness between everyone in the game, and the fact that all odds seem to be stacked against them leads to some pretty funny moments, too.
As the puzzle is pieced together by the contestants, you figure the mystery out along with them. It’s so satisfying when another piece falls into place and finally makes sense. The Vault is a witty, thrilling mystery, an honest and scarily accurate portrayal of the future of American reality TV, with a hint of sci-fi that is revealed in the end. If you enjoy dramas that know when to crack a joke or two, but still maintain a suspenseful and mysterious tone, check out The Vault.
Content warnings will follow directly after the embedded trailer & playlist containing the first episode. They are a bit spoilery so if you don’t want to see them, don’t scroll past the two videos!
Content Warning(s): suicide, death, loud noises