One of the better things to come out of Disney’s acquisition of 20th Century Fox was how it affected Hulu. With Disney having bought out Fox’s stake in it, they’ve been able to use the streaming platform to host a variety of Fox shows, specifically ones from their cable network FX. The FX on Hulu branding has allowed for older shows like “Rescue Me” and “The Shield” to find a new home alongside newer programs like “What We Do in the Shadows.” Alongside that though is one of the more unique programs to come around in some time, “Reservation Dogs,” which is doing well enough to have picked up a third season for itself.
While at face value, “Reservation Dogs” may seem like a teen comedy, it’s also an example of the power of different representation in the television industry. “Reservation Dogs” is one of the few, if any programs, to consist of indigenous American writers, directors, cast, and crew. Series creator Sterlin Harjo was born in Oklahoma and is a member of the Seminole Nation. While the show is largely his brain child, the project was co-created with Taika Waititi. While Waititi isn’t American, he is Maori, the indigenous people of New Zealand.
“Reservation Dogs” tells the story of four teenagers who aim to go to California, to honor the memory and wishes of their late, mutual friend, Daniel. Their attempts to finance this trip though aren’t exactly legal, leading to a variety of incidents alongside the kinds of challenges teens would normally face. Well, “normally” is a bit of a stretch at times considering the shenanigans that ensue. They can’t be too far-fetched though considering that elements of the stories, the characters, the themes, stem from things in Harjo’s own life.
Calling the series a critical success would be an understatement. It’s doing well enough to have gathered itself a third season renewal, which is an especially big win for Harjo considering this is his biggest project to date. Waititi has been having success left and right between the aforementioned “What We Do in the Shadows,” “Thor: Love and Thunder,” and “Our Flag Means Death.” Oh, and there was also that Oscar he picked up for “Jojo Rabbit.” Even then, Waititi has wisely realized that this story is largely Harjo’s to tell, and the Kiwi filmmaker largely serves as an executive producer, instead of a writer or director.
The season 2 finale of “Reservation Dogs” airs September 28th, 2022. The series is available to stream on both Hulu and Disney+.