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The Real-World Connection That Has Sweet Tooth Producers Worried

When most people hear about comic book adaptations, their first thoughts turn to superheroes. However, comic books are an expansive medium, encompassing all kinds of stories, and that's precisely where Jeff Lemire's "Sweet Tooth" comes into play. The post-apocalyptic tale occurs in a world where a sizable portion of the population has developed animal traits, making the remaining full-humans highly wary of them. Some even hunt the hybrids for sport, making one boy's journey across a desolate America all the more treacherous. 

The series will soon receive the Netflix treatment, and the first season of "Sweet Tooth" is set to debut on June 4. However, based on what we've seen from the trailer so far, it looks like the show may hit a little too closely for some. The opening shots of the trailer depict people wearing masks and talking of how "nature made everyone sick," which may seem oddly reminiscent of the COVID-19 pandemic. While media outlets talk of a return to normalcy, the pandemic still very much exists, so the decision to come out with a pandemic-oriented TV series may appear weird for some.

No one knows that better than the producers of "Sweet Tooth." While stories about viruses and dystopias are nothing new, they take on a whole new meaning in 2021. Several people who worked on the latest Netflix series spoke with ComicBook.com to discuss their fears about how audiences will potentially react to the show coming out in this day and age. 

Showrunner Jim Mickle reflects on the unexpected timeliness of Sweet Tooth

One shot from the "Sweet Tooth" trailer shows a bunch of people gathered around wearing masks, and while it feels like it took influence from the past year, it's purely coincidence. After all, the series draws influence from comic books that first came out in 2010, which also feature a pandemic. It also sounds like the crew filmed this scene and others like it before COVID-19 as showrunner Jim Mickle explains, "It was always the plan (to begin the show that way) because we shot that in 2019, so the pilot was all done well before COVID."

It just so happened that scenes from the pilot would take on even greater meaning in a post-coronavirus world, and that's caused some significant anxiety for all those who worked on the show. Mickle goes on to discuss how he hopes people give it a chance in light of its newfound relevance: "I think there's always that concern that people might skip the tiny little piece of the show and miss everything that comes after, because really that's just the diving board to launch into much richer show about many other things. So, hopefully they don't."

Executive producer Beth Schwartz also chimes in with her hopes of audience's reaction: "Hopefully when they get to the part with the hybrid babies, they'll see that this is a very different kind of show." Much of the plot surrounds a deer-hybrid boy, Gus (Christian Convery), going on a cross-country journey to find more kids like him with his protector, Tommy Jepperd (Nonso Anozie). It's closer to something like "Logan" than "Contagion," so people should give it a shot to see the actual plot kick off before laying down judgment. 

With outstanding reviews already pouring in, you should give "Sweet Tooth" a shot when all eight episodes of the first season become available on June 4.