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All American Fans Have Mixed Feelings On The Spinoff

When "All American" premiered in 2018, it joined the pantheon of great TV sports dramas, including "Friday Night Lights" and the soapy, basketball-centric "One Tree Hill." The CW series follows Spencer James' (Daniel Ezra) high school football career at South Crenshaw and the ritzy Beverly Hills High. The series' star rose when it began streaming on Netflix, and in March 2020, "All American" was the streamer's most popular show (via Insider). The teen drama is still in full swing, with "All American" Season 5 scheduled to premiere in October.

Also returning in October for its sophomore season is "All American: Homecoming," the spinoff series that looks at the world of HBCU athletic programs. Introduced in a 2021 backdoor pilot, "All American: Homecoming" follows Simone Hicks (Geffri Maya) from the original series as she leaves California to play tennis at Bringston University in Atlanta. Peyton Alex Smith plays Damon Sims, a crackerjack baseball prospect.

With "All American" and its spinoff both airing concurrently, fans can't help but compare the twin series. Here is why some fans have mixed feelings about the spinoff series.

Some fans prefer the spinoff to newer seasons of All American

In the subreddit r/AllAmericanTV, u/Federal-Figure-5786 came out swinging in support of the original series. "'All American: Homecoming' is missing the magic 'All American' S1 had," they wrote. "I am not sure if it's the cast lacking or the mainstream plot lines but I really thought I would like this more than I do." Other fans agreed that the first season of "All American" was superior but that later seasons became increasingly lackluster. "'All American' has gotten a bit stale," wrote u/RoundMedium, with u/All_Lightning879 chiming in to add, "I'm enjoying 'Homecoming' a lot more than Spencer these days."

One savvy "All American" fan pointed out that the strength of the first season lies in the fact that it's based on a true story. Indeed, "All American" is based on the true story of former linebacker Spencer Paysinger, who also serves as a producer and consultant on the series. However, as the series diverged from Paysinger's experiences and expanded on the stories of fictional supporting characters, it stands to reason that the series' selling point became a little diluted. As u/Top-Voice6270 put it, "The show ... strayed from the football."

Though some fans are partial to "Homecoming" ("I love 'All American: Homecoming' better than the original," asserted u/AlternativeAdvice916), it can't be ignored that the two series are inextricably linked. In one episode of the spinoff, Simone even returned to California and her "All American" peers. "It was an amazing experience because it's where I started," Geffri Maya told Entertainment Weekly about returning to her old stomping grounds. "It's my family, you know what I mean? This universe is just really special and I was coming home. The love is still there."