The Avocado War
Reign of Terroir
A Sweet Deal
High on Edibles
Returning for a second season, Netflix’s culturally relevant and eye-opening documentary series Rotten showcases 6 more episodes designed to expose shady business practices and some of the shocking corruption surrounding a lot of our food products today. With many of the same techniques as the first season, Rotten delivers more of the same here, with a good balance of face to face interviews, informative graphics and plenty of facts and figures to digest.
From bottled water scandals and awful modern-slavery techniques adopted for creating chocolate, Rotten does well to keep each episode engaging and shocking, ending with an episode dedicated specifically to the new line of marijuana-filled “edibles” that look set to take the American market by storm. Much like before, Rotten does tend to lean closer toward the American consumer and marketplace, but there’s enough educational content and thought provoking discussions here to keep things balanced. Even the marijuana episode, which is likely to be the most controversial here, has a good balance between those warning against this product and those wholly for its legalization.
At the heart of it, Rotten is really about exposing the rotten core of terrible business practices and a lot of the episodes follow the same rigid pattern as before. After introducing the product and its general production history, we then go on to see the current challenges and problems farmers and workers face today in the wake of growing demand. All of this will be familiar territory for those who watched the first season and Rotten does well to keep things interesting here, building on the good work done last year with its various episodes exploring trades like garlic, cod and milk whilst exposing the challenges these face. Season 2 is no exception here.
Much like before, the series breaks up its various talking head segments with informative graphics, complete with diagrams, graphs and facts to help reinforce the points being made in this documentary. All of this works well to keep things visually engaging while shots of the different countries visited and interviews with the locals there helps to add another layer of depth to the show.
If you saw the first season, strap in for more of the same. Rotten has its winning formula and stubbornly sticks by it, much to the credit of the show. With six more trades explored and exposed, Rotten does well here to shine a spotlight on the rotten business practices and potential problems these industries face now, and in the future. While the marijuana episode at the end is probably the odd one out and will almost certainly garner the most polarizing reaction from people, the documentary series itself continues to deliver the goods. With slightly longer episodes this time around and plenty of content to digest, Rotten is one of the better documentaries on Netflix and well worth returning to again.