Netflix is doubling down on Prank Encounters hosted and produced by that Stranger Things kid Gaten Matarazzo. Not since Terrence Howard’s Fright Club has a prank show sounded so gross and pointless, but Nexflix released a statement reassuring folks that the premise of PE isn’t as bad as it sounds. Netflix says that the cannon fodder for PE all came in under the pretense of a “one-day, hourly gig” and they got paid for it. So calm your tits, these lazy gig economy schlubs wouldn’t know what to do with health insurance, PTO, or weekends and evenings off anyway!
Netflix released a clarifying statement in response to widespread criticism that the premise for PE was inherently cruel and stupid (via Metro UK):
A Netflix spokesperson said: ‘The pranks in Prank Encounters are spooky, supernatural, and over the top, and everyone had a great time.
‘All participants came in with the expectation this was a one-day, hourly gig and everyone got paid for their time.’
What Postmates delivery person’s day isn’t improved by getting an order to deliver Thai food to a spooky abandoned building only to be greeted at the door by an expensive and realistic looking Gorgon monster threatening to drink your blood while a teenager practically pisses their pants cackling at your stupidity? If you scream loud enough, you might even get a tip!
Netflix has a point, though. I’m sure the people who ultimately agreed to appear on the show had an OK time, were compensated, and probably got a charge out of the thought of being on TV. People love being on TV! But the thought of millions of Americans juggling multiple gigs and hustling in order to keep a roof over their heads and their families fed is terrifying enough. Do we really need to be throwing ghosts into the mix?!