Poster for Metal Lords, featuring a young woman and two young men sitting at a cafeteria table.


Title: Metal Lords
Released: 2022

Fix: Teenage Angst, (Awkward) Teenage Love, Teenage Comedy, HEAVY METAL!
Platform: Netflix

Netflix Summary: 

For teenage misfits Hunter and Kevin, the path to glory is clear: Devote themselves to metal. Win Battle of the Bands. And be worshipped like gods.

FYA Summary:

Kevin has one friend: Hunter, a throwback kind of kid who’s obsessed with everything Heavy Metal, including winning their high school’s Battle of the Bands. They have a drummer (Kevin) and a lead guitarist (Hunter), but they need a bass player to round out their sound. Kevin is interested in asking Emily, a new girl at school who plays the cello, to join their band (and also maybe date him), but Hunter sees her nothing as a Yoko and pushes back, hard. 

The rift between the two friends threatens to kill their chances at stardom before it’s even a glimmer in the universe’s eye.

Familiar Faces:

Jaeden Martell, a young man with medium-length brown hair and glasses, wears a dark jacket and backpack with blue straps

Jaeden Martell as Kevin

It took me a minute to realize where I knew Jaeden from, but a quick IMDB search reminded me that he’s the creepy grandson in Knives Out. He’s much more appealing as Kevin, a pretty stereotypical high school guy with a lovely sweet side (especially when it comes to his relationship with Emily).

Brett Gelman, a bald man with a dark beard wearing a brown jacket, looks off camera in a disappointed manner

Brett Gelman as Dr. Sylvester

I kept expecting Hunter’s dad to start talking about the Upside Down, but, instead, he was just kind of a jerk of a dude, both to his son and in general. Serves him right that his son uses his credit card to buy a lot of expensive band gear.

Joe Manganiello, a bald man with a salt and pepper beard wearing a plaid shirt and white jacket

Joe Manganiello as [REDACTED]

This is a super fun cameo that I don’t want to spoil for you. He does not, however, strip.

Couch-Sharing Capability: Bring the Whole Band

As someone who—obviously—enjoys content that was created mostly for teens, I realize that me saying Metal Lords is fun for all ages might not be the most reassuring for adults who aren’t YA fans. But trust that this movie is sweet and feel-good, with just the right amount of awkwardness to keep it feeling real. It’s a movie that kids will like—I think—because they know people like Kevin and Hunter, and adults will enjoy connecting with the main characters through a nostalgic (“I was like that once”) kind of lens.

Recommended Level of Inebriation: Shots and Solo Cups

Kevin and Hunter attend a party at the home of a popular kid, and Kevin falls prey to alcohol and not knowing his limits. If you’re going to drink, definitely keep it thematic by drinking out of red cups or shot glasses, but please don’t be like Kevin and drink so much that you barf can’t enjoy the end of the movie.

Use of Your Streaming Subscription: Beyond Reproach

I don’t know that I would have watched Metal Lords had my husband not picked it for our weekly movie night, but I’m really glad I decided to choose the “feel-good comedy” rather than my other option(s). It’s a super cute, somewhat under-the-radar/understated movie that will have you rooting for the underdog and cheering for Skullfucker’s (Hunter came up with the name) success in the Battle of the Bands and in life in general, post-high school.

(And if you’re missing Eddie Munson, Hunter might fill a little of the hole.)

Mandy (she/her) is a manager at a tech company who lives in Austin, TX, with her husband, son, and dogs. She loves superheroes and pretty much any show or movie with “Star” in the name.