A Boomer & a Millennial Watched ‘Virgin River’ for the First Time—Here’s What They Said
It’s no secret that our streaming schedule is determined by who we’re with. For example, Stranger Things is an ideal show to watch as a couple. The Bachelorette is best enjoyed with a group of close-knit friends. There’s also a safe option like Schitt’s Creek, which never gets old.
But not every show should be watched together. It’s not that we don’t enjoy cringing at every sexual reference. Instead, we’re convinced there’s a generational gap in how people interpret a particular show. To put our theory to the test, we enlisted a Boomer and a Millennial, who both had never seen Virgin River. Still, they were willing to watch the first episode of the first season with the sole purpose of providing their thoughts as a Boomer (adults age 57 to 75) and a Millennial (adults age 24 to 40).
FYI: Virgin River follows a nurse practitioner named Mel, who moves to a remote town for a fresh start. The show is full of love triangles, twists and cliffhangers that keep you guessing until the very end, so buckle up, because there are four seasons available on Netflix.
Here’s what our test subjects had to say after their first viewing.
1. Did you enjoy 'Virgin River'?
Both the Boomer and the Millennial confirmed that they not only enjoyed Virgin River, but they’d also be interested in continuing the show. The series offered just enough mystery, along with a small dose of nostalgia that left them wanting more.
“It brings me back to the days when I would watch soap operas all morning before picking my kids up from kindergarten,” the Boomer said.
The Millennial agreed, claiming Virgin River reminded her of a nostalgic TV show: Gilmore Girls. “Am I crazy to say it reminds me of Gilmore Girls?” she asked. “It’s not the same in that Rory rarely left Lorelai’s side, but I see it following a similar format—one that moves extremely slowly but must be watched diligently to fully understand the character dynamics.”
2. Is the story line believable?
When asked if the Virgin River story line is believable, they both gave extremely different responses. Let’s start with the Boomer: “In some areas of the U.S., yes, the plot is believable,” she said, naming Los Angeles and New York City as two exceptions. However, she noted that believability isn’t a dealbreaker when it comes to shows like Virgin River.
“I don’t watch something because it’s ‘believable.’ For me, the goal is to take a walk in someone else’s shoes,” the Boomer explained. “I’ve always dreamed of picking up, moving to the middle of nowhere and starting new. That never happened, and it never will. But I’m intrigued by the idea of living vicariously through Mel, no matter how cheesy.”
On the other hand, the Millennial couldn’t get over the people, who seem way too perfect. She said, “I’m 100 percent rooting for Mel, but I definitely scoffed at the unrealistic concept of dating after moving to a new place.”
The Millennial continued, “The first thing I noticed was all the attractive people. Since when is there not a single unattractive person in an entire town?! Plus, everyone seems marriage-worthy (from what I’ve seen), and that’s hard to come by in today’s dating scene.” Fair enough.
3. Hypothetically, what should happen next?
Again, the Boomer and the Millennial only watched the first episode of Virgin River, so there was not much to go off. When asked to predict how the show will end, the Boomer was more focused on a happy ending, while the Millennial was more concerned with Mel’s future.
“This show has ‘happily ever after’ written all over it,” the Boomer said. “I can already see there are three seasons available on Netflix, so if I had to predict, I’d say that Mel marries Jack, has babies and lives happily ever after. I know there will be a few conflicts along the way, but I think Mel and Jack will find their way back to each other like Joey and Pacey [on Dawson’s Creek].”
The Millennial disagreed, saying, “Mel seems like the kind of girl who clings to men, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it doesn’t work out with Jack. He seems like a great guy, but he’s tied to that bar—and what does that mean for Mel’s career?”
She continued, “It’s one thing to experience small town living, but I don’t see Mel staying in Virgin River for very long simply because the career opportunities are slim.”
Oh, if they only knew.
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