Is Lost Speedways On Netflix? [Expert Guide!]

Netflix’s Lost Speedways is the story of three mismatched friends who decide to race each other across America in iconic cars. The series focuses heavily on the camaraderie that develops among the trio as they road trip together, with the banter more than making up for the sometimes choppy (and sometimes exhilarating) driving scenes.

While the setting and subject matter of Lost Speedways might conjure up images of the old-style American road trip, the production values and story lines are firmly planted in the present day. The show even references contemporary events, such as the 2007 financial crisis and Hurricane Katrina, which struck the Gulf Coast in 2005.

Netflix is currently in production on season two, and with it coming to an end, it’s the perfect time to reflect on the first season. Is Lost Speedways as good as it seems? Let’s take a look.

An Enormous Road Trip

Lost Speedways begins with three friends – Adam, a software engineer; Matt, a business consultant; and Charlie, a student – setting out on a cross-country road trip in Adam’s 1971 Plymouth Roadrunner. They are joined by Matt’s fiancée, Lainie, and their infant son, Jack.

The story picks up where we left off in the first season: Adam, Charlie, and Matt, in the midst of a hurricane, are holed up in an unfinished house in East Texas. They’ve run out of food and are forced to eat their pet rat, but still have enough electricity to play a series of unexpected pranks on their friends and family. Outside, the storm rages on, and it’s not clear where they’ll end up spending the night.

It’s at this point in the first season that we learn that Matt’s family has a long history of traveling in iconic cars – his grandfather built up a collection of antique cars, which he eventually bequeathed to his grandson – and he encourages his three friends to follow suit. The decision is made easier when Lainie suggests that they take a break from their road trip and hunt down Charlie’s 85-year-old grandma Lola to ask her for help with the trip. Grandma Lola turns out to be an excellent driver who takes the group on a quick trip around the block before the start of the season.

An Interesting Take On A Classic Genre

Lost Speedways is an interesting take on a classic genre, as it combines elements of comedy, thriller, and drama into an entertaining show. The narrative frequently switches between the groups of friends in a kind of meta-style, as characters comment on the action or interject with humorous asides.

This multi-genre approach is most effective in scenes where the friends encounter other drivers on the road. The banter frequently goes beyond what you’d expect from a road trip movie, and the interactions between the three groups of friends inject a surprising amount of social commentary into the story. For example, Matt remarks that he’s never been on a road trip with a couple of guys named Charlie and Adam, as they share a laugh at his expense. While traveling, Lainie calls out the hypocrisy of the American education system, which forces her to confront the trio about their apathy for social issues. In another scene, Charlie makes reference to a famous YouTube video of a road trip through the American Southwest, criticizing the materialism and consumerism of American culture, which prompted the video’s creator, Dylan McAvoy, to leave a lengthy rebuttal.

An Enjoyable Roadtrip

Even though the narrative frequently switches between the different groups of friends, the show still maintains a cohesive feel throughout. There are moments when two or more of the friends are traveling together – for example, Charlie and Lainie are joined by Matt and Adam on a stretch of highway in Wisconsin – but for the most part, we follow the exploits of the individual groups. The road trip is not only an interesting take on a classic genre, but it’s also a convenient story arc to explore the developing friendship of the three main characters.

In keeping with the theme of friendship, some of the most entertaining scenes involve the trio of friends goofing off or engaging in light mischief. When they pull over at a rest stop to take a break from their arduous journey, they engage in some playful banter, with Charlie comparing the rest stop food to dog shit and advising his friends to wash down their food with milk before eating it. Later in the season, when tensions among the friends begin to mount, this nature-versus-nurture dynamic gives way to some genuinely funny and heart-warming scenes. For example, when they arrive at grandma Lola’s house in Tennessee, she opens up her pantry, which is stocked with such luxuries as Snickers, Oreos, and M&Ms, and encourages the guys to indulge themselves and help themselves to all of the snacks they can handle. Even more heartwarming is when we find out that one of the characters, Matt, is a bit of a foodie and enjoys cooking, which provides the perfect opportunity for him to indulge himself while on the road trip. The result is one of the best meals we’ve seen on TV in a long time.

All In All, An Entertaining And Unique Look At The Present Day

While much of Lost Speedways takes place on the open road, the show breaks the fourth wall on several occasions, making overt references to current events and pop culture. For instance, when Lainie’s parents call and ask the guys to check on their daughter while they’re away on a cruise ship, they respond by taking a detour through Lainie’s childhood town and playing a weird game of ‘Where Are You?’ with her cousins, leading to a funny scene where the friends comment on the incongruity of being in a town called ‘Hollyweird’ and having to ask directions to find a restaurant. The setting then flips to show us a panoramic shot of the Pacific Ocean, with the friends enjoying a scenic drive and a bottle of wine before continuing on their way to Alaska.

The show also makes multiple references to films and TV shows, generally of the ‘70s and ‘80s, so if you’re a fan of those eras, you’ll definitely want to check it out. There is also a lot of meta-reference throughout, as characters frequently comment on the nature of the road trip and how it differs from what you might expect. For example, Adam remarks that this is not a Hemingway novel, comparing the trip to a cross-country road race and the development of his literary skills to that of a real-life Fincher movie. The show even ends with a meta-reference to the very fact that it is a road trip movie, with a title card that reads: “In a Road Trip, Nothing Is As It Seems.”

Ultimately, Lost Speedways is an entertaining and unique look at the present day and the friendship between the three main characters, who race along in some of the most iconic cars to ever exist. The show doesn’t always hit the conventional narrative marks you’d find in a traditional TV series, but that’s part of what makes it so interesting.

Is Lost Speedways on Netflix? You can stream it here. What do you think about it? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

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