I was nervous about the Hulu original Plan B. It was not too long ago that I watched the HBO Max original Unpregnant. Unpregnant was disappointing because it never went as far as it should have. Hulu had already proven some skill with Palm Springs, so that should have balanced out my hesitation. I am happy to report that Plan B is better than Unpregnant!
Kuhoo Verma plays Sunny and Victoria Moroles is Lupe. After a typical, ineffectual, dated, and just plain wrong, sexual education class Sunny loses her virginity but did not use a condom appropriately with her partner. With the help of her best friend Lupe, they seek out the Plan B pill only to be denied by a pharmacist because they are underage, and the pharmacist has the discretion of who they want to give the medication to. Queue the road trip because of America’s HORRENDOUSLY AWEFUL lack of access to family planning. Plan B, the film, lets this sit with the viewer in the back of their heads more than Unpregnant. It is the right move, if you aren’t going to go full out about why a lack of access to healthcare for women as dictated by old men is fundamentally unjust, then just frame the situation in a way that makes the viewer sit with the absurdity. Unpregnant ventured into those waters with a couple of toes but did not want to get too wet and left me feeling disappointed.
Verma is of Indian descent and Moroles is of Mexican descent. It is nice to see more representation and small bits of their cultures are brought into the film. The writers, Joshua Levy and Prathiksha Srinivasan are of East Asian and Indian descent. It is also their first feature-length screenplay. Natalie Morales, of Cuban descent, took her first seat in a director’s chair for a feature-length film. This is what the film industry needs, new faces being given new opportunities.
Plan B is a fun comedy that is not a retread of the Unpregnant storyline. If you are hesitant to watch another teen girl road trip abortion film, don’t be, this one is much better. Classic road trip antics pop up from time to time and earn the laughs. A female friendship is explored, and their bonds are deepened. I am happy that Hulu seems to be getting it right with its original feature-length releases and hope that they can continue to keep the quality at least this high.