Liar Liar, Pants on Fyre: Which Fyre Festival documentary did it best?

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Liar Liar, Pants on Fyre: Which Fyre Festival documentary did it best?

John Klos- Flickr

John Klos- Flickr

John Klos- Flickr

Alison Pfaff, Head Photo Editor

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From the memes surfacing on Twitter and the hype surrounding the Fyre Festival documentaries that had just come out on Hulu and Netflix, I decided to deep dive into the world of the most epic party that never happened. I started by watching the Netflix documentary: “Fyre: the Greatest Party that Never Happened.” Entertaining to say the least, I learned of the insanity that ensued when rapper Ja Rule and entrepreneur/scammer Billy McFarland created Fyre Festival, a supposed luxury music festival in the Bahamas, to take place during two weekends in April and May of 2017. With social media influencers promoting the project, beginning with a single orange square on their Instagram and a picture-perfect commercial with recognizable models, this was destined to be the greatest festival of all time right? Wrong.

With only months to prepare, oversold tickets, a suspicious amount of money pouring in from Billy’s side of things, workers not being paid, it was a disaster. Guests arrived to find their “luxury experience,” was a mass of unstable tents, no running water and lack luster food. The internet turned the event into a joke, laughing over millennials being scammed out of thousands of dollars. Performers such as Blink 182, G.O.O.D Music and Major Lazer pulled out of the event last minute, and guests were stranded.    

While the Netflix documentary had me puzzled why someone would throw such an extravagant music festival on such a short time frame, one thing was missing: Billy himself. McFarland’s voice was not present in the Netflix documentary, which is a crucial side to the story that people must hear. Employees of the company spoke out against the insanity, but I wish Billy could have explained himself.  Even if he is a fraud, what would have made it better is interviewing the creator himself.

Hulu’s Documentary “Fyre Fraud” expressed multiple points of views, including McFarland and those who worked for him. That aspect had me more interested. At this point, I knew the basic timeline of how things occurred, but Hulu did a great job of giving McFarland a chance to speak for himself. You could tell he was either lying or just plain delusional, and that somehow made it both interesting and sad to watch. He appeared so caught up in his own lies he couldn’t even really defend himself from the damage he caused.

Overall, while both documentaries have their high points, Hulu’s “Fyre Fraud” reigns superior in the interview area, as well as background on McFarland, while Netflix’ was engaging and hilarious entertainment wise. I highly recommend both.

 

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