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Cruel Summer: 10 Things That Would Be Different If The Show Was Set In The Present Day

The '90s setting of Cruel Summer is part of what makes the show such an entertaining ride. The characters' fashion sense perfectly evokes that decade, as layering dresses over tops was in, along with cheesy necklaces and mixing patterns. The time period also affected the main storyline of the first season, as lies and rumors swirled around the tiny town of Skylin, Texas, and the characters didn't have access to the technology that they would now.

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Fans waited impatiently for each fast-paced season 1 episode of Cruel Summer, and it was fun to take a trip back in time to the '90s and see how the mystery unfolded in this time period. It's interesting to imagine how the characters would act now.

10 Jeanette Would Be Harassed On Social Media

While the season 1 finale didn't answer every fan question, viewers do feel that they got to know Jeanette really well over the course of these episodes. Jeanette is harassed by the entire town as everyone believes that she knew about Kate's whereabouts and didn't tell anyone, and she becomes more and more bitter.

It's easy to imagine Jeanette facing some social media harassment if Cruel Summer was set in 2021. She would receive so many comments, DMs, and tweets that she would likely make her accounts private or stop using them. Fans can picture her messaging strangers and defending herself and she might get so mad that she would confront Kate herself.

9 Kate Would Have Thousands Of Instagram Followers

Seen as the prettiest and most popular girl at school, Kate is someone who others pay attention to. Although she's carrying around the pain of her mom's affair and seems unsure of her relationship with Jamie, people think she's perfect.

A 2021 Kate would definitely have thousands of people following her on Instagram, and she would set trends without even trying to. She would fall apart even more as a result of her social media fame, as she would feel even more pressure, and she would think that people expected too much from her.

8 Mallory Would Take An iPhone Video Of Martin's House

One fan theory talks about Mallory's involvement, and viewers found out in the season 1 finale that Mallory saw someone in Martin's house. She didn't know that it was Kate, though. Up until this point, Mallory is mysterious in her own right, and she's ready to move on from her friendship with Jeanette.

If the show was set in the present day, it seems like Mallory would have pulled out her iPhone and taken a quick video, knowing that something strange was going on but unsure exactly what it was. She would use this iPhone video to share her story and she might even bring it to the cops or the local newspaper, which could help people know that Jeanette was innocent.

7 Kate's Interview Would Go Viral

Kate resisted giving a TV interview about her painful time in Martin's house, but she makes the decision and seems determined to tell the truth. She says Jeanette saw her and did nothing with that information.

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While this was a big deal for all of the characters, the episode/clip would definitely go viral if the show took place in the present day. People would ask Kate about this everywhere she went. It's also possible that this would change the story entirely, as maybe some strangers would become obsessed with finding out the truth, and they would do some investigating of their own and create a YouTube channel or podcast about it.

6 Mallory Would Ignore Jeanette's Text Messages

When Cruel Summer opened, fans learned that Mallory, Vince, and Jeanette were best friends who did everything together. They created a bucket list of dares and made their way through it, and that's how they began sneaking into Martin's house.

Even though Mallory was hiding something, she's still one of the most likable characters. If the show was set today, Jeanette would try texting Mallory once their friendship fell apart, and Mallory would ignore her. This would be a relatable, realistic, and modern way to explore how the end of their relationship affected them both. Jeanette would know for sure that Mallory never wanted to talk to her again.

5 Kate Could See What Happened In Her Absence On Social Media

Kate didn't know much about the outside world once she began living at Martin's house, as she completely cut herself off. She stopped going to school and didn't talk to her friends and family for months.

Kate's storyline would play out much differently if the show wasn't set in the '90s. It seems fair to say that Kate would have access to her phone for at least a little while and Martin would likely have a computer that she could use. Whenever he left the house, she could check in on social media, and she would know that Jeanette took over her life much earlier. This might motivate her to leave Martin sooner and try to take her life back, instead of become miserable over everything she lost and ignoring Jamie and her friends.

4 The Town Would Know More About Martin's Past

When Martin came to Skylin, everyone seemed happy to have a new assistant principal, and no one was suspicious of him, although viewers could tell that he was creepy. No one seemed to know that much about where he came from, though.

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That would change if Cruel Summer was set today. Everyone would be able to look Martin up online and find out more about his past school jobs and maybe even find a secret that he was trying to run from. This might save Kate entirely, as people would warn her about him, and the townspeople wouldn't think so highly of him.

3 Martin Would Steal Kate's iPhone

The fact that Cruel Summer has a '90s setting makes Kate's disappearance even more impactful as people really have no way of getting in touch with her.

It's likely that Martin would steal Kate's phone if the show was set today, as he wouldn't want her to have any connection with the outside world. She would spend a lot of time trying desperately to locate it, but she wouldn't be successful. Martin would also get rid of his landline so Kate wouldn't be able to phone her house. This would cut her off even more and maybe it would alert her to the fact that something is terribly wrong much sooner.

2 Kate Would Find A Reddit Or Facebook Group Instead

Kate needed an outlet for the questions that she had and the pain that she was experiencing, and she found an online chat room. Fans had many questions since the beginning of the show and that included when Kate would find out that her stepsister was the one talking to her.

It seems likely that Kate would explore avenues like Facebook groups and Reddit threads, and she would get some helpful advice from people, as talking to her stepsister seems to mostly be a plot device to let fans know that Kate is lying.

1 The Media Would Set Up Camp Outside Kate's House

When Kate escaped from Martin's house and shared her story about the kidnapping, the media was definitely interested, but she wasn't followed by reporters and no one seemed to be waiting outside her house, hoping for an interview.

This would change if the show was set in the present day, as Kate's disappearance and homecoming would be huge news, perhaps the biggest in the whole country. Reporters would approach her and her family a lot and it would be hard to stay private, especially once the court case ramped up. Maybe Kate and her family would even move as they would need a break from this.

NEXT: 10 Behind-The-Scenes Facts About Cruel Summer

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