What year is I Am Not Okay With This set in? The '80s vibes are confusing fans

27 February 2020, 16:22

Katie Louise Smith

By Katie Louise Smith

The time period of I Am Not Okay With This is very ambiguous but there's several clues that hint to the fact it's set in the '00s.

For those of us that have been binge watching I Am Not Okay With This on Netflix, it's safe to assume that we've all been asking the same question: What year is this show meant to be set in? Is it current day? Is it the '80s?

Much like Sex Education and The End of the F***ing World, the vibe of the show is specifically designed to make viewers feel like it could take place at any time.

READ MORE: I Am Not Okay With This is set in the same universe as The End Of The F***ing World

Co-creator Jonathan Entwistle, who also created TEOTFW, intended the vibe of the Channel 4 show to make it feel like the show could have been set "any time from 1988 to 2006". And it seems like he's done the same with IANOWT.

Thanks to the John Hughes homage, the show has a distinct vintage feel with '80s aesthetics and old school settings. But despite the old fashioned furniture, the vintage cars and the retro vibe of the show, there's a number of clues that suggest it take place at some point in the '00s.

What year does I Am Not Okay This With take place in?

I Am Not Okay With This: What year is it set in?
I Am Not Okay With This: What year is it set in? Picture: Netflix

For starters, we know the show is definitely set post '90s, thanks to a line of dialogue spoken by Sydney to her mother in the first episode. After accidentally washing her mum's stockings, Sydney tells her that no one has worn them "since the '90s".

VHS tapes of Bring It On (2000) and Erin Brockovich (2000) can also be spotted in Stanley's collection, so we know the show takes place post-2000.

Stanley's DVD collection contains films from 2000
Stanley's DVD collection contains films from 2000. Picture: Netflix

In episode 1, Sydney and Stanley are also texting on smart phones. Given that iPhones didn't come out until 2007, we can assume that it takes place toward the end of the decade. Most of the food and drink seen in the supermarket also has current day labels and packaging too.

While all signs are pointing to a late '00s time period, it doesn't really matter – and certainly doesn't affect the story. The vibe of the show is meant to be ambiguous, much like Sex Education and even Riverdale.