P.O.V.: Only the Young

About This Episode

Garrison, Kevin and Skye are in many ways living the archetypical American teen life. Growing up in the small town of Santa Clarita, they hang out, listen to punk music, change their hairstyles (and hair colors) and complain about living in a place with nothing to do. They explore friendship, discover first love (and heartbreak) and dream about the future. They are unconventional, perhaps, because they combine their Christian faith with American teen culture.

As beautifully and vividly captured in Only the Young, something else is different -- the America around them. Foreclosed homes, empty swimming pools, trashy underpasses and a closed mini golf course form much of the visual poetry of Garrison and Kevin's daily skates around town. As high school graduation approaches, these signs of a nation in economic turmoil become dramatic realities that complicate the teens' relationships and their hopes for the future.

Only the Young is a portrait of contemporary American youth. It suggests that youth will always be a font of profound personal and social questions and that teen life will always have a special place in American culture. But it also shows that the economic future that the young in today's America face is more troubled than it has been for generations.