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A stellar documentary charting the success of George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley during their Wham! career, from best friends to 80s pop icons.

“Wham! Bam! I am! A man!” From such roots spawned one of the slickest and sing-along inducing pop acts of the 1980s.

Using a combination of new audio interviews and archival footage, Wham! is Netflix’s latest smash documentary that tells a story of youth, friendship, stardom, and big bright colours.

Friends Andrew Ridgeley and Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou (who would take on the stage name George Michael) formed Wham! in 1981 and over the course of 5 short years would sell 30 million records, be the first western act to perform in China, and break through in America in a big way.

What Is Wham! About?

Charting the journey from 12 year old Bushy Mead school friends to superstardom is director Chris Smith (Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened, Tiger King) using a rich archive of materials, including in no small part a treasure trove of scrapbooks kept by Ridgeley’s mother from the band’s very beginnings.

Smith’s choice to use only audio from his new Ridgeley interviews is a smart one, considering this documentary tells a personal story where only one half of the duo is there to tell it.

If Ridgeley’s side had been told with in-camera interview footage there would have been a risk of making the whole film appear one sided. Indeed, there are no in-camera interviews recorded for anyone.

Thus the scrapbook mentality rings true. A collage is created with the plethora of materials available. Thankfully this includes candid archive interviews with George Michael snipped and chopped up over footage of their well documented lives, as well as a newly discovered tape of the band performing on the dingy club circuit to build up a following.

Combined with frank comments from Ridgeley, the whole package imbues the documentary with a much needed air of honesty.

Wham! Official Trailer

Is Wham! Worth Watching?

But that isn’t why Wham! is doing so well on the socials. This is ‘feel good’ hit we are talking here! At the heart Wham! celebrates a deep standing friendship.

Seeing the pair pull through the scrappy early years is a heartwarming experience, regardless of whether or not you are a fan of the music.

This is especially so considering how shy Michael is depicted in the early years, happy to step back as a whirlwind Ridgeley took the lead.

If Wham! is to be believed, then from their second album (‘Make It Big’) onwards the goal was to launchpad George Michael as a solo artist.

Whether this is true or not Ridgeley is certainly magnanimous in his comments, constantly referencing that ‘Yog’ (his nickname for Georgios) quickly surpassed him in songwriting ability.

This isn’t a documentary looking to get to deep therapy sessions. It skirts around the potential for lingering resentments to instead present acceptance.

In doing so Smith gives room for the life and soul of a friendship that, by all accounts, was an open an honest one irrespective of subsequent career paths.

Come to relive a more colourful era of pop music. Stay to get swept up in the tale of scrappy boys done good. Then off you go go, buoyed up with those sweet melodies all ringing in your ears.

Words by Mike Record


  • Sweet And Feel Good
  • Revealing Early Footage
  • A Heart-Warming Friendship Angle


  • Skirts Over Areas Of Potential Conflict
  • No Negativity Anywhere Is Unlikely
  • You'll Be Humming Wham! Songs For Days


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