High School in the 1990s
Welcome to the 90s, Shmoopers, an era filled with Walkmen, Nirvana, crop tops, and scrunchies. Specifically, The Future of Us is set in small-town Pennsylvania, with much of the action taking place on the Lake Forest High campus.
It's important that the story is set in the 90s rather than an earlier decade. Why? Because the 1990s were literally right before the Internet changed our lives. When the 2000s rolled around, many things about our culture changed in a really short amount of time—the Internet officially started running the show—and the fact that the story takes place right before this turning point exaggerates what a big change Facebook has had on the way we view social interaction.
But some things never change. High school is still full of drama, rumors, cool kids, and losers, and there are still bonfire parties that everyone talks about all week and that kid who walks around the locker room without his shorts. The Internet may be up and coming, but stories still spread like wildfire, whether it's because of a Facebook status or because somebody saw Josh in Sydney Mill's convertible near the park on Wednesday afternoon.