To be honest, when the networks announced the long lists of new shows they picked up for the upcoming Fall season, ABC’s comedy titled ‘Selfie’ and staring Karen Gillan did not even ping on my radar. I knew of it, but the premise and the early release trailer did nothing for me. To me, it was being touted as a social media savvy and utterly vapid valley girl has humiliating moment and tries to go humble.
Well, that pretty much sums up what Selfie is all about, but after watching the pilot episode, I think i’m going to be a bit more nicer about the show than other reviews have been.
Eliza Dooley (Karen Gillan) is a pharmaceutical sales rep who relies more on what her online followers are doing, hash-tagging and liking via vine, instagram, twitter, Facebook etc etc etc than dealing with the actual real life people around her. Attached to her phone like a drunk to a bottle of whiskey, she’s what I imagine Clueless’s Cher Horowitz to be like had she been created in this technologically advanced era.
Sashaying down the isle of an airplane, we’re first introduced to Eliza where every meme, lol, yolo, hashtag and Valencia filter is thrown at us to ensure that we know Eliza is a ‘millennial’ and that we shouldn’t really like her, plus she’s snagged herself an upgrade and she’s messing around with her co-worker – whom she finds out is married. It’s then the plot is switched up and we’re manipulated to feel sorry for her when she ends up covered in her own vomit (it’s a slow motion liquid mess of a scene that almost had me dry retching) and it’s captured on multiple cameras and subsequently uploaded to every form of social media available – including Google +.
Searching for help from her online cheer-squad, Eliza quickly learns that she doesn’t actually have any real friends.
Thankfully, there’s the non-sexual and non-threatening co-worker and anti-any-form-of-technology Henry Higgings (John Cho) just around the corner willing to fix her and turn her into a respectable lady capable of migrating into society without the need to constantly take a selfie. If you hadn’t worked it out by now, Selfie is an attempt at taking the classic My Fair Lady and throwing a Mayfair filter over it to make it accessible to a younger audience – sort of what Clueless did with Jane Austen’s Emma – but no where near as effective.
Not that Selfie is really that bad. Sure, there were a mass of quotes spewed out of Eliza’s mouth (including and not restricted to “BF BS. Got played like Flappy Bird. Mortified.com.” and “make like Elsa and let it go”) that were enough to make me a) glad I’m in my mid 30’s and will never have to speak like that and b) wonder how someone who actually talks like that finds themselves employed, but there were a few moments I let out a very hearty laugh – Henry Higgins “What makes you confused?” Eliza Dooley “Plus sized skinny jeans, I mean what the?!”
Check out a clip below
Selfie premiere’s on Sept 30th on ABC.