- Pediatrician gets death threats after pro-vaccine TikTok video Monday 9:37 PM
- This Australia-themed dildo is raising money to fight the bushfires Monday 8:26 PM
- Influencers say they’ve received unwanted sexual solicitations worth thousands Monday 7:39 PM
- Pregnant woman masterfully trolls gender-obsessed relative Monday 3:05 PM
- HBO’s ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ returns from a 2-year break with brand new ways to make you cringe Monday 3:00 PM
- Far-right accused of impersonating antifa online to encourage violence at Richmond rally Monday 1:59 PM
- Second Amendment protesters defend gun rights with truly terrible signs Monday 12:52 PM
- David Lynch surprises fans by dropping Netflix short out of the blue Monday 12:29 PM
- Poop-focused parody of Kent State Gun Girl sparks conservative ire Monday 11:58 AM
- 6-year-old raises $250K for Australian bushfires by making clay koalas Monday 11:31 AM
- What you need to know about Clearview AI and its facial recognition app Monday 10:36 AM
- Apple TV+ gets its first SAG Award while Netflix and Amazon nab 2 each Monday 10:07 AM
- Facebook apologizes for translating Chinese president’s name to ‘Mr. Sh*thole’ Monday 9:45 AM
- New York Times endorses Klobarren for president Monday 8:45 AM
- 6 gift cards that make for the most thoughtful Valentine’s Day gift ideas Monday 8:16 AM
The ‘Selfie’ pilot is here, if you’re self-obsessed enough to care
Finally, millennials get the opportunity to see just what middle-aged network executives think of them.
The first episode of Selfie, ABC’s new comedy is available online, giving millennials the opportunity to see just what middle-aged network executives think of them—the vacuous and annoying stars of terrible television.
Selfie is loosely based on My Fair Lady. We know this because cunningly, the main characters are named Eliza Dooley (Doctor Who‘s Karen Gillan)—a social-media-obsessed fright—and Henry Higenbottam (Harold & Kumar‘s John Cho). But was the original Eliza ever this annoying? Would she have walked through a packed plane shouting “got the upgrade, ladies … don’t be jelly” and lacking so much self-awareness to boast of being “#instafamous”? Of course not—she was rough as old boots, but she was never as unlikeable as this.
You may well say, though, that those who tune in to ABC on Tuesdays at 8pm won’t know or even care about the original, an assertion confirmed by their viewership, evidence that they don’t possess any viable, enriching distraction: a computer, a book, a ball.
But this isn’t about whether the show is an accurate adaptation. Of course it isn’t—although Gillan’s battle with an American accent unintentionally recalls Audrey Hepburn’s insulting attempted cockney twang. But in the transition, the heart of the set-up, our empathy for Eliza as she is socially engineered from the class in which she was born, is replaced by hatred for a character who requires lessons on how to be nice.
In future episodes there will no doubt be redemption, and, it can be confidently assumed, a relationship with her mentor. It is inevitable that she will develop as a person, drop the selfies and finally understand that “being friended is not the same thing as having friends.” It is worrying, however, to think that we should be expected to want to follow this frightful shell of a person on her journey.
But what is even more worrying is that someone at ABC thinks that the modern equivalent of a good-natured, poor, Covent Garden flower vendor is an ignorant, friendless bore who decides she needs a revised self-image. Eliza Doolittle required a veneer of gentility and respectability so as to promote her inherent wholesomeness; Eliza Dooley needs a professional image “rebrand” to obscure her worthlessness.
Screengrab via ABC
Tom Harrington is an entertainment reporter whose work for the Daily Dot focused on webseries and streaming entertainment. He's reviewed series on YouTube and Netflix, and he was approximately four years ahead of the curve on comedian Joe Pera.