I’m not one to be easily offended by every other thing, so I wasn’t particularly bothered by the hate people had been giving a new Netflix trailer.
A great gal called Divya G happened to talk about it on YouTube and even decided to do a reaction video to the first episode. When I saw it in my subscription feed, I thought “Huh. Maybe it’s worth watching first episode before I watch her video.”
Let me tell you now that I didn’t even last for half the episode but boy, oh boy, did what I saw make me angry enough to rant…
The second the constant narration started, I was sick of it. From my experience, character narration has to be done really well to be good and should (in most cases) stick to writing. This had none of that, just “Hi, I’m John Smith. This was my life until recently. This is what is like now.” I know it kind of decreased a bit as it went on but no matter what the quantity, it was annoying.
You can quite clearly tell that they just didn’t do a good job with the fat suit. If you want to make someone look fatter than they are, don’t make them ware relatively tight fitting clothes where we can quite clearly seen their slim arms and legs. You’re supposed to pad them up a little all over then dress them in poorly fitting, baggy clothing to at least give a better illusion than a pillow held at the stomach. I know they pretty much only use it for the first episode, but it is the entire show’s main plot point (summarised in a prop).
Also, btw why is everyone calling her ugly when she’s quite clearly still pretty? Oh wait, nevermind me, it’s Hollywood logic.
My main problem is the jokes. Particularly the child molester ones. I mean, if the guy was as great a lawyer as he said in his monologue, surely he would have pressed charges for slander? Although she publicly accused him, she didn’t press charges, which is some decent evidence in itself (don’t quote me, I have no legal expertise). And then the main character reasons that because he’s an accused child molester, she has a chance at getting into his pants (for context: he’s married and his son is even her age). That’s just outright insensitive.
I have no problem making jokes about touchy subjects but these aren’t funny. They’re not even shocking. They’re just…confusing. Every time I heard something I thought was meant to be a joke, I found myself tilting my head, pausing the TV and thinking for a short while “how, in any context, someone could have found this funny?” I honestly have no idea…
I thought it would be worth mentioning that Debby Ryan is “surprised” by the backlash the show has recieved. You can read her interview with Teen Vogue if you want, but it did little than just confuse me a bit more.
Here’s the thing, why must we always aim to make content that addresses ‘serious issues in society’?
If you’re going to do it well, by all means go ahead, but if you’re not going to do your research and do it properly on any level, don’t do it at all. (Is it really that hard to write dialogue that sounds natural coming from a teenager’s mouth?)
That being said, this rant is only from watching about half of the first episode, so if it does get better, let me know, because I’m not watching another second to find out.