Tonight, “Selfie” premiered on ABC, and this was a show we had a ton of hope for. Despite the stupid title, it’s got a great cast that includes Karen Gillan (“Doctor Who”), David Harewood (“Homeland”), and John Cho (“Sleepy Hollow”). It also is inspired in some ways by “My Fair Lady.”
Now, we come to the laundry list of problems. There are no inherently likable characters in the pilot, and while we’re not supposed to like Gillan’s Eliza Dooley when we first see her, the writing never completely redeems her. Also, Cho’s Henry is uptight, and not altogether interesting in his own right, either.
The biggest problem “Selfie” faces, minus of course the name and our general lack of interest in most of the computer-chatter in here, is that this feels very much like a television pilot. Since they had to sell the show to ABC with this, it feels like the writers were forced to change Eliza into someone she’s not in 21 minutes or so. That’s pretty impossible.
This is a show that could eventually be good, given that it may have a few more episodes. Creator Emily Kapnek is extremely talented and we’ve liked her since “As Told By Ginger,” and we have faith that this can turn around with more time, and no need to transform all of the characters overnight. In its current form, though, this was mostly rushed, unfunny, and a little desperate to cling to a word that already feels outdated. With a different title, maybe this would have a little bit more buzz behind it … and be a little less annoying. Grade: D+.
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