My secret American TV wish? To see a series with an Asian man starring as the romantic lead opposite a lovely non-Asian gal.
Well, thanks to ABC, it’s coming true in the new comedy Selfie, a modern remake of My Fair Lady starring John Cho and Karen Gillan.
Admittedly, there’s a little truth to some criticism. This first episode does feel a bit heavy-handed at times and the vomit gag seemed a little too much (NOTE: don’t watch the first half of the pilot while eating or on an empty stomach). Still, just as Eliza eventually blossomed in My Fair Lady, I see great potential for this series to shine.
Besides, there are many wonderful reasons why you need to tune in to this truly unique TV show. Here are my top five!
1. It features an Asian man as the romantic lead
Just consider that for a moment – an Asian man as the leading romantic role in an American TV series. When have you ever seen that before? It’s historic! If there’s only one reason you choose to tune in to see Selfie, make it this one. (P.S.: Check out this fantastic article I found in the HuffPost: “Will John Cho Be Television’s First Asian Romantic Lead?”)
2. The story centers around an AMWF pair
Again, think about that. An AMWF couple is not the side show here (ahem, The Walking Dead) – they’re the main attraction. Ask yourself, when was the last time you ever saw a show built around an Asian man and a white woman, meant to fall in love with each other? Yep, another one for history. Another huge reason to tune in!
3. John Cho and Karen Gillan have great chemistry
Of course, it’s already amazing to have an Asian male romantic lead and an AMWF pairing – but it would be all for nothing if there’s no zero chemistry there. Fortunately, Cho and Gillan make a charming pair together in Selfie. In fact, in my opinion, the best scenes in the pilot featured just the two of them. They shared some beautiful moments and I’m looking forward to seeing more sparks fly!
4. There’s a really smart premise behind it all
One of the coolest things about Selfie is that it’s a smart critique of our social media selves.
Just look at the title of the series. Selfie doesn’t just refer to those ubiquitous photos of ourselves we share all over the social networks. It’s also a reference to the kind of selfishness that’s on parade when we go a little too overboard online (a quality embodied to the extreme by the Eliza character played by Gillan who has some 263,000 followers hanging on her every post).
The pilot alone takes swipes at everything from hashtags and over-posting your life online to how people use mobile phones at some of the most inopportune moments. I loved it. Finally, a show that pokes fun at – and serves as a commentary – on our social media lives.
5. There’s lots of interracial love to go around
If you’ve watched American TV as long as I have, you know it’s not just AMWF couples getting the short shrift. In fact, it’s tough to catch pretty much any kind of interracial coupling on your average TV show.
But here’s the amazing thing about the pilot for Selfie – it’s bursting with interracial love.
The boss for Cho’s character on the show (played by David Harewood) is a black man who happens to have a white wife. They have a mixed-race daughter who ties the knot with a white guy during the pilot.
Imagine that. In one half-hour of American television, you will have seen not one, not two, but THREE interracial couples. That seriously has to be a record.
While I don’t know how things will shape up after the pilot (will we see more of the boss’s wife or their newly married daughter and son-in-law?), they’re off to a great start.
What do you think of Selfie? Will you watch the show this season?