Netflix and Chill: Haters Back Off!
Kevthewriter endures a Netflix comedy series based on an inexplicably popular YouTube channel.
Many YouTubers have been getting their own movies. The only one I’ve seen is The Angry Video Game Nerd one, which was okay, but I heard most of them are terrible. But what if a YouTuber got their own Netflix series? Wouldn’t that be GREAT? As Haters Back Off! has shown, the answer is no.
I’m slightly aware of MirandaSings. I had a voice teacher years ago who loved her videos and I think I might’ve seen a couple of them and thought they were okay but the videos don’t exactly seem like the best source to translate into a 30 minute sitcom.
For those who don’t know, MirandaSings is basically a video with one joke: an obnoxious girl attempts to sing popular songs and sings them horribly. That persona might be okay for a YouTube video that lasts a few minutes but it’s something that would be hard to translate into a 30 minute sitcom. And, judging from the pilot, they failed at it.
Biggest problem is hardly anyone in the show is likable. The main character, Miranda, is stupid, talent-less, obnoxious, rude, egotistical, snobby, vain, and so many words I can think of that are NOT nice. The supporting characters are not much better. Her uncle is an obnoxious enabler who thinks she’s a talented singer while her mother is a wimp who doesn’t even try to bring Miranda and her brother back down to reality and is also self absorbed to boot. The only character whose somewhat likable is Miranda’s sister, who’s basically the only one that calls Miranda and her family out.
Of course, just because the characters are unlikable doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing. It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is a good show but none of the characters are decent people. Bad Santa and Three Billboards Outside Ebbings, Missouri are good movies that are filled with horrible people. Bojack Horseman is another show on Netflix where the characters are very flawed and that show is great.
But, if you’re going to make a show about unlikable people, you gotta really be careful how you do it. The characters still have to be interesting and/or funny. The characters in Bojack Horseman are both. Same thing with Three Billboards. The characters in It’s Always Sunny and Bad Santa are hardly deep but they are funny. Problem is, while Haters Back Off had a couple of laughs (i.e. Miranda thinking a guy who gave her a negative comment looks exactly like his profile picture, which is the standard YouTube user profile picture from the late 2000’s), the characters are mostly not funny and there is nothing about them that is interesting as characters so, at the end of the day, they just end up coming off as annoying and repugnant.
I will say, though, that I may not have given the show the most fair shot because I only saw the pilot and sometimes pilots aren’t that great. The pilot to Bojack Horseman was kinda…ehh. But, while I realize shows grow over time and don’t always start off good, the pilot should at least give a sense of whether or not the show might be enjoyable. Even if the pilot of Bojack Horseman wasn’t its best moment, it at least gave off the sense that there was going to be more to the characters than what the first episode let on.
I can’t say the same thing about Haters Back Off as the pilot alone just felt like it was going to be an annoying show and nothing would change about it. I’d love to be proven wrong and have future episodes show there is more depth to these characters and they aren’t as annoying and unfunny as the pilot made them out to be but, as of now, I just don’t think that’s possible.