OK first thing’s first…anyone who has never seen one of Chris Lilley’s TV shows needs to go and watch Summer Heights High before coming back and reading this post, or at the very least watch a few clips on YouTube and brush up on it’s Wikipedia page. If you’re too lazy or simply can’t be bothered, Chris Lilley is an Australian comedian whose mocumentary sketch shows are sort of the Aussie equivalent to Little Britain, and the shows’ popularity have similarly made them a global hit amongst those who enjoy seeing a grown man play dress up!
One of Lilley’s most infamous creations (arguably Mr G from Summer Heights High takes the crown), Ja’mie King is a twisted portrayl of those bitchy teenage girls who rule the hallways of posh schools from Scotland to erm Sydney. Cruel, vain, slightly (very) racist and obviously obsessed with the opposite sex Ja’mie has all the worst traits of a person rolled up into a slightly gawky package represented by a 39yo man in a wig. Now to those who have never seen any of these programmes this probably sounds like a comedy show, and whilst it undoubtedly is the style of the show lends a lot to the likes of The Office in terms of cringeiness when looking at what is unfortunately not an unrealistic representation of the modern teenage girl.
This time round Ja’mie has her own series, appropriately titled ‘Private School Girl’, all about her in her last few weeks/months at high school before she takes her gap year/goes to university to study PR…unless her dream of becoming a model/dancer comes true of course. I have just whizzed through the first 4 episodes of the series (I believe there are 6 in total) and I’ve been left both overjoyed and slightly disappointed with a programme that promises so much, thanks to it’s hateful young star. The good news is that if you enjoyed Lilley’s other TV shows then you are likely to enjoy this…there is plenty of OTT drama, lots of hair flicking and enough cringey moments to make David Brent blush. Ja’mie is currently the head girl in her last year of school, and along with her band of prefects/’besties’ they rule the school with a manicured fist. Sure they hate all the Asians and the ‘boarders’, whom they consider to be all lesbians, but otherwise Ja’mie’s school life seems to be going amazingly – she even has the Deputy Principal wrapped around her little finger and hopes to be the Student of the Year before she leaves.
Trouble arises in the form of the new boy Mitchell, who is as ‘quiche’ (uber cool in Ja’mie speak) as her and her pals despite being 2 years younger. Desperate to impress him, Ja’mie goes to extreme lengths to snare him and ultimately after he puts his arm around her at her sweet sixteen-esque house party, she updates her Facebook status to ‘in a relationship’. What is terrible about the whole social networking aspect of the show is that alot of it I have actually seen from people on my Facebook! All night Skype chats, being ‘official’ after 1 date and hoardes of selfies (both solo and together) are an embarrassing side effect of being so obsessed with what the world thinks of you that you have to include them in everything. Maybe this type of humour will date quite easily but for the meantime it’s great to wince at Miss King’s actions. Obviously this all ends in tears, but what would a show like this be if an utter bitch like Ja’mie got her own way.
It’s also funny to see how horrific her dancing is, although not as nice is the bullying that takes place in every single dance class of the rich-yet-plain farmer girl who is a ‘boarder’. Similarly whilst Ja’mie’s African immigrant pal is a nice one-liner, it ultimately becomes distasteful when the poor boy, who barely speaks, is relegated to being used as a pillow as she rambles on about Mitchell dumping her. I guess this is just mocking the way girls like Ja’mie act, but judging by the number of people Lilley has had come up to him and say ‘omg I AM Ja’mie’ it’s a bit worrying that a lot of people might not get the satire behind the programme.
It remains to be seen what the last 2 episodes bring…apparently the last one has something that will be a massive shock for Ja’mie and maybe change who she is; I’m guessing either her father is having an affair with his sexy PA Mandy or somebody dies – possibly her African pal (who I know she ditches in episode 5). Regardless I am sure there are going to be lots of ‘OMG WTF’s’ and even more ‘dick pics’ to come, but personally I am waiting for a Mr G show…the world is ready!