I know it’s kind of futile to review a comedy program, because humour has and always will be a subjective thing, but I just really wanted to talk about this series and by fuck are we doing it.
Fans of CollegeHumor will be aware that they’ve recently unveiled their brand new streaming service. They’re bringing back old cast members, fan favourite shows and releasing new premium content.
It’s a great leap forward. Turning a profit online, especially for a format like CollegeHumor, is immensely difficult.
Platforms such as YouTube make their money via advertising. If a YouTuber gets enough view their videos get monetised, provided that their content falls within the platforms content guidelines (though if they’re so popular, YouTube is known to turn a blind eye) that YouTuber can get a cut.
But if your business model relies on the generosity of a multinational corporation, then it’s safe to say you’re going to go broke real soon. That’s why you got to hustle. You got to get services to request that you advertise your products on your content, you got to make your own merchandise such as shirts or cups to sell and you got to develop your own business, become a brand.
It’s hard work but I think CollegeHumor has made a wise move by developing a streaming service. Which unlike the DC streaming app, is now available in over one hundred different countries.
They’re bringing back fan favourite web series’, which brings us to the topic at hand; See Plum Run.
Precious Plum was hands down some of the best content CollegeHumor ever created. It was a web series parodying that Honey Boo Boo girl- you remember her? She was a reality TV star and their show was basically about her mother taking her around to all these beauty pageants even though she was like…six years old or something. It was weird. They made a cameo in that Dumb and Dumber sequel, it did not age well.
Precious Plum on the other hand, has aged like a fine wine. Despite being based off of a blip in pop culture, the series of short videos possessed a sense of depth and hilarity that was hard to forget. It follows the misadventures of these objectively terrible people travelling around to different beauty pageants, to which bad things happen to them. It’s crude, it’s vulgar- it’s hilarious.
There’s a lot of great quotes from this show, my personal favourite being; “He didn’t lick my pussy- so he can suck my dick!”
If you have a minute or two to spare, I implore you to watch the very first episode. If you find it amusing, watch the rest of the series. If you love the series, then for the love of god subscribe to Dropout.
The new Dropout series, See Plum Run, has about a dozen episodes. Twelve minutes each, one hundred and thirty five minutes in total. You could binge it all in a matter of hours and despite the short time length of each episode, it has the same kind of quality as a Netflix show.
In fact, the quality of this show is outstanding. Sets, makeup and effects are all gorgeous. Performances by the main cast are, as per usual, fantastic but I was surprised to see the quality of acting among supporting characters- especially the younger ones. You had sixteen year olds in this web-series who are better actors better than most of the people you would see on a CW show.
Josh Ruben (actor who plays Mama) and Elaine Carrell (writer and actor who plays Plum) portray these deeply moronic garbage people with such conviction that it’s hard not to route for them.
The show begins with these reality TV stars living in disgrace after Mama was caught having an affair with a sixteen year old boy (which was legal in Mississippi) so now, propped up by an obscure TV network the two resettle in Middle America.
To avoid getting child service on her ass, Mama is forced to enrol Plum into a school (one which she’s severely ill equipped to handle) and so the mayhem begins. Mama takes an immediate disliking to her new neighbours and their daughter, Kennedy, and to spite them she has Plum run for School President- a role Kennedy was surely more qualified for.
The show parodies a number of things. The outdated Honey Boo Boo parody is obvious, but their commentary on reality TV as a whole stands true. The school presidential campaign also parallels that of the 2016 election, with Plum taking the role of Donald Trump and Kennedy resembling Hillary Clinton. Yet unlike a lot of recent political satire, the show doesn’t come off as either preachy or insincere.
But what I particularly love about this series is the depth of each and every character we see on screen. It seems everyone involved in the story is out for themselves.
Brian, Mama’s housemate and political advisor (played by the phenomenal Grant O’Brien) right from the get go is only working on this seemingly trivial campaign because A) he’ll get free rent forever and B) the experience will make a great thesis, maybe even a good book deal.
Kennedy’s friends and parents are supportive only in respect to her career. They don’t necessarily care whether or not said career makes her happy but rather that her success will in turn make them happy- they live vicariously through her.
A. R. Johnson, the school newspaper editor, is a combination of both Anderson Cooper and Rachel Maddow. Obviously not enthused about Plum’s message, she however covers her relentlessly as Plum is a crude goldmine for views. A reflection to how the main stream media in America covered the Trump campaign, gaining over a billion dollars of free coverage. Unfortunately, like a lot of journalists she see’s this crisis as an opportunity to monetise. She see’s the whole fiasco between Plum and Kennedy as her one way ticket to Yale.
The only character who seems to genuinely want to help others is Kennedy herself. The poor girl just wants to make announcements in the morning and ensure the school is more eco friendly but now she has people spreading rumours she has STI’s and getting abortions- among other damning falsities. It’s fucked up.
All in all the show was fantastic. Great cast, great writing, a lot of depth for a short period of time and above all else- it’s funny as hell. Once again, director and writer Sam Reich proves why he’s the President of CollegeHumor.
I can’t recommend checking out this series and subscribing to Dropout enough. I wish the best of luck to the CollegeHumor Staff in their new endeavours with this app and other projects.
But there is one question that still remains…Can we get another season of Troopers?