By AJ JORQUIN
#RealityHigh, a new Netflix original follows the story of Dani Barnes (Nesta Cooper), a senior high school student who deems one of the uncool kids — a product of a traumatic and embarassing middle school experience. She tricked into kissing a pig after her “best friend” Alexandra Medina (Alicia Sanz) lured her into one of the camp cottages saying her true love (a.k.a. that guy we all had a crush on during middle school), Cameron (Keith Powers), wanted to make out with her. Out of excitement, she rushed into the cottage and here she saw a boy under a blanket and thought it was Cameron, she goes under the blanket, closed her eyes, tried to land a kiss and then… BOOM! Laughter spread around the room, phones flashed, kids took pictures, and to her surprise, it was some other kid holding a pig to her face. The news spread like wildfire on social media. Proactive as she was in trying to forget the past and moving forward in her last year in high school, shame has continued to follow her ever since the “pig scandal” (the pettiness is real). On the upside, she excels as a volunteer in a local dog shelter, gets good grades, has one friend named Freddy — the true BFF (Jake Borelli).
If you ask me, #RealityHigh has a very common story line. We have a girl who is an overachiever, but is constantly dubbed as socially unfit by two famous girls and one queer boy (predictable), and has this best friend that secretly has a crush on her but can’t tell her because she likes someone way hotter (predictable!). Bonus! She has a supportive family to make social life less harsh. What is the point of even telling a story that’s already been told so many times? Because the film has a hidden agenda: the prolific modern day abuse of social media.
The storyline, is basic, no doubt. However, the execution had a good, underlying message. It tackled how most people, especially today, fancy portraying a different character online. These individuals lose themselves in the process of trying to get more likes and find themselves having to maintain a reputation that is all fiction. A change of character for the sake of being likeable is seen in many storylines and may seem like an overrated topic, but it’s actually occurring in our daily lives. As clichéd as the story gets, #RealityHigh wants us to talk about social media decency more. Remember, with great power comes great responsibility. (Oh please! Spare the judgment. We are talking about clichés after all).
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#RealityHigh’s clichéd storyline that tells you to stay woke in the age of social media domination. Give it a shot. Watch it on Netflix.