Fall TV 2014RecapReviewTV

‘Selfie’ Review/Recap: “Nuggets of Wisdom”

Laura Tormos ’18 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer

Da'Vine Joy Randolph and Karen Gillan in the Selfie episode "Nugget of Wisdom." Photo Credit: Nicole Wilder/ABC.
Da’Vine Joy Randolph and Karen Gillan in the Selfie episode “Nugget of Wisdom.” Photo Credit: Nicole Wilder/ABC.

In its fourth episode, “Nuggets of Wisdom,” Selfie continues to display the qualities of what seems to be shaping up to be a solid, promising, new TV sitcom. It has everything you could hope for in a 30-minute comedy: the laughs, plot progression, character growth, and something that Selfie seems to keep consistent with every one of its episodes: an overarching theme that threads everything together. This week, it was about realizing and loving who you are. Charmonique’s (Da’Vine Joy Randolph) last line to the priest before she dances solo to Mary J. Blige’s “Real Love” really does say it all: “I have self-love, and that’s real love.”

The episode did, of course, start with the usual display of Eliza Dooley’s (Karen Gillian) social media obsession, which at some point will likely begin to get old. Much like Henry’s (John Cho) lack of knowledge in social media, Eliza’s lack of knowledge in anything but can be seen as almost charming. Her comments when assigned to do something selfless by Henry are hilarious—and even better is her turning Charmonique’s wig room into a dance club so she can defend her “insta-crown” (or whatever she’d call it).

Most people would peg Eliza’s crowd to be vain and self-centred—which is how Eliza is more portrayed to be—but it is definitely becoming clearer and clearer that Eliza is, at heart, a giving and caring person. She may have initially not been able to think of a single way in which she could help Charmonique with her sitter problem (though, let’s be honest, she probably did and quickly dismissed it because no one, especially not Eliza, wants that kind of last minute responsibility), she eventually not only came around, but actually admitted to having fun later.

Da'Vine Joy Randolph and Karen Gillan in the Selfie episode "Nugget of Wisdom." Photo Credit: Nicole Wilder/ABC.
Da’Vine Joy Randolph and Karen Gillan in the Selfie episode “Nugget of Wisdom.” Photo Credit: Nicole Wilder/ABC.

Henry, being slower to do the same, makes sense given that he is in the opposite end of the spectrum of Eliza as a workaholic, which is not what would typically first come to mind as a problem. It becomes clearer with every episode that, while he may be “coaching” Eliza on how to more efficiently connect with reality and the people around her, he’s in need of as much coaching as she is. Admittedly, however, it is quite entertaining to hear his idea of relaxing on the weekend (which is, apparently, adding tortilla strips to his salad, spending his Saturday night with a jar of vitamins, and speaking in accents to his expired yogurt.) Although he was most likely trying to come off as sarcastic when he insisted that he had a “blast” over the weekend to Eliza when he was dancing to Charmonique’s son’s, (who was acting as the DJ in Eliza’s makeshift dance club), sick K-Pop tunes, it was most likely the absolute truth.

The best part of the entire episode, in fact, is very likely to be her son. Not because of his DJ-ing skills, though they are definitely more impressive than mine, but because of his hilarious deadpan delivery to some already-hilarious lines. His response to Eliza describing her social media fame rivalry with her “best friend” (“She a Virgo?” “Continue”) was particularly golden.

The one small complaint with the episode (though mostly based on a personal preference rather than a factual one, considering how predictable it was) was the inklings of romance between Henry and Eliza that finally began to surface at the end when he was wistfully contemplating what red-headed Korean offspring may look like. We all figured the romantic implications were coming, of course, considering this is a modern adaptation of My Fair Lady. Though most stories revolving around a male and a female working together and forming an unlikely alliance normally result in romances, there was a small hope maybe they would discard that aspect and keep it strictly at a friendship level—a man and a woman that simply have great platonic chemistry.

Though there is technically still plenty of time for Selfie, it is quite clear that it is simply just not to be. This, of course, is good news for those who were rooting for it—not so much for those who weren’t. Either way, Selfie continues to be smart and entertaining, and whatever the nature of Eliza and Henry’s relationship turns out to be, given what we have seen in terms of character development, it will likely be done very well.

Overall Episode Grade: A-

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