Home » THE IDOL Series Premiere: “Pop Tarts & Rat Tails” | Review

THE IDOL Series Premiere: “Pop Tarts & Rat Tails” | Review

A tainted, tawdry take on a celebrity’s trainwreck trek to fame or flameout

by Jef Dinsmore
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Truth be told, I wasn’t going to watch, let alone review THE IDOL. I had read all the controversy surrounding it and just thought I didn’t need it. I’m way past my younger years and just didn’t need another show about the angst, agita, and bad mistakes youth make in their journey to figure out who they are and what they need to do with their lives. There are plenty of shows out there about that process. There is even one out there from this show’s co-creator Sam Levinson called EUPHORIA. Yeah, you know that one, do we need another? Do I need THE IDOL?  

TheIdol_Ep1-Pic02Well, here I am. It is mainly because no one associated with this site jumped on the bandwagon about Jocelyn’s (Lily-Rose Depp) journey. No one wanted to peek at this tainted, tawdry take on a celebrity’s trainwreck trek to fame or flameout. For me, it is one of those instances of just not looking away from the accident or just spending too much time wondering how bad it could be.  

Yep, I took the bait as Levinson & Tesfaye hoped I and others would. They call the series ‘revolutionary’ where I and others see it as a series purposefully pushing the boundaries of good taste, which is completely subjective, and presenting a story that is not especially good storytelling but just a show of controversial moments setting up the next controversial moment. They are just out to shock audiences and like an accident aside the road we want to see if we can be shocked. Thus, taking their bait.  

The show opens with Jocelyn or Joss, as her assistant Leia (Rachel Sennott) calls her, all absorbed in a photo shoot for her comeback album. She hits an array of emotions for the lens and is pretty much the most expression we get out of the gal & the actress for the duration. The whole photoshoot also offers the funniest bit in the episode as well. Joss exposes her breasts during the shoot and the on-site Intimate Coordinator has a conniption fit on how it wasn’t in her rider to show her areolas even though she was in control of displaying them in the first place. The dude ends up getting locked in the bathroom by one of Joss’s managers, Chaim (Hank Azaria) until the session was over. Not only was it funny but you’re left to wonder if it was a commentary on Levinson’s opinion of Intimate Coordinators.  

Also, a part of Joss’s relaunch is preparation for a music video and her attitude is just so lackluster. We learn she doesn’t even like the song she is putting out. Neither do I and, we learn neither does Tedros. Joss’s whole posse rallies behind her and the song, even despite her little internet scandal that arose doing the episode. Seems some sloppy oral sex was captured for the world to see; only in reality mainstream sites wouldn’t really show it. This pack of executives from publicist to record dealer just feed her whatever they need to in order to move Joss forward. Pathetic really. Is that how the industry really is? 


So, to release the tensions of the day, Joss goes clubbing and it is at his club that she meets Tedros and an instant attraction is felt though not effectively portrayed. She liked him enough to invite him to her house the following evening despite Leia’s objection. While Tedros waits for her to come downstairs we learn of how much of a player he is as he practices his come-on to her in the hall mirror. A real sleazeball this one. It all leads to some rough foreplay, which we know Joss doesn’t mind because of an earlier scene of self-pleasure Joss has involving choking herself while committing the act. The foreplay scene between the two has him restricting her airway also but the gibberish he spews just kills the mood. Again, a mild shock scene with no strong context to it.  

So, we are left with a troubled celebrity not pleased with her craft but finding a mate also interested in rough sex and bondage and the promise that it gets tawdrier as the story goes on. Yeah, this is all torture all right.  

The next post reviews episodes 2 & 3. Stick with us if you can.  

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