In a **shocking** turn of events, the Netflix original Sierra Burgess is a Loser, AKA another film obsessed with relating to all you #edgy and #quirky teens, has recently caused some rumble on social media. As with any basic teenage rom-com movie, the movie centers around a mean girl, a brilliant but socially awkward loser, and a charming jock. However, this time it epically failed at capturing our hearts, leaving fans upset and uncomfortable instead.
Brief Recap: Sierra Burgess is a Loser revolves around (surprise!) Sierra, an unpopular high school student, and Veronica, a gorgeous cheerleader, who helps Sierra catfish the fuck out of Jamey, a hot jock, in the hopes that he will eventually fall in love with her. So relatable right?
In addition to an already sketchy premise that seems to gloss over things like basic consent and unethical manipulation, the movie also makes sure to touch upon many other issues in the worst possible way.
For starters, we can’t help but notice a few homophobic and transphobic undertones. For instance, when Sierra constantly makes references to being a lesbian as if being a part of the LGBT community is an insult… because apparently that’s still a thing we’re doing in 2018. If that wasn’t enough, within the first five minutes of the film, a student “insults” Sierra by suggesting she make her school assignment about her trans experience (even though Sierra identifies as a cis female). Because we wouldn’t want trans people to feel left out of this wholesome homophobic banter, would we? Sure, it might’ve just been an attempt to characterize a convincing high school bully, but it seems as though these lines were specifically designed for laughs. Which we’re not willing to fork over so easily.
To add on to this already problematic movie, Sierra and Jamey’s first kiss is definitely an issue we need to address. For starters: it was by no mean consensual. No matter how romantic Netflix tries to make it, the truth is that Jamey thought he was kissing Veronica, not Sierra. And in this deception, Jamey’s bodily autonomy is essentially stripped away in its entirety. This scene was nothing short of disturbing, fucked up, and uncomfortable for the audience. But what makes matters worse is that Sierra never apologizes to Jamey, even when he realizes her deception later on in the film.
Fatphobia is also something that is continuously encouraged throughout the film. But let’s make one thing clear: just because you don’t look “perfect” according to our (admittedly ridiculous) societal beauty standards, doesn’t mean you can do whatever you want to make up for it. We can vouch that one can have a healthy love life without catfishing. And you don’t need to blame your problems on people who do fit these beauty standards either. Newsflash! Feeling insecure about your appearance/weight doesn’t give you a pass to be an awful human being (a not-so-subtle subtweet @SierraBurgess).
Also, for being so smart, how is it that Sierra is so fucking stupid? Who in their right mind would decide to get revenge on the one person helping you out? Also who made it all the way through MTV’s Catfish without realizing that catfishing never ends well? So many questions, and so few answers. To put it frankly, pretending to be someone you’re not only leads to anxiety… and possible a shitty rom-com. But hey, it sure does make for an intriguing promo!
Finally, as the movie comes to an end (holy shit, this thing is still on??), the audience sees Veronica forgive Sierra for literally STEALING HER WHOLE ASS IDENTITY by convincing Jamey to go to the school dance with Sierra. A song plays, the light dim, and it seems to be happily ever after for the two love birds. However, not to be the bearer of bad news, but in reality, Jamey/literally every other sensible human being, would have remained freaked the fuck out.
To sum it up, the entire plotline of this movie involves Sierra blaming everyone and everything for her problems except for herself. And yet, she didn’t receive any consequences for her own actions and still gets the perfect ending. Unfortunately for her, we have our fair share of experience with blaming the world for our own issues, so we know better.
Our conclusion? Not even Noah Centineo’s leaked nudes could save this movie… and that is the only astonishing thing about the film.