There has been an iCarly social media takeover and I’m loving it. The show originally aired on Nickelodeon from 2007 to 2012 and is probably one of the reasons why most kids in my middle school wanted to be YouTubers. The big news is that there is a reboot being released that will live on Paramount+. The original followed the life of Carly, played by Miranda Cosgrove, who had a popular web show, and the reboot will pick up years later as the characters navigate their 20s.
The new title sequence uses the original song from the first edition of the show, and although the graphics are updated to have continuity with the new style of social media, it’s like I stepped into a time machine while watching it. The best part is how in tune the show is with the culture of the viewers, because the title sequence re-enacted a popular meme of Miranda smiling smugly.
The funniest part is that the meme isn’t even from iCarly, so you’d really have to be in tune with meme culture to catch it. They know their target audience and that is vital to making reboots work-- giving the original audience what they want. That seems to be one of the trickiest parts of a successful reboot: deciding who the target audience will be and how to best serve them. For example, Disney’s Lizzie McGuire reboot was cancelled after Disney deemed the new version not family-friendly enough. Despite Hilary Duff’s efforts to move it to Hulu where they wouldn’t have to be under a PG rating, it ultimately got scrapped. It’s complicated to balance, but to me, the loyalty should stick to the fans that watched it when it was on. For iCarly to stay true to its roots is such a power move that is already working in its favour. The meme in the title sequence which is directed at the generation that also happened to watch this show at a young age is a seamless connection to its audience. It acts as reassurance that the creators see the original fans and have made the show something that will be enjoyable for them.
Something else I’ve been loving is that they don’t seem to be abandoning the comedic timing and style of the show. Nickelodeon Studios is listed as one of the production companies so that is comforting to know as well. The original creator of the show, Dan Schneider, will not be included in the making of the show since Nickelodeon cut ties with him after reports of abusive behaviour and inappropriate relationships with young actors started circulating. I’m happy that they’ve been able to make the reboot happen without having to consult him, and from the looks of it, the show will do amazing without him.
What makes iCarly so distinctive were the awkward pauses filled with quirky music and nonsensical jokes so odd that you had to laugh. It’s a weird show:
Unfortunately, we won’t be getting the show’s original dynamic duo because Jeanette McCurdy, who played Sam, will not be returning. She’s spoken about how toxic her experience as a child actress was, so although I will miss not being able to see Sam all grown up, I’m more happy that she’s doing what’s best for her health. Carly’s brother Spencer, played by Jerry Trainor, and Carly’s other friend, Freddie, played by Nathan Kress, will join as original cast members. We’ve got some new characters in the mix as well, including Laci Mosley as Carly's best friend named Harper, and Jaidyn Triplett as Millicent, Freddie's stepdaughter.
It’s so cool to see characters that I once watched as a kid be reimagined in their 20s because it feels as though they’ve grown up with me. It’s kind of like catching up with an old friend, and I’m so excited to see how they’ve navigated this project. On the business side of things, this is a great move for Paramount+ because had it not been this, I would have never considered subscribing. Now I’m getting my subscription ready in time for June 17th when the iCarly reboot drops, and depending on their streaming catalogue, I might stick around.