" Superpower is a unique and effective tool but it isn't the primary tool, the show invests more time in displaying the complicated lives of teenagers rather than finding more about the superpowers and that gives you a set of two recipes to enjoy which might be very different but certainly feels very connected."
I Am Not Okay With This takes two ingredients i.e... puberty and superpowers and mixes it thoroughly. The plot isn't very conceptual or something that goes in different layers, it is very simple and basic but has one extra thing that changes every damn thing. Syd, a not so regular teenage girl just moved into a town of Pennsylvania. She is basically treated as a new weird kid in the school but she has a best friend Dina who is quite enough for her to ignore everything.
Syd loves Dina but too afraid to admit. Later, Syd also comes to know that the dumbest sportsperson of her class, Brad is dating Dina. Syd is smiling but angry like a volcano from inside. But this volcano doesn't burst into a confession of love from Syd rather it becomes the first use of her superpower, the anger inside her made Brad nosebleed. And slowly she gets to know about her powers and tries to find ways to focus. Her mom works at a restaurant while her father is dead and she is still grieving about it. She is made to write all her thoughts on her diary by the school counselor.
Based on a graphic novel by Charles Forsman (“The End of the F***ing World”) by the director Jonathan Entwistle and the writer Christy Hall, I Am Not Okay With This is not a complete fictional superhero story but it can still be counted as an origin. An origin of cheaper Jean Grey who loves her best friend Dina and doesn't know shit about her powers. The show may feel rushed and is layered with cliches but what really makes you more hooked up is the amazing timeline and execution, with every episode, not more than thirty minutes I Am Not Okay With This is tight engaging and has a very little space for boredom. Each and every episode starts with " Dear Diary " which you can say is a sanity measure she needs to take in order to vent out her bottled up grief about her dead dad. The diary is the sole keeper of almost everything happening in her life from her kisses to how she made a signboard kiss the floor with her anger.
"Superpowers" is a unique and effective tool but it isn't the primary tool, the show invests more time in displaying the complicated lives of teenagers rather than finding more about the superpowers and that gives you a set of two recipes to enjoy which might be very different but certainly feels very connected. Even the grief of Sydney's father leaving the earth without a note is used as a tool that kind of justifies her superpowers in a strange way because the way she constantly bottles up her thoughts and feelings makes you think that these superpowers are still a very average miracle considering her situation. This is something very new and great in its own way. A detention special mission by Syd, Stan, and Dina in the fifth episode reminds so much about the movie " Breakfast Club " which kinda highlights the teenage device is far more important than a superhero device for the show.
The setting is very similar to The End of F***ing World. The music particularly is so nicely curated from the 80s that it feels as if they were born to be played in this show. Performances by Wyatt Oleff as Stan is mesmerizing he plays the coolest and certainly the closest to "real-life one-sided lover" teenager ever, I guess. Sophia Lillis as Syd is spectacular. Aidan as Liam who was Syd's little brother had a cute characterization which is something new as these days the younger ones are usually shown monstrous in different ways.
Overall, I Am Not Okay With This is something very new and engaging and deserves praise but has some minor setbacks.
FINAL VERDICT - 3 / 5.
Should give a try.