“I Am Not Okay with This” review

Mikayla Hartley, Staff Writer

In this show, the classic narrative of “The Hero’s Journey” is taken on but quickly turned on its head. Syd, the main character of the show, begins to develop powers that she cannot explain, but unfortunately for her, she does not get the answers she wants.
She doesn’t get a mentor or guide to show her the way. Instead, she just has herself.
Similar to the show, “The End Of The F***ing World”, “I Am Not Okay with This” is based on a graphic novel written by Charles Forsman. I Am Not Okay With This tells the story that many of us all know almost too well.
It follows the story of a young girl in high-school trying to find out who she is, whether this be through awkward interactions, finding your sexuality, picking zits in places they shouldn’t be, or accidentally breaking a wall with your mind.
Aside from the supernatural abilities given to Syd, her story is resonating. The show’s major theme is about identity. Syd is trying to find herself in the crossfire of her recently deceased father and her newfound abilities.
Often, she finds herself not able to control how she wants others to see herself as characters like Brad antagonize her throughout the show on her self worth.
The show plays on a lot of tropes of high school movies but makes sure to keep it unique for the audience, such as the “Breakfast Club”-esque episode, “Another Day in Paradise”, where the group gets stuck in detention and rebels around the school.
In this episode, there is a fun interaction with Dina and the school janitor in which she tries to seduce him to give her the keys.
The weird seduction part fails and the janitor tells her he’s married and gay. It is a nice laugh and a good step in the right direction for the media to leave these toxic tropes behind. There was also the high school party, where for a second it seemed like Dina was going to leave Syd alone at the party after Syd asked her not to as most highschool movies go.
But instead, Syd and Dina spent the bulk of the party together, kicking back and having fun. The long-awaited high school dance was the last trope in the show, but the wholesome event quickly turned sour after Brad’s head exploded, staining everyone’s nice expensive Homecoming outfits.
Syd’s struggle with finding who her family is and how to control her powers is a tragedy. She finds that no matter what she does, even if she looks at her world in a bright cheery way, it will all still collapse on her. For everyone in the audience, the story is relatable.
Often we feel that we cannot contain our fears and emotions. That the zits on your thighs is all that everyone will ever see.
The creators of this show did an incredible job with casting, music, and atmosphere. The two actors, Sofia Lillis(Syd) and Wyatt Oleff(Stanley) also co-starred in the movie “IT” together.
It was nice to see more interaction between the two actors and the characters they played. In the show, Stanley mentions the band “Bloodwitch” on several occasions. His mentioning of this indie band got many fans curious and invested in this underappreciated music to find that the band indeed does exist.
The creators of the show made up Bloodwitch, but it can be found on music streaming sites as a fun Easter egg for the audience.
Overall the show was phenomenal. Aside from its unsatisfying ending and short run, it lived up to the hype. In the small world that Syd provided to us through her inner thoughts and diary, we are shown what it’s like to be in high school again. An experience that many do not want to relieve, but is important to tell.