"Can I speak to the manager?" Crosses into a whole new realm with the upcoming horror film, Karen, written and directed by Coke Daniels and starring Taryn Manning as the entitled racist No, this is not an SNL skit. No, we can't speak to the manager to keep this movie from happening, and sadly, we can't demand a Doggett prequel for Orange Is The New Black to keep Manning from making what will likely be the biggest mistake of her career.
Karen, the meme that morphed the "can I speak to your manager" haircut/starter pack joke, along with the Dane Cook comedy sketch (2005,) has become a full-fledged film. Why? Because during the early stages of the pandemic in 2020, the Karen meme resurged with a vengeance. Across states and borders everywhere, entitled women yelled at police for enforcing lockdowns, refused to wear masks, and became Super Saiyans at grocery stores and post offices, demanding their every wish be granted or else they'd call the attorney general. They made scenes everywhere they went and quickly became the laughing stock of everyone online. So the "why" of this is self-explanatory; Coke Daniels is riding on coattails of successful memes for clickbait, just like I am, for writing this article.
So, what's this movie about? Based on the trailer they dropped on June 17th, the plot centers around a family of color moving into a neighborhood that seems relatively safe at first, but within days, they discover they have a nightmare neighbor named Karen who is so blatantly racist and entitled that it's almost comical. That, in itself, is sort of the problem. While there are people who are openly that prejudice in public, most racists are at home in their mom's basement being edge lords on 4chan, or they're starting other forums or podcasts with a limited number of yes men surrounding them. Quite frankly, I'd love to see a Karen or Chad be that open about their hatred toward someone outside of their skin tone; they'd be a lot easier to ostracize. In this upcoming film, however, Karen does everything the synoptical racist would do, and the weirder thing is, everyone in the community seems to be fine with it. Not happy about it, but complacent. Aside from the race issue, everyone seems to put up with the fact that she believes she's a unicorn who deserves to always get her order first. Plus, they sprinkled a little bit of that bad cop angle with Karen's brother being a shady law enforcer. They also added a few "you better behave or I'll have to talk to the manager" lines and a few Karen screeches when she doesn't get her way to seem relevant.
From a technical standpoint, this will be a horrible movie. The lines are delivered unnaturally, giving forceful emphases on Karen being the monster. The writing is too simplistic for something marketed as a horror movie, and many people are coming to the conclusion that this is a sad attempt at being a "Get Out" knock-off. The true horror is that people are being forced to watch the trailer. Here, watch the trailer.
If Daniels really wanted to step his game up from his C movies and hip-hop band days, he would make this Karen project either an intentional parody or wax the villain mustache off and make Karen someone everyone adores because she's "just so nice and charismatic." Then, slowly, we come to find out that there's a serial killer in town, and the new neighbors meet the killer's profile. They spend the whole movie looking out for themselves while solving the case. They'll think it's the shady cop the whole time, only for it to be Karen. After she's caught, it'll all make sense because the community had previously turned a blind eye to her subtle red flags. Then, maybe do a freaky plot twist no one saw coming? I don't know, I'm not a movie director, but anyone could probably do better than this.
The monstrosity, known as Karen, has yet to be given a release date.
Feed me, Seymore! We like Bacon Here. Hit that bacon button or I'll have to speak to your manager.
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