Paramount+’s “iCarly” revival is a hit among fans of the original, who laud it for preserving the essence and the humor of the 2007 series. The characters haven’t drastically changed, and the jokes are mostly just aged up a bit. That said, there’s something from the original series that probably shouldn’t be revisited: The story of Ginger Fox.
You might not remember that name right away, because she only appeared once on the original series, in 2010’s “iFix a Pop Star.” That episode was a doozy, parodying Britney Spears’ 2007 breakdown in ways that are extremely hard to watch now.
For those who don’t remember, a quick refresher. After Freddie’s (Nathan Kress) music video for Wade Collins becomes the third-most downloaded video on PearTunes, Ginger Fox’s manager reaches out to the iCarly gang in the hopes that they can restart the washed up pop star’s career.
Fox plunged into pop stardom with the most-viewed video on PearTunes, but later had a mental breakdown and received psychiatric help. Throughout the episode, Ginger Fox is portrayed as arrogant, and even unhinged at times, at one point throwing a fork that wound up in Freddie’s shoulder.
Watch how they portrayed Fox during the rehearsal process below.
Carly (Miranda Cosgrove), Sam (Jennette McCurdy) and Freddie try their best to salvage Fox’s image, even though they attest that she can barely sing, dance or keep any rhythm. Still, the trio manages to produce a hit during Fox’s live performance at the Pop Music Awards, thanks to lip syncing and lots of smoke (Fox hadn’t shaved her armpits since her last hit — four years ago).
It all feels very…brutal, looking back at it. Fox’s hit song? It was called “Hate Me, Love Me,” meant to be a riff of Spears’s song “If You Seek Amy.” The performance that the iCarly gang orchestrates mocks Spears’ performance at the 2007 MTV Video Music Awards, where the star was criticized for lip-synching and dancing poorly.
If the comparison to Spears isn’t wholly apparent yet, there’s also the video of Fox washing her hair with blue cheese dressing while the paparazzi aggressively approach her that is extraordinarily similar to the video of Spears crying with her dog outside, while paparazzi swarmed her.
But “iCarly” even went one further. The kids also have to babysit Billy, Ginger Fox’s son, after her ex-husband won custody of him, similar to Spears’ custody battle with ex-husband Kevin Federline.
In light of Spears’ current conservatorship case, in which Spears revealed, “I am depressed and I cry every day,” poking fun at Spears’ mental health in this “iCarly” episode has aged horrendously. Series star Nathan Kress has promised that more characters from the original series are returning — including some obscure ones you might’ve forgotten about — but Ginger Fox is definitely one we can leave alone for now.