Why hasn’t it caught on?
When I received an email a few months back about a new web series “where a Hispanic kid is doing the best he can [to meet] his idol, the country singer Taylor Swift, but he ends up falling in love with a drag queen who looks like Taylor,” I tagged it as interesting but didn’t rush to post anything.
At the time, I judged it to be of limited interest to this site’s readership (not a great many diehard Swifties around here) and like something that would quickly find an audience with or without my help. Hence, no particular urgency or need to add my voice to the choir.
Except, as it turns out, there has been no choir. Three months later, only one of the videos has surpassed a thousand views.
And now I’m puzzled. The four episodes up so far are consistently funny. The writing is smart and self-aware. The lead, a Colombian writer/actor named Heider Tunarrosa, invests his character with all the unhinged exuberance of a superfan, tireless in his pursuit of Swift tickets and wholly oblivious to how his obsession must appear to the outside world.
I’m not saying it’s great television, or great anything. But with videos of random unknowns singing Swift songs regularly getting upwards of 100,000 views on YouTube, why hasn’t an original Swift web series been able to find an audience? Is it the Hispanic lead? The drag queen? The cerebral tone of the writing being at odds with the overwhelming pinkness of the title screen, such that the right audience is scared off and the wrong one drawn in and disappointed? A simple lack of promotion?
In fact, why hasn’t Swift herself seen or tweeted about this?
When it all goes right for a series like “Searching for Taylor Swift” – when it comes out of nowhere and suddenly everyone’s watching it – you think, ‘Well, yeah, of course that worked. Obviously it would.’ When it doesn’t, you’re left scratching your head. What went wrong? Why that and not this?
[There are bits of language and sexual content in some of the videos.]