Another observational / reality offering in 10’s Pilot Week (there are a lot of them) is I Am Roxy, a half hour of television which centre around Sydney public relations director, Roxy Jacenko.
Jacenko, who has previously featured on Celebrity Apprentice and is a brand ambassador for Stan (I didn’t hear any plugs), owns Sweaty Betty PR and is wife to convicted former investment banker Oliver Curtis. Between them they generate an inordinate amount of column inches, at least in Sydney press.
This TV indulgence is not far removed from similar genres outings on Lara Bingle and Brynne Edelsten. It follows its title character at home and work with varying amounts of conflict and vanity.
As if to bring some gravitas, this is actually narrated by Barrie Cassidy, and the soundtrack draws upon classical music.
All of the conflict comes from Jacenko being unhappy or frustrated, and reminding us she is a perfectionist. She complains about renovations of a $6.6m house in scenes that could be straight out of The Block, moans to staff and an intern at a meeting, and expresses guilt over not being present enough to her two children, Pixie and Hunter.
The kids are ferried off to school with mocha lattes, driven in an SUV by their nanny.
“Being tough is the name of the game,” she insists.
“I don’t care about criticism, I have to be tough.”
Such scenes make her unsympathetic to viewers without necessarily being interesting.
After several of these scenes I couldn’t help but wonder, is she always looking for failure in order to call it out? She sure talks a lot.
“She has a very aggressive way of communication… she’s got no filter,” Curtis explains.
For whatever criticisms one has (boredom being chief amongst them) Jacenko is self-made as far as I can tell, so credit where it is due. But I question the appeal of this as a series, lacking humility and a trajectory. Perhaps if it had been filmed when Curtis went to prison and Jacenko faced a cancer battle it may have been more unique.
Right now it feels like privileged white folk given too much oxygen.
I Am Roxy airs 8:40pm Wednesday on 10.