After The Original Creator Exits, Lizzie McGuire’s Revival Is Currently Not Moving Forward
Oh-My-God- this was supposed to be the picture perfect revival! If you’re a Millennial – especially a gay Millennial, chances are you were obsessed with Disney Channel’s groundbreaking live action series, Lizzie McGuire. The cheeky show revolved around twelve-year-old Lizzie, played by the epitome of perfection- Hilary Duff, navigating through tween life as she discovered the horrifying changes we all experience as we enter into our teens. The relatable series didn’t shy away from actual, realistic subjects young people were facing. We watched as Lizzie would see friends become frenemies, the growing pains of being embarrassed by your parents, slowly becoming responsible, and crushing on any guy you’d see.
Duff would eventually go on to become the girl every gay boy wanted to be friends with, or you know, be. Not only was she involved in a messy love triangle with former bisexual Aaron Carter and everyone’s favorite wild child Lindsay Lohan, she became a gay staple of sorts. She was the first to publicly star in commercials telling people to stop saying “That’s so gay” as sponsored by GLSEN. Seriously, if you remember when the commercial first came out in 2007 – you were SHOOK that Duff was single handily ending homophobia… or just really trying to help. Being an admirer of Duff since those early McGuire days, when you just knew she’d totally have a gay best friend – it was pretty powerful.
A lot of Millennials, gay and straight, were super stoked when Duff announced Lizzie McGuire would be revived on Disney’s new streaming service, Disney+. Through the years, David “Gordo” Gordon (Adam Lamberg) was so obviously Lizzie’s gay best friend (despite the series trying to pair them romantically), and that storyline is probably nothing more than fan fiction, but it was finally time to see Lizzie have a gay BFF in the revival… which was very likely to come. Right?! The gays do need a little fan service in this instance. However, it looks like those dreams are being wiped away with the latest exit from the revival series.
According to Variety, the Lizzie McGuire revival has been put on hiatus after two episodes. Cue the cartoon version of Lizzie stomping her feet and crying until the screen fills up with tears! Why?! The series’ original creator, Terri Minsky, had returned for the revival and is now quitting her job as showrunner. Disney released a cryptic statement claiming that since filming they have decided to move in a different creative direction since the fan base has a sentimental attachment to the show… and high expectations. Pretty much this means that the revival wasn’t living up to the hype and needs to completely be redone. The series was one of the most anticipated new shows heading to the streaming service, so it’s a little hard to imagine they are going to drop it entirely – but things are not looking good.
This of course comes as devastating news to ride or die fans of the original series. Lizzie McGuire wasn’t a show full of the ridiculousness in That’s So Raven or Phil of the Future. It was like a watered down Degrassi. Lizzie battled off mean girls like Kate Sanders (Ashlie Brillault), who we’d find out was really only mean due to family issues, Gordo realized he was different for having only female friends and unsuccessfully tried befriending boys, and Lizzie’s hot and cold relationship with her earnest mother (portrayed flawlessly by the severely underrated Hallie Todd) is a series long storyline anyone could relate to even by today’s standards. Lizzie McGuire wasn’t a silly one off, let’s-laugh-at-nothing series. It had heart and meant a lot to those of us figuring out tween life along with the titular character. The revival was set to see Lizzie as a struggling thirty-year-old who has to move back in with her parents, which honestly doesn’t sound too far fetched from many people today. With the tone of the original, the revival could be even bigger and better than anyone could imagine.
Disney really needs to get it together and whip this series back into shape and be sent immediately to our television screens… because this has to be one of the most anticipated revivals of 2020. If anything, I know one gay contributor to Instinct who is ready and willing to take over for Minsky!
Writer’s Note: This is the opinion of one Instinct Magazine contributor and does not reflect the views of Instinct Magazine itself or fellow contributors.