So NoTORIous: The Complete Series (review)

Is this the pinnacle of our celebrity-obsessed, “reality”-overdosed pop culture? Is this the inevitable zenith of a decades-long spiraling of self-referential humor into dimensions beyond normal human ken? Could Tori Spelling actually be this self-aware? My head might explode. Here, the daughter of mega TV producer Aaron Spelling — formerly falling into the unholy-spawn category but now perhaps edging toward redemption — plays “Tori Spelling,” spoiled-brat unholy spawn of “Aaron Spelling” who acknowledges that only her father’s irresistible-force influence is to thank for her “career” as an “actress” even as she attempts to make a go of it on her own, talent or no. Surrounded by a coterie of bestest friends and inanest hangers-on, “Tori” suffers the slings and arrows of outrageous fame… which makes for some of the most incisive and hilarious satire of Hollywood superficiality and disgusting wealth I’ve ever seen. Unless Spelling isn’t in on the joke, in which case it’s just plain sad… which, in a spiral-of-meta way, again makes it hilarious. You can’t lose. All nine episodes that aired on VH-1 are here, plus a bonus unaired episode, deleted scenes, multiple commentaries, making-of featurettes, and more. [buy at Amazon]

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