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The Student News Site of Olathe West High School

Owl Post

The Student News Site of Olathe West High School

Owl Post

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The Summer I Turned Problematic

+The+Summer+I+Turned+Pretty+is+a+book+series+by+Jenny+Han%2C+adapted+into+a+popular+tv+show+currently+streaming+on+Amazon+Prime.
Addison Smith
The Summer I Turned Pretty is a book series by Jenny Han, adapted into a popular tv show currently streaming on Amazon Prime.

Are you Team Jeremiah or Team Conrad? Fans of “The Summer I Turned Pretty” divide into these two categories, but the popular series is now bringing up a new perspective: that the show itself is problematic. 

It’s no secret that many teen shows about romance and life can not accurately portray healthy relationships or decision making. That’s what makes these shows entertaining. 

With “The Summer I Turned Pretty,” however, some fans are finding different things in the adaptation of the books that don’t sit right with them.

One of the main topics everyone tends to agree on is that the main female character, Belly, clearly has trouble making decisions, leading fans to think that Belly herself is the problem, and she keeps causing all the negative impact on other characters.

In season one, we see Belly desperately pining over Conrad, but she also starts to see a new side of Jeremiah that peaks her romantic interest in him as well. 

It’s a classic love triangle, but the toxicity of each relationship is what makes the show problematic.

When Belly is with Conrad, the show romanticizes the toxic relationship between the two of them that we occasionally see throughout the series.

And what’s worse is that the show is teaching its viewers that the red flags in relationships can be overlooked and not dealt with if the “love” is there. 

Many fans are just deciding that the problem in the whole show is Belly, and that she is what made the issues of each love interest worse. 

To add insult to injury, the show’s main theme is that the boys suddenly become competitive for Belly’s affection only after she “turned pretty.”

Bouncing back and forth between brothers, and not bothering to notice the pattern of heartbreak and problems that it’s causing each party involved is overall problematic. 

Don’t get me wrong, as a fan of the show and the books, the series is entertaining and it can grab your attention easily throughout the many obstacles the characters face.

However, viewers need to notice that the show can display negative behavior that is overall toxic and troubling. 

To add insult to injury, the show’s main theme is that the boys suddenly become competitive for Belly’s affection only after she “turned pretty.”

The theme and the journey throughout the series gives viewers the wrong idea about love and relationships.

You shouldn’t have to “turn pretty” to get a guy, much less two brothers whose relationship with each other and yourself you basically destroy.

Both Conrad and Jeremiah have flaws that would make a relationship have rough times, as does Belly. That’s at least one part that the show got realistic.  

So, it’s not as simple as ‘Team Conrad or Team Jeremiah.’ What fans need to know is that there isn’t a right side to the debate. Neither relationship is perfect, and the show itself is problematic. 

Fans of The Summer I Turned Pretty respond to our open instagram poll about the controversial show.

 

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About the Contributor
Addison Smith, Online Editor
Addison Smith is a senior and Online Editor for the Owl Post. This is her third year on staff, previously serving as a staff member. Addison is involved in Rho Kappa, Link Crew and Quill & Scroll. Outside of school, Addison enjoys hanging out with friends, making art and watching TV shows, her favorites including, “The Rookie” and “Community.” Addison is looking forward to advancing the print paper, furthering her photography and writing stories about the community. What Addison loves most about journalism is the ability to spread information to the public and the fascinating world journalism provides through writing and photography. 

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