When the Lizzie McGuire reboot was announced last year, it triggered nostalgia in all the women who grew up watching the series. Since production was halted after two episodes, superfans have been anxiously waiting to find out what the future holds for this reboot.
When Lizzie McGuire first aired back in 2001, the main character, played by Duff, highlighted the struggles of a teenage girl trying to survive junior high. Millions of girls around the same age easily connected with the experiences of Lizzie, her cartoon inner monologue, and her friends.
Now, with Hilary Duff and the Lizzie McGuire fanbase being all grown up, the revived series would present a completely different era and its obstacles. This time, we would see the character managing life in her 30’s.
Disney+ Wants To Remain Family-Friendly
Hilary Duff took to Instagram a few days ago to share the responsibility she feels to her fans regarding the persona of her character and to plead for Hulu to air the series that was originally slated for Disney+.
The drama behind the suspended production is reported to have been centered around a disagreement between the Disney+ Executives, Hilary Duff, and the series creator about their vision for the show. Apparently, the thematic elements and how adult Lizzie was being portrayed wouldn’t have been appropriate for an adolescent audience. Disney+, wanting to keep their wholesome reputation, won’t air the series if it isn’t considered “family-friendly.”
Superfans of Lizzie McGuire loved the show for how relevant it was, and Hilary Duff told her Instagram followers she feels she “would be doing a disservice to everyone by limiting the realities of a 30-year-old’s journey to live under the ceiling of a PG rating.”
Apparently, the thematic elements and how adult Lizzie was being portrayed wouldn’t have been appropriate for an adolescent audience.
Duff added, “It’s important to me that just as her experiences as a preteen/teenager navigating life were authentic, her next chapters are equally as real and relatable.”
Duff Believes the Series Is a Better Fit for Hulu
Obviously, fans aren’t yet aware of the direction the show intended on taking or what experiences grown-up Lizzie had in store for her, so what prompted the firing of series creator and showrunner Terri Minsky remains a mystery. However, with a show as beloved as this one was back in it’s prime, the creative direction is massively important if the producers want to appeal to the show’s original fans.
Since Lizzie McGuire was originally a Disney character, it’s understandable that the brand would be leery of tarnishing the innocence of Lizzie in any way. On the other hand, Hilary Duff probably also has her own vision for Lizzie’s future, as she is just as much tied to the character as the brand is.
While the future of this reboot is still up in the air, it begs the question: is this show better off left in the past? After all, some things are better off left alone.
It wouldn’t be Lizzie without Hilary Duff, so her support of how the character is portrayed feels necessary for the revamp to be a success.
Clearly the re-development of the series wasn’t entirely thought through before it was announced. The same teenage girls who grew up watching Lizzie McGuire might have had more in common back then than they do now; middle-age is much harder to generalize. Moreover, it wouldn’t be Lizzie without Hilary Duff, so her support of how the character is portrayed feels necessary for the revamp to be a success.
Although Hulu is owned by Disney and it seems possible that the platform could air the new series, are fans being set up for disappointment whether the show is eventually completed or not?
As excited as millions are for the show’s reprisal, Lizzie might be better off left as a nostalgic memory rather than emerge as a character who would disappoint the fans who grew up with her. The original series remains available to stream on Disney+.