Better than an alarm clock, Lucie arrives at my bedside at 6:58 every morning. My eight year old diva in the making has discovered Jem and the Holograms. Actually, this is not her first experience with the cartoon. When she was about three, I was flipping the channels looking for something other than the same Dora episode to watch when we found Jem. She snuggled in close while I told her stories from when I was a little girl. One early morning a few months ago, Lucie was up before everyone and found this show again, and such began my early morning wake-up call.
Thanks to Netflix, we can binge watch whenever we feel like having a Jem marathon. My guess is that Lucie is not the only little girl obsessed with Jem. The live action movie premieres in a few weeks, coincidentally on the weekend after Lucie’s birthday. You know where we’ll be, pink hair and all!
Jem and the Holograms was a big part of my tweendom. If you need an introduction, take the most messed up plot line from your favorite soap opera and simply put it to music.
The main characters are Jerrica Benton, her sister Kimber, and their friends, Aja and Shana. Jerrica inherits a purple hologram machine, Synergy, that creates realistic illusions with the flick of a pair of red star earrings. Jerrica learns she can change her appearance as well as transforming the world around her — monsters, dead presidents, rock stars — nothing was impossible when it came to Synergy. Jerrica decides to lead a double life — business woman by day, rock goddess by night. She was the Hannah Montana of the 1980s.
Jerrica’s sister and best friends join her to form the Holograms. They spend their days feuding with a rival rock group, The Misfits.
The question I always had is if Jem is the hologram, why is the band called “The Holograms?”
Any 80s girl will tell you that Jem was their ultimate cartoon idol. My husband agrees, because he knew quite a few girls who took pointers from Jem and her friends.
Here are just a few of the lessons I learned from watching Jem and the Holograms.
- If given immeasurable power, the most logical thing to do is to start a rock band.
In the first episode, Jerrica inherits Synergy, a machine that can create realistic holograms. Of all the things she can do with her power, Jerrica decides to form a rock band transforming herself into the mysterious Jem. Makes sense to me.
- Give a girl the right earrings, and she can take over the world.
Jerrica receives magical earrings that have the ability to activate Synergy from wherever she is. The right accessories really do make the look, and these earrings really deliver. Glamour and glitter! Fashion and fame! This girl really has it all.
- It’s perfectly acceptable if your boyfriend cheats on you with your alter ego.
Rio is not the sharpest tool in the shed. How does he not realize that Jem is his girlfriend Jerrica with pink hair? Through the series, Rio dates both Jerrica/Jem and she doesn’t seem to mind she is being cheated on with herself. In fact, Jem actively pursues Rio and then worries about which of her two personalities he likes better. This is the ultimate love triangle.
- The best relationships are built on lies.
If the band knows that Jerrica and Jem are one and the same, why can’t Rio know the secret as well? He is probably not very trustworthy,since he doesn’t mind dating two girls at once, but Jerrica/Jem is not being fair to him either.
- There is a song (and a whacked out music video) for every situation.
You want flying unicorns? Check. Rainbows? Check. Doves? Check. MTV doesn’t have anything on Jem.
- When it comes to makeup, use a heavy hand, and maybe a magic marker or two.
The natural look was definitely not in. Think KISS, but with pastel colors.
- Big hair, don’t care!
You could practically smell the Aqua Net through the television screen.
- There is always a favorite child. Jerrica and Kimber – this is sibling rivalry at its best.
When their father died, Jerrica received clothes, jewelry, a brand new car, and a hologram machine equipped to meet her every whim and desire. What did Kimber get? An electric synthesizer and an inferiority complex.