This new image from Jem and the Holograms is hardly “outrageous” and is “kinda grainy, still colorful, definitely exciting,” at least for those of us old enough to have owned a Jem doll in the ’80s. The image of Jem, or Jerrica Benton and her bandmates, the Holograms, first appeared on print in Elle and was scanned by the nice people over at io9 so we internet types can see it and share it.
I really need a Jem refresher because I used to be obsessed with the show and have apparently forgotten everything there was to know about it except for the basics. Jerrica ran a music business by day and headlined a girls’ hair band as Jem by night, and somehow, no one ever noticed she was both people (except for the Holograms). She talked to a computer named Synergy (Siri’s cool Gen-X aunt), who I swear was thought to be modeled after Jem’s dead mother. Her father was not dead, but “long-lost.” She had a boyfriend with purple hair named Rio, who didn’t know that she was two people in one (duh, Rio). And, her magic earrings flashed red and switched her identities.
Fortunately, io9’s Meredith Woerner is on the case and has more details about what this particular image of Jem and the Holograms means for us:
Looks like Jem [Aubrey Peeples] with Aja [Hayley Kiyoko] on the bass and Kimber [Stefanie Scott] on the keytar. Shana [Aurora Perrineau] appears to be absent (presumably on the drums and just out of sight) but we’ve seen glimpses of each cast member in a previously released studio photo, even though it really only showcased the girls’ hair.
Here is that image:
As a reboot of a beloved property (shut up, it is absolutely beloved), there are always concerns. Christy Marx, the creator of Jem and the Holograms, wasn’t a part of this movie. For another, the people behind this movie are the same people responsible for making Justin Bieber famous. They’ve also “updated” Jem’s story to make it millennial-friendly, changing Jerrica from an accomplished businesswoman to a younger orphan who “becomes an online recording sensation” and goes on a musical adventure with the Holograms, who also happen to be her sisters (Kimber is biological, Shana and Aja are foster sisters, consistent with the original story).
What can be gleaned from this single, grainy image? Practically nothing. It appears to look appropriately neon and pink, and because pictures can’t make sounds, the most we have to go on is the fact that Aubrey Peeples, who is playing Jem, can definitely sing: