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Bebe Zeva: 17 Again

April 5, 2011

I didn’t know who Bebe Zeva was before I read about the documentary Tao Lin and Megan Boyle made about her. I don’t read Hipster Runoff and fashion blogging fills me with a melancholic nostalgia, so Bebe drifted along outside of my internet periphery. Somehow I ended up having to write a review of it for my journalism class, and now here I am (I think it deserves more than the meagre word count I was assigned).

As most of you know,  the documentary was filmed over 5 hours using isight on a macbook. Sometimes the sound goes in and out, and sometimes the “camera” gets a little shaky but it’s better quality than I expected.

Is it a secret rule that when you’re meeting people from the internet in the real world you have to bring food? Tao Lin and Megan Boyle showed up with a bag full of goodies. Bebe Zeva ate:

  • Whipped cream
  • Vegan raw ice cream
  • Kamboucha
  • A candy cane
  • “Throw-back” Mountain Dew
  • Diet Coke
  • Ginger ale
  • A sports drink
  • A  sugar cookie

My stomach actually hurt while I was watching Bebe eat, but maybe because, like a true internet loner, I was bingeing myself?

Near the beginning of the documentary Tao Lin covers Bebe’s hair with whipped cream and throughout the rest of the film Bebe’s fashionable exterior is deconstructed, ending with a friendly romp wearing an oversized t shirt and gym shorts in a hotel pool. As her personae falls away Bebe gets more comfortable in front of the camera, rolling around in hotel lobbies and espousing on internet culture. I think it’s safe to say that I developed a very serious girl-crush on Bebe.

My favorite part of Bebe Zeva a Documentary is that it captures the best aspects of a night out with friends. It’s drawn comparisons to a sleep over, and after viewing it I completely understand why.

Bebe Zeva is 1 hour and 30 minutes long, available from MDMA films for $20.

Bebe Zeva’s tumblr & blog

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