Set in the city of Seoul, Netflix’s ‘Celebrity,’ a South Korean drama show directed by Cheol-gyu Kim, is an exploration of fame through the modern lens of social media influencers. The show revolves around Park Gyuyoung’s lead character Seo Ah-ri, a rookie e-celeb with an unlikely beginning and some controversial ideas. With the help of an anonymous online personality, Ah-ri punches above her weight and manages to become the top socialite across the country. However, after facing the rocky road to fame, Ah-ri decides to reveal the industry’s sordid secrets on a live stream that threatens the routine status quo of the influencer lifestyle.
Full of unlikeable yet highly entertaining characters defined by their wealth, the show presents stardom in a harsh light and explores the class disparity within such circles. If you’re in the mood for similar stories high on drama with a touch of social relevance, here is a list of shows you might enjoy! You can find most of these shows similar to ‘Celebrity’ on Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu.
8. Dynasty (2017-2022)
‘Dynasty,’ created by Sallie Patrick, Stephanie Savage, and Josh Schwartz, is a reboot of an infamous 1980s soap opera of the same name that follows the rivalry between the country’s two richest families. Following an engagement between wealthy businessman Blake Carrington and a younger woman, Cristal Flores, Carrington’s daughter and heiress to his company, Fallon, suspects Cristal of foul play. As she pursues after her, the family dynamics complicate, leading to an outpour of drama. Although lacking in the social commentary aspect, ‘Dynasty,’ like ‘Celebrity,’ also revolves around morally ambiguous rich people and their problems. If you’re a fan of such dramas, you should definitely give ‘Dynasty’ a watch.
7. The O.C. (2003– 2007)
Josh Schwartz’s ‘The O.C.’ is a teenage comedy-drama show starring Adam Brody, Rachel Bilson, and Ben McKenzie at its forefront. Centering around Orange County in California, the show follows Ryan Atwood, a young boy from the middle class, after he gets adopted by the wealthy Cohen family. Alongside his socially awkward stepbrother, Seth, Ryan steps into a new world and tries to fit in with the scandalously spoilt community and their extravagant way of life.
Along the way, the two brothers and their friends, Summer Roberts and Marissa Cooper, make their way through love and life. Like, Ah-ri from ‘Celebrity,’ Ryan Atwood stumbles into an entirely new world and slowly assimilates into his new affluent lifestyle. As such, fans of ‘Celebrity’ might enjoy the depiction of the upper class’s materialism in ‘The O.C.’ and its drama-infused plotlines.
6. Famous in Love (2017-2018)
Based on an eponymous novel by Rebecca Serle, ‘Famous in Love’ created by the author and I. Marlene King, follows Bella Thorne’s Paige Townsen, an ordinary college student who ends up starring in a blockbuster overnight. After unexpectedly clearing the audition for “Locked,” a book-to-movie adaptation, Paige finds herself caught in a frustrating love triangle between Jake Salt and Rainer Devon. Although the two shows are drastically different in tone, viewers might find similarities between the protagonist Paige and Ah-ri in ‘Celebrity,’ as both women stumble into the limelight and find it to be much different than expected.
5. Clickbait (2021)
Created by Tony Ayres and Christian White, ‘Clickbait’ is a mystery thriller show with a dark take on social media. Following the kidnapping of Nick Brewer, a video of him holding a sign reading “AT 5 MILLION VIEWS I DIE” goes online and soon turns viral. As his friends and family rush to find Nick’s abductor and rescue him, their investigation leads them down a spiral of dark secrets.
Focusing on the morbidly grim part of the internet, ‘Clickbait‘ presents a haunting yet riveting story about action, consequences, and the things in between. If you enjoyed the mysterious crime aspect of ‘Celebrity’ and are looking for something more intense with a focus on social media, then you might enjoy this show.
4. Emily in Paris (2020-)
Starring Lily Collins as the lead, Netflix’s ‘Emily in Paris’ is a comedy-drama show created by Darren Star that follows the titular character Emily Cooper, an American with a degree in communications who uproots her life to Paris for a chance at success. Working in social media marketing, Emily, tasked with bringing her unique American perspective, builds a life for herself in a new country.
However, ignorant as she is regarding this new world’s customs, Emily, stubbornly set in her American ways, finds herself with major cultural whiplash as she tries to fit in. Featuring social media in significant measures, ‘Emily in Paris’ would make for a fun watch for people interested in a fashion-centric show with a more idyllic take on social media after the cynically harsh approach opted by ‘Celebrity.’
3. Elite (2018-)
Netflix’s Spanish drama thriller show ‘Elite,’ created by Darío Madrona and Carlos Montero, revolves around an upper-class school, Las Encinas. Following the enrollment of three working-class students, Samuel, Nadia, and Christian, Las Encinas witnesses a clash between the newer students and their peers. The air, ripe with conflict fueled by class disparity, surrounds the school until a mysterious murder case takes the campus by storm.
With multiple seasons and an array of engaging characters with their secrets to keep, ‘Elite’ makes for an enthralling watch. Sharing its knack for the exploration of classism with ‘Celebrity,’ ‘Elite’ presents an equally entertaining tale imbued with scandals about a group of wealthy individuals. With similar social dynamics and a focus on high society, this show is sure to appease fans of ‘Celebrity.’
2. Mood (2022)
Sasha Clayton, an aspiring musician in her 20s, comes across the world of social media and tries her hand at it to gain fame and success. With the help of Carly, Sasha finds her footing in an exploitative world that allows her the means to access her dreams. However, once she witnesses the dreadful truth of the business, her life takes an unexpected turn. Created by Nicôle Lecky, the lead actress, ‘Mood’ is a drama show based on her own play titled ‘Superhoe.’
If you enjoyed the honest exploration of the e-celeb scene in South Korea as depicted in ‘Celebrity,’ then you will also like Sasha’s experience with social media on her path to musical success. Additionally, Sasha will also be reminiscent of Ah-ri as a driven woman with a firm grip on her ambitions.
1. Gossip Girl (2021-2023)
HBO Max’s teen drama show ‘Gossip Girl‘ is a sequel to the well-loved show of the same name from the late 2000s. Starring Emily Alyn Lind, Jordan Alexander, and Thomas Doherty alongside others in an ensemble cast, ‘Gossip Girl,’ is created by Joshua Safran, Stephanie Savage, and Josh Schwartz. Delving into the lives of rich socialite teens in Manhattan, this show follows a number of characters as they find themselves under the watchful eye of “Gossip Girl,” an anonymous blogger leaking everyone’s secrets over social media.
Fans of ‘Celebrity’ will find many similarities between these two shows, from their depiction of wealth and privilege to an incognito tattletale blog’s involvement. Additionally, the show features social media’s influence over the current generation and touches upon influencer culture.