Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Apple’s show about apps is app-solute horseshit

Credit: Charley Gallay / Stringer / Getty

Pretty much every company is getting into the “original content” game at this point. It’s a cornerstone of the idea of “peak TV,” that there’s so much money producing so many programs of high quality that we can’t possibly keep going up. Apple has more money than any company on the planet, and so the notion of it getting into TV certainly sounded like a promising idea. What sort of sure-fire, cost-as-no-object project can you dream up? They could pull it off, easily. Instead, they have produced the low-rent Shark Tank knock-off Planet Of The Apps, which pretty much everyone agrees is a goddamn disaster. Rather than watching any of its 10 horrifically stupid episodes, why not take 10 minutes and watch this evisceration of it via The Outline instead?

The show itself is a sort of tech-industry dystopia, full of pointless gadgets, “big-idea” thinking that goes nowhere, and people so drunk off money and personal branding they seem to exist within a separate reality entirely. Gwyneth Paltrow, one of the show’s four “gurus” who, if contestants are lucky, can come onboard to shepherd your app into fruition, is perhaps the apotheosis of this sort of conspicuous-consumption philosophy, but noted terrible musician and onetime hologram Will.i.am makes a great case for himself as King Idiot of the Planet Of The Apps. In the most damning portion of The Outline’s video, he takes a fun, silly idea about a little smart-watch Tamagotchi and turning it into an unusable mess. (Jessica Alba and marketing bro Gary Vaynerchuk round out the famous-people crew.)


The whole thing is strikingly out-of-sync with the sort of taste, polish, and elegance that has traditionally defined Apple products, and it looks to get even worse: Their next project is a Carpool Karaoke knock-off. Perhaps soon they can produce a groundbreaking program about, like, old cars people find, and then something where a handsome man rebuilds your kitchen for you, and then maybe a reality show about, um, lawyers who need help dating, or something? But they’re all apps, and they have “app” in the title.

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