iCarly has returned to Paramount+ for its second season, and the revival’s first episode back wastes no time giving the fans exactly what they want. Well, some of the fans.
Friday’s premiere picks up shortly after the infamous Webicon disaster of 2021. Beau and Wes have joined forces to turn the internet against Carly, whom they’ve dubbed “the ice queen.” (Those poor boys, right? How dare she not like them back!) Carly films a live apology to her crybaby exes, but they manage to turn the whole situation back around once again. To prove that she won’t die a lonely ice queen, Carly claims that she already has a new boyfriend, with Freddie stepping in to help seal the charade.
This leads to what showrunner Ali Schouten calls a “little meta moment” during which a trio of “Creddie” ‘shippers — literally driven by Freddie’s mom — confront Carly and Freddie during a fake outing at an onion patch, where they “come in and speak to the love of ‘Creddie.'”
It’s all an act, of course, but it does beg the question: Would the show ever let these two get together for real someday? For the record, no one is saying no.
“The main thing that’s important to the writers and the actors is that whatever happens between the characters happens organically, that it’s not something we’re shoehorning in for plot or just to get people riled up,” Schouten says. “For us, it’s about seeing what kind of chemistry there is on set and then writing towards that.”
Like most of Carly’s plans, her fake relationship with Freddie quickly spirals out of control. And when he’s caught kissing another girl on one of Carly’s live streams, the audience turns on that girl, forcing Carly to step in and explain that she made the whole relationship up because “people were demonizing [her] for not reciprocating Wes and Beau’s feelings.”
Schouten says this is indicative of how the iCarly revival has grown since it premiered just last year.
“It’s a more confident show,” Schouten says. “Going into Season 1, we were figuring out what it was. What could we get away with? And it turned out that the audience responded well to bigger swings. So we had an opportunity right from the start [of Season 2] to ask, ‘What’s a really juicy thing that we can get right into in Episode 1?’ Which, in this case, is being a woman on the internet. It’s still a very goofy, silly show, but I think we get into a little bit more of that feminist stuff, which is exciting to me.”
That messaging is especially evident during a chat between Carly and Freddie shortly after the internet catches him kissing his new squeeze. Seeing his mistake as a chance to fix her image, Freddie says, “People love a woman scorned! But they don’t love a woman angry, only men get to do that. So do whatever you want, but be chill about it.”
We also see it in the way Carly is treated by commenters. One writes, “Carly, I would never cheat on you, queen!” Then 10 minutes later, he calls her a lot of mean names for not responding.
So, what else can we expect to see in Season 2?
“Lewbert and Guppy and Chuck are all in Episode 2, which is a great episode,” Schouten teases. “We also have Mrs. Benson back for quite a few of them, and she’s a room favorite to write for. We also have some familiar faces from other shows. Josh Peck is probably the biggest one. It’s a blast to see him and Miranda goofing around on set, like a little Drake and Josh reunion.”
One person we can expect not to see, just as in Season 1, is Sam, played in the original series by Jennette McCurdy.
“We knew it was important,” Schouten says of explaining Sam’s absence in the first season. “We didn’t want to brush off Sam. We want to keep Sam’s spirit alive on the show. And if [McCurdy] wants to come by anytime, she’s welcome. We respect that she’s at a place in her life where it doesn’t make sense for her to join the revival, and I think that’s the right choice for her, and I would never want to question that. But we also don’t want to pretend that this really important character doesn’t exist.”
Your thoughts on the new season of iCarly? Grade the premiere below, then drop a comment with your thoughts.