Ok, Serious Arts Reviewers who just happen to be old white men, we get it: Elephant is a steaming pile of manure. Meghan Markle should be ashamed of herself.
Because we as a culture love blaming Meghan Markle for things that have absolutely nothing to do with her - like a sugary Disney script that gives human names and feelings to wild animals.
Meghan has all the qualities a good kids' narrator needs, chief among them the ability to sound like she's smiling or laughing when she's talking, which she puts to constant use in this film.
Adults don't like listening to it because adults don't like being talked to like children. "What is he doing? It's time for a pool party!" (cue 'African' music) emotes Meghan. An elephant farts: "Oh dear!" and again, "Urrrrgh, who did that?!" Meghan pantomimes - this is more or less the level at which the documentary operates, and that's absolutely fine.
In the promotional interview, Meghan talked about how, "when you spend time connecting with them and the other wildlife, you really understand we have a role to play in their preservation and their safety". She speculated: "I think they're a lot more like us than they are different."
Naturally, this became "Meghan Markle says she 'understands' elephants", an irresistible headline.
A useful hack for watching the documentary as an adult is to view it as a coded message from Meghan to the masses. What does Meg understand? Turn it into a drinking game: take a shot whenever Meghan says something about elephants that could apply to her own royal (mis)adventures.
She describes the oldest of the herd, the matriarch Gaia who is universally respected for her years of leadership and service, "almost everyone here is related to Gaia: sisters, daughters, cousins, grandkids". Meghan tells us: "She is a powerful role model for the entire herd." I think we all know what she's really saying, and who. Drink.
Why is it fun to imagine Meghan really does feel she understands elephants? Is it because, "elephants can't survive on small islands. They need to roam vast distances to survive" or perhaps because "social life is like oxygen". Drink.
Maybe it's the sobering moment when "the herd was so focused on keeping the young safe that they forgot about their oldest", or the reflection that "elephants are individuals. She'll bring her own style of leadership. And she's started well!" Oh, Meghan. Drink.
It's become clear that lockdown has exponentially increased the curve of boomerification of millennials. Though we were steadily heading to boomerhood anyway with Gen Z entering the workplace and the pubs, we maintained some kind of relevance. Now, the brunch outlets are shut, and we're at home with new technology and apps we can't work out.
Gen Z are entertaining the world on TikTok, and we're scrambling to catch up. I downloaded the app and felt confused, panicked and incompetent: TikTok is boomering us.
With lockdown, the network once the preserve of teens has gone mainstream. Even if you don't have the app, you'll know vaguely what it is, you'll have seen the distinctive videos elsewhere on the internet. TikTok is social distancing, TikTok is banana bread, TikTok is arguing with strangers on the internet about pandemic policy.
The quarantine had barely started before that reliable cultural barometer Maura Higgins had taken to the network.
The first videos of Maura were presented almost without comment by online news outlets - there was no other choice. They had to be seen, that much was certain - but they couldn't be explained. Like solar eclipses in the olden days, Maura's TikToks don't make sense to us ordinary folk, but we wouldn't miss them. They are in the visual language of TikTok, in which we are at a conversational level at best.
There's the odd celebrity doing it in style - Judi Dench somehow pulls it off; Jane Fonda's dedication to high production value is kind of endearing; Laura Dern can do no wrong, ever. But mostly it's Gordon Ramsay making you want to claw your eyes out, or Courtney Cox just…seeming tired. Jessica Alba is a beautiful woman and a fantastic dancer, like J-Lo, but they're fish out of water on TikTok.
TikTok is a platform for engagement-natives. Today's teens have spent their entire lives being rated online, learning what people respond to and what they don't; they've been sifting through content and media ever since they can remember. We'll never truly get it. Goodbye, internet - I hardly knew you.
While celebrities appear to be losing their minds - special shout out to January Jones's 'human stew' bath, which included an entire box of salt and baking soda - there is the exception that proves the rule: Vogue Williams, who has thrived in every situation life has thrown at her.