'Good Girls' Star's Forgotten Comedy Is a Surprise Hit on Netflix
Months after fans last saw her as Annie Marks on the beloved comedy Good Girls, actress Mae Whitman is earning rave reviews from fans for an older credit that just made its way to Netflix. On Oct. 1, the streamer added the 2015 film The DUFF, a teen comedy movie that has quickly shot into Netflix's streaming charts.
Directed by Ari Sandel from a screenplay by Josh A. Cagan and based on Kody Keplinger's 2010 novel of the same name, The DUFF follows Whitman's Bianca Piper, a high school senior who sets out on a mission to reinvent herself after she learns that secretly refer to her as the DUFF — "designated ugly fat friend." With the help of Wesley, the school's charming jock, Biana sets out on a mission to save her senior year from becoming a complete disaster and find the confidence to revolutionize the school's social order. In addition to Whitman, the film also stars Robbie Amell, Bella Thorne, Nick Eversman, Skyler Samuels, Bianca Santos, Allison Janney and Ken Jeong.
After making its Netflix debut on Oct. 1, nearly six years after its early 2015 theatrical run, The DUFF currently ranks as the No. 2 movie on the streaming platform, only falling behind the Jake Gyllenhall-starring thriller The Guilty. The film has proven so popular on Netflix that it also ranks No. 6 among all titles, both films and series, that are currently available for streaming on Netflix. On that list, The DUFF, which has a 73% Tomatometer rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes, is just behind fellow popular titles Midnight Mass, The Guilty, Maid, On My Block, and Squid Game.
The film's renewed success comes just months after Whitman's time on Good Girls came to an end. The actress starred as Annie Marks, a cashier at Fine & Frugal who is the younger sister of Beth Boland, from 2018 until the show's series finale in July of this year. The series, which followed sisters Beth and Annie and their best friend Ruby have as they a difficult time making ends meet and decide to rob a supermarket, ran on CBS for a total of four seasons before the network announced in June that it would not pick Good Girls up for Season 5. There had reportedly been hope that the show could move to Netflix, but the talks were said to have "imploded." Upon the cancellation news, Whitman reacted to the update by sharing a hilarious meme featuring a screencap from the show.
In addition to Good Girls and The DUFF, Whitman is also well known for her roles as Ann Veal on the Fox sitcom Arrested Development and Amber Holt on the NBC drama Parenthood. Her other credits include The Jungle Book 2, JAG, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and The Owl House, among many others.