If you've never heard of Celeste Barber, let me fill you in. Celeste is the Queen of Instagram and, with 9.5 million followers, has kept fans laughing at her antics for years.
As well as being a bonafide comedian, she is also an actress and has previously starred in the Australian hit show The Letdown.
Now though, she is the lead in the Netflix comedy Wellmania.
So what is it all about, and is it worth watching?
What Is Wellmania About?
Wellmania is an Australian comedy on Netflix that follows Liv Healy (Barber), a food journalist who has a pretty hectic life in New York.
On the verge of being selected as a judge for a brand new tv series, she heads back to Australia for the weekend to surprise her friend Amy Kwan (JJ Fong) for her birthday.
There her handbag, containing her green card, is stolen. So pulling a few strings, she gets an appointment at the American consulate for a new one, only to pass out and have the whole thing revoked on medical grounds.
The only way she can get back to New York is if she gets herself in shape and ready for another medical assessment in one month's time. But with a party-hard lifestyle, it's an uphill struggle that will push Liv to her limit.
Can food writer Liv do what is necessary to get over this major health crisis, or are her problems more deep-rooted than even she realised? Find out in Wellmania.
Wellmania Official Trailer
Is Wellmania Worth Watching?
Co-created by Brigid Delaney and Benjamin Law, Wellmania is based on Delaney's memoir, Wellmania: Misadventures in the Search for Wellness and is a really funny comedy that is peppered with some more dramatic moments which balances out the whole series nicely.
The concept is solid. Liv has been leading an unhealthy lifestyle involving a tonne of alcohol and drugs until a recent opportunity compelled her to reassess her decisions.
Despite struggling with her bad habits, she really really tries to adopt different approaches to healthy living with varying degrees of success. The problem is that life frequently gets in the way.
Plus, Liv doesn't actually want to change; she just wants to get back to New York. So a desperate Liv cooks up a scheme to get well fast to pass the test. If only it were that simple!
From the off, you know exactly what you are getting with Wellmania. Celeste Barber is funny and relatable as a woman nearing 40 years old who just doesn't want to grow up. Or, more importantly, deal with anything that may force her to confront her past traumas.
But as the show goes on, and the layers of her life are peeled back, we get to see the deeper side of Liv, and credit to Barber for not phoning in a one-dimensional character, which could easily be done over eight 30-minute episodes.
The script is funny, the side plots are clever, and the evolution of Liv Healy is well worth watching. However, if I was to be critical, it's hard to watch grown adult act like a petulant teenager all the time.
While I appreciate that it's part of the central theme of the show, she lacks all social awareness and will seemingly step over anyone she has to get what she wants, which can be offputting.
On one hand, you want to root for her, but on the other, she makes that very difficult! That said, by the end of Wellmania, you do grow to love her and hope that all of Liv's professional dreams come true.
Cast of Wellmania TV Series
Celeste Barber as Olivia “Liv” Healy, New York Times food writer
JJ Fong as Amy Kwan, Liv's best friend and an investigative journalist from The Standard Sydney
Genevieve Mooy as Lorraine Healy, Liv's mother
Lachlan Buchanan as Gaz Healy, Liv's brother and fitness trainer
Remy Hii (Harrow) as Dalbert Tan, Gaz's fiancé
Alexander Hodge as Isaac Huang, Liv's love interest and crush worthy workout partner
Simone Kessell as Helen King, editor-in-chief of The Standard Sydney
Virginie Laverdure as Valerie Jones, Liv's editor
Johnny Carr as Doug Henderson, Amy's husband
Leah Vandenberg as Dr. Priyanka Singh, consulate-approved physician
Miranda Otto as Camille Lavigne, a sexual self help guru