[Photo Source: Facebook/Superwoman]
Lilly Singh, better known as “Superwoman,” is taking her self-made stardom to new heights with “A Trip to Unicorn Island”—a documentary that gives viewers a first-class seat on the YouTube sensation’s world tour.
Sitting down to watch the film, now available for purchase on YouTube Red, I expected to see snapshots of Singh traveling the globe, telling jokes, and posing with her signature “S” hand sign. Instead, what I got was a less than glamorous look at what it really takes for her to be a “Superwoman.”
The documentary starts with Singh, clad in her glittery blue pilot’s costume, getting amped up to go on stage in front yet another screaming crowd. In the voiceover, she says she will never stop pushing to succeed at what she does. To her, being “Superwoman” isn’t about telling jokes, doing skits, vlogging, rapping, or performing; it’s making people happy.
While her goal is to spread smiles to her audience, we learn through the documentary that her YouTube empire was started through a need to find her own happiness. Singh shares that after graduating from university, she struggled with depression and in her attempt to find a way out of the darkness, she began creating videos in 2010.
The title of the documentary comes from one of Singh’s earlier videos where she describes “Unicorn Island” as her “happy place” full of everything from popcorn to technicolor plush toys. “I truly believe that everyone has a unicorn island within them,” Singh says in the film, adding that through her tour, she wanted to remind people that life is beautiful and help take them to that place of happiness—a message that seems to be both for her audience as for herself.
In her YouTube videos, Singh always greets her fans with a warm smile and an upbeat demeanor, but the documentary shows a rare glimpse to what happens when the camera stops rolling. The unbelievable pressure of a self-made celebrity becomes apparent as we watch Singh work all day on the tour and all night on her YouTube channel, getting minimal sleep and battling self-doubt along the way.
“We don’t work 9-5, we work wake to sleep,” says YouTuber and fellow tour performer, Humble the Poet, who collaborated with Singh on multiple songs.
One of Sigh’s strengths is her ability to relate to people, make it seem as if you are best friends, and watching this documentary was like having a deep heart-to-heart with someone you thought you knew. I felt overwhelmed when she felt overwhelmed. I got misty when the pressure pushed her to tears. I felt exhausted just hearing her schedule. But more than anything, I was inspired by her unrelenting determination to do it all, and do it all well.
“I feel like my life is slowly becoming something no one can relate to,” she said in the film, adding later that she never wants “to seem like some unattainable, untouchable, unreachable person.”
Lilly, if you’re reading this, please know that while you go by “Superwoman” on YouTube, this film made you relatable as a real woman, someone with an unrelenting drive to turn her dreams into reality, and that is its true superpower.
Check out the trailer here: