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Retta to star in pilot for Bookstagram murder drama

It's like Murder, She Wrote, but she's talking about books on Instagram

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Retta
Retta
Photo: Frazer Harrison (Getty Images)

After four seasons on Good Girls and many more seasons before that on Parks And Recreation, Retta may have found a hot new TV project: According to Variety, she’s set to star in a pilot written by Good Girls’ Jenna Bans and Bill Krebs. But, somewhat surprisingly, the show is apparently a drama, despite the fact that nearly everything about it would suggest otherwise.

Titled Murder By The Book, the pilot will star Retta as an “Instagram famous book reviewer” who decides to stop reviewing mystery books and “becomes an unlikely detective” trying to “uncover the shocking truths about an eccentric seaside town.” So, like Murder, She Wrote but about someone on Bookstagram rather than someone who writes mystery novels. Murder, She Grammed, maybe.

Murder By The Book is being developed for NBC, which is probably banking on this being the most straightforward version of this concept with the most general appeal. Each episode will open with Retta on Instagram, talking to her followers about books, and then she’ll hear about a murder that happened in her eccentric seaside town, and then she’ll solve the murder by finding clues that the police overlooked (since they’ve never made a Bookstagram video), and then she’ll do another video for her followers about how she solved the mystery. Repeat 100 times or so, sell the syndication rights, put the whole thing on Peacock, and everybody gets rich.

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The show is just a pilot at this point and might never make it to air, but if Bookstagram is getting a murder-of-the-week show, what social media community will be next? Film Twitter? Anime Twitter? Ooh, how about Weird Twitter? There’s a murder in an eccentric seaside town and Dril says that you do not, under any circumstances, “gotta hand it to them.”