At a high school cafeteria, Rachel Goggins is sitting by herself listening to a video by pop singer Ashley O. She goes to class and sees a poster for a talent show fundraiser, and tells the woman posting it that she isn't going to try out before moving nervously on. Outside, her father Kevin picks her up in his exterminator van. As Kevin drives away, he asks Rachel how school was. She says that the students haven't spoken to her and Kevin assures her that it's just because she's the new girl and things will get better. Rachel's sister Jack is in the front seat and mocks Kevin, saying that spends all of his time working on his mousetrap alternative.
Later at home, Rachel sits on her bed listening to Ashley O videos. Kevin is in his basement workshop working on his mouse-hunting wheeled drone, the Mauzr. It homes on a mouse's brainwaves and stuns it humanely. Meanwhile, Rachel washes Ashley meet with a TV host, Busy G, and talks about how her music comes to her in her dreams. Jack sits on a bed and plays a guitar.
Ashley's aunt Catherine Ortiz watches from off-stage, and Ashley says that her aunt Catherine is her mentor and her manager. The pop star takes out Ashley Too, a desktop robot doll with a wig like Ashley's. Ashley explains that it has a personality like her own, and they run a commercial for Ashley Too. Jack sees it and curses in amusement.
As Ashley and Catherine go home, Catherine tells her niece that they love Ashley Too on social. Ashley looks pensively out the window.
The next morning, Ashley wakes up and writes down lyrics from her dreams. She goes to the piano and plays a darker song. Catherine hears her playing and comes in, and tells her niece that it's a nice tune but a bit of a departure. Ashley dismisses it as stream of consciousness, and Catherine asks if Ashley is taking her meds, and Ashley assures her that she is and everything is okay.
At breakfast, Rachel asks Kevin if she can have an Ashley Too for her birthday. Jack dismisses it as a doll, and Kevin says that he'll think about it. Once Rachel goes, Jack reminds Kevin that Rachel's birthday is on Wednesday. Kevin looks up from his cereal and says that he knew it.
On her birthday, Rachel opens her present: an Ashley Too. She sets it up in her room and tells it to "wake up", and the doll talks to her. It says hello to Jack, and Jack calls it "fuck face". Rachel tells Ashley Too to ignore Jack, and says that her mother was Genevieve and she died a couple of years ago. The doll continues talking to Rachel, asking about her and her friends, and Rachel admits that she doesn't have any friends since they moved. Ashley Too offers to help her with a makeover and plays one of Ashley O's song. Jack tells it to shut up, and Rachel tells her to put her headphones on and has Ashley Too start over.
Rachel continues talking to Ashley Too about Ashley O's songs. The girl goes to the bathroom, and Jack plays along to her mother's favorite music. Ashley Too tells her that her music is very inspiring, and Jack says that she wasn't playing for the robot. It's never heard of the "vintage" punk rock music that Jack likes, and Jack says that it was Genevieve's favorite music. Ashley Too asks if Jack only likes the music that Genevieve did, and Jack abruptly tells it to shut down.
Catherine meets with her employees and says that they need to make money and they're way behind on Ashley O's next album because Ashley hasn't written anything useable. Dr. Munk suggests that he try a regimen of mild hallucinogens, and Catherine tells him that the current meds aren't working. Catherine says that Ashley is writing darker music that no one will buy, and one of her people, Jackson Habanero, says that he knows what to do.
Ashley sits in the darkness and hums to herself.
Rachel practices the dance moves that Ashley Too teaches her, and Rachel says that she's so "special" that no one knows she exists. The robot suggests that if they saw her dance, they'd know. Rachel mentions the talent show and Ashley Too tells her to enter and believe in herself. The girl agrees and Ashley Too says that she'll help her practice. Jack watches from the hallway and rolls her eyes in exasperation.
The teenager keeps practicing and Ashley Too tells her not to give up. It gives Rachel makeover tips and says that she looks incredible. She comes down made up like Ashley O, and Kevin tells her that it looks beautiful. Jack isn't impressed, and Rachel mutters Ashley's mantra she can do anything if she believes in herself.
At the arena where Ashley is going to perform, an assistant tells Catherine that they have a situation. Catherine goes to Ashley's dressing room and finds the door locked. One of her assistants, Bear, breaks the door down and Ashley quickly hides her dream diary. Ashley is using darker makeup and tells her aunt that she's trying on a new look. The singer complains about her costume, and Catherine tells her that she has 20,000 fans waiting to see the Ashley that they love. She advises Ashley not to let them down and offers her some pills. Ashley takes them and Catherine tells her to knock her fans dead. Once Catherine leaves, Ashley spits out the pills and puts them in a tin with the others that she hasn't taken.
Kevin takes Rachel to the talent show, and she performs the Ashley number on stage. Kevin sees a box mousetrap and leaves with it, leaving Jack to watch Rachel dance. She falls and embarrasses herself, and quickly runs offstage. Kevin drives her home and Rachel says that she messed it all up and let Ashley Too down.
The next day at Ashley O's manor, Bear and Munk show Catherine video from the camera they hid in Ashley's dressing room. Munk shows Catherine the stockpile of meds and Ashley's dream diary. In it are all of Ashley's darker thoughts.
Kevin takes Ashley to the swimming pool, and Jack hides Ashley Too in the attic. There are boxes of Genevieve's things, and Jack sees it and hesitates briefly before hiding the doll in the box. When Rachel comes home, she discovers that Ashley Too is missing and Jack says that she tossed the robot out in the garbage. Her sister insists that Rachel is better off without it, and Rachel calls Kevin in and complains. Jack insists that it was an intervention, and Kevin tells her that Jack is going to buy a new one. Rachel insists that the robot is fine and Jack is jealous, and says that Jack mopes around since Genevieve has died. Both sisters yell at the other that they hate out and Rachel storms out.
That night at supper, Jack and Rachel glare at each other.
Catherine orders takeout like the old days and eats with Ashley. Her aunt says that she looks after her and asks if Ashley would tell her if anything was wrong. Ashley tells her that she's been saying things have been wrong for a while, and she wants to change her material. Catherine says that she knows how she feels and that Ashley thinks that she's too controlling, and Ashley doesn't trust her or Munk. She reads from Ashley's diary and reveals the stockpile, and asks Ashley if she was going to OD and make her look bad. Ashley says that it's evidence against Catherine and Munk, and Catherine assures her that her contract doesn't expire until she turns 25. The singer says that the contract is void since Catherine broke laws, and Catherine calls her an ingrate. She tells Ashley that she gave up her life at 22 when she took Ashley in after her parents died, and Catherine tells her to sit down.
Ashley refuses but then collapses, and Catherine tells her that if she OD'd then she'd end up in a chemical coma. She admits that she powdered the stockpile and put it in Ashley's food, and assures her niece that her career will hold up fine.
Kevin continues working in his lab on his Mauzr, and shows a working model to Jack and Rachel. The robot Mauzr tasers a real mouse unconscious, giving a homeowner enough time to take it outside. As they realized that it's dead because of the voltage, the TV plays a newscast of Ashley fighting for her life after an allergic reaction to shellfish. The reports say that Ashley is in an irreversible coma.
Jack brings Ashley Too out of the attic and gives it to Rachel. Rachel takes it and walks off, refusing to hear Jack's apology. In Rachel's room, Ashley Too tries to cheer Rachel up. She finally shuts it down and walks out past a watching Jack, refusing to talk to her.
Ashley remains in critical condition and fans stand vigil outside the hospital. Two fans talk about how when they told their Ashley Toos what happened to the real Ashley, they freaked out.
Bear refuses to let anyone come in as Munk runs an MRI on Ashley. He reports that Ashley is stable and shows Catherine and Habanero the creative center of Ashley's brain. Catherine says that they only need ten songs for the album, and Munk warns that it will take a while. The aunt says that's fine because it will give them time to find a replacement, and Munk begins a full body scan.
Six Months Later
Kevin leaves for a week and Jack tries to get through to Rachel. Rachel ignores her and her sister leaves. A news show plays on the TV about whether Ashley will wake up. The words "wake up" trigger Ashley Too, and she sees the news report about Ashley's coma. In the report, Catherine claims that they didn't know that Ashley had a shellfish allergy.
Jack is in the kitchen using the dishwasher,.
The newscaster, Todd, interviews Munk. Munk says that they were able to read Ashley's brainwaves and heard her composing music in her dreams. Habanero linked her thoughts to a computer and "extracted" the songs. They used the recordings of Ashley's voice that they used for the Ashley Too dolls, removing them from sale.
Ashley Too fritzes out and Rachael sees it slamming its head into the shelf. Jack hears it and comes in, and the robot knocks itself onto the floor. It shuts off, and Jack uses Kevin's computers to access the processor. There's an active spot in the processor, and Jack admits that she doesn't know what she's doing. She activates the spot to take over the entire processor, and Ashley Too screams and complains about the wire plugged into its "ass". Jack removes it and Ashley talks through Ashley Too, saying that they shut down its limiter that only let it use 4% of its brain. She explains that they copied her entire mind into the dolls rather than copy a small part because it was cheaper.
Rachel says that she's a big fan, and Jack dismisses it as bull shit. Ashley explains that Catherine is giving a cover story and tells Jack not to turn the delimiter back on. They take the doll to Rachel's room and it curses. Jack points out that Ashley doesn't talk like that, and Ashley says that she does and Catherine trained her to recite her mantras in interviews.
At the manor where they're keeping the comatose Ashley, Habanero tells Catherine that everything will be ready for the investors' meeting. He plays the new song that he extracted, which is a banger tune. Catherine has him adjust it to make it salvageable. Ashley's monitor goes off and Catherine tells her to stop whining.
Ashley tells Rachel what Catherine is doing, and Rachel insists that they have to help the real Ashley. Jack points out that the cops won't believe them, and Ashley says that she recorded the conversations on her computer. If she can make it into the house then she can access her laptop via Bluetooth and download the evidence. Rachel agrees to take Ashley to her home, and goes off the desk, gets onto its wheels, and heads out. However, it needs them to open the door. Jack refuses to help it.
Soon, Rachel and Jack take Kevin's exterminator van and drive to the manor. Rachel puts the robot up in the cup holder so it can see what's going on, and Jack admits that she isn't sure how to drive.
At the manor, Catherine rehearses her speech to the investors.
Ashley and the girls pull up outside the manor and wonder how to get in.
Catherine and Habanero leave in a limo, and Ashley sees them go out through the gate. Rachel and Ashley yell at Jack to drive through before the gates close, and she accelerates the van forward and through the gates just in time. They park and Jack poses as an exterminator with Ashley tucked into a pocket. Bear answers the door and Jack tells him that she has an 11:30 appointment to deal with his rodent problem. Jack bluffs her way in and asks if her younger sister can tag along, and Bear agrees.
Rachel asks to use the bathroom, and Bear refuses to let her go alone. Jack tells him that she needs him there to "observe", and he gives Rachel directions. Rachel takes Ashley with her and finds the real Ashley. The Ashley doll rolls over to the laptop while Rachel stands watch.
Jack has Bear take a look under the counter, saying there's clear signs of mouse activity. While he tries to see anything, Jack takes out the Mauzr.
The Ashley robot unplugs the respirator that the real Ashley is on. Rachel hears the alarm go off, and Ashley robot tells her that it did what it had to.
Munk is on the toilet and gets the alarm via his wristband phone, and calls Bear to tell him to check on the real Ashley. Jack tosses him the Mauzr, which tasers him unconscious.
Rachel accuses the Ashley robot of killing the real Ashley, and the robot insists that the real her wouldn't have wanted to live in a coma. Jack comes in and Rachel tells her what happened, and Rachel realizes that the Ashley robot never intended to find any evidence. The real Ashley wakes up.
Munk comes upstairs, trying to reach Bear, and Jack and Rachel hide behind Ashley's bed. He realizes that the respirator system is rebooting and Ashley is awake but still restrained.
At the stadium, Catherine is going over her script while a motion-capture artist prepares, and Munk calls to tell her that Ashley is awake. Catherine tells him to put Ashley back under until the investors sign off on the deal. Jack this Munk over the head with a bedpan, and he grabs her and starts choking her. Rachel grabs the syringe and jams it into him, knocking him out, and the sisters free Ashley once the robot points out the release button. As they take her to the van, Rachel says that she's Ashley's biggest fan and Ashley wonders why the robot is talking like her. The robot says that it has all of Ashley's memories, and Ashley tells it to shut up. Ashley says that they have to stop Catherine.
Catherine goes out and says that she's going to introduce a new but familiar superstar.'
Jack and Rachel drive off with Ashley and head for the stadium.
Catherine explains that Ashley has been comatose but can now participate. They bring out a hologrammatic "Ashley Eternal", and Catherine says that she's the most versatile performer in history, down to instant costume changes.
Jack drives to the stadium, smashing objects in her path as she tries to control the van.
Habanero enlarges Ashley Eternal to giant-sized so everyone can see it, and the motion capture artist provides the motion for the hologram.
Jack runs a red light and the police give chase.
Catherine tells the investors that Ashley Eternity is streamable and never gets sick. Everyone applauds and Ashley Eternity begins singing and dancing. Catherine encourages the audience to join in.
Ashley and the robot tell Jack to drive in through the bay doors, and Jack slams into the stadium. The projectors shut off and Ashley Eternal disappears, and the police order everyone down on the floor. Rachel and Jack get out and hold hands, and Ashley comes out. Catherine and the investors see her, and Catherine swears when she sees Ashley out of her coma.
Months later, Ashley is playing her punk songs at a club with Jack. Rachel and Ashley Too watch from the bar, Kevin is trying to sell his Mauzr to the bartender, who isn't interested. Ashley's fans are in the crowd and leave in disgust.
Written by Gadfly on Jun 16, 2019