HBO’s Girls - What’s All The Fuss About?April 20, 2012
Demand Weekly provides new movie reviews of hot movies and shows on demand from the POV of watching from the comfort of your home. Today’s reviews: Girls (HBO), produced by Judd Apatow.
Young Women on the Verge of Life
Being in your twenties can be difficult. You’re supposed to be all grown up, but you are still making childish mistakes. You’ve made your first, tentative steps into the real worlds of employment and relationships, but it certainly doesn’t feel safe or comfortable. This is the world of “Girls.” And it’s a pretty realistic world as opposed to the usual TV world in which women can afford Manolo Blahniks, even on a cop’s salary.
Don’t get me wrong, these “Girls” are young women of privilege. They’ve gone to excellent schools and they’ve been supported by parents who, while not in the top 1%, are hardly poverty-stricken. Lena Dunham, the creator/writer/director/star of the show is annoyingly funny as her character’s parents (the always wonderful Becky Ann Baker and Peter Scolari) tell her that after two full years out of college, they are cutting her off financially. You will want to slap Hannah (Dunham) and cheer for her mother. Then when Hannah goes to a job interview that starts off really well, but you see the exact moment she blows it, you will want to rescue her, and slap the dope interviewing her.
Side rant: When will someone give Becky Ann Baker her own sitcom??? It was great to see her play a mom who is not as sappy as the mom she was stuck playing on “Smash,” but seriously, all you folks in tv land, she’s capable of shouldering something more than just a three-line mother role! End of rant.
Lena Dunham / GIRLS (HBO)
The extraordinarily talented Dunham has created a cast full of such richly realistic characters, full of contradictions and awkwardness. And finally: sex on screen that is embarrassing and real. No perfect moments of airbrushed loveliness and perfectly-timed climaxes, sans cellulite and that always extra elbow, just real people not knowing the right thing to say or the exact right place to put their hands, but yearning for connection. How refreshing is that?
There has been a lot of fuss that this show is only about white girls.
Certainly there is an absolute need for more diversity on TV. Television should reflect what the real world presents. On “Girls” at least some of the white girls, for all their fancy upbringing, are normal looking. They actually look like the girl who lives next door, not some pencil with boobs and unusually high cheekbones and full lips that is the usual “girl next door” on screen. And the boys don’t have perfect six-packs and a constant two-day stubble. They are young white people of privilege, but they are not caricatures. They are flawed. That is what makes them so relate-able.
Let’s cut them a little slack, ok? Go pick on "Revenge" or "Ringer." Now there are some worlds in need of diversity! In the meantime, let’s see how “Girls” develops.
I want to see how these girls
grow, stumble and bloom.
Jean Tait is a contributing writer to On Demand Weekly. Currently the Director of Programming for the Connecticut Film Festival, Jean has programmed for the Jacksonville Film Festival and Sundance Channel.
Look for GIRLS on HBO On Demand
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