Girls is an HBO comedy-drama about girls in their twenties living in New York City finding out what they want to do with their lives. Being typical millennial creatures, the discovery comes slowly and is paid for by mom and dad (until they cut you off). The show is created by Lena Dunham: she writes, directs and performs in the show. Very Author! Very sincere! Before you read on, know: spoilers ahead!
Reality and post SATC generation
The show has been called the ‘independent version of Sex and the city”. From there you learn that Girls also deals with four girlfriends living in New York. Although this show looks like SATC, it’s also radically different. it’s not anti SATC, but no more post SATC. Girls is brutally honest and honestly brutal. It’s not a conventional show, but not so unconventional that audiences feel alienated. On the contrary: you can relate to these girls so easily that they might as well be real. It might be overkill, but for me it’s true. Due to their reality, Dunham isn’t afraid to show off the boring traits of the characters – boys and girls – or admit their mistakes.
Ironic and sincere humor
I agree with people who rate this show as refreshing, but not just because it shows girls in a different way. What I find most refreshing is that the show gives way to self-deprecation and irony. Dunham wants you to love her and her characters, but also see the humor, laugh at their mistakes, and see the irony of it all. If anyone tells me that women can’t be funny anymore, I’m going to tie them up and make them watch this show until they admit their mistake.
The fact that Lena’s character, Hannah, often walks around naked is considered “abnormal” as she does not have a Hollywood body. Is she trying to shock? Maybe, but she’s also trying to be good with her own body in a world that teaches you not to (and probably show off her cool tattoos). This brings me to the awkward sex scenes. In Girls, sex isn’t always glamorous and that’s okay. Sometimes it takes time to understand the other person’s desires, or even your own.
The four friends are very different, but that’s what makes it interesting. Their friendship is a bumpy road, but they still stick together. They have their faults, but their faults are not “having overpriced shoes” (yes I’m talking about Carrie Bradshaw).
Hannah is an aspiring writer and basically waits for a job and a novel to land on her knees. Little by little, she learns that this is not how life works – at least not for most of us – and she takes life “one mistake at a time”. Marnie (played by Allison Williams) is Hannah’s beautiful best friend who can be quite tense and obsessive, but also responsible and gentle. The combination of the loose projectile Hannah and the super-planner Marnie creates a firework display. Jessa (Jemima Kirke) is the wild friend of British Boho, who lives on the edge and learns that she sometimes seduces men for kicks. It doesn’t always end well. Then there’s Jessa’s niece, Shoshanna (Zosia Mamet), who is sweet and innocent, but wants to be less innocent. Shoshanna is the youngest of the girls and is still studying at college while the rest are graduates and working (Marnie, sometimes Jessa) or doing internships and looking for jobs (Hannah).
There are also boys in the show. Yay. Adam is an actor and kind of Hannah’s boyfriend with a strange sexual appetite. It took me a while to get used to him, but as the season evolved I loved him more and more. The second boy in the series is Charlie. He’s Marnie’s (ex) boyfriend. At the start of the series, Marnie gets bored with Charlie and dumps him (which broke my heart, he’s so sweet and cute). She realizes that the only reason they were still together was because she was used to the situation and that she thought Charlie needed her. But when he starts dating another girl, much more spontaneous, Marnie breaks down and stalks her Facebook profile. Charlie’s friend Ray also makes a few appearances on the show. He owns a coffeeshop where Hannah will eventually start working. Ray is very protective of his friend Charlie and can be quite rude at times. As with Adam, as the series evolved, I liked him more. In the final episodes, he and Shoshanna get closer and eventually, after developing feelings for her, Ray takes Shoshanna’s virginity.
In the episode
Lena Dunham made a “guide” for the series called Inside the episode. You can watch it on youtube. I thought these videos were really great and really add more value to the episodes. Go see them.
What’s a series without good music, right? Below is a list of my favorite songs featured on the show, but there are plenty of other great songs to hear during the episodes.
Uncovered – White Sea
I feel everything – Feist
Our offer – Best Coast
Same Mistakes – L’Echo-Friendly
Heartbeats – The Knife
I don’t like anyone – Belle and Sebastian
White Nights – Earth
Everyone will get high – Grouplove
Can’t wait to see season 2!
January 13 season 2 of Girls is scheduled to air and I am so excited! The teasers posted online are promising. I think Season 2 is going to eclipse Season 1, which is great. Save the date, because you don’t want to miss this hit show!
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