Wednesday, May 9, 2012

HBO's Girls

I meant to post this when the GIRLS backlash was in full swing but I did not want to add to the ugliness that was going on.  It’s one thing to voice an opinion but it’s another to totally bash one show and the young woman behind it when there are so many other shows doing the same or not doing enough of what GIRLS is being crucified for or expected to do.

Girls should be commended for:

1.      Young woman in charge of running her own show – This is a huge deal and hopefully other women will be given similar opportunities (I hope)

2.      All around good acting

3.      Good directing

4.      At least these daughters of privilege are good actresses and did not take the route of talentless/lazy daughters of wealth/privilege who are famous because their dad is/was a prominent this or that.

5.      I will tune in to the next three episodes and hope it gets better.  I don’t have time to watch TV and I don’t give a show more than one episode to impress me.  After ten minutes of Eastbound & Down I knew I’d never watch that show again. I tend to be more patient with shows created by women – as a viewer and a woman that’s my choice.

My gripes with the first episode:

1.      Unlikeable characters.

2.      Don’t  knock  Sex and the City because without its success, I highly doubt that HBO would have taken a chance on Girls.

3.      Throwing a tantrum because your parents won’t fund your lifestyle? In this economy? On college professor salaries? – Well, see # 1.

4.      I’m going to assume that there are people of color still living in Brooklyn BUT, I will not leave it up to this show to be the one to correct that. I feel that the backlash specifically directed at this show has been a bit on the misogynistic side.

I’m glad I stuck with it because  with the progression of each episode, I’ve enjoyed the show more and more. Maybe if the show would have used the 2nd episode as the pilot, the backlash would not be as horrible as it was. I feel that Hanna’s behavior and entitlement on that first episode turned a lot of people off. 

I know the race issue is what a lot of people were bitching about but don't blame the show or its creator. Give her credit for the fact that she made a feature film when she was in her early twenties - it was that film that got her the HBO show. Some of you will say that it was privilege that allowed her to make her film and you are probably right but I don't hear anybody condeming Jason Reitman's success.

Jemima Kirke (who plays my favorite character on the  show) was recently interviewed by NY Magazine and asked about the lack of diversity on the show;

How do you react to the criticism that the show doesn’t have people of color?
[Nods in agreement.] I know.

And that it’s this rarefied white hipster chronicle?
I mean, I kind of get it. I get it. I totally get it. It’s true, this isn’t every girl. This isn’t … the title is misleading because it’s not all girls. This is a very specific demographic. You know, we’re not talking about girls living in projects, which there are millions. We’re not talking about, you know, girls who live on the Upper East Side with, like, loaded parents who have no idea how to leave home. You know? There are all kinds, and we’re just a very specific … We’re not the average. So I get it. I don’t think there’s any sense in getting mad at it; it’s just a show. It’s just a show about this type of girl. And I think when it claims to be something else, it’s a mistake, but that’s what it is.”

I’m sure a lot of people cringed at some of her responses but at least she’s honest and doesn’t sound like she’s full of BS.

Read the rest of the article below and if you wrote the show off on the merits of the first episode, give it a shot – it’s pretty good.



  1. Hi,
    Love this post - I agree with your 1st, 3rd and 4th gripes, but I have to say 1 and 3 are what actually make the show enjoyable for me! I don't fully relate to any of the characters, and I don't find them likeable at all, especially Hannah (except for a few short moments). Honestly she is so incredibly self-centered, sometimes you just want to shake her out of it. The thing is though, I know girls like this. I also feel like, as a 22 year old, I have done some pretty dumb things that I'm pretty sure will make me cringe in about a decade.
    Please check out a post I wrote about Girls a while back!

    Oh, and I completely agree with you about the second episode, I found it wayyy funnier than the first, even though a lot of the scenes were a bit difficult to watch.

  2. Yes, yes, yes, we are in total agreement! :)

  3. Thanks for your comments ladies.