Due to the power of positive thinking (and also our job descriptions) we've already seen HBO's new half-hour comedy-drama Girls! Since it airs this weekend after Game of Thrones and Eastbound & Down, here's the lowdown on just how long you should be tuning into HBO on Sunday.
When can I see this?
Girls premieres Sunday, April 15 at 10:30pm, right after Eastbound & Down.
Who’s in it?
She may not be a household name yet, but NY-based writer/director/actress Lena Dunham has been quietly making a name for herself in the independent film world, specifically with her breakout indie hit Tiny Furniture. The cast is made up of mostly unknowns, some of whom also appeared in that film, but eagle-eye viewers (and fans of old-school Whit Stillman films) might recognize Chris Eigemen as a snarky boss.
Who's behind it?
The primary behind-the-scenes figure is super-producer Judd Apatow, whose array of producerly credits includes recent female-centered hit Bridesmaids. But it's just a surface comparison... Girls is actually much closer to another credit of his, Freaks and Geeks.
So what's the story?
Hannah (Dunham), a 24-year-old writer with a milquetoast deadpan is informed by her parents that they're cutting her off immediately. As she prepares to deal with surviving in New York City on her own, she manages to get herself fired from her unpaid internship while also navigating an unhealthy relationship with an actor dude. Meanwhile she finds herself split between taking advice from her uptight Type-A girlfriend and a British free-spirit who's just returned to town.
Who's the target audience?
We're definitely in coming-of-age territory, so certainly the 18-30 range and probably more women will respond to this show than men. But few things are as universal as well-observed human truths, so really anyone should be able to find something to like about it.
Let's hear about the good parts.
If you've seen the trailers, you'll notice Girls is billed as a comedy, but its supposed punchlines are as gentle and understated as to be non-jokes. That's because Girls is much more about creating realistic characters and the awkward situations they constantly invite. Dunham's Hannah is a character who makes bad choices but is sympathetic enough that we hope she'll grow from them. But ultimately the main reason to watch Girls is that the dialogue is simply funny. Sure, its sense of humor is not the laugh-out-loud, puking-in-the-sink hilarity of Bridesmaids, but more old-school Woody Allen, where two characters can just walk the streets of Manhattan discussing ridiculous things.
But it can't be all good, right?
Detractors have already cited Girls' hipster pedigree (Dunham and some of the cast are basically hipster royalty in NYC), so if you're allergic to characters who bask in ironic clothing, music, or jokes, this show may not be for you. And Girls' fearlessness about sexuality (there's a truly awkward and slightly graphic sex scene about halfway through the pilot) might be a bit too much for some viewers.
Alrighty. Let's hear the final verdict, should I watch or not?
Absolutely. There's nothing else like Girls on TV. It's honest, breezy, and compelling, particularly in showing how naive its characters can be. Far from the hipster-bait it appears to be in the trailers, Girls by no means glorifies youth like most other shows about young people. In fact, it should make anyone older than 24 feel relieved that those years are over.
What should accompany my viewing experience?
An Old Fashioned? A Dark 'N Stormy? Something sweet, slightly retro, and involving hard liquor.
Is there a clip I can take a look at so I can decide for myself?
Check out this trailer!
Are you going to take our advice and watch Girls?