GIRLS (HBO, Sundays, 9:30pm, Eastern)
This wasn’t a program I was prepared to actually like. I was pleasantly surprised with this seemingly real show about four young women in their early to mid twenties. It is sort of on the opposite end of the social spectrum portrayed by Sex in the City.
This is the struggle of these four young women dealing with the day to day grind of living life in New York City. Paying rent, finding jobs, searching not just for love, but for solid, comfortable relationships, are all themes that transcend not only life in the big city but the life of many college graduates around the country in an economy that isn’t quite healthy.
Girls is served up on a platter of acerbic wit, piled high with realism and topped off with just the right amount of satire. Most of the work is due to the real life observations of one talented person – Lena Dunham. This young gal is a busy person. She created this gem and writes, directs, produces, as well as holds down the lead role. HBO and co-producer Judd Apatow have shown great faith in Denham and as far as I’m concerned, she has delivered.
The writing takes into the lives of the four friends played by Dunham, Allison Williams (Brian Williams’ daughter), Jemima Kirke, and Zosia Mamet. Dunham and Williams as best friends and long time roommates show great chemistry. The ultra talented Mamet, who played a worldly Bohemian in Mad Men, goes completely opposite here as the innocent, naïve virgin. Kirke’s character (Jessa) was my least favorite right from the beginning but she may actually be the most complex character as the series moves along.
Girls is funny and bawdy without relying on cheap laughs. The humor and wit is seldom laugh out loud funny but I chuckle throughout each episode. It is subtle, sexy and smart, and at times, sweet and innocent without even trying. It is a premium cable program and therefore is not appropriate for all audiences. I can tell you that I can’t wait for the next episode.
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