The great thing about Canadian TV is its pilfering of American shows I haven’t seen. The Sopranos, Curb Your Enthusiasm, even going back to Dennis Miller Live and Dream On, I did not get to see on their first run. Canadian TV lifts them up so I don’t have to get HBO. I really should, but I like TV and HBO says they are not TV, so here we are.
The latest offering is the much ballyhooed Girls. I loved the praise/backlash when it first came out. Online equivalents of fist fights in the streets. It was groundbreaking. It was racist. The characters were so relatable. The characters were so annoying. I liked the hype about the show so much, I felt no need to watch it. Until the Canadian Cosmo Channel started showing this epic show that defines our generation or the latest self-indulgent hipster tripe, depending on who you talk to.
The show is basically about lost twenty somethings in New York having sex and cracking wise. I sort of know about the cracking – but the other stuff, I am ignorant of. It appears that the show much like the gender that bears its name, Girls is something I don’t get. It seems these women’s basis for existence is to curse their birth canals. They are burdened by them, like a couch in the living room that needs to be moved but a doorway, stairs and apathy prevents from doing so. The characters are unlikable, which is fine. I hate Pete Campbell from Mad Men – and boo and hiss him when he comes on-screen. But I still care and I cheer his failures. As for the Girls, I just don’t care.
The only male comparison I could come up with was Entourage, another show I watched a year after its much feted debut. Entourage was a slicker version of dudes, being dudes in a gaggle of hollow sex, fame, money, and swearing. And I was into Season 1. A very good show to get drunk to as you don’t have to be 100% into the program to keep abreast of what’s going on. Back then I ran into a lady who had also seen Entourage and she didn’t get it. To her it was boring. It was just guys being pricks and buying expensive stuff. And she was pretty much right. Halfway through Season 2 I lost track. I popped in from time to time and not much had changed.
Lena Dunham, Girls’ writer/director/and franchise player has been nominated by the elite and intelligentsia as the next lady superstar in the vein of Brett Butler, Tina Fey and Kristen Wigg before her. I’m going to with Amy Schumer for funny it girl of our time. She probably gets bonus points from me because she banged the former World Heavyweight Wrestling Champion. A conquest usually reserved for playboy models or divas. She’s the new Sarah Silverman or more accurately the new Andrew Dice Clay. The foul-mouthed stand up with well constructed legitimately hilarious dirty jokes . Her show, Inside Amy Schumer, is part sketches and stand up and woman on the street fare. (Oh, how I tried to like The Sarah Silverman Program. After 6 episodes it was clear that the plot of the episode got in the way of the jokes. It ended up being “cute” rather than funny, so I washed my hands of it, as did America.)
Amy goes into depths about her birth canal as well. But she deals with it as a scamp. Her vagina is a rascal, getting into hijinks, and getting itself out of shenanigans. But does so in a less entitled, more entertaining way than Hanna, Marnie, Jessa, and Shoshanna. I will still watch Girls. To get angry at it. To be in the know at dinner parties I don’t attend. Girls (and actual girls) will remain to me a pleasant mystery. Something I will come close to being satisfied by, but ultimately leave me frustrated. Yet I will often return as I find chicks and the teevee at their best to be charming and comforting. And at their worst to be Kim Kardashian.