Cultivated Revelations

A conscious lifestyle blog

A Case for HBO’s ‘Girls’

When the HBO show, ‘Girls’ burst onto the scene in 2012, it was a big topic of discussion in the pop culture world. Called the real-life “Sex & the City” by some, and “unrealistic and over-dramatic” by others, it’s had quite a successful run. I, myself, have loved it from day one, and I think it’s super true to life in its premise more than in its details. For example, I have never cried to my best friend while taking a bath with her like Jessa did with Hannah in season 2, BUT I can absolutely identify with the close and intimate relationship that that scene was representing. After almost 5 seasons of this show, I think it’s clear that ‘Girls’ and ‘Sex & the City’ are more different than they are alike, but I think there are some interesting parallels that have been – and will continue to be – discussed as time goes on.

Where I think the ‘Sex & the City’ reference holds true is mostly in the simple fact that there are four main female characters who are best friends, living in New York City. As a female viewer, you definitely have the tendency to try to identify with one of the characters over the others. But with ‘Girls’ vs. ‘Sex & the City,’ rather than desperately trying to prove that “I’m the Charlotte of my friend group!” Or “I’m the Carrie!” you sort of don’t really want to be any one of the girls from ‘Girls.’ Their flaws are so prominently on display in this show, that you are scared to identify with any of them, but then you can’t deny when you do. This is at the heart of why I love the show. This is why it’s real – its characters are wildly imperfect, and that’s real, whether we want to believe it or not. Yes, the characters in ‘Sex & the City’ were flawed (and don’t get me wrong – I love that show, too – just for different reasons), but they were flawed in cute and funny ways that were typically neatly and easily reconciled. With ‘Girls,’ the flaws are big and connected to underlying issues, and they take time to fix, if they ever get fixed at all.

Cultivated Revelations - Girls vs SATC{SATC: We’re okay!}

Cultivated Revelations - GIRLS vs SATC
{GIRLS: We’re not sure we’re okay.}

I also love the portrayal of life, especially in New York City, as a young twenty-something in ‘Girls.’ I lived in Brooklyn for a bit more than 2 years earlier in my 20’s; New York is glamorous sometimes, but it’s mostly stressful and dirty and going at rapid-speed. Everything is available all the time. It’s about having access to all things and all people and trying to choose which things to grab, which people to hold close to you and which to let go. It’s about being mistreated, and mistreating others and learning how to work through both those things without hating yourself at the end of it. This is what being in your 20’s is about anywhere in the modern world, but in New York City, I think it’s amplified and concentrated. In places like New York, everything is acceptable, so you’re forced to really choose what path you want to take, and what’s acceptable for you; what happiness is for you. It’s liberating. And that’s how I feel when I watch this show, because these aspects of life are portrayed so well in it. I feel liberated. I feel like I’m okay because Hannah, Marnie, Jessa and Shoshanna are okay, despite their glaring imperfections. It’s an awesome and important series, and I’ll really miss it once season 6 is finished and the show is over for good.

What are your thoughts on ‘Girls’ and how it’s like or unlike ‘Sex & the City?’ Have you watched either show? Tell me in the comments!


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1 Comment

  1. Love it, love it, love it and agree!

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