02 August 2013

Friday is the (Inspirational) Movie Night: Girls (2012-)


This goes in the same way as Sex and the City (1998-2004). While you would like to hate it and tell everybody how shallow and untrue it is, you find yourself glued to the monitor. And being thankful that each episode is just about 20 min.

Again, this is mostly a story of how not to. And how we all do stupid things. And we all are somewhat anxious at times. While Girls (2012-) caused various storms in the US media bla-bla (well, see here where the series is compared with a 1925 hipster essay on emancipation and cliche formation, here, and here; and that's just one magazine that prides itself on going deep into pop phenomena), take it for what it is.
A story on being structurally privileged - go, google the whole thing about Girls lack of racial diversity, like this - and still very insecure. On being confused and very weird. Very weird.

Again and again, and it's impossible to repeat it too much, this is not role-model show. There are no such, btw. Watch it as an anthropological study on some girls in some place. I doesn't have to be representative. It doesn't have to be healthy. But it may take some stigma off from being weird, having mental health issues, dealing with your own body, being entangled in relationships that you know are no good, etc. The usual stuff.

The obvious bonus is that the creator of the series is a girl (Lena Dunham was born in 1986), so we can just relax and listen to her stuff. As an anthropology piece, we said.
Just to realize that the problem is not only the perfection, the girls that Courtney Martin describes as
"We are the girls with anxiety disorders, filled appointment books, five-year plans. We take ourselves very, very seriously. We are the peacemakers, the do-gooders, the givers, the savers. We are on time, overly prepared, well read, and witty, intellectually curious, always moving… We pride ourselves on getting as little sleep as possible and thrive on self-deprivation. We drink coffee, a lot of it. We are on birth control, Prozac, and multivitamins… We are relentless, judgmental with ourselves, and forgiving to others. We never want to be as passive-aggressive as our mothers, never want to marry men as uninspired as our fathers… We are the daughters of the feminists who said, “You can be anything,” and we heard, “You have to be everything." (from this book)
We also have the other end of the messiness and anxiety spectrum. Plus all the shades in between.

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