The first time I tried to watch “Girls,” I made it through all of five minutes. The second time I tried to watch it, I made it through ten. It’s a show full of whiny train-wrecks. Why would I keep watching this? I kept asking myself “Was I really that neurotic in my twenties?” and “Why is Lena Dunham getting so many accolades for this?”
And then I thought of Claire Danes in “My So Called Life” and how much I hated that show, too. That show won a Golden Globe. Do you have to be whiny to win awards? Seems so. Woody Allen made an entire career out it it. Then again, I’m not in love with his movies, either (I know-TRAVESTY! How can I call myself a New Yorker???)
No, I definitely wasn’t that whiny in my twenties. I was too busy to be whiny or as self indulgent as the characters portrayed in “Girls.” Most of my friends were too busy to be whiny. Our parents were of the “If you want something, get a job and pay for it yourself” mentality. I’d been working and paying bills since I was fifteen. I grew up in the 90’s, Generation X. We had a few whiners, but not nearly to the extent happening in this show…or supposedly in this generation. We worked hard, some of us slacked hard, but we had fun and we paid our own bills, little by little by taking any job we could get. No one was too good to wait tables or bartend while they pursued their dreams. For God’s sake, we had the movie “Singles”. Not as whiny, but whiny enough.
(my artist friends and I, circa 1997, before our three woman photography show. All Rights Reserved)
Fast forward to the twenty-somethings of today. I work in broadcast production and visual effects with many talented, driven twentysomethings or “hipsters,” as some call themselves. This show definitely does all of them a great disservice. Yes, they live in Williamsburg, Bushwick and Greenpoint. They work as hard as I did and they play as hard as I did…if not harder. Some are self indulgent and whiny for a second but they don’t last or they learn to get over themselves quickly. I’d prefer to see an HBO series about THEIR lives and how they’re coping with working seventy to ninety hour weeks and managing their sanity-which they seem to do. Some of them work free internships by day and bartend or work other jobs at night. To me, that story is more realistic…and more impressive than what I’ve seen on “Girls.”
Just stop the whining… and while you’re at it, the gratuitous self deprecating sex. But that’s another post… after I force myself to make it through a few more episodes.