HBO’s ‘Girls’ — Why We Have A Love/Hate Relationship With The Show

If you haven’t heard about HBO’s new show, “Girls,” directed by and starring Lena Dunham, you’ve probably been living under a rock for the past few weeks. It’s been years since we’ve seen so much virtual ink spilled overa television show, particularly one targeting women.

Wading among the “I LOVE this show” and “I have SO MANY problems with this show” reviews, we find ourselves somewhere in the middle. At times, it’s scary how much the show manages to reflect our lives (have they bugged our apartments?), but then minutes later has us saying, “Really?! No one’s that clueless!”

Ultimately what we’ve realized is that there’s such a reaction to this show because there’s nothing like it on TV, no other show that depicts relatable 20-something women. There are plenty of shows that offer dramatic fantasy and escapism — the networks have you covered when it comes to vampires and rich kids — but not so many that try to show regular women, with all of their problems and flaws, in their day-to-day lives.

But that is part of the difficulty with “Girls.” The show aims for realism, which can be a little uncomfortable for the viewer who either ends up reliving difficult memories — like the time they said the wrong thing in an interview or the myriad bad decisions they’ve made in relationships — or is pained watching characters make one poor choice after another. Maybe the reason there are so few shows that focus on 20-somethings is because growing up and figuring oneself out is such a messy process, full of frustration and mistakes that we’d rather forget than relive now that we’ve learned our lessons.

On the other hand, those same everyday banalities are what make “Girls” endearing — the show also lets us relive dancing around the room with friends blasting our favorite song and all those…

 
 
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Quote of the Day: “When I’m deciding where to eat for an occasion, I like to pick somewhere different that sounds interesting.” –Male, 31, PA

Now that YouTube celebrities’ influence is rivaling many Hollywood stars’ sway, more brands are partnering up with online video stars to reach a new, larger audience. These collaborations leave traditional advertisements behind, instead asking creators to put their own spin on the brand while still entertaining viewers. Lionsgate gave several popular creators free reign to create original fan videos for the Hunger Games: Mockingjay release, while Proactiv enlisted beauty blogger Eva Gutowski to incorporate the product into a “goofy relatable DIY video.” (Adweek)

The heavy emphasis on STEM education in recent years may have caused schools to neglect social studies’ subjects. According to federal test scores released this week, eighth-graders’ 2014 U.S. history, geography, and civics scores improved only 1% or saw no change compared to the 2010 test results. The National Council for the Social Studies points out, “STEM is not going to do any good if we don’t have the glue of social studies to make responsible citizens.” (Wall Street Journal)

Do you like green eggs and ham? Netflix is hoping you do, and is turning the beloved Dr. Seuss classic to a 13-episode animated series. The brand appropriately announced the show, produced by Ellen DeGeneres, via rhyme, including the lines: “You can stream it on a phone. You can stream it on your own.” The “richly animated production” could appeal to the current generation of parents, who reportedly like and watch the same movies and TV as their kids. (Adweek)

More and more industries are experimenting with on demand, and Uber is working to make instant gratification even more ubiquitous. The service is planning to use drivers and UberRush couriers to provide same-day delivery for hundreds of merchants and is reportedly in talks with Neiman Marcus, Louis Vuitton, Tiffany’s, and more. Currently there is a separate app for deliveries, but the two sides of the business could soon combine. (Fast Company)

It’s never been easy to have children, but many Millennial parents today are “expected to do more with less.” According to recent data the post recession period “has been especially hard on young parents” and as many as 23% have been in poverty since 2009. Childcare and education have also become more expensive than when Boomers were raising families. However, there is good news. These parents are better educated than previous generations: 56% have had at least some time in college, compared to 43% in 1995. (Washington PostWall Street Journal

Curious about Millennials’ spending habits? Find out exactly how much they're spending and what they’re buying with our tracked data trends that have all the stats, thanks to our monthly survey of 1000 13-32-year-old Millennials nationwide. Our Silver and Gold subscribers get access to regularly updated charts following average daily spend and items purchased, with spending broken out by age and gender. (Ypulse)

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