Filed under: COOL SHT, Feature | Tags: Adam Driver, Architecture, Augmented Reality, Bravo, Carrie, Culver City, Facebook, Girls, Google, Hannah, HBO, hipsters, Instagram, Jimmy Choos, Lena Dunham, Los Angeles, Marnie, Monolo Blahnik, NYC, Project Glass, Reality Series, Samantha, Samitaur Tower, Sex and the City, Silicon Valley, Star Trek, SXSW, Williamsburg
THIS WEEK: OVER VAGINA’D HBO & INSTAGRAM GOES INSTABOOK
Lena Dunham in HBO’s Girls
© Jojo Whilden/HBO. All rights reserved.
The new series, Girls, comes to HBO this Sunday and I couldn’t be more ecstatic. I watched the first two episodes in Austin at SXSW spawning my lady crush on its writer/creator, Lena Dunham. The show follows a group of NYC Williamsburg hipsters through their daily machinations focusing on the somewhat unglamorous side of their romantic transgressions. I spent my 20’s living in NYC, the latter half in which I was working at HBO, and hence, was especially excited to see this story unfold.
I’ve been watching the critical reviews come across the internet wires and they all boil down to one thing: sex. The sex in Sex & the City was glamorous Jimmy Choo-laced fantasy, thick with witty Samantha-isms and adorable recaps from Carrie. The sex in Girls is uncomfortable to watch and ‘real’ in a way I’ve never seen on screen before. Slate Magazine describes this realness as the “chronicling of bad sex” whereas New York Magazine raves that the sex “isn’t a reward, it’s a revelation.” So which is it? Lena Dunham writes, stars, and partially directs this series. She plays Hannah, a post-collegiate brutally torn from the parental financial purse strings to go out on her own for the first time. The first sex on screen carries out between Hannah and her sex buddy Adam, and while not ruining anything, I’ll just say, that I would never tell a friend about sex that bad.
That said, it wasn’t only the sex that I found so intriguing. It was the comfort level by which these girls interact with each other and by which Dunham herself is comfortable exposing the world to. There is one scene in particular that I have obsessed over, obsessed because I think it indicates some lack of cool on my part and therefore has been a conversation piece for weeks. Dunham’s character, Hannah, takes a bath with her towel-clad roommate Marnie chatting about their lives, a pastime which in most respects would be done over breakfast or perhaps, any other place with clothes on. I’ve obsessed because I’ve wanted to know if this happens in real life. Do women get together naked and talk about what’s going on in each other’s lives? I don’t even like to look people in the eye in the women’s locker room, let alone sit naked in a bathtub and talk about my sex life. Does this make me uncool?
Lena Dunham, as Hannah, with actor Adam Driver.
(Photo: Jojo Whilden/HBO)
Back to the sex. The attempt to categorize this show at the ‘everygirl’ story would be dangerous. In the same way that Sex & the City did not translate to the lives of most American women at the time it debuted, I don’t think Girls has the intention of direct translation. How many women buy Jimmy Choos on a Monday and Monolo Blahniks on a Tuesday? In the same respect, how many women catch up on their day with their best friend sitting naked in a bathtub and then have discussions about how maybe they really do want AIDS at the doctor’s office? Here’s where I had to reel myself in. Being that you, the viewer, are presented with a woman (Dunham) who looks more real than the skinny plastic surgery-disfigured faces of so many Hollywood actresses, the viewer immediately thinks that what happens on screen will look more similar to their own world. In my case, even though I spent some time living in Williamsburg, the attempt at direct correlation was lost in translation. Frankly, that’s not the point. I think Dunham’s intention is to entertain with her own story and hope that each viewer draws inspiration in whichever way makes sense. Whether that’s making one person feel less embarrassed about their own bad sex moment or more comfortable in simply sharing something with a friend, so be it. So, I’ll attempt to stop thinking about how uncool I am for my lack of bathtub friend time…but seriously, does this make me uncool?! Maybe not, but quotes like this one, make Lena Dunham fresh to death.
In other news, Facebook acquires Instagram for $1 Billion (scaring the sh-t out of this Instagram user right here and this one over there), Google busts out some augmented reality glasses which sadly bring on the Star Trek jokes, and Bravo announces plans to bring a Silicon Valley reality series to screen.
Some more Cool Sh-t:
Photo Credit: Designboom
Filed under: Feature | Tags: Box Office, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Kim Cattrall, Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Michael Patrick King, Samantha, Sex and the City, Strangers
SEX AND THE CITY: SAMANTHA’S LOST HER GROOVE
Like the millions of other 20-something females out there, I saw Sex and the City over the weekend. Turns out, the film exceeded expectations beating out Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull for the top spot at the box office with $55.7 million. Here are some interesting stats as quoted by the LA Times: 85% of the audience was female and 80% of the audience was 25 years or older. My favorite quote about the craziness surrounding the film is pulled from a reviewer from the Herald Tribune who called it ‘feminine ground zero.’
In essence, the movie did very well and I would add that I definitely enjoyed it. That said, I’m just wondering here. . .
. . .what the hell happened to Samantha?
I may remember her appearance being a bit younger i.e. (above) but at least I remember her as a complex, intriguing character.
And frankly, after watching re-runs of Sex and the City on TBS in syndication in which most of Samantha’s parts are cut out to remain squeaky clean, I miss her.
Do not read on if you don’t want to incur some soft spoilers.
In the movie, Samantha’s character is brutalized into a bland, silly and frankly caricature-like vision of her former self. Carrie, Miranda, and Charlotte approach Samantha in a mini-intervention to tell her that they are concerned over her weight gain. I propose an additional intervention, this time to Michael Patrick King (writer of the film), to ask him to re-think Samantha if in fact the sequel becomes a reality.
Samantha’s character is crucial to the plotline in a way not as obvious to the Carrie-obsessed. Within a cast of marriage-obsessed characters, Samantha keeps the story well-balanced, reminding viewers that not every woman dreams of one day walking down the aisle, baby in tow. Even for those women who do dream those things, it may not be the one priority. Old Samantha was sex-obsessed and powerful in her career. In this movie, she’s become de-sexualized. Even more shocking, her career revolves around a man (a plot which resolves itself by the end of the film).
So, here’s the deal:
Times Samantha Has Sex in Sex and the City:
Years Samantha Has Remained Faithful to Smith
Pounds Samantha Gains While Trying to Remain Faithful to Smith
Times Samantha’s New Dog Attempts to Hump Something
Recognize Our Girl?
To help Samantha get her groove back, I propose a showing of support:
Designed by: Minki Kim
Just so I’m not accused of being overly critical, I thoroughly enjoyed the film, particularly the moments between Carrie and Miranda. One-sided Samantha isn’t Samantha at all.
For an interesting review of Sex and the City that I don’t agree with but find hysterical none the less check out:
- “Sex” Sells Way To Top Of Box Office [via Zemanta]
- Weekend Box Office: ‘Sex and the City’ Takes the Weekend; ‘Strangers’ Debuts Well [via Zemanta]
- ‘Sex’ Sells: Women Give Carrie & Co. $55.7M Debut [via Zemanta]