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Girls is a comedy on HBO that is written, directed and produced by Lena Dunham. It premiered in the spring of 2012 to immediate acclaim. Critics and fans praised Girls for its unflinching look at the real lives of young adults in New York City. The titular girls are not glamorous or aspirational. They are not even likable all the time, and they are not supposed to be.

In the pilot episode, Dunham's Hannah learns that her parents will no longer be financially supporting her. She becomes just another over-educated young adult who cannot find a job. She struggles with the realistic need to land a white collar job despite her lofty dreams of becoming a writer. The show casts Hannah as a ridiculous character. She dreams of writing her memoirs even though it is clear that her life is not special enough to warrant a memoir.

Hannah's best friend Marnie, played by the beautiful Allison Williams, has a respectable adult lifestyle, but her high-strung nature alienates her from her friends and boyfriend. Jemima Kirke's Jessa is a worldly Brit who shakes up her friends' lives when she returns from traveling overseas. She projects a free-spirited attitude that is really covering up pain and fear. She does not crack often, but when she does, there are major repercussions. Jessa's cousin Shoshanna is initially introduced as little more than fast-talking comic relief, but Zosia Mamet gradually chips away at her character's neuroses to reveal a charming oddness. Shoshanna is a mirror for her older friends, shattering their illusions of maturity.

Girls was helmed under the tutelage of Judd Apatow, so audiences can expect improvisational humor laced with brutal drama. Girls does not hesitate to depict the characters in unattractive moments. They fight about inconsequential things and have cyclical, endless conversations about their boy troubles. When these girls are annoying, audiences cringe because they can relate.

Girls does not wrap up complex circumstances in neat packages. Confusing situations play out without clear resolutions. One notably entertaining subplot involves the end of Marnie's relationship. She did not enjoy dating Charlie when he was in love with her, but she is upset when he quickly moves on after the breakup. Marnie's feelings are contradictory and completely common. The situation is played for laughs without insulting real girls who have acted the same way. Girls depicts many realistic scenarios this way, with humor and heart.

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Sunday 10:30 PM et/pt on HBO
3 Seasons, 33 Episodes - Currently Airing
Comedy
7.4/10
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Girls Full Episode Guide

  • Hannah receives life-changing news on the day of Adam's opening night. Marnie's timing is poor when she divulges a secret to Shoshanna, who is dealing with her own unexpected news. Jessa‚Äôs boss asks for an unusual favor.

  • Elijah offers his assistance to Hannah; Marnie performs at an open mike with support from her friends; Jesse goes job hunting.

  • Hannah works to rekindle the flame with Adam. Shoshanna gets too involved with Jessa and Jasper.

  • Hannah's mom makes an odd request of her while visiting her grandmother in the hospital. Later, Hannah spends time with her over-achieving med student cousin.

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