When Gossip Girl’s Blair Waldorf takes an internship at W in Season 4, she has her boss’s job by the next episode. But when Hannah Horvath asks for a salary at her unpaid publishing internship in the pilot episode of Girls (premiering this Sunday at 10:30 on HBO) she gets fired. As any 20-something can attest, the latter scenario feels painfully real. Internships are the new entry-level job, and they don’t always guarantee advancement or pay (unless you do have a last name like “Waldorf”). Which of course got us thinking. If Hannah is “at least a voice of a generation” — someone who feels as lost as she does destined to be heard — which of her TV peers also qualify as real voices of today’s 20-something crowd? And who doesn’t? To investigate we did a survey of their career paths, ranking from “as real as your local government ” to “her work-shirt doesn’t have a midriff.” Please feel free to disagree, and add any we missed!
#1. Parks and Recreation: Tom Haverford, Department Administrator/entrepreneur
Like many 20-somethings, Tom Haverford believes he is destined for greatness despite being stuck in an unglamorous mid-level job. And while he certainly doesn’t lack ideas, one only needs to take a look at his list of failed ventures (including SnakeJuice, Tommy Fresh, Know Ya’ Boo, and Entertainment 720) to see that he’s more of a dreamer than a businessman. But it wasn’t until the demise of his media conglomerate that Tom came to terms with this. So this season, in the wake of his public humiliation, Tom’s treatin’ himself and “laying low” as Leslie’s Image Consultant/Swagger Coach.
A voice of a generation?: Yes, absolutely. DJ Roomba forever.