Maureen Dowd Stumbles Upon Female “Raunch” Comedy, Proclaims It a Trend

It is one of the small pleasures of life to see a New York Times op-ed columnist come down from her tower, take notice of a phenomenon in the culture sphere, and proclaim it an actual trend. It is even better when that trend has been percolating for over a decade, as is the case with the subject of Maureen Dowd’s most recent column, “Dirty Words From Pretty Mouths.” … Read More

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‘Girls’ Season 4 Episode 7 Recap: “Ask Me My Name”

Confession: I found this episode very difficult to watch. In Girls-land, a Hannah Horvath meet cute is the equivalent of the Jaws theme, a surefire sign that things are about to get (emotionally) gory and fast. So from the moment Fran the “17th century notions of utopia” teacher, played with familiar sweetness by Obvious Child leading man Jake Lacy, asks Hannah out in the faculty lounge of their fancy schmancy Brooklyn private school, I was waiting for the other shoe to drop. And drop it sure as hell did. … Read More

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‘Girls’ Season 4 Episode 6 Recap: “Close Up”

It’s rare that seasons of Girls divide so neatly in half, but so much has come to an end or started anew in its tiny Brooklyn universe of late that “Close Up” feels more like a reset button than a follow-up. As the dust settles in the aftermath of “Sit-In,” Hannah and Adam are definitively no more, Mimi-Rose and Adam are now a couple for the show to explore independent of their effect on Hannah, and Desi and Marnie are now well past the honeymoon phase of cheating and homewrecking, respectively. That’s a lot of new ground to cover, and “Close Up” is a great start, albeit one that’s designed to be less memorable than last week’s showpiece. … Read More

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Allison Williams Defends Her Father with Unrelated Anecdote About a School Dance

Allison Williams, star of Girls and unfortunate heiress to the Brian Williams helicopter incident stigma, gave a talk with Seth Meyers… Read More

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‘Girls’ Season 4 Episode 5 Recap: “Sit-In”

It takes Hannah Horvath’s worst nightmare to make her biggest wish come true. Despite what Adam tells her about his new relationship with Mimi-Rose Howard—she of the woman’s name and a man’s name, with a flower stuck in the middle—”Sit-In” is all about her. In many ways, the cliffhanger the episode picks up on is the narcissist’s dream: something terrible happens that is objectively not Hannah’s fault, or at least not directly, bringing her friends and frenemies to her emotional sickbed one at a time. Unfortunately, the “something terrible” has to come first. … Read More

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‘Girls’ Season 4, Episode 4 Recap: “Cubbies”

It’s been seventy-five years since Thomas Wolfe wrote the book on it, but You Can’t Go Home Again is still a productive theme with a protagonist as un-self aware as Hannah Horvath. Poor Hannah can’t undo the damage she did at the rager last week with an “apology” letter so passive-aggressive even she doesn’t realize how unapologetic it is. So she tries to turn back time even further by taking her father’s advice and returning to New York—only to find her couch gone and her boyfriend attached to blonde, pencil-thin Gillian Jacobs, a situation that’s likely the stuff of Hannah’s insecure nightmares. … Read More

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‘Broad City’ Routinely Demolishes “Hot Take” Culture With Absurdity

Unpaid internships. Gentrification. “Butt stuff.” Rape culture. Embedded within each half-hour episode of Broad City Season 2, there has been a nugget or two of relevance. Fortunately for us, though, it’s remixed to the point of near or total absurdity. … Read More

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Staff Picks: Flavorwire’s Favorite Cultural Things This Week

Need a great book to read, album to listen to, or TV show to get hooked on? The Flavorwire team is here to help: in this weekly feature, our editorial staffers recommend the cultural object or experience they’ve enjoyed most in the past seven days. Click through for our picks, and tell us what you’ve been loving in the comments. … Read More

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The Case for Writing Workshops

Girls‘ recent exploration of the writing workshop has provided a rare opportunity to publicly explore the good and bad sides of the building block of creative writing instruction, known as just “workshop” to veterans. For those who don’t know, during workshop, one writer sits silently, offering up a previously-submitted piece of writing to discussion, analysis, and critique. During the allotted time, the teacher classmates will refer to “the writer” and “the writer’s choice” as if the person in the “hot seat” were absent (this is the mandatory silence that Girls‘ Hannah cannot maintain in class). Sometimes the writer gets a five-minute response window at the end, sometimes not. Often the critique begins with a “what works in this piece?” discussion before moving in to constructive criticism. The received wisdom of workshop is that you learn as much from dissecting the “craft” choices of your peers as you do from their dissection of your own work. In other words, everyone is learning from each others’ mistakes. … Read More

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‘Girls’ Season 4 Episode 3 Recap: “Female Author”

It’s about damn time Girls gave us a reason to root for Marnie. “Female Author” is enough to make us remember the show’s early days, when Marnie didn’t just have her life together—she had her life orders of magnitude more together than any of her friends. After months upon months of mortifying office parties and kitchen sink rim jobs, the put-together gallerist we once knew was all but forgotten. And then we got this episode, which sees Marnie make real, concrete, hopefully possibly lasting progress, personally and professionally. Who knew she had it in her—or more importantly, that the writers’ room would let her have it? … Read More

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