Saturday 21 October 2017

'Girls finale was underwhelming and infuriating' - Colette Fitzpatrick

OPINION

Colette Fitzpatrick
Colette Fitzpatrick

Colette Fitzpatrick

One of the most talked-about, praised, watched, lambasted, critically-acclaimed and criticised television shows of recent times is over, and it feels like we're going through the five stages of grief.

The last episode of Season 6 of Girls aired last Sunday and I was disappointed that the final episode of a show I loved was so weak.

I get that it's probably the trickiest episode to write, the last one, especially when a show has been so ground-breaking.

However, I don't think I'm alone in saying it was underwhelming and infuriating.

Red carpet glam: The cast at the premiere of the final season
Red carpet glam: The cast at the premiere of the final season

Don't read any further if you haven't seen it, because there are lots of spoilers coming.

Perfect

Desk-bound misery: Lena Dunham as Hannah in ‘Girls’
Desk-bound misery: Lena Dunham as Hannah in ‘Girls’

First, the good bits about the last season. It was perfect that things weren't all neatly wrapped up, that Hannah didn't go back to Adam in the end.

They both realised - in one of the show's best scenes - that actually they weren't going to be together and that it wasn't going to work out. They well up.

It's a really quiet scene. No drama. Just heartbreaking acceptance.

Other shows would have gone for the safe, romantic predictability of the fairytale ending - going back to each other because they were "meant to be".

This season also saw the four pals drift away from each other, which often happens when babies and men and life get in the way. In fact, some of them barely see each other at all in the final season.

The last episode was utterly frustrating. Hannah struggles to accept the responsibilities of motherhood, concluding that her baby "hates" her because she's having a tough time getting him to breastfeed.

Come on. A two-bit scriptwriter could have come up with the whole "motherhood is much harder than we all thought" storyline.

Hannah comes to "understand" the sacrifice of motherhood and then, in the final moments of the episode, her baby finally latches on. Please.

Maybe, like life, it was supposed to infuriate you.

For all its flaws, Girls remains one of the best shows ever written for female characters. Unlike Sex And The City, it features overweight women who are broke and think they're better than what life has thrown at them.

It's more realistic. There are lots of realistic sex scenes.

"There's people who don't want to see bodies like mine," Dunham has said.

There are lots of losers and lots of neurotics, lots of narcissism and lots of real. It was funny and unpredictable, touching on subjects comedies rarely do, such as abortion, STDs and sexual harassment.

The show's heroine was a bit of a mess. She's become the poster girl for millennials everywhere. Lots of women recognise the learning curve that Hannah and her pals go on.

Lena Dunham - writer, actor, businesswoman and poster girl for a generation of feminists, - was the powerhouse behind Girls and was invariably caught up in controversies herself.

When she appeared on the cover of Vogue, the American gossip website Jezebel offered a reward of €10,000 for the untouched-up pictures.

It's like we couldn't live without having to have a go at this woman, that who she is and what she represents still makes people feel uncomfortable.

Girls, like Lena Dunham, is actually more of a phenomenon.

Read more: 'Girls': voice of a generation

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