GIRLS: An Intergenerational Dialog (Episode 1, “Pilot”)

Fuck buddies, lousy internships—or lousy interns—and opium tea.

Gen Y: (I’m actually going to Chinatown tomorrow, I can check.)

Gen X: I think it would be more on West 28th street, Chelsea. You might be thinking of Chinatown in, like, 1895?

Gen Y: Haha. Right. Where there are opium basements and sometimes Sherlock Holmes is there.

Gen X: I did like that shout-out to Twix. But back to sharing the bathtub…

Gen Y: Girls might do that. Depending on how long they’ve known each other? I guess? At Oberlin (where Lena went), I remember this one chick always inviting me over for baths. And not in a gay way.

Gen X: The pilot has two bathroom scenes in one half hour—both with two girls and then a guy coming in.

Gen Y: Same guy. Charlie, you need to learn how to knock! I hate scenes where girls pee in front of each other and hand toilet paper over. They did that in Empire Records too.

Gen X: I suppose the bathroom scenes are the modern equivalent of “powdering our noses” in the little girls room.

Gen Y: Sure.

Gen X: But also sort of infantilizing.

Gen Y: I do love how nonsexual it is though.

Gen X: Maybe it’s Dunham’s way of showing “realness.” Because toilets are real and don’t tend to show up on TV that often. “It’s HBO, let’s show them peeing.”

Gen Y: It takes away the fantasy of what happens when girls bathe together? Or pee together? It’s weird that Marnie would watch Jessa pee when she seems so uptight. It just seems like a strange time to lecture.

Gen X: Agreed. Marnie would not hang out in there. And not to get too graphic, but Jessa seems to be sitting down for a long time. Until she mentions the pregnancy I had to wonder what exactly, you know, she was doing…

Gen Y: Lol. We don’t know Marnie and Jessa’s relationship.

Gen X: I can accept that girls pee together, fine. But do they also do the other thing? Or would they say, hey, like, I’m going to do more than pee right now, so let’s continue this chat later?

Gen Y: Aaron, I hate to dispel your male fantasy, but girls do not shit in front of each other, no matter how much opium Twix they are on.

Gen X: Good to know!

NAMECHECKS

Gen Y:  I have to say, I am very confused as to how good an actress Zosia Mamet is.

Gen X: I love her. But then I am a closet connoisseur of uptalk. I think we will have to redefine “Mamet-speak.”

Gen Y: I loved her in Mad Men. But this weird JAP-py infantilization thing creeped me out.

Gen X: She is sort of the only character who is clearly defined out of the gate—you might say cartoonishly so. But the show does suffer a bit from the modern affliction of having just about every character sound the same.

Gen Y: Also I don’t think we needed that Sex in the City reference, because the show is obviously trying to set itself apart from that, while recognizing that it will inevitably get compared to it. But a lot of people go OMG! It’s trying to be Sex and the City!

Gen X: I also have to wonder about the Mary Tyler Moore reference. First, because it made no sense: in fact the show does not sound at all strange through a wall, or at least no stranger than anything else. But also because MTM is the pinnacle of situation comedy and to invoke it in the first episode of any show is simply madness.

Gen Y: Someone did compare Lena to Rhoda. Wasn’t Rhoda the sister?

Gen X: Are you kidding? No! Rhoda was the friend. I couldn’t help thinking of the pilot of that show, when Mary interviews with Lou Grant, which is perhaps my favorite sit-com moment ever.

Gen Y: YouTube’ing it!