For someone who professes not to watch much tv, my Sunday nights are now cannibalized by it. Even stranger because usually I watch any show I might be interested in either on demand or via streaming, without worrying about the time and day of broadcast. But there is something appealing about Sunday nights, an evening usually spent at home dreading the Monday alarm clock.
I will make some fancy tv dinner – my last effort was pasta with lobster, very decadent – set it on the coffee table and, at 8 pm, I will inaugurate the proceedings with “True Detective”, a dark police show featuring a still thin and slightly unhinged Matthew McConaughey and a not so sunny Woody Harrelson.
At 9 I will move over to Yorkshire and “Downton Abbey”, which I am still watching because it’s always fun to gawk at real life mansions and be plunged into obnoxiously precise Queen’s English, not because the plot is making any sense. And, finally, before going to bed, I will spend thirty minutes with “Girls”, a show that fascinates me on many levels.
“I can’t watch it. I just want to slap them all” was sofagirl’s horrified reaction when I confessed my admiration for Lena Dunham. But I think that’s the point of the show: a train wreck of entitled 20 somethings from a certain segment of the population, maybe a touch representative of so many youth who plod along without knowing what to do with their lives. Perhaps the show makes me feel grateful for having left youth behind.
There was a time when all I would watch was “Sex and the City”, the single reason why I initially subscribed to HBO. Women of my generation navigated from our late 30s to our 40s while watching “Sex and the City” and I am still upset at Carrie for passing over Mikhail Baryshnikov in favour of slimy Mr. Big.
When I catch the show on reruns on occasion, some of it feels a bit dated but quite a lot of the subject matter is still subject of conversation – from whether to dye one’s pubic hair to the relevance of oral sex. And then there are those impossibly fat closets and all those Manolo Blahniks that the writers never explained how a New York city columnist could possibly afford.
(Incidentally, Sarah Jessica Parker must have spotted a marketing opportunity and, possibly, a big cash cow, as she has teamed up with one of Manolo Blahnik’s designers to create her own SJP line of shoes which will retail between $200 and $500 at Nordstrom. Not exactly a bargain but in the realm of possibilities.)
As I watch Hannah, Marnie, Shoshanna and Jessa getting naked at the drop of a hat and going through the motions of the 20s’ sweet nothings, I wonder if they are going to graduate into their version of Carrie & co. How differently will they tackle sex, and worry about men and looks and life? The protagonists of Sex and the City mostly took their careers as a fait accompli, meaning they must have devoted some time to it during their 20s.
But last night, as I was washing the dishes after my tv marathon, I was struck by the thought that, as much as it doesn’t make any advertising sense, I would really like to see a show on women who have had a career, a lot of sex, maybe done the family thing and are now swimming in their 50s. How are they faring? How have they put their brains, their accomplishments and their failures to work? What do they wear? Who do they sleep with?
Netflix: are you listening here?