By Alberto Cox Délano | TV | January 13, 2023 |
By Alberto Cox Délano | TV | January 13, 2023 |
I’m not going to do to you what Ginny & Georgia do, by way of Netflix’s watch time algorithm edicts. I’m getting straight to the point, telling exactly what you can skip from season 2 of Ginny & Georgia, without missing out on anything. Why? Because this is a 10-episode season, each running for at least 50 minutes, credits not included. There is no justifiable reason you should spend six hours watching this wretched attempt at doing Gilmore Girls, but edgy, by ’90s kids trying to appeal to Gen Z’s.
Seconds are rounded to the closest multiple of five. My actual review comes right after:
Also, there are several scenes that you can just fast-forward through, particularly if it involves the characters having a dance party when they are at the mayor’s office or those involving the private detective. I’ll get to that in a minute.
Why am I being so harsh on this pretentious but mostly harmless show? In season 1, there were several scenes with, say, teenage characters texting each other, using the now-standard “texts pops up in the frame hyperreality-style”. And they went on for minutes, characters laying on a bed, reading and reacting to the conversations. Then there were the scenes where the characters did very little, but they went on and on, say, a teenage girl looking at herself in the mirror and showing she has an eating disorder. And no, they were not artistic, contemplative scenes. This is a series that needs establishing shots every time they change to the main locations, it’s not Jeanne Dielman, 23 quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles.
And then there were the pointless dialogues that gave us such gems we can’t erase from our minds such as “Oppression Olympics”, “We’re like the Gilmore Girls but with bigger boobs” or Taylor Swift jokes that were all the rage back in 2012. All baffling decisions, even for a Netflix show, even for a show aimed at teenagers. But that’s actually a disservice to Netflix’s crop of teen shows, some of which are pretty much the best that have ever been made.
And then I realized, this goddamn show was made by and for the algorithm. It’s unnecessary length, those pointless scenes, they were all conceived in order to maximize watch time. Plus, the premise itself is something only an AI processor could churn out if you fed it all the episodes of Gilmore Girls, The O.C., Pretty Little Liars and Euphoria. Ginny & Georgia was made to waste our time and that isn’t something I can forgive. It is something that makes me want to get revenge.
Ginny & Georgia does have one thing in common with Gilmore Girls: The mother character, Georgia (Brianne Howey and Nikki Roumel in flashbacks) is by far the most interesting, most fun and the real Star of the show. In fact, you will notice that all the scenes that you don’t need to skip are mostly those featuring Georgia, because I’m a thirsty boy. The scenes you should skip though, well, they mostly involve Ginny (Antonia Gentry) and the teenagers.
Look, I’ve tried to check myself, I’ve gone over every single one of my ingrained and unexamined prejudices against teenagers and teenage girls. But with Liberation Theology Jesus as my witness, I can’t stand Ginny. I can’t stand her plotline, I can’t stand her stupid love affairs, I can’t stand just how utterly uncharismatic she is. That’s not the actress’s fault, it’s the fault of the writers and showrunners. There was so much to explore with Ginny; you could’ve made her such a dynamic character if, instead of being whiney about her mum’s personality and background, she was supportive or complicit. But no, you had to make her a normal teenager with a background that is clearly far from normal. You could’ve made her the Thelma to Georgia’s Louise, in a mom-daughter version. But they had to insist on making it that damn mixture of gritty crime drama and teenage rom-com. Ugh. Worse still, the main plotline involving Ginny is that she is harming herself. Several, minute-long scenes. They are not graphic but … why would you use that to pad the runtime?
Also, as with any bloated TV Drama, there is an expansive gallery of characters, including Ginny’s new local boyfriend (who looks salvaged from the warehouses where they kept Johnny Depp clones), the high school characters, and the PI trying to nab Georgia for killing her ex-husband. They are all pointless. Luckily, they make good use of Scott Porter as Mayor Paul, Georgia’s brand-new fiancée. Also, there is a good subplot involving this series version of Luke Danes, Joe, who starts a romance with Georgia’s town rival Cynthia (Sabrina Grdevich). Oh, and Georgia’s other baby-daddy, the abusive Gil (Aaron Ashmore) is released from prison and moves into town to make things slightly more interesting.
Final verdict: Hatewatch if you want, but please don’t give it more watch time than necessary. Or just watch Gilmore Girls again, a show that never wasted your time … except for the final season.
Alberto Cox is now very afraid Jameela Jamil will start yellint at him DMs for not supporting female writers or something.