Girls Season 3 DVD Review
If you’re a show on HBO, you come along with a certain heightened expectation from TV audiences around the world. From classics like The Sopranos, The Wire and Curb Your Enthusiasm to recent successes Game of Thrones and True Detective, HBO often deliver the best shows on television. Quite uniquely, Girls came along in 2012 with a whole different slant on the world – that of the modern female – and gave a voice to Lena Dunham who has arguably become the voice of a generation over the past couple of years.
In collaborating with Judd Apatow (Freaks and Geeks, Bridesmaids, Anchorman), Dunham has given audiences the opportunity to step into the minds of four young girls all dealing with their own problems in a world more believable than the majority of programming on television these days. Raw, fresh, funny and heartbreaking all at the same time, Girls never pulls its punches, balancing perfectly between cringeworthy and triumphant. While Season 2 proved to be a difficult and challenging one for many, not unusual for successful shows, Season 3 seemed to serve as a strong reminder of why we all fell in love with Dunham and co in the first place.
What’s It About? For a show that has a lot of talk surrounding it, it’s surprising how many people have never seen it. If you’re a newbie to the world of Girls then definitely start from the beginning – it’s a show much more effective once you know the ins and outs of the characters and what makes them tick. If you’ve been following from the start then you’ll know the drill as you enter Season 3 – these characters will make you laugh, cry, and occasionally want to kick the television in, but in the end you’ll definitely be coming back for the next episode.
Lena Dunham’s character Hannah often takes centre stage, struggling to make a success of her writing, relationships and.. well, everything really! We begin with a more positive Hannah, at least in terms of her relationship with Adam (Adam Driver), while Marnie (Allison Williams) and Shoshanna (Zosia Mamet) are dealing with breakups. Jessa (Jemima Kirke) perhaps has the biggest problems of all, entering rehab and not exactly being the most personable patient there. Girls always shifts the dynamic from one episode to the next, never resting on its laurels or becoming too comfortable. Season 3 certainly continues the trend of shaking up its characters and throwing every challenge under the sun at them, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Verdict: It can be quite easy to criticise Girls because of the high bar it set right from the get go, especially with Dunham being thrust into the spotlight as so many girls gravitated towards her. It’s a tough spot to be in and no doubt the pressure is immense to deliver a top quality show every week. Season 3 is as much a rollercoaster as any of them, if not moreso, with some really serious issues coming to light. As much as Girls can be known as a comedy, it’s hard to be funny all the time when dealing with death, assisted suicide and drug addiction. These situations help us to get to know the characters far better and make for a more well-rounded show altogether.
Extras: On the DVD there are audio commentaries, a recap of Season 2 and some Inside The Episode featurettes. If you’re more interested in special features, the Blu-ray also offers episodic recaps, deleted and extended scenes, a gag reel and more!
Final Words: Sometimes it’s difficult for a show to maintain the quality that grabbed people in the first place, yet Dunham and her co-stars show no signs of slowing down. Girls still manages to be as engaging, hilarious and real as ever, dealing with various subject matter in a way that people can genuinely relate to. At the heart of it, Girls is real and that’s always going to be the most important thing – beyond the humour and wackiness, it’s clear that Dunham wants to present something that resonates with an audience. Season 3 certainly manages to do that and there’s no reason to believe the fourth season (airing this month on Sky Atlantic) will be any different.
Girls Season 3 is out on DVD and Blu-ray on January 12th from Warner Home Video.