‘Glow’ Wins Round One—But Does it Have Staying Power?

Try not to get sucked in by Netflix’s new show, Glow. Featuring neon credits and an intriguing ensemble cast, it’s definitely the new lady-driven dramedy du jour. Created by Jenji Kohan (Orange is the New Black, Weeds), Liz Flavhive and Carly Mensch, it aims to explore a pivotal time in feminism to see if real progress actually occurred.

Starring a dressed-down Alison Brie, it brings together a patent group of misfits to explore the quirky underbelly of L.A. talent in the 80’s. Brie plays Ruth, a wannabe actress who loses her best friend, soap star Debbie Eagan, after having sex with her husband. Because it’s a Jenji Kohan production, all the characters have to be flawed and somewhat unlikeable, but all get the chance for redemption. Leading the cast of misfits is Marc Maron as campy director Sam, who fights many personal demons in his quest to make another cult hit.

Its first season has been received with fanatical praise, much like OINTB. The real test will be if the show can continue past its initial honeymoon phase to build characters we truly want to root for, or if it will fall flat and cling to the stereotypes it claims to fight.

Overall Impression

In true Netflix fashion, Glow unites a hodgepodge of actors, producers and themes that my demo has proven to like. “We see that you enjoy Orange is the New Black, Mark Maron and the Alison Brie plotline from Mad Men. You’ll be happy to know, we’ve hand-crafted a show just for you.” This big data approach to content creation often works, but it can still feel a bit formulaic.

Why You Should Watch It

-You love the 80’s

-You love wrestling

-You love female ensemble casts with two conventionally attractive white women at their core

-You never got sick of OITNB or Weeds

-You like Alison Brie’s butt

Best Part

When the whole cast takes a day off to party in Malibu, and the drunken ladies discover a robot that dispenses drugs.

Worst Part

Sam constantly telling Ruth she’s not attractive. It’s Alison Brie—she’s just not going to be relatable and average ever. Give it up!

Alternate Interpretation

An exploration of whether we should confront stereotypes dead on or seek to leave them behind.

Overall Rating

7/10. An enjoyable quirkfest that will probably go on four seasons too long.

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