Girls is based on the real-life experiences of Lena and follows the story of a writer who gets a shock when her parents suddenly announce they will no longer financially support her as they have done since her graduation from college.
Brothers Mark and Jay Duplass, who have made many movies together as writers, directors and actors — including "The Puffy Chair," "Jeff, Who Lives at Home" and "The Do-Deca-Pentathlon" — have a TV series now.
Elsewhere on television, Mark is one of the stars of "The League"; Jay plays Jeffrey Tambor's son on "Transparent"; and together they play the midwives in the office upstairs on "The Mindy Show." Jay, who co-wrote and co-directed with Mark, stays behind the camera here.Mark plays Brett, who is married to Michelle (Melanie Lynskey); they have two young children and a stable but marginally unsatisfying life.Michelle, who feels the weight of routine, longs for something unexpected; Mark, who loves his work but not his job — he is a creatively frustrated, mid-level sound designer for film and the family's sole support — seeks refuge in the familiar.Into their Eagle Rock Craftsman house comes Brett's best friend, Alex (Steve Zissis, who co-wrote the story), a little-employed actor "too fat for the leading man roles and too skinny to be the chubby best friend," who has just been evicted from his apartment.He is followed shortly by Michelle's sister, Tina (Amanda Peet), visiting from Houston, who decides to stay after a breakup. And that is just enough new stress to set things tumbling.
Like Mike White's "Enlightened" and Lena Dunham's "Girls," also on HBO, and Jill Soloway's "Transparent" on Amazon, the series transfers to the no-longer-quite-so-small screen the concerns and aesthetics of independent film, particularly the style called "mumblecore," with its focus on character, naturalistic dialogue and subdued, often indefinite plotting."Togetherness," the new comedy from HBO, started its creative journey with those "uh-oh" moments that many people experience in their 30s.
"We were just getting our butts kicked," said Jay Duplass, the 41-year-old writer-director who co-created the series with his younger brother and longtime creative...
"Togetherness," the new comedy from HBO, started its creative journey with those "uh-oh" moments that many people experience in their 30s.
(Scott Collins)As the name might imply, the difficulty of communication between individuals — indeed, the near-impossibility of ever really saying what one means, when meaning itself is so endlessly mutable — characterizes the genre both in content and form.
Awkwardness, and the likelihood of whatever one says being the wrong thing, is its anxious resting state.
Much writing for television (and film) might be characterized as Newtonian — there is a cause for every effect, things move relentlessly forward.