HBO to renew ‘Girls’ for fourth season

HBO has ordered a fourth season for ‘Girls,’ the network announced Thursday, as writer Lena Dunham and executive producer Judd Apatow fielded questions from the media in a contentious and at times awkward news conference.

Yvonne Villarreal reports on a discussion of the frequency with which Dunham appears nude on the show:

Things kicked off to a ruffled start when a reporter inquired about Dunham’s not-in-short-supply nudity on the show—“I don’t get the purpose of all of the nudity on the show, by [Dunham] particularly,” he started. “And I feel like I’m walking into a trap where you go, ‘Nobody complains about the nudity on “Game of Thrones,”’ but I get why they are doing it. They are doing it to be salacious and, you know, titillate people. And your character is often naked just at random times for no reason.”

To which Dunham responded: “It’s because it’s a realistic expression of what it’s like to be alive, I think, and I totally get it. If you are not into me, that’s your problem…”

The exchange got muffled as executive producer Judd Apatow chimed in, asking the male reporter: “Do you have a girlfriend? Does she like you? … Let’s see how she likes you when you quote that with your question, and just write the whole question as you stated it.”

Los Angeles Times

Dunham and Apatow, appearing along with actresses Jemima Kirke, Zosia Mamet and Allison Williams and executive producer Jenni Konner, were also criticized for the show’s lack of diversity. “We need to talk about diversifying the world of television, and we are trying to continue to do it in ways that are genuine, natural, intelligent,” Dunham replied, according to the Associated Press.

In a review, Hank Stuever writes that the characters in “Girls” have become so despicable that the show has lost its interest:

The grittiness of “Girls” crossed a line last season into abject disgust. The show became less about satire and more of an obsessive downer. It’s a lot less fun now; when watching these new episodes, I found it impossible to complete any sentence along the lines of “I hope [blank] happens to [blank],” not counting my hope that poor Adam (Hannah’s increasingly complex boyfriend, played by Adam Driver, who now provides the show’s only gravitational pull) will come to his senses and flee. I don’t hope anything happens to Hannah or Marnie or especially Jessa, because “Girls” forgets to offer any payoff or engagement as a TV show; Shoshanna is the only one of them I’d really keep watching a show about, if it came with a laugh track. One intriguing arc involves Adam’s sister, Caroline, played by Gaby Hoffman, who turns out be exactly the sort of disruptive trouble “Girls” needs; she’s someone who might have real mental issues, instead of just dabbling in them.

The Washington Post

The third season of “Girls” begins Sunday.

Max Ehrenfreund is a blogger on the Financial desk and writes for Know More and Wonkblog.
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