Last night was the Girls season finale on HBO, and though there was some controversy throughout the season, there’s one thing that makes this show a success: the reality.

This is a column written by Hypable.com’s Senior Editor and writer John Thrasher. You can follow John on Twitter @jthrasher.

Note: Do not read on if you have not seen Season 1, Episode 10 “She Did.”

It’s very rare that a show can win me over in its first season. I find it very hard to like a lot of the shows that most of my friends like, based on the simple notion that the storytelling is boring/uninteresting/unrealistic (sorry True Blood fans, I tried!). However, the new HBO series Girls was not only amazing for each of those reasons, but each episode seemed to get better and better.

This season was marked with various controversies. The first being its apparent notion about sexism and gender. A couple of weeks ago we posted this story on Hypable asking if the HBO series is really about girls at all, with the Hypable user suggesting that each of the main characters is dependent on the validation of the men in their lives. And yes, while that was somewhat true, it was also one of many points of realism the show reflected to the audience. What makes Girls so interesting is how it took an unconventional TV formula and made it a huge hit across multiple demographics. These days, to make a successful TV show, you have to have a male heroic protagonist or a sitcom/comedy full of pop culture references and one-liners (Mad Men, Glee, Arrested Development much?). Don’t even think about a show with a female lead that has something to offer beyond her body, though. Our society’s scope of what makes great TV is based on traditional masculine ideals.

Girls, written, directed, produced by and starring Lena Dunham, has turned a comedy series with a flawed (not heroic) female protagonist into a critical and mainstream success. The show reflects a group of girls, each dealing with their own struggle to maturity, at times cringe-worthy, but overall likable, interesting, and most importantly realistic. Are we meant to criticize Hannah when she takes the tip in the hotel room in the pilot episode or are we meant to take a deeper look at ourselves, the reality, and wonder if we’d do the same thing? In fact, I had this conversation as it happened with my friends (who ironically live in Greenpoint, Brooklyn – the same neighborhood as Hannah and Marnie). At first they said, “Wow, I can’t believe she did that,” to which I responded, “Honestly, if I were in her position, I would have done the same thing.” Eventually we all came around and agreed that we would have taken all of the money if our parents cut us off in the same way. It’s unclear if we’re supposed to root for Hannah, criticize her narcissism, or look at all things and wonder how much of ourselves we see in her, even if we don’t say it out loud. And it’s that inner monologue with ourselves, that I only recently realized as being my subconscious, that makes this show a true piece of art.

We are part of a society where the masculine perspective of the blonde-bombshell or the femme fatale is the only “acceptable” way for a female protagonist to exist. Hannah is the character that most of these “acceptable” female characters make fun of or are used to contrast the differences between our perceived notion of what it means to be beautiful. Lena Dunham’s character Hannah breaks this all down with the audience finding her realistic portrayals of femininity, body issues and trust as reasons to celebrate rather than draw comparisons. As a feminist myself, and someone who loves successes like Bridesmaids, I couldn’t be happier and more celebratory for Hannah and what she represents.

That isn’t to say the show doesn’t have its season-1-style problems as well. Should the show bring in more diversity regarding race? Yes, I think so. And there are reports that Community’s Donald Glover has been seen shooting scenes with Dunham. The cast, supporting characters and guest stars have all predominately been white. That’s unrealistic, particularly in New York City… Or is it? Maybe there are social circles that are specifically white-centric, but not in a racist way. This show is more about realism and less about cultural expectations. There are tons of reasons this show could be criticized, whether it be about how doing crack is perceived as “fun,” or how the main characters depend on men too much, how the supporting characters (Shoshanna) are underdeveloped, or how certain demographics are underrepresented. There are an array of cracks to mend. However, the realism and perspective of the narrator present a story based more on the the situational realities of life and less on whether or not a female is dealing with them.

The season finale really nailed this unapologetic point-of-view regarding reality. Each character ended the season with their own personal version of maturity. Marnie, who on the outside seems like she has it all together, is arguably the least stable person on the show (yes, even over Adam) after her situation with Charlie, moving out of her apartment with Hannah, and then ultimately finding herself making out with the wedding host (played by SNL’s Bobby Moynihan). Shoshanna spent the entire season in a panic about where she is in life regarding her sexual maturity. We are meant to assume that she has overcome that hurdle (in her eyes, not mine), with Ray of all people. And Jessa, the resident hippie vagabond, randomly married the man who she was meant to have a threesome with, in what seemed to me like a clear attempt to take control of her otherwise uncertain whimsical life. Through various levels of realism, these portrayals of women and young people in general are arguably the most realistic depictions of real-life issues that are also not specifically about gender. Girls has turned the notion of women being objects of beauty, rather than having something to say, on its head and has done so on a mainstream level.

The season ended just as it began: with Hannah stuffing her face with food. This time, she clearly has her cake (and eats it too). A lot of Girls fans were wondering what it all meant. To me, after Adam rode off in his ambulance, it was all about her accepting where she is in the moment. The final scenes, which to me were a direct reflection of Adam’s “Time is a rubberband,” were all about Hannah accepting the realities, not over-thinking it, and simply admiring a moment alone on a beach at Coney Island after a rather dramatic last 24 hours.

Season 2 is in production with Dunham tweeting that she was excited for everyone to watch the season 1 finale because she was putting the finishing touches on the season 2 finale at the same time! No word on when Girls season 2 will premiere just yet, but I know I for one will be waiting to see how the circumstances from the finale fare and how Lena Dunham will continue to realistically challenge the notion of what it means to be a female on television in 2012.

Official pictures from the Gilmore Girls revival hint that Stars Hollow’s pride and joy went on to become a teacher. Tanc Sade’s Instagram suggests otherwise.

Rory Gilmore — high school English teacher or staff writer on The Stars Hollow Gazette? When the first official photos of the Gilmore Girls revival were released by TV Line, Rory Gilmore was shown standing at the front of a classroom with some chalkboard notes that seemed to indicate she was teaching high school English. And she wasn’t just any high school teacher, but a Chilton high school teacher.

GILMORE GIRLS
Source: TV Line

However, while promoting an upcoming charity fundraiser, Tanc Sade, everyone’s favorite Life and Death Brigade member, Finn, gave away that Rory Gilmore is an above the fold writer of the Stars Hollow Gazette. Sure it’s a long cry from covering the parking lot pavement of Chilton, but it does not strike us as the type of hard-hitting journalism that would satisfy a girl who hit the road to cover the Obama campaign at the close of the series. This issue, dated July 19, 2016, will appear sometime in the “Summer” installment of the four-part series.


Whose to say that Rory Gilmore can’t juggle two careers at once? She was, after all, the Editor in Chief of The Yale Daily News and a star student who graduated on time after taking a semester off to have a breakdown. Maybe her staff writing position is just a hobby.

This is not the first inside look into the Gilmore Girls reunion that Sade has provided. One quick browse through his Instagram and you will be treated to tons of behind the scenes goodies! Here are some of our favorites.

A Gilmore and her LDB boys


LUKES LIVES


They’ve come a long way from moving Rory out


Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life arrives on Netflix soon.

Twitter announces slew of changes to give you more room to tweet, get noticed

You'll also be allowed to retweet yourself. Umm...

11:15 am EDT, May 24, 2016

Twitter has confirmed that they’ll be making a few changes to let you fit more in a single tweet. Changes to retweeting and chatting with a user are also in the pipeline.

Earlier this month we told you Twitter would stop counting photos and links as part of the 140 character limit, but it looks like the social network is taking things a step further. Not only will URLs and photos no longer be a part of the character count, but they will also stop counting usernames.

Here’s Twitter’s full breakdown of the upcoming changes:

– Replies: When replying to a Tweet, @names will no longer count toward the 140-character count. This will make having conversations on Twitter easier and more straightforward, no more penny-pinching your words to ensure they reach the whole group.

– Media attachments: When you add attachments like photos, GIFs, videos, polls, or Quote Tweets, that media will no longer count as characters within your Tweet. More room for words!

– Retweet and Quote Tweet yourself: We’ll be enabling the Retweet button on your own Tweets, so you can easily Retweet or Quote Tweet yourself when you want to share a new reflection or feel like a really good one went unnoticed.

– Goodbye, .@: These changes will help simplify the rules around Tweets that start with a username. New Tweets that begin with a username will reach all your followers. (That means you’ll no longer have to use the ”.@” convention, which people currently use to broadcast Tweets broadly.) If you want a reply to be seen by all your followers, you will be able to Retweet it to signal that you intend for it to be viewed more broadly.

One or two of these additions may be controversial. For example, giving people the option to retweet themselves if “a really good one went unnoticed” sounds like a cheap solution to fix the issue of tweets not getting noticed. Why should it be upon the user to do something to get the tweet noticed? It’ll look obnoxious if we’re retweeting ourselves — it’s the equivalent of asking aloud, “Hey, did anyone just hear my excellent thought?” even when everyone heard it but purposely ignored it.

Twitter isn’t ready to launch these changes today because they want to give developers time to prepare. This way, third party apps like Tweetbot (It’s great — there are no ads in it!) will be ready to support Twitter’s new rules right at the start of the official launch. Expect to see these features in a few months.

Sadly, we’re still waiting for Twitter to launch an “edit” button. It sucks to be unable to fx a mistake.

James Corden invited the now world famous Chewbacca Mom onto The Late Late Show for some sh**s and giggles.

Ah, Chewbacca Mom. A literal ray of sunshine whose viral video is sure to put a smile on your face. Proof that even the simplest materialistic things can bring us joy if we have the right outlook on life.

A small, simple video… and now a national sensation to the point you can’t escape that Chewie mask anywhere. Talk about oversaturation!

For those not yet burdened by the cynicism of age and the Internet, her overnight fame means that there are plenty of new ways to laugh with Chewbacca Mom — the best of which were provided by James Corden Monday night on the Late Late Show.

Corden, in a video reminiscent of his Carpool Karaokes, invited Chewbacca Mom (real name Candace Payne) and her daughter to drive around with him, with humorous results:

Chewbacca Mom does a flawless impersonation of herself as she participates in the spoof, and then suddenly, J.J. Abrams appears to add his support of the mask’s authenticity.

It ends with them all wearing masks and laughing hysterically. (Are there… fumes in these masks?)

Anyway, if you want even more Chewbacca Mom, check out another video of her on Corden’s show:

Did you find it as hilarious as James Corden does?

Kohl’s, which is selling Chewbacca masks like hot cakes since this went viral, has a lot to thank Chewbacca Mom for. And they’ve been showing their appreciation with extra Star Wars-related merch for her and her family. Now we’re just waiting for the inevitable reality series.