So Ginny and Georgia wants to liken themselves to Gilmore Girls; lets see shall we…

Welcome back!

As we all know, Ginny and Georgia was released on Netflix recently and has gained a surprising amount of buzz. Mainly stemming from Mr. tap dancing it’s Friday with the man bun. But in case you missed it. Ginny and Georgia centers around a family who moves around a lot. Georgia (who’s birth name is in fact, not Georgia) was a teen mum who got pregnant and had Ginny (or Virginia) when she was around 16. She has a very difficult life before pulling herself out and trying to make a good life for Ginny and her son as a single parent. So, yes, the similarity is definitely there, and they do in fact make reference to being Gilmore Girls, which is an interesting angle. Yes, it is obvious but still such a bold move to call yourself out for being a rip off. Anyway, Georgia is a particularly resourceful woman who moves her family to a new town and we get to see them adjust. SO, here is my comparison of Ginny and Georgia and Gilmore Girls.

So firstly, let’s just talk about how many “similarities” there are between the two. We can’t ignore the alliterated GG of Gilmore Girls and Ginny and Georgia, a bit suspicious. Teen pregnancy. Angsty teens, new school, small town, dad who is half in the picture, the 1 local restaurant with a flannel wearing man. Estranged grandparents. Wow, kind of an aggressive rip off but anyway. Multiple love triangles, because where would television be without love triangles. Anywho, here is the corresponding characters:

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Character comparison time:

Ginny is very Rory. They are both just so annoying and bitchy. Their plot lines kind of follow Mean Girls two with them progressively becoming worse and worse. They also both can be really disrespectful and rude to their mums. We do not accept disrespect towards Georgia or Lorrelai. Ginny moves to a new school, making new friends and dating boys for the first time. Granted I like Ginny less than Rory but they are still an obvious copy.

I mean Lorelai is also obviously Georgia including little romance with the guy who works at the local hang out place (diner could we say). We also have the very clear teen mom thing and the homelessness. Estranged parents. Georgia is the light of this show and I feel the same towards Lorelai. They both have unhealthy ties with their exes/ fathers of their children.

I’m gonna say Maxine is Paris purely because she is so neurotic, or she could be like a cross between Maxine and Abby? Anyway, Paris gives off a definite bi energy about her and Max is gay. But that is probably where the comparison ends.

Luke is clearly Joe. I mean, look at these two pictures, my god.

Man who runs the local hang out place, has a long standing crush on our main gal, sarcastic, and watches her date other men rather than just saying he loves her. It’s okay Joe, I’m sure there will be light for you in season 2 if they make one.

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But, does that make Peter, any of Lorrelai’s boyfriends. I guess we will go with Max though, the good guy who she easily could’ve ended up with but also we like diner boys. Proposes very quickly, we know it won’t work out.

We have a very clear similarity with Christopher and Zion. Both swing in and out of the girls lives, Christopher is constantly with Lorelai and not with her and making very confusing times for everyone, they really copied this with Zion. Even down to the begs to get married and claims of change. The motorcycle is a dead give away. Parents who disapprove of the woman who got pregnant by their son. It’s like practically word for word copied.

So kid next door must be Jess. I mean, bad boy, doesn’t want a girlfriend, messing with her and her relationship. Even motorbike crash/car crash comparisons…. Also they do kind of look alike…

But I would feel terrible calling Hunter, Dean or Logan. Maybe he’s Rory’s fiance in the a year in the life season… because she does constantly forget they are dating. Also cheating but hey. I know people hate Hunter but he isn’t a bad guy, I have more respect for him than Ginny, that’s for sure.

There isn’t really a clear Lane to me, I suppose it has to be Max again but purely on closeness to Ginny, not a very good comparison though.

Her co-worker is clearly Michel. I hope I don’t need to explain this but her coworker has the same no nonsense attitude. Also is the main co-worker of Georgia.

If Max is Lane does that mean Sophie is Matt Brody before he joined The OC?

Taylor is Cynthia because he gets a bit too political and is always harassing people and getting in everybody’s business. Although, I hope we see a bit more of her story in a future season as they hinted to there being a lot more going on below the surface.

So, is it a rip off, I mean yes. I would be lying if I said no. I still enjoyed watching it and it brought forth a lot of issues particularly surrounding racism, however, it is a copy. I don’t think acknowledging it is a copy negates the problems with that fact. However, I absolutely love Georgia, I love Joe and I would definitely watch another season. They did bring a different kind of comedy forward too through Georgia and her con-artist ways. So definitely check it out if you like Gilmore Girls or even if you don’t, I personally don’t love Gilmore Girls but I did enjoy this and I think some of the issues they discuss are important and while “oppression Olympics” was maybe not an ideal scene, the points raised are really important.

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Why Dance Academy is so great…

Dance Academy is an Australian teen drama which first aired in 2010, ran for 3 seasons and one movie which made it into Australian Cinemas. Dance Academy follows the lives of a group of teens attending the National Academy of Dance in Sydney. These kids were primed to join the Australian Ballet Company once they graduated if they were the best few. It is currently on Netflix if you’re interested in checking it out or re-watching! I grew up watching Dance Academy, it made me want to be a dancer or an athlete. However, I think it was a bit late for any of that.

So, here are all the things that I think make Dance Academy so great to this day and make me able to still enjoy it 10 years later.

Despite the actual ‘elite’ talent of the teens and their living away from home, Dance Academy is incredibly realistic to the teen experience. They show young teens making stupid mistakes over and over. It represents the real issues of eating disorders in teens, explores sexuality, cheating, hard work. Kat even has an identity crisis which I think is incredibly relatable to many teens who may discover they aren’t as about sure what they want to do after school than they once were, or realize that they don’t know at all. Kat portrayed this in her move away from dance before she returned realizing her passion and working hard to get where she wanted to be.

Dance Academy also dealt with illness and grief. Ben is a cancer survivor who in the movie has a ‘relapse’ and has to come to terms with his limits. The loss of their friend, Sammy honestly broke me and still hurts me when I watch it.

It talks about familial expectations and how hard they can push one. Working your way through school to support oneself. Sammy has a real struggle with his family throughout the whole show.

It also takes a hard look at how complicated friendships are in teen years and how hard it can be to know who your real friends are.

Body image issues and eating disorders need to be explored more in teen shows because it is such a common problem and Dance Academy did that. They looked at eating disorders and body image in elite athletes.

It also tackles crime with Christian’s past and upbringing in that world and Abigail’s shoplifting. They showed sexual assault as well.

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Another realistic portrayal they presented was athletes and injury, athletes get injured often and keep going through the pain, this is exactly what happens in the show and it also presents how detrimental this can be for athletes.

Additionally, it portrays financial hardship, both Sam and Tara need a scholarship to keep attending because neither Sammy on his own or Tara’s family can afford to send them to the Academy.

Another important aspect for me about Dance Academy is, the actors they chose could genuinely dance. As opposed to other shows like Blue Water High (no shade) where actors are chosen as actors but can’t actually do the exact thing their character does. All of these actors were athletes. There was no need for stunt doubles or cutting scenes to avoid the face of the actor.

I also just feel like there is something so pure about the portrayal of the age group. While they aren’t incredibly young they also aren’t in their late teens which means that there are some cringey embarrassing moments and a lot of personal growth and self discovery. Had they set the ages as older the show would likely have revolved largely around bitchyness and sex but they chose teens who were still largely children. So yes, there is some crime in Dance Academy but I think that is so genuine to the age group, unlike shows like ‘Never Have I Ever’ (check out my thoughts on it here https://simplymythoughts.blog/2020/08/29/never-have-i-ever-been-less-impressed/), the cringe is so normal, its teens acting like teens worried about pimples and if the boy likes them.

Dance Academy showed that with hard work you can reach above and beyond. Tara began her time at the academy as one of the worst trained dancers in her year and became one of the best through hard work and determination. However, it isn’t unrealistic about how having a dream isn’t always enough especially as an athlete.

Keiynan Lonsdale also came from Dance Academy – you may recognize him from The Flash, Love Simon or Work It.

The Movie:

Honestly, the movie really didn’t disappoint me, I feel like I was prepared to be a little disappointed by it because when it came out I was 17 and following up 5 years after the end of Dance Academy, I was worried. But it really didn’t disappoint me, I feel like the movie in a way grew up with the original audience showing them working in the industry and the issues they’re still facing. The only disappointing part for me was how little Christian was in it, but, at least he came back. Almost all of the original cast came back for the reunion movie which I think is great. I also think it was quite exciting to be able to watch the movie on a cinema screen with the Dolby Atmos sound.

So, to sum up, I believe Dance Academy stood the test of time over my youth. I think it was super well done and showcased a lot of issues in a relatable and realistic way. Also, I love dance and any dance movies or tv shows so that was exciting. And we gotta support the Aussie television industry somehow. Don’t forget you can watch Dance Academy on Netflix now!

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‘Grand Army’ is worth the watch!

So, grand Army came out a long time ago and I hardly heard anyone talking about it, so I finally checked it out on Netflix recently. I was definitely surprised but what I was faced with and had not at all expected it. For me this was a very clear case of judging a show by its cover image, and I was way off!

Grand Army is about a school in New York and a set of kids at this school, but it is a little dark. Not in the regular sense of a dark show, I feel like Grand Army is unapologetic in showing all of the worst aspects of high school. Particularly in America.

Some themes which are discussed include; friendship, selfishness, racism, sexism, feminism, terrorism, rape and sexual assault, religion, sexuality, class, poverty, pressure on women, victim blaming and more. In only a few episodes.

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For me though, the most influential character was Joey who starts as a very confident woman trying to support women’s rights at their school, going against dress code norms and being confident in her body, sexuality and herself. However, this character later goes through a turmoil with rape, losing all her friends and going through the criminal process as a victim. I feel like her acting was incredibly compelling through this show.

We see her come to lose confidence in her body, her memories and her personality at points, she moves to shroud herself in clothing. A woman who stood up in her school for non sexist dress codes and free the nip. We watch her lose herself entirely for a time.

While the other stories are also important and well done, hers had the most impact to me, however they all did impact me in one way or another. But I wouldn’t want to spoil the whole show for you!

Although, I have to admit, I hated this girl so much and I hated the amount of screen time she got!

So, is Grand Army an enjoyable show? No not really, but I think the messages are very important and they didn’t totally shy away from the worst of a high school experience. You can learn things from every character. I also feel like there is a character that we can all probably relate to.

So I do 100 percent recommend Grand Army but it is nothing like I was expecting and it can be difficult to watch at points. Because they chose honesty. I think more shows should be more honest about these issues rather than recycling the same ideals and the same way to approach issues.

It is a very confronting show a times but, that added to the realism for me. So, if you have a chance, please do check it out and let me know what you think!

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Checking out the Dawson’s Creek pilot…

Dawson’s Creek has always been one of those shows for me which I’ve heard of, or has been referred to, but I never had the opportunity to check it out until now. Recently Dawson’s Creek went up on Aussie Netflix so I thought I’d give it a go and let you know what I think of the pilot. So here goes;

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We are first introduced to Dawson and his friend while they hang out critiquing TV things. So, Dawson himself is a movie buff which is kind of fun since I am clearly very interested in TV shows, so I just thought that was nice.

Then we are introduced to Joey, his life long best friend (right of image), Joey.

I really don’t vibe with this other guy, Pacey, (left of image) so let’s hope he gets better. So far, from just the pilot, everything he has said felt borderline offensive and also he is rude and some other things we will get in to…

Anyway, back to the start Joey breaks to Dawson that they basically aren’t allowed to sleep over together now that they’re 15. So, was it okay last week? If she stays at his every weekend why was it fine last weekend but not this weekend? Seems a bit suspicious to me.

I have heard the consensus is that Dawson is the worst part of Dawson’s Creek (but honestly, James Van Der Beek playing himself in ‘Don’t trust the B in Apartment 23’ is gold), but this is definitely a red flag.

And this too… Like, I know it’s Dawson’s bed, but look at him man-spreading, he is lying down the middle of the bed!

Outer Banks who? Honestly, there might be a bit more worth watching here, I mean, at least in number of episodes there definitely is. So, if you were someone who did happen to like Outer Banks or just like the idea of a small town show for people living on the water maybe this is it!

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This is my main gal. Gotta love a woman who doesn’t take shit from boys and stands up for herself, so far I’m rooting for this girl. But they are trying to make me not like her, you can already see that her standing up for herself against rude men is portraying her as the bitch of the show, which is just so unoriginal. I love this girl, show me more of her honestly because she’s a powerful woman.

Now, these next series of events really threw me, Pacey had met this woman at the video store and flirted with her, which already gave me bad vibes but then, there’s this.

Yikes… “during school hours”

Um, also yikes…

Double yikes, already wondering why all of this was allowed and why the rest of them are friends with Pacey but also, why none of them told him it was super weird to be so into his teacher.

What exactly is going on! She’s his teacher! Also, he is a child. If Joey and Dawson are 15 then so is Pacey so what on Earth is happening in this show. We are only looking at the pilot!

Basically, Joey has been whining and complaining literally the entire show since a new girl showed up, but she was really boring in the episode so if you want to see her wait a few more episodes. I sort of understand where Joey is coming from when she acts like this the whole episode, she is just jealous of Dawson being interested in another girl because of what it could mean for their friendship and she is already worried about their friendship beforehand. And Dawson is kind of instantly obsessed with this girl but he is also just being nice. However, her being so rude and whinny the whole time really doesn’t put me on her side. Although, she is 15 so I guess I can let it slide for now. But, so far my least favourite characters are Pacey and Joey.

We then end with Joey and Dawson deciding they can still be best friends and tell each other anything because they care about each other so much, which is cute. The execution is kind of strange but humorous.

So, on a whole, I would suggest giving Dawson’s Creek a go, it looks decent enough as far as teen shows go. I think the friendship that Dawson and Joey have is also nice and kind of cute but I worry that the point of that is to ruin it. Either way, I think I will keep watching it. If you want an ‘every qualm I have with’ for season 1 let me know and I’ll make one!

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I watched October Faction so you don’t have to…

So, I have kind of been on a roll with Netflix Original titles lately so I thought I’d continue with October Faction. This 2020 title follows a family of supernatural hunters who travel around with an organisation called ‘Presidio’.

While I started watching it expecting to see a Supernatural rip-off it was really more similar to Shadow Hunters with the righteous (humans) who attempt to kill all the ‘monsters’ whilst also doing horrible things to them and massacring people. Kind of reminds me of the Clave in Shadow Hunters. As well as just how much politics is going on between these groups. So, if you liked Shadow Hunters maybe you’ll enjoy October Faction.

The moral of the story is; if you want to watch some hunters + family dysfunction (and magic babies). Just watch Supernatural instead. You still get the angst and hunting (in fact more hunting), still got those family dynamics (in particular daddy issues), however, without the high school experience. So, while they are different, if you have the ability to watch Supernatural instead, for instance on Aussie Stan, do that. If not then sure you can check out October Faction.

Anyway, here are all the things that didn’t make sense to me in October Faction;

Oslo? Someone explain to my why they would be being transferred to Oslo, that is actually quite far from the Finland-Russia boarder. It isn’t that close? Why Oslo? Why not Helsinki or even Stockholm? Not many people know this but I’m obsessed with Norway so I know a bit about it, and I know it looks small but in actual land size it is pretty big so, that is really far, even by plane its several hours away…

Yes, Oslo… right by the border?

**Oslo is in the south of Norway by the Sweden border**

The whole burial thing made no sense because he couldn’t possibly not give this one guy a proper burial but he walked over all his other soldiers who also just died. And you can’t say its because of the mission because the mission wasn’t over either time.

It wasn’t snowing then it was only moments later…

Murder vs torture. Can we really act like they’re so different and one is off limits when their jobs are to murder.

How could no one know about the secret prison and why was it a secret? They raised all these soldiers to believe everything else was a monster and the enemy, wouldn’t lots of them not care about the torture cave?

Why were they the only two without masks or helmets on?

So who’s kid was she putting in danger

Seems like it was kind of all Alice’s fault to me.

How’d she cut her own umbilical chords and tie them off on her own?

How did no one find Alice screaming whilst giving birth to twins while there were soldiers everywhere killing her town?

What was the actual purpose of fake killing the grandfather – it wasn’t to bring their family back because they tried to transfer them right after. Seems like everyone hated the old man so who would have known?

Just because they’re ‘free’ why’d they become assholes.

None of the big reveals shocked me, not the “they’re my children” or the “old man isn’t dead” or the guy with the weird eye being the dead brother. I’m sorry, I don’t know if that was just me but they all felt pretty obvious to me…

What did shock me was Alice over-writing all the innocent humans to bring back the warlocks. And like, Viv and Geoff didn’t care?

Lowkey the story of Alice being imprisoned underwater by whoever would’ve made a better story. Show me that flashback. I believe the show would have been better if we watched the events at Harlow then watched what Alice did after as opposed to basically the whole show. Sorry.

So anyway, if you liked Shadow Hunters you probably won’t mind October Faction but I won’t say it isn’t flawed… clearly. It is available on Netflix, the first 10 episodes, so check it out if you’re interested and if you did watch it, please comment down below and let me know what you thought!

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‘Never Have I Ever’ been less impressed…

‘Never Have I Ever’ is another one of the Netflix Original new releases and similar to ‘Get Even’ it is based around the lives of a few high school women. Devi is the main character and has experienced a lot of trauma over the past 12 months but decides this year is the year for her and her two friends Fab and Eleanor to become popular. Honestly, for me, this show just wasn’t it. It didn’t get me like a lot of other shows have. It was also super cringey in my opinion. However, I do appreciate the diversity Netflix has shown with NHIE, but honestly it should have come sooner. I also really appreciate them showing cultural and religious aspects for the characters which can educate viewers. So, here’s how I feel about Never Have I Ever. Spoiler disclaimer!

The beginning is really quite like ‘Awkward’ (on Stan Australia). In Awkward the main character has broken her arm? collarbone? (I couldn’t be bothered to check). She’s required to wear a cast around looking like this. She then attempts to get everyone to forget that she had that and tries to get with the most popular boy in school.

Here, the main girl has been wheelchair bound and returns to school without the wheelchair hoping to reinvent herself and get the guy. As usual, my biggest problem with this show is the main character.

Devi: For me, Devi is quite flawed, which I suppose is meant to be realistic for teens finding their identity and such but she just is not someone who I feel like I can root for when you add up a lot of her actions. For example,

She intends to use a guy figuring out his sexuality for popularity. Devi states she is going to try to date the guy in her class, who she believes to be gay. Because having a boyfriend, even a closeted one, is apparently better than being single? That’s not cool Devi.

She also, really doesn’t like listening to other people’s feelings or seeing their point of view. Case and point, her friends tell her they need to talk to her and she blows them off. She tries to force them to date people because it will make them cool. She doesn’t want to see her cousins point of view on not wanting to have an arranged marriage because she’s jealous of her cousins beauty.

Fun Fact: You can have your own things going on but still care about and respect that your friends do too. Just because you have stuff doesn’t mean you can’t be there for your friends.

She even chooses to be there all day for the guy she likes rather than being there for her best friend who’s mum just left her! I mean come on.

She also tries to change a lot about her friends in the beginning of the show telling them how they should dress and who they should date. This also, doesn’t appear to be optional to her. Devi has just decided they’re going to date these 3 guys she picked out. You can’t control people like that Devi.

Then there’s the whole trying to sleep with the cool guy because he’s cool then basically aiding a rumour going around that they did have sex. Why is that okay Devi? Don’t use people like that especially when you’re his friend.

I’m not going to say that Devi was entirely unlikable, but many of these actions for me really didn’t put me on her side. I recognise I don’t understand what she’s dealing with being a Hindu American or with the loss of her father but her high school quest for popularity and notoriety unsettles me.

I feel like you could even be more sympathetic to Ben because you saw he really had no one around him, was ignored by his family and really just wanted a friend so you could forgive his behaviour early on. Had the show been about him I feel like we would have been shown a better character and better growth.

The show also perpetuates the societal ideal that women should find a man in order to be popular and valued by others. Devi entirely believes that her worth can be equated to the boy she’s dating or who ‘sleeps with her’. Can’t we normalise on TV that it isn’t essential to date in high school and it doesn’t make you a failure or a loser to be living your life on your own. Can’t we slash societies idea that women need to find a man (especially at 16).

Although, Devi isn’t my only issue with the show. I really don’t enjoy the narration over the top of the show, kind of reminds me of the over narration I felt in Jane and Virgin and for me its too much. Narration by a not character also just annoys me, if it is going to be narrated why isn’t it narrated by Devi.

However, there were a few redeemable aspects of the show. For example, Devi does make the first move on the guy she likes which I think was nice to see.

I do also appreciate that Devi is seeing a therapist throughout the show as this should be normalised for teens to ask for help if they need it and seeing someone doesn’t make you weird.

I also did quite like her friends. Both of whom were going through their own things trying to be supportive of Devi and each other, but ultimately were let down by Devi the entire time. But, they both showed personal growth without starting out being really selfish.

I also enjoyed seeing Fab’s coming out in stages to people around her.

Here’s another few things I noticed while watching Never Have I Ever that don’t contribute to how I feel about the show I just found them funny: 

  • Old el paso product placement…
  • Netflix referring to Riverdale – hi Netflix I already have a subscription, that’s how I’m watching, you don’t need to keep advertising yourself.

Netflix has revealed it has been renewed for another season, so I really hope we can see some personal growth for these characters and avoid some of these issues in the next season. All that said, it is nice to see Netflix moving in a move diverse direction slowly but surely and I hope this continues. However, I can’t say I would recommend the show as it is very cringey.

If you’ve seen it let me know your thoughts and if you agree Devi was the worst character. Devi is definitely another character to add to the list of boring, unlikable main characters. If you missed my post on main characters check it out here https://simplymythoughts.blog/2020/08/15/main-character-syndrome/

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