A few weeks ago, my friend Cailey introduced me to a comedy that airs on MTV, of all places. It's called Awkward. and it's about a teenage girl named Jenna, who is, unsurprisingly, quite awkward. The premise is not unique - unpopular girl tries to navigate the murky waters of high school - but the execution is fantastic. It all starts when "invisible girl" Jenna receives a "carefrontation" letter from an anonymous source, which is immediately followed by a terrible accident and a huge misunderstanding, and well, you'll just have to watch it. It's a pretty cringe-worthy first 10 minutes or so.
Ashley Rickards, who plays Jenna, is cute and snarky with enough self-awareness to keep the (many) awkward moments from becoming painful. Her narration throughout the show maintains its endearing quality without becoming too contrived, and while I question the character's decision to keep a public blog that reads like a Live Journal (remember those?), I find it easy and fulfilling to shake my head and smile at her many teenage woes, because who among us hasn't been there? Ok, maybe not there, exactly, but Jenna is very relatable, regardless.
And though I feel much too old to be invested in the travails of high school students, invested I have inevitably become, because it's not so trashy that I feel bad about myself for watching, yet but just trashy enough to keep things interesting. Besides that, this show is genuinely funny; the writers are witty without becoming inaccessible and deftly employ "oh my god" moments that result in hearty, albeit embarrassed, laughter. And the language on these kids! You will be amazed at the number of euphemisms for sex they are able to come up with.
The third episode of the second season airs tonight, but you can catch up on the whole series at MTV.com (if you live in the US. Sorry UK readers!). And since each episode is only about 20 minutes long, you have no reason not to watch them all this weekend. Check out the trailer below: