04/17/17 4:24pm


Joan Didion’s “Goodbye to All That” is so often imitated it has become a trope, and so too, on a smaller and more time-sensitive spectrum, has the Girls takeaway op-ed. That’s not to say there’s anything wrong with either. Both essay types touch on popular and ever-relevant themes (leaving New York; saying goodbye to something that was, if not good, fleeting and romantic; youth; the ends of eras). As well, both are opportune springboards for poetic meanderings about the hopes and dreams of a generation of young people (not to mention gauging the self-awareness of Didion and Dunham).

It’s been six years, and New York is a whole different world from what it was in 2012 (a MetroCard swipe was 50 cents cheaper, for one thing), and, like the protagonist’s of Girls, it’s relatively unclear if the changes have been for the better. The show has polarized the internet and been held up as both an example of deplorable white privilege and a battle cry of normalization for women’s bodies. Viewers have crawled out of the woodwork to voice their say on Girls, and the takeaway essays run the gamut from tone-deaf and dismissive to heartfelt to powerful. Love it or hate it, it’s clear Lena Dunham has succeeded in spreading her message far and wide, although just because you’re one of the louder voices in the room doesn’t mean you represent a generation.

Here are our favorite Girls takeaway pieces (not including our own), the cream of the crop ranked from least insightful to most resounding. (more…)

02/22/16 8:50am

Finally, a wedding episode of a show where everything goes wrong.

The boys are back in town. But not boys, Girls. And not really in town, more like at a rich country house. Like all the best Girls episodes, last night’s season five opener whisked Hannah and friends away from the city. Oh, you don’t care? You stopped watching Girls around the time Marnie started doing Kanye West covers? We get it. Girls stopped being an exploration of 20somethings scraping by in Brooklyn long ago, opting instead to see just how insufferable its characters could become.

Judging by last night’s episode? Pretty insufferable! Worse yet, it’s a wedding episode, when everyone’s at their worst. But this is the penultimate season before these Girls (presumably) become WOMEN, so we’re sticking it out to the end, albeit sometimes begrudgingly. Even if it seems like they’re running out of friends to hook up with.  (more…)

02/10/16 2:50pm
Ranked with POWER.

Ranked with POWER.

Brooklynites are in all your face all week long: they’re running for president, they’re fighting our superheroes, they’re accompanying their wives to the Super Bowl. They rise and fall with the tides of popular opinion or occasionally under the scrutiny of congressional hearings. To help you keep track of who’s up and who’s down, we made a power ranking of the top 10 people repping the borough right now, and whether they’re on the come up or the cool down. (more…)

10/22/15 3:56pm

It’s Thursday, brokesters, which means we’re asking the big questions over here at Brokelyn HQ, so that we can spend our weekends pondering over the things that really matter. Sure, there are political elections. Sure, there’s the World Series. But why isn’t anybody pitting Lena Dunham head-to-fuzzy-head against Swedish Chef?

Listen, it wasn’t too long ago we all looked on—mildly horrified—as a costumed Lena Dunham did some kind of strange interpretive puppet lip-dub to Sia’s “Chandelier” on Seth Meyers’ SNL Weekend Update. And just last week, a SoundCloud user uploaded a very accurate impression of the Muppets’ Swedish Chef performing the very same song. (more…)

03/24/15 8:44am

A typical March day in Venice. (Photos by Dan Cerruti.)

Jay-Z. Lena Dunham. Dan Cerruti. What do all these incredibly important cultural figures have in common, besides zeitgeist-capturing appeal with legions of fans? They–we–are all native New Yorkers who have decided to move to a land of gritty authenticity where only the savvy and cunning survive. I’m talking, of course, about Los Angeles.

The name of this blog being a pun on Brooklyn, I suppose I should do what I can to make you stow away your pitchforks and torches and stymy your cries of “traitor” and “heresy” and “You’re wearing shorts in March? Go fuck yourself.” The internet is lousy with “Why I’m leaving New York” essays, but I figure I should do my best to explain why this phenomenon has claimed so many New York peeps. (more…)

03/03/15 1:22pm
lena dunham la

Her new permanent wardrobe?

Around this time of year, when it feels like all hope is lost because winter’s icy grip won’t let you go (which is a lie because winter ends and there’s never any hope), the idea of just packing up and moving somewhere warmer can sound appealing. Of course, just picking your whole life up can be difficult, unless you’re fabulously wealthy like say Lena Dunham, who’s done with this Brooklyn bullshit and is decamping to L.A. (more…)

01/19/15 11:00am
Study up

Study up

1. Celebrate MLK Day by being a decent human being and volunteering. (Monday)

2. Sneakily learn about human evolution with the help of some cocktails and paleontologists with the Secret Science Club at The Bell House. (Tuesday)

3. Win some uh, helpful equipment, at Sex Toy Bingo at Trash Bar. (Tuesday) (more…)

11/10/14 12:47pm
girls season 4

Maybe Hannah will write one of those “Leaving New York” personal essays

The seasons are changing, and with them brings the cool chill of millennial Brooklynites fucking up, fucking each other, and…moving to Iowa? That’s right, Girls may not be back until January, but the season four trailer dropped over the weekend.

Hannah looks happy writing about herself and frolicking in cow country, Adam seems apathetic and tortured about it (per usual), Marnie’s getting laid by her taken bandmate (which totally won’t backfire), Shosh is about to get bitch slapped real hard by “The Real World,” and by the end of the season Jessa will be dead with four midgets in an opium den in Saigon. I jest – but who knows? I wouldn’t put it past Lena. If anything, this season looks like it will be a nice departure from the very dark, grim, and ultimately depressing tone of the last. Hopefully things are on the upswing for these twentysomething tropes, because Girls is basically a Farmer’s Almanac for how well us millennials will weather the ensuing year.

07/18/14 1:58pm
lena dunham not that kind of girl

Why not give a fellow New Yorker a shot to wind up here?

You’d think that after the bitey incident with her dog and her perplexing recent appearance on Seth Meyers, Lena Dunham might be laying low. Nope! The wunderkind’s at it again, with a soon-to-be bestselling memoir titled: Not That Kind of Girl (with knowing subtitle, “A Young Woman Tells You What She’s ‘Learned'”). Before we get into all the feels we have about this, let’s cut to the book tour.

Lena is touring the country’s most progressive cities to promote the book, sitting down along the way to participate in conversations with high-profile artistes like Miranda July (Pasadena) and Carrie Brownstein (Portland). New York City gets her twice, first at the Union Square Barnes and Noble (with Amy Schumer) and then our very own borough receives her glittery presence again on October 21 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (along with Jemima Kirke, Zadie Smith and Bleachers). And in a strange twist on the traditional author’s book-signing format, the Dunham franchise is calling for opening acts to preface each city’s event. Sounds like a great opportunity. That is, as long as you don’t live in New York, where the chance to be an opening act isn’t offered for either of her appearances here. (more…)

11/22/13 2:40pm
girls season 3

Oh you girls

After keeping us waiting for months to find out what happened to Lena Dunham’s Hannah Horvath, Dunham herself just dropped the season 3 trailer for Girls. You can throw out that porn parody, because the real thing is back!

What’s happening in it? Aside from Hannah having short hair still, Marnie doing Marnie things and Jessa in fact being alive, looks like the big news is that Hannah has an office job at some point. And it makes her cry. Which I kind of understand, although when I had an office job at that age I did more interesting thing than cry, like sleep at my desk and take interns up to the roof of the Bronx County Courthouse and almost get them and me shot by the NYPD.