How to watch HBO’s Girls… without HBO?

Either you really do believe Lena Dunham (center, above) is the voice of our generation, or you’re one of her peers who regards her with an “unstable blend of worship, envy, and disdain,” tuning in in case her show flops (against all media predictions); or in all sincerity, you’re banking on this one being the Great Brooklyn Hope after the disappointments of CBS’s 2 Broke Girls and MTV’s I Just Want My Pants Back, oh, and HBO’s last try with How to Make it in America. Whatever the reason, you’re determined to watch HBO’s Girls when it debuts Sunday, April 15, 10:30 E.S.T.  Ironically, the show that just might capture what it’s really like to be young, broke and hapless in BK, airs on a channel you can’t afford. 

How are you going to make this happen? Many of us are already scheming to identify an ex-factor benefactor, like a friend’s rich older brother who rocks a screen projector in his Murray Hill frat house, or that “uncle,” AKA distant family friend you never had coffee with, who happens to own a 65-inch high def. How ‘bout that trustafarian you haven’t spoken to since college who you’re convinced must be hiding luxury Time Warner amenities inside his Bushwick slum?

Maybe these hook-ups are imaginary? You can always team up with your girlfriends and split HBO ($14.95 a month on top of whatever you already pay for cable), so every Sunday night, y’all can do potluck and 40 ounces and dress up like, well, yourselves for a self-referential slumber party. Gab about the show’s accuracies and inaccuracies, and relate your own horror stories of bad sex with Brooklyn deadbeats, fights with the ‘rents, and the week you only ate peanut butter because you didn’t have money for food.

And then there’s the sponging-off-of-your-parents solution. If they subscribe to HBO, you can snag their cable account number to stream the show on HBOgo.com. You can access HBOgo.com on a wide range of gadgets — depending on the account holder’s cable provider — including your iPad, iPhone, Android, Xbox360, Roku or Samsung Smart TV. If you own more than two of these, then maybe you shouldn’t be reading this article. The only downside is the show won’t be available to stream on HBO go until the next day, so you’ll have to selectively blindfold yourself  to the words Girls, Lena Dunham, HBO, and vagina, until you’re able to watch it.

Did we miss any other schemes for watching Girls? What’s yours?

Follow Kate @yatinbrooklyn


  1. ryanahamilton

    Try a local bar. I always see places (such as The Counting Room, Brooklyn Winery) screening popular shows (HBO series, Mad Men) on Sunday nights.

  2. Cribbster

    I’d also suggest watching “Tiny Furniture,” her feature from two years ago. It’s streaming on Netflix now, and it’s really a great, great movie.

  3. Tim Donnelly

    Well, of course you COULD torrent it, or anything else for that matter. That’s up to you, but don’t say we didn’t at least try to find some semi-legal alternatives.

  4. AND FURTHERMORE…let’s just take Brooklyn off TV for the next ten years if our only options are whiffing terribly on the character of the borough or unambitious sad-sack losers. Or just bring back Bored to Death.

  5. Woody

    Actually be careful with HBO torrents. HBO is known to follow through with your ISP and if you do it enough, you may find a cease-and-desist letter in your mailbox.

    Instead, try searching file-sharing sites or streaming video sites.

  6. Actually, with HBO Go you can watch shows at the same time as they’re airing on TV.
    I do it every week for Game of Thrones (sponging off a friend’s parents!)

  7. landowner

    Yep, even those who are broke are assumed to still have college degrees and parents who can afford HBO … yes, this the culture of Girls.

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