“Ginny & Georgia” Season 2 is a prime example that proves that writing is everything. It is 2023, and we are constantly looking for the next best thing to watch while scrolling away on our phones and on OTT platforms. But what has “the next best thing” come to mean? Is it the thing with the best story, the most ingenious visuals, or just the most hype? Our lifestyles are such that Netflix is our most-turned-to recreational activity. In that case, our standards are not that high for what we choose to bombard our senses with. The makers of content definitely know that which is why there is so much mediocrity around us. But once in a while, there is a show like “Ginny & Georgia” that shows us the standards we should have. The concept of it is not new or fresh, but the writer exhibits a genuine understanding of the characters and their journey. We used to believe that covering every detail was boring. It turns out people just weren’t doing it right.
Watching “Ginny & Georgia” makes us realize why we were left feeling like series like “Never Have I Ever” or “Sex Education” missed the mark. While the second one got episodic and preachy without a strong connecting thread, at least in the later seasons, the first one just lacked a soul. All of the shows reference pop-culture moments constantly, but an educated line needs to be drawn between making it believable as actual “teenager talk” and going overboard for the sake of being funny and woke. Writers not knowing how to toe this line is why we hate the “Gossip Girl” reboot so much. In fact, mastering this finesse is what gives a movie or a series its timeless quality. People who watch this show in the future will not have to rush to Google everything that is being said and can just enjoy the references in relevance to the story. But this is just one of the lesser points of what makes this such a good show.
We can all agree that the relationship between the mother and the daughter is at the heart of the show, and it has been beautifully captured with all of its highs and lows, gratitude and disappointment, and the love that we can neither live with nor live without. It is probably one of the best-kept secrets that, for most women, mothers are the first template for everything they want to be as well as everything they don’t. Ginny had always admired her mother for her confidence, and her ability to fit in wherever she was and just get what she wanted—exactly the things that she struggled with. But then again, the reason Georgia was like that was that she had a very different moral compass from Ginny’s, which the daughter was well aware of and which was the cause of friction between them throughout. Ginny understood why her mother was the way she was; in fact, she even acknowledged that she probably needed her to be like that. But Ginny had grown up in a world where she did not always have to be on guard. The prevalent moral code of conduct, one that doesn’t take the limited options of the socially disadvantaged into account and one that doesn’t always care for their justice either, was what Ginny had believed in all her life. Her greatest conflict was probably her awareness of the system’s flaws but inability to accept anything else.
Neither Georgia nor Ginny ever fit in where they want to. But while the latter saw it as a flaw, the former didn’t care and learned enough to be a chameleon and get what she wanted. We are not sure if it was age or experience, but Georgia understood that “fitting in” was a myth. People followed certain codes of conduct that brought them together as a group, but intrinsically, each and every one of them struggled. Ellen Baker struggled with the stress of parenting two bratty teenagers, and Cynthia struggled with maintaining an image of perfection, one that ceases to matter when she stands the risk of losing who she loved most. People like Bracia found it difficult to be taken seriously due to their race, and then there were people like Abby who struggled to be ‘good’ enough. Yet, that did not stop them from becoming friends by finding a sliver of common ground with each other. Because, in most cases, that is enough. The similarity might give you that initial connection, but it is the curiosity and tolerance towards our differences that make the relationships last. But Ginny was yet to learn that. Kudos to the writer for making sure that the audience learned this lesson while the protagonist stayed clueless.
However, the point we are trying to make is that it was the fear of this very difference, the lack of control it gave Ginny over her own emotions and her life, that made her resent her mother. We believe it was in “Ginny & Georgia” Season 1 that somebody said that “teenage is an emotionally busy time.” This series might really be one of the more accurate depictions of teenagers that we have seen in recent times. The complexity of seemingly simple emotions, the understanding of both sides of the story yet the struggle to embrace them, the discovery of oneself and one’s identity in the world while learning the lessons to fight for it—everything was captured beautifully.
We will repeat what we said earlier: writing is everything, and it takes a genuine love and honesty for the craft to create something like “Ginny and Georgia.” It covers all of its bases, though we really want to see more of Georgia’s emotional struggle. Don’t get us wrong; we see her love for her daughter, her journey through the past, and her struggle to sleep at night. But we get the feeling that this is just the surface. We can’t explain it, but just like Ginny, we are confused by Georgia’s ability to cover things up behind Julia Roberts’ smile. We, too, want to delve deeper. But knowing what the writers are capable of, we know we will get to see that soon enough. We don’t say this often, but this series is a fine work of art and deserves much more hype than what it is getting. May God bless us with more such series where the makers actually care for the audience rather than a streaming platform’s watch hours.