Commentary: HBO’s Girls Is Not A Show About Velociraptors


Every website on the internet has posted some sort of detailed reaction to the new HBO series Girls – I just finished reading the ones on,, The Will & Grace Fanfic Geocities site, and the Wikipedia page for “Charlemagne” – and I had originally planned to write my own, but foolishly, I decided to wait until more than one episode of the series aired before launching into a lengthy, passionate diatribe about the show’s cultural implications.

After the second episode aired, I was preparing to gather my thoughts into an unnecessarily verbose piece about the thirty-minute comedy, but unfortunately, every conceivable argument that anyone could possibly make about the show has already been taken: Girls is a refreshingly honest triumph, Girls is a glorified paean to privilege, Girls is a gender breakthrough, Girls patronizes the gender, the gender is irrelevant to Girls, Girls proves that girls are just as funny and gross as guys, any arguments that Girls “proves” anything about the funnyness of girls is a patronizing implicit endorsement of the “girls aren’t funny” archetype, backlash towards Girls, backlash towards the backlash of Girls, frontlash towards the backlash of Girls, sidewayslash to the frontlash of Girls that doesn’t endorse the backlash towards the backlash-lash, and so on, including the numerous lengthy, phenomenally well-written passionate pieces arguing that the mere existence of all these lengthy passionate pieces about Girls misses the point entirely.

After scouring the internet nonstop for the past week, I’ve confirmed that there is only one argument in the entire English language that hasn’t been made yet about the show Girls, so it’s the only argument I’m left with to make here:

HBO’s Girls is not a show about velociraptors.

Here are three incontrovertible reasons why the show Girls is not actually a show about velociraptors – please feel free to argue away in the comments, and don’t forget to Facebook and Tweet this post so we can continue arguing about this thirty-minute HBO comedy that’s aired for two episodes:

1. There are no velociraptors on the show Girls.

First and foremost, we are two episodes into the series now, and not ONE velociraptor has yet to make an appearance on the show Girls. Even in today’s self-obsessed, social-media dystopian Twitterverse of post-postmodernism, the lifeblood of any televised program runs through the veins of its evidently main character-vessels; in the case of the show Girls, none of these said vessels happen to cast a velociraptor-shaped umbra, solidifying the show’s still-cooling molten core as eminently raptor-free.

In short, were Girls intended to be a show about velociraptors, television history strongly suggests that one of these creatures would’ve appeared in an area visible to us viewers within the show’s maiden pair of episodes, the champagne bottle still freshly-cracked from its critical-christening. Since this has thusfar failed to be the case, we can almost certainly conclude that the show’s velociraptor involvement is, and shall remain, minimum at best.

2. The girls on Girls are not secretly velociraptors in human masks.

Predictably, much of the blogger-backlash towards Girls has centered around the possibility that the girls on the show may appear to be girls at the moment, but they are, in fact, velociraptors wearing elaborate human-girl costumes equipped with voice synthesizers to make them sound like humans. This sort of blogger pessimism is highly predictable – ANY show that gets lauded too loudly for its non-involvement of velociraptors will surely by nature incite some backlash from writers insisting that it does (free pageviews!) – but these bloggers, and nay, even the bloggers they’re blogging about, and even the bloggers that those bloggers have ever associated with, are all missing the point.

Not only are there no velociraptors on the show Girls, but furthermore, human costumes for velociraptors equipped with devices capable of perfectly mimicking human speech simply do not exist, nor should these theoretical devices be made the fulcrum of EVERY heavy-handed editorial piece about Girls from bloggers who are either vindictive towards Ms. Dunham’s success or flat-out clueless. We’ve heard it all before, bloggers, and it’s time to move on; move out of your mother’s basement, and into your father’s ground floor.

3. Girls is not symbolically a show about velociraptors any more than it is literally a show about velociraptors.

The societal implications of Girls – both within the world of the show and those connoted by the show’s mere existence – are numerous and complicated, and yet, they’ve provided equally aerodynamic argument-bullets to both sides of the Girls-inspired moral shooting-battle. And yet where, within this complex moral genome, are we supposed to cram a raptor-shaped puzzle piece?

My point is, it’s easy to say that Girls is symbolically a show about velociraptors; in this soundbyte-obsessed, Rush Limbaugh-aided birth control war we call an earth, a girl’s identity is assailed and eroded on a near-daily basis, so who’s to even say what a ‘girl’ is, let alone that one is or is not a velociraptor? Furthermore, while the raptor may indeed be the universal literary symbol for “privilege” – its razor-sharp claws being the ancient animal equivalent of Ms. Dunham’s ivory tower upbringing – the show Girls fails to praise nor judge these theoretical raptor-claws; the raptor-claws are simply there, just as they are in life, and girls, like anyone, must simply deal with them.

Thus, the show is not endorsing, tacitly or untacitly, the notion of these claws’ necessity, and with them, the rest of the raptor. And we’re to judge Dunham on this point as though she’s diligently tied her own moral noose? Please.

In conclusion, Girls is a show about human female girls, and not the extinct dinosaur velociraptors. There are no velociraptors on the show, the girls on the show are not secretly velociraptors in elaborate costumes masquerading as girls, and the show involves no definitive metaphorical raptors any more than living physical ones. It is, by any estimation, a thirty-minute comedy about girls; hence, its characteristically postmodernly-unironic title. And that’s one moral that remains very much unextinct.

That’s it! That’s the last argument, it’s all covered. Now we can watch the f*cking show.

related stories
you might like
Powered By Zergnet