Hulu’s Shrill is powerful, empowering

Courtesy of Allyson Riggs/Hulu
Aidy Bryant plays Annie Easton, based on the original Shrill book’s author, Lindy West.

Hallie Lauer | News Editor

03/28/19

I’m going to be honest with you. I haven’t finished the entire first season of Shrill yet. Granted, there are only six episodes which are each about 24 minutes, and if I were the type of girl that had the time to sit down and binge the entire season in one sitting, I would. Unfortunately, I am not that type of girl.

However, I have this wonderful platform where I get to rave about a show unlike any other I’ve seen in my 21 years of living.

Shrill is a Hulu original TV show about Annie, played by SNL’s Aidy Bryant, a plus-sized aspiring magazine journalist. But this isn’t a show about her journey to lose the weight and become the top writer where she works. This is a story about a real person, and it mostly is real. Shrill is based off the 2016 memoir of the same name written by Lindy West.

The first episode dives right into the ups and downs of life when Annie realized her morning-after pill has failed because she is over 175 pounds. We spend the rest of the first episode watching Annie handle that particular situation.

Throughout the rest of the episodes, Annie deals with a sick parent, an over-the-top jerk of a boss, a less-than-stellar “boyfriend” and an internet troll that harasses her about her weight. The audience gets to share all those highs and lows with Annie.

A lot of what this show is about is small victories. Annie in one episode attends a “Fat Babe Pool Party” and gains confidence in herself. In another, she tells off a personal trainer who keeps harassing her by saying, “There’s a small person in there just dying to get out.”

I don’t know that there has ever been a show about a plus-sized character who is well-dressed and isn’t dying to change their shape — despite the majority of the characters, including her mother, trying to get her to. It’s a nice change of pace from watching the Kardashians work out and eat salads all the time.

It loosely takes what Lena Dunham did with the show Girls and builds upon it. But I hate even making that comparison because Shrill is 10 times better than Girls ever was. They both tackle really relevant issues, but they do it in completely different manners. Shrill feels like I know these people; their issues are real and relatable.

There is no word on whether or not Shrill will get a second season, but if I had to bet one way or another, my guess would be that they are going to.

Another plus, this show is actually funny. I found myself laughing out loud, and not that laugh where you actually just blow air out your nose, but a real laugh.

Not only is this show funny, but it does a decent job with representation. Annie’s best friend and roommate Fran is a black lesbian and carries a storyline of her own, rather than just being there to move Annie’s along.

I highly recommend this show. It’s funny, it’s empowering and the episodes are only 24 minutes, give or take. But you don’t have to take my word for it; Rotten Tomatoes gave the show a 90 percent, and you know how stingy they can be.

 

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