I bake a lot of cupcakes, so I feel like this is a solid offer.
Have you heard of the Bechdel Test? You know, the litmus test for women in entertainment made famous in a comic strip. It simply requires that a film or show feature 1) two+ women who 2) have at least one conversation with one another 3) about something other than a man/men. And a huge HUGE majority of movies (even ones for women) fail this test.
A couple weeks ago, my BFF sent me a text telling me someone had made a TV show about us*. I had to watch and I think NBC’s new comedy Best Friends Forever might make Bechdel Testers happy**. The show written by and starring Lennon Parham and Jessica St. Clair is tagged as a “boy meets girl’s best friend” comedy and is clearly making some accommodation to typical chick-flickery (i.e. Lennon’s boyfriend has a central role, the ladies watch Steel Magnolias, etc.). It also does a lot more, however, with female friendship and its centrality to women’s experiences. For example, even in the promotional photo (above) you’ll notice that while Lennon’s boyfriend Joe is in the picture he’s not in the photo Lennon and Jessica are taking. This is actually about them and their love. They even turn that Steel Magnolias cliche on its ear, making fun of Shelby. Meanwhile, Joe’s doing wikipedia research trying to fit in with them. Like in Bridesmaids, you’ll immediately notice a lot of slapstick, body/bawdy humor, and inside jokes demonstrating that 1) these women are close and comfortable with each other and 2) they’re not trying to impress us with their prettiness. The show has been compared to Laverne & Shirley and Bitch Flicks also gave it a solid write-up.
I could go on and on, but I just want you to watch the show and see for yourself. According to TvLine’s Renewal Scorecard this show’s future looks grim. Watch please and support. Wednesday 8:30 on NBC. I even made it easy:
*Obviously not literally, but within the last year, my BFF and I actually did eat ice cream and watch Steel Magnolias. And I kind of wish I was crashing on her couch.
**The first three episodes admittedly focus a lot on Jess’s divorce and her recovering. That’s natural and has a lot to do with establishing character and plot. The show also appears to be laying the groundwork for moving away from that into more of the backstory and future of the best friendship (I hope!).
4/28 UPDATE: 1) I tweeted my post “Watch BFF and I Will Be Yours” to Lennon Parham and Jessica St. Clair. The former retweeted it and the latter replied that “We are already yours! xo” I might die of happiness!
2) NBC canceled the show already and isn’t airing the rest of the episodes. I am irrationally sad. What jerks!
5/11 UPDATE: The show has been officially canceled. But the last two episodes are airing June 1st at 8:00. Watch them. Do it.