Magazine article Out

On the Cringe

Magazine article Out

On the Cringe

Article excerpt

AWKWARDS TEEN ANGST IS APPEALING, NO MATTER WHAT YOUR AGE.

Even before the first episode of Awfcwardaired,creatorLauren Iungerich knew that her series about a teenage girl would be popular outside the walls of high schools. "When I cast Molly Tarlov," she remembers, "I said, 'You're going to be a gay icon.' "

It isn't just Tarlov, who's deliciously campy as the evil cheerleader Sadie Saxton, that gives the show appeal beyond the teenage demographic. It's the sharp writing, the rapid-fire dialogue, and the problems that our heroine, Jenna Hamilton (Ashley Rickards), faces each week; as Iungerich puts it, "the things she's confronting are things you can still be confronting at 25 or 35."

So while grown-ups might not fret about scoring a date to the prom, trying to figure out whether a hot guy - like Jenna's own Romeo, the sweet, wishy-washy Matty McKibben (Beau Mirchoff)- is worth pursuing remains relatable long after graduation. Because Jenna is your classic girl next door - scrutinized after what people think was an unsuccessful suicide attempt - her trials aren't just fun to watch, they're easy to empathize with.

Rickards pegs the show's appeal to the way that Iungerich writes her characters. …

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