Guilty Pleasures: Awkward

Everyone has a guilty pleasure show. Carys Rose Thomas shares why Awkward is hers'.

Carys Rose Thomas
12th March 2018
Image Credit: YouTube

I'm a sucker for a shit show. Ones with terrible one-liners that make you want to crawl into the dusty crack under your bed and never come out again. Ones with 32 year old actors playing high school teens that make you wonder if they really couldn't find someone younger-looking who was willing to take this god-forsaken roll. Yep, all of that. I love it. We all need to indulge in a trashy binge every so often.

Currently, I'm delightfully gorging my way through the high school drama cheese fest that is Awkward. Starring the classic misunderstood invisible teen girl Jenna Hamilton who spends hours reading books and writing her blog because she’s “not like other girls” and somehow has a plethora of super-cool attractive football players fawning over her. I would have adored Jenna if her character had been presented to be aged 12/13, and that is exactly part of the reason why I can’t quite stand her but still sort of adore her now.

I can't stand [the lead] but still sort of adore her

The show’s relationships are predictable and at times I find myself force-binging, just trying to get to the episode when she finally - after 22 episodes - holds some two-dimensional meathead boy's hand. As confusing and pointless as it may seem, this process is somewhat enjoyable.

This whole show is like a low-rent American Waterloo Road meets Glee. Maybe it’s the bringing together of these, two other shit shows I absolutely adored back in the day, that got me hooked on Awkward. I can’t really explain what draws me to all of these disaster shows. But in a time when our society looks about as good as the hate child of Theresa May and Donald Trump would, I think sometimes it's nice to escape into this ridiculous world of overly-saturated shots of grown actors in high school Letterman jackets making corny jokes. And as much as I slate the show with absolute delight, it does have its genuinely redeemable features. It shows a classic school bully's complicated home life and manages to make all the characters - even the protagonist - quite flawed but still likeable, helping them feel that tiny bit more realistic in an otherwise sensationalistic and unrealistic world.

It's nice to escape into this ridiculous world of overly-saturated shots of grown actors in high school Letterman jackets

I must admit, even I am beginning to waver from it. It's a bit like when you start a giant dairy milk bar absolutely ravenous, certain you'll competently devour the bar piece by piece in minutes. Half an hour later you're left with nothing but an empty chocolate wrapper, a horribly full stomach and that one final piece you just can't quite munch. I am on that piece of Awkward. What used to be a good-bad show for me has descended into a full blown bad-bad show. But I'm hooked now, the dramatic like of Jenna Hamilton and her romantic antics is my drug and I shan't quit until I've had every last drop.

The moral of the story is: you should watch Awkward. Well, don't. But do. You know what I mean.

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