Blank My Life is quirky and puzzling. What begins as a series of vignettes in the first two seasons evolves into a full throttle series in Season Three. And it works. A ridiculous premis like accidentally killing your GBF and then moving to Ohio from NYC makes for compelling, if uneven, viewing.
Lead character Susan is irritating, cute, and self-absorbed. BFF Brendan is equally self-absorbed, but sympathetic due to being dead and stuck in Ohio until something is resolved. But what?
I only watched a handful of episodes of Girls because I didn’t like or find interesting any of the characters. This is better, but Susan’s self-absorbed journey puts her squarely in Lena Dunham territory. The difference is my willingness to empathize with her clear unresolved grief about losing Brendan. I’ve lost two close gay male friends, one in 2007, and one in 2018. I am still inconsolable at times even as life marches onward. I think writer/creator Alex Spieth is aware of Susan’s flaws and unlikeabile traits; she leans into them, but doesn’t lose sight of the character’s fucked-upness.
Spieth is a Carnegie Mellon alum and Pittsburgh shout-outs permeate all three seasons. She seems all kinds of interesting. She’s from Nashville. Interestingly, when I ran away in my mid-twenties, I ended up about an hour outside of Nashville in Western Kentucky. That’s a thoughtful inversion of fictional Susan’s story.
Susan has been labeled bi-curious after she has an affair with Genevieve ((rebeca) Rad), but I’m more comfortable describing her as bisexual without a modifier until the character sets us straight. Susan’s hangups, angst, and grief spill right into this new relationship. That goes about as well as you’d expect.
If you are looking for a quirky exploration of 20-something with queer (and undead) influences, you’ll appreciate this. I’m invested in Susan and want to see if she can carry another season minus her bff and ex-boyfriend. Can she grow up?
And can we PLEASE have a bisexual woman’s story without the tropes?