Back in 2013, Girl Code was named the “Worst Cable TV Show of the Week” by the Parent’s Television Council’s TV Watchdog website for “The crass, disgusting, and downright dangerous “advice” MTV gave to 14-year-old girls on the May 21st episode…”.
While it’s hardly a surprise that an MTV show would earn the disapproval of the PTC, overall I have to disagree with their assessment that Girl Code gives dangerous advice. Maybe that’s easy for me to say, being a twenty-something with no kids, but the show is a comedy – not a how-to guide. Not all commentary applies to everyone, nor is it meant to be taken at face value.
However, the primary reason I vouch for the series, especially this third season, is because Girl Code is having conversations many other TV shows aren’t. Plus they don’t preach to or patronize it’s viewers, it’s more simply a platform for a variety of women to share their experiences, one-liners, and sketch comedy.
Episodes have always bounced around from topic to topic, with varying degrees of seriousness, but it’s really settled into a well-balanced groove this season with a slightly new thematically-focused format. Without losing the laughs, the show is now more capable of diving deeper into subjects, exploring them from a variety of angles and view-points.
So far, this season has tackled going Back to School, Sexuality, Divorce, Strength, Race, Being Healthy, Girl Power, Money, Humor, Vacation, Bad Relationships, and Self Expression. Sub-topics of those episodes included blended families, Feminism, using the B-word, eating right, being financially savvy, self acceptance, diversity, and more.
The Race episode (3×5) in particular was a standout of the series. The show’s diverse cast really shines as they share their own experiences and takes on stereotypes, hair & skin color, and interracial dating without ever pulling the punches.
Sparring us all from the after-school-special lessons, Girl Code more or less tells it like it is, which of course is where much of the humor is derived. After all, life is funny as evidenced by the numerous quotable jokes, gifs, and shareable YouTube clips that surface after every episode.
Obviously Girl Code isn’t going to change the world, nor does it always offer sage wisdom, but I have to imagine that for some girls in the audience it’s meaningful to know that they aren’t the only one’s going through these things. You know, it’s okay to have divorced parents, or to leave negative friends behind, or to be funny, or that you can be both emotional and strong at the same time. And for that, I’d say Girl Code is more often helpful than harmful.
Catch it Wednesday nights at 11pm, online at MTV.com, or any of the million times it re-airs over the course of the week.