Netflix’s new mother-daughter drama, Ginny & Georgia, is quite possibly better than Gilmore Girls. Holy Lauren Graham, I’m going to regret writing that. Okay, it’s not better, it’s different. It makes minorities into the majority. And does so without wanting or needing praise. It just does it — organically and seamlessly. Ginny and Georgia just passed Tiger King as the #1 most-watched Netflix show ever for most days running, beating the King’s 27-day streak. So yes, they might have upset Taylor Swift — and her criticism of that line in the show is valid — but they dethroned Tiger King, and for that alone, we owe them. We had a chance to sit down with the cast to discuss all things Ginny, Georgia, Rory, and Lorelai.
Antonia Gentry (“Ginny”), Brianne Howey (“Georgia”), Sara Waisglass (“Maxine”), and Felix Mallard (“Marcus”) revealed what’s so special about their show, and also if they’d rather go on a road trip with Ginny & Georgia or the Gilmore Girls.
While Gilmore Girls locked in the witty, fast, pop culture dialogue, Ginny & Georgia has a slightly darker undertone. Ginny’s mom, Georgia, might be a murderer (hello evil plant — you’ll know when you watch that scene). Ginny & Georgia is sort of like what Gilmore Girls would have been if Lorelai was an evil gardener/covert murderer running amok in Stars Hollow.
By now, you’ve no doubt heard about Taylor Swift’s recent criticism of the show. One of the characters made a joke that shamed Swift for her dating history, and there was a swift wrath brought down on the show. Swift is right — it’s not a joke we should be making. But let’s be honest: If we culled through all the dialogue in Gilmore Girls, I’m sure we would also find a joke that’s not great. Granted, Gilmore Girls was from a different time, and it’s 2021, so we hope that shows about empowering women, empower women, but we still are learning.
Most importantly, we cannot diminish the other great points about this show. Antonia Gentry (“Ginny”) revealed that this show made her feel represented for the first time. There are not many shows being led by young women of color or Black women. You can probably count them on one hand. Gentry shared with us how showrunner Sarah Lampert made sure Ginny’s voice and experience were authentic. How? Simple: She asked Gentry.
In an Instagram post, Gentry wrote, “I never would have imagined something like this as a young girl — that is, having a voice capable of impact. It is so meaningful to see the hundreds of messages from fans in my inbox who feel seen, heard and understood because of the show and its characters…. As someone who grew up feeling voiceless and unimportant, and who did not see herself reflected on screen, Ginny Miller was finally a reprieve. Finally, a character who was just as confused and imperfect as I was gets a chance to exist. Ginny Miller, though fictional, is a character who reflects all of life’s contradictions and imperfections.”
The show tackles an array of important topics — LGBTQ+, mental health, body image, race, and more — without seeming like an after-school special. The diversity in the show feels authentic. Probably because as Gentry said, it’s based on some of her real-life experiences.
So don’t get mad at me, but Ginny & Georgia represents the underrepresented in a way Gilmore Girls never did. (Anyone else recall the Asian-themed goodbye party for Rory, where white people are dressed in kimonos and ate Asian take-out? White people eating Chinese food is not diversity.) Recently, Priyanka Chopra wrote in her book that growing up she loved Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but often wondered what it would have been like growing up with role models who looked like her.
Now about that road trip: While most of the cast knew who they wanted on the road trip with them definitively, Gentry said, “If it’s a big enough bus, why not everyone? So yes, there’s room enough for everyone — Ginny, Lorelai, Rory, Taylor, and Georgia. But not Tiger King. Sorry. There are new queens in town, Tiger King. And one of them will probably murder you with a ficus. Oops, spoiler alert. So who would they rather go on a road trip with? Would you rather I tell you, or would you rather watch? Sorry, you’ll have to watch to find out.