Younger Makes Me Feel Older
About the new show “Younger” on TV Land I have just two words to share: Innovative Television. Actually, I have many more words to share about it, some of which comprise the following article (or blog, or post — what the heck are they calling these things nowadays?). This is a timely show that captures the essence of contemporary life, and that really speaks to this generation. Because when I think “contemporary life” and “this generation,” I think TV Land.
There is no need for me to give a plot synopsis here. It’s about a woman named Liza who is in her forties. Recently divorced and with a daughter in college abroad, she finds herself on her own for the first time in a long time. She tries to get a job in publishing, the field in which she had worked before she had a family, but finds it difficult to get hired for an entry level position at her age. Encouraged by her friend Maggie (played by the incomparable Debbie Mazar, more on her below), and by a compliment from a cute guy at a bar who thinks she is much younger than she is, Liza decides to give herself a makeover and pretend she is 26 in order to land the job. She gets it, but now she has this secret about her real age that she is keeping from her boss, her new friend at work, and the afore mentioned cute guy from the bar who she starts seeing. Hilarity, as they say, ensues.
If the above outline doesn’t lure you in, though that seems an utter impossibility, then how about this review from Rotten Tomatoes: “Darren Star’s witty writing and Sutton Foster’s charisma help elevate Younger above some of TV Land’s previous sitcoms.” When I think “Darren Star,” I think “witty,” and when I think “TV Land’s previous sitcoms,” not much comes to mind.
Debbie Mazar deserves a lifetime achievement award of some sort. She is one of very few actresses that some people recognize by name who has a lisp. Unfortunately, people with speech impediments are very marginalized in Hollywood. As strides are made for equality in Hollywood in other respects, let’s hope this is not something that falls by the wayside. All voices deserve to be heard, even if they have a lisp, a stutter, or are delivered by way of a high-arched palate.
Kidding aside, “Younger” is relatable because it taps into a feeling I think we all share, no matter what our age, of yearning for the past. When you’re an adolescent, you think about how simple it was to be a kid. When you’re in college, maybe you think of how nice and comfortable your childhood home was, even if your parents did yell in the kitchen all the time. When you’re in your mid twenties, you think about your glory days in college. And if this show is as true to life as it initially appears to be, when you’re in your 40's you wish you had the freedom and opportunity of your mid twenties.
So far I have seen the first three episodes of “Younger,” and I can’t wait to curl up in my pajamas with a bowl of mac and cheese this Saturday night and watch the rest. That may sound like sort of a lame Saturday night, so I want to assure everyone that I have a date on Friday night. I can’t be expected to go out on both nights of the weekend every weekend anymore. For that I would have to be, well, younger.
Note: I realize that the title of this article doesn’t really match the content. When I started writing I planned to write about how “Younger” makes me feel older, but then found myself off of that topic. I kept the original title because it is still true — the fact that the theme of “Younger” resonates with me does make me feel older.