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Good Girls is centered around three women. There's Beth, a mother of four whose relationship with her husband is facing tough times and they're drowning in bills, then there's Annie (Beth's sister), a single mother who barely makes enough money, and lastly, Ruby, their friend whose daughter has kidney failure while she and her husband don't have enough income for better medical care.
The show follows them as they decide to stop playing it safe and end up making some pretty big decisions to help with their financial situations, starting with robbing a local store.
Good Girls is a comedy, crime, and drama show and the point of this article is to give you 5 reasons why you should check it out for yourself.
Fantastic Leading Ladies
This goes for both the characters and the women who play them. As I mentioned at the start of this article, we have three main characters: Beth, Annie, and Ruby. Throughout the first season, we see them use their individual strengths to work together. Most of the time they big each other up and the three women are a support system for each other while still being able to fight their own battles by themselves if need be.
And that's not to say that Good Girls was written or has been created with the deliberate intention to spread this message of girl power and to preach about how amazing women are. Beth, Annie, and Ruby are all flawed in their own way. They're not perfect and although part of their motive throughout the show is to support their family, they also have some selfish motives at times, and the show never denies that. They accept that these women are flawed.
That's what makes these characters so fantastic. There are several layers to them and they're incredibly interesting to watch. Not to mention that the women who play them (Christina Hendricks as Beth, Mae Whitman as Annie, and Retta as Ruby) all do an outstanding job and their talent is undeniable.
There's a Variety of Relationships
Of course, we have our main three women who are all fantastic to watch both as a trio and as duos. You can see how much they all mean to each other and it's just really fun to see them interact.
Each of them also has a relationship with their respective partners which are also fun to watch. There's Matthew Lillard as Dean (Beth's husband), Reno Wilson as Stan (Ruby's husband), and Zach Gilford as Gregg (Annie's ex and the father of her child). In this mix, we have a couple that's gradually falling apart, a loving couple, and a couple that's already broken up. There's a lot of variety which makes all of their interactions entertaining, especially when all of their lives cross over from time to time.
Then there's their relationship with their children, although the most notable ones are probably Ruby and Stan's relationship with their daughter Sara (played by Lidya Jewett) and Annie's relationship with her daughter Sadie (played by Izzy Stannard). Sara is shown to have strong views, be independent, and incredibly smart. While Saide is, unfortunately, being bullied for the way she looks and dresses, she doesn't let that stop her from being herself and she's also shown to be very smart and caring.
Both of these children play massive parts in their mother's lives and the decisions they make throughout. Seeing their relationships really helped to ground why Beth, Annie, and Ruby are doing the things they do throughout.
Lastly, I have to quickly mention the connection the three women, especially Beth, end up sharing with Rio who is a criminal they cross paths with during season one. All of their interactions are entertaining and important while some are hilarious and others are kind of frightening. There's a broad spectrum and it makes for one of the best relationships in the whole show.
It's a good mix of funny and serious.
Good Girls falls under the genres: comedy, crime, and drama but it manages to have a good amount of each. There was never a moment throughout the first season where I felt like one overpowered the other. The writers clearly know when to be funny and when to be serious by making sure that the appropriate tone is used and the other doesn't ruin it.
It was never funny for the sake of being funny which I love, but no matter what the ratio is it always feels like the right amount of comedy, drama, and crime. Overall it makes for a much more entertaining show and really helps with the pacing as every second feels natural and is enjoyable.
It does cliffhangers extremely well.
Quite a few episodes, including the season finale, end with a cliffhanger. They tend to end episodes just as a conversation is about to start or something relatively big was revealed. Every single one makes you want to keep watching. I planned to spread this first season out to make the most of it but with every ending, I couldn't stop, I had to click the next episode. This was especially the case with those that contained cliffhangers.
The thing is they end so suddenly. It's almost like you expect the episode to stop right before or go on for a few minutes longer, but it doesn't. Instead, it stops in this in-between that makes it impossible to say no to another episode. Even if you don't have time to watch it all in one day as I did, it'll just make you excited for when you can sit down to another episode.
It has great pacing and it makes the most of every second.
With a balance of its genres and a good grip on how to end episodes effectively, Good Girls also has great pacing. Every second of every episode is enjoyable and has a clear path onto the next moment. It all connects incredibly well and the layout of the story feels natural, progressive, and is always entertaining.
Every moment feels deliberate and it's clear the cast and crew make the most of every second of storytelling that they have. The fact that they do this is amazing considering it's short. Each episode is on average 44 minutes long and there are 10 in total for season 1. That's not necessarily a surprise, most shows are nowadays, but there's always something going on in Good Girls. Just when you think you have a moment to breathe, something else happens.
There's a lot of content considering there are only ten episodes but it never feels rushed. There's a great balance and having so much rich and interesting content in just 10 episodes is always impressive to me.
- Some LGBTQ+ representation—Throughout the first season, we see that Sadie, Annie's daughter, is trying to figure out who she is and how she identifies. She goes by female pronouns but has a hairstyle and dress style more commonly associated with men. She's often bullied at school for it and a lot of other kids keep trying to figure out whether she's biologically male or female. Also, in Annie's apartment, there's a rainbow flag on one of the walls. Although Sadie's gender identity and/or sexual orientation aren't explicitly talked about, we know through several episodes that she's figuring herself out. The reason it's honourary is because it's not always the main focus and I highly expect that we'll get a lot more, definitive content around Sadie and her identity during season 2.
- The actors—I did talk a little about Christina Hendricks, Mae Whitman, and Retta but every actor in Good Girls seems to give 110% or more to the roles they're playing. I find myself invested in every character, even the ones I'm most likely supposed to dislike. Here is a link to see the list of main and recurring cast members if you want to look into them a little more. Each actor does a fantastic job at bringing these characters to life and every single one of them is entertaining to watch. This also has to be a shoutout to the crew because beyond the acting everything else in Good Girls is easily good from the visuals to the writing to the music and all the things in between.