'Girls' Star And Creator Lena Dunham: 'People Have Trouble With Vagina'
Writer, director and star Lena Dunham has a new TV series on HBO. “Girls” features four 24-year-old women going through real issues, in a raunchy funny way. Since it’s from a woman’s perspective, it may push boundaries that make regular viewers uncomfortable. Dunham warns she likes to say “vagina” a lot.
“People have trouble with vagina which is why I chose to title several episodes Vagina _____,” Dunham said. “It’s amazing that a medical word like that can cause so much anxiety and I think it’s undeniable that there’s a double standard and that’s threatened people. I think we really try to play with that on the show and challenge people’s expectations of what you can and can’t say. It would give me a lot of faith in people if it made them laugh instead of made them cringe.
Luckily her show is on HBO so she can not only say vagina, but any other dirty word she can think of. “There’s nothing you can’t say but there’s things people don’t want to hear. I want to say vagina all the time.”
When discussing topics pertaining to vaginas, Dunham is careful to be real. She will laugh at things but doesn’t want to belittle them. “We’re always checking in about whether the thing we are writing feels real. Those experiences of going to get STD tested and going to get the morning after pill and having somebody tell you that they’re not sure they want to be your boyfriend, those are experiences that we’re all having. That is the great comfort, seeing your reality. Movies and television have the power to make people feel not alone.”
Being on HBO, the show will feature a healthy amount of nudity too, including Dunham. “I always say that people should be commended for things they do that are actually brave. I’m afraid of heights and diseases and undercooked meat, but for some reason it’s never scared me to be naked or exposed on screen. So it has come really naturally.”
The raw and real look at young girls could also appeal to grown-ups too. They can probably relate, or at least understand. “My hope is that adults are going to connect to it because it’s a sometimes frightening glimpse into where your kids are at but it’s also, these things don’t change so my mom watches it and she says, ‘I remember that moment for me. I remember when I didn’t know what I was going to end up with and I didn’t know if I was going to be a successful artist.’ Those things don’t change whether you’re texting or communicating via Facebook or whatever you’re doing.”
Girls premieres April 15 on HBO.