One of the things I miss here in Germany (or in most of Europe for that matter) is the holy grail of television: The 30 minute comedy. Sure, everyone fawns over Succession or Breaking Bad or whatever high-profile high-stakes drama is coming out – I know I do! – but damn, without 30 minute comedies TV would be a hella sad medium.

The thing is: Comedy is effing hard. It’s hard to make – but it’s also hard to enjoy. Back when 30rock was on the air, it was my show. There was nothing else out there with humour quite as far up my alley as Tina Fey’s TV show about making a TV show. And that had little to do with the topic as much as the humour, the music, the joke density…

When “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” rolled along (also helmed by Fey), I was super happy, and while I loved that show, it was too out there to truly scratch my 30rock itch. By the time the fourth season rolled around, I had fallen out of love with Kimmy, Titus and the gang hard.

If you’re reading this and you, like me, have a 30rock-shaped hole where your heart used to be (I think Jack Donaghy put mine in a suit and then a microwave), please give Girls5eva a try. The pitch is deviously simple: A girl band from the 90s unexpectedly reunites after their song is sampled by a well-known artist. They try to rebuild their former glory, but there’s only one catch: They’re not 20 anymore…

Girls5eva (run by Meredith Scardino, who was, amongst others, a staff writer on Kimmy Schmidt) starts off as a riff on showbiz, kind of reminiscent of 30rock. Our girls are weird, their music is horrible, yet everyone they meet is somehow weirder and more horrible. But over the course of its (currently) three-season run, the show gradually sheds its 30rock-like roots and turns into something better: A show about four women who want to make art on their own terms, without abusive men telling them how to do it. In that way, it’s an incredibly empowering show about the female perspective – and a hilarious one to boot.

I missed this show because it was on peacock and as a European, it was inaccessible to me. who the hell has that?! But now that it’s on Netflix and it only has 15ish episodes, it’s something you should really give a try. I binged the entire thing (I’m currently unemployed and I have a fever, ich darf das!!) and wholeheartedly recommend it.


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