TV Review: Awkward. (5×13) “I’m the Kind of Girl Who Found Her Voice in College”


Well everyone, we’re in the home stretch. The second half of season five will be the end of Awkward. as we know it, and I can’t say I’m sorry about that; many of the show’s hilarious earlier moments have become tired bits, and I can barely stomach Jenna’s obsession with Matty. Rather than fumble through showing us what each of the characters is up to in their first year of college, the writers chose to do a time jump, throwing us into a situation where a lot of things have changed and we don’t know why just yet. Let’s see where everyone is:

    According to Jenna, college is helping her become the person she was meant to be. Being as she came home demanding hemp milk and sporting a holier-than-thou attitude, that person is a giant tool. She and Matty are no longer together, for reasons we’re not allowed to know yet. As a result, Jenna’s social media went dark after October of the previous year.
    Lacey and Kevin are busy with their new baby, another thing that Jenna mopes about.
    Lissa seems to be the happiest out of everyone. She’s doubling as the Hamiltons’ nanny and an atonercize instructor. She’s been back with Jake for six months.
    Back from her first year at NYU, our girl T is sporting some serious threads — ones that are insanely expensive for a college freshman living in New York. Within the past year, she’s become best friends with Sadie and starts bailing on Jenna’s sleepovers in favor of trustifarian parties. She and Adam have since broken up.
    Sadie is her usual self until she gets a reality check. Sergio has a new girlfriend and will not be hooking up with Sadie anytime soon (for now).
  • JAKE
    Jake is working at the local country club and is excited to see Matty for the summer, though he too has been kept in the dark about the Jenna/Matty break up.

Now, on to the story: Jenna has an internship with Idea Bin this summer. Her manager is Aaron “My Hair Looks Sexy Pushed Back” Samuels, and he is unimpressed by Jenna’s lack of social media and personal branding. Jenna decides that nothing is going to shake her confidence in her new role. Enter ex-boyfriend Luke, her new coworker. She describes him as, “The perfect guy, the one that got away, the one who reminded me what an immature mess I was in high school.” REALITY CHECK: Luke was a pretentious, self-important college freshman who made Jenna feel bad about her high school life while she was still in high school. I never thought I’d say this, but the problem in that case wasn’t Jenna, it was Luke. This show needs to stop touting nonsense like this.

According to Luke, he gave Jenna’s application a little nudge so she got the internship. Jenna’s confidence is further shaken when Aaron “MHLSPB” Samuels says that her essay on how misconceptions affect people (based on her own non-suicide incident) has no stakes because she didn’t actually try to commit suicide.

Later that night at a Palos Hills party, Jenna calls someone out for being a sloppy rando. “That’s my girlfriend,” an annoyed Matty tells her. Jenna is upset by Matty’s current frat boy status. Don’t worry, Matty isn’t pleased with her either: “This pretentious bullshit is exactly what I expected of you…pretentious because you’ve turned into some self-righteous hippie chick thinking you’re better than everyone while you’re standing there with that stupid thing hanging out of your nose.” Matty said it, not me. Jenna gets upset, as she is the only one allowed to openly judge others.

Lacey soothes some of Jenna’s fears by explaining, “When everyone stops trying to act like adults, they’ll stop acting like such children.” Invigorated by her mother’s words, Jenna goes to Idea Bin to work on her essay, entitiled “I’m the Kind of Girl Who Found Her Voice in College.” Luke arrives and further helps Jenna by explaining that everyone the light touches in Idea Bin has been a product of nepotism at some point or another. He pushed her application because he believes in her. They end up hooking up on the couch.

The episode of Awkward. was a decent start to this half of season five, though I do think there was too much Jenna and not enough of the other characters. Most of that was a result of the time jump. We had to check in and establish where everyone was before giving them their own storylines. I have a bit of hope for the future. However, the time jump was the smartest thing they could have done in their situation, since they did the more realistic thing and had the kids go to separate colleges — that many settings and storylines would have been way too much to take.

Episode Rating: 6/10.

Bri is a 25-year-old born and raised in the swamps of Jersey. Just kidding, she lives at least twenty minutes from those swamps. She’s a publishing professional that moonlights as a writer. She enjoys going to concerts (anything from Rooney to Springsteen to NKOTBSB), roadtripping, and complaining that she truly belongs in the 1950’s, the 1920′s, or the 1980′s depending on her mood. She definitely owns more books than she should and reads every chance she gets. If you stop hearing from her, it’s because the book piles have fallen over and smothered her to death in the night. You can contact her at Twitter: @bri_lockhart