Critical Condition: Insecure

Insecure (SoHo, 9.00 Thursdays)

“Issa (Issa Rae) has a job she’s ambivalent about, a boyfriend she contemplates breaking up with daily, and a best friend who’s basically a lifeline. In other words, she’s in her 20s. If the premise of Insecure sounds like scant scaffolding to hang a series on in 2016, the execution is something else. Co-creator/co-writer/star Rae, who first gained notice for the excellent web series Awkward Black Girl, has delivered a fresh, sharp-edged comedy that swerves past nearly every cliché.” — Entertainment Weekly.

“Small-scale sitcoms based on the lives of their creators have long been a mainstay of TV—LouieBetter ThingsGirls, Curb Your EnthusiasmMaron. Mostly, these semi-autobiographical shows are character-driven and have an acidic, self-deprecating way of examining their stars. HBO’s Insecure is different. Tasked with scaling up her hit webseries Awkward Black Girl for HBO, Issa Rae has elected to take a positive and insightful approach, and the result is a rare TV treasure.” — The Atlantic.

“It’s a smart and often funny look at young people looking for love and professional satisfaction in Los Angeles, which is about as common a genre as TV has to offer these days. But taken in the totality of the TV landscape, Rae’s voice is one that wasn’t being heard and that voice is what makes Insecure stand out, not necessarily as better than the Emmy winners or critical favorites in the field, but as gratifyingly distinguishable.” — The Hollywood Reporter.

Insecure stands out, even among a very strong crop of new television comedies. Its stories of buppie frustration and romance, set in Los Angeles, aren’t revolutionary, but they’re funny and moving, powered by Ms. Rae’s ear for dialogue of a kind of crystalline, pitch-perfect profanity.” — New York Times.

“Rae came to HBO after Lena Dunham’s Girls sparked a series of at times heated conversations about minority representation on premium television. Insecure, co-created with veteran comedian Larry Wilmore, is the result — a show that cannot help but carry with it the burden of being a standard-bearer for diverse voices on television, even as it attempts to be, you know, funny.” — Variety.

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