Dollface - Review
Hulu's brand new comedy web series dropped on Friday. This bingeable masterpiece explores female friendships in full detail and how they're sometimes disregarded when relationships are instead put first.
Kat Dennings (2 Broke Girls, Thor) plays the starring role as Jules, an introverted web designer who is suddenly dumped by her boyfriend of five years. With her heart utterly broken and her world turned upside down, she is reintroduced into the world of women and must learn to navigate through the trials and tribulations that come along with it. The first step is rekindling the friendships that she left behind so long ago. The series also features Brenda Song, Shay Mitchell and Esther Povistky as Jules' new/old friends who give her a helping hand and lots of support during her new single lifestyle.
The amazing thing about Dollface is the fact that it's produced by women, for women. Australian filmstar Margot Robbie acts as an executive producer (as well as making a short cameo role in episode 8), along with Dennings and a long list of others. New talent Jordan Weiss is the show's creator, with Dollface being her first writing credit - a really impressive feat considering how out-of-the-box the series is. Showrunner Ira Ungerleider described how they had "half the show directed by women", as well as featuring female writers, female camera operators and female audio assistants, which is just awesome. The true message behind the show is all about women supporting women which is entirely prevalent throughout.
Much like other comedy series, the core aspect is featuring a 'fab four' of female characters (the first that comes to mind is Sex and the City), and audiences can find themselves in each of Dollface's main characters. Jules is awkward, quiet and almost nerdy. Madison is a control freak who loves to be organised and share her opinion. Stella is laidback and fun, she's most certainly the coolest of the group. And Izzy (or should we say Alison) is just plain weird. These are characters that we can relate to and have fun with. I myself am very much a "Jules" (and proud). But I would be lying if I wasn't a little bit of Izzy and Madison as well. The strong bond of complicated friendship between these women is aspirational and something that viewers will either see in their own relationships or wish to find in the future.
One area that must be discussed is the magical elements and blending of fantasy and reality used in the friendship dramedy. The exaggerated sequences of surrealism used to exemplify Jules' wild imagination is just enamouring to watch. It's fun and it's fresh, taking you out the original narrative for just a moment to demonstrate how life isn't always so two-dimensional. My personal favourite was in episode 9 which was constructed around The Wizard of Oz, a trope that has often been used in many different TV shows however Dollface added an extra pinch of feminism by basing the journey of the storyline around a women's march. From an animated Cat Lady making a common appearance and plenty of dream sequences, the creative team behind Dollface has been so clever in making their version of a comedy series completely different.
Before it's release, Dollface was awaited by many with excitement and fervour and it's clear to see that it was worth the long wait. Kat Dennings truly shines in a role that does hold similarities to the infamous Max Black but Jules really allows her to explore and show her true comedic talent without being held back. Accompanied with Song, Mitchell and Povistsky, the four women have superb chemistry. Dollface's first season was genuinely lots of fun nonetheless 10 episodes is simply not enough! The finale closed quite openly, leaving plenty of room for Jules and the gang to develop and evolve as women even further.