Such Brave Girls Review 2023 Tv Show Series Cast Crew Online
“Most people aren’t wet for trauma like we are,” Josie (Kat Sadler) tells her sister Billie (Lizzie Davidson) in the pilot of Hulu‘s “Such Brave Girls,” as they scroll through the social media of the girl Billie’s ex is now seeing. “She’s ‘live laugh love.’ We’re…death, silence, hate.”
While it’s arguably the thesis of Hulu’s new series, produced by A24 and Various Artists Ltd., “Such Brave Girls” has a lot of laughs and a lot to love. Sadler created, executive produced, and stars in the gloriously uncomfortable comedy as the perpetually depressed Josie, on a search to find herself with the often misguided help of Billie and their mother Deb (Louise Brealey). Simon Bird directed all six episodes, which premiered on BBC Three in November.
What immediately sets “Such Brave Girls” apart and pops off the screen is the chemistry of real-life sisters Sadler and Davidson, finely tuned to the delightfully unhinged Brealey. Nothing sums the dynamic up better than the girls bursting into the living room in Episode 1 after a disastrous hair-dye job and their mother shouting “Stop being pig women!” while they wrestle on the floor. These three are all each other has, but they’re in good company — or at least like-minded company with similar mental health issues (low self worth!) and coping mechanisms (shopping!).
The series shares connective tissue with “Fleabag”; with its bleak humor, its sexuality, the shared trauma of sisterhood, even the depiction of well-meaning strangers who can never quite understand the inner workings of a nuclear family (in this case, any and every man they cross paths with, including a father who stepped out for tea bags a decade ago and never came back). Deb is the ostensible villain of the show, her issues especially with Josie laid bare, but Brealey plays her so well that she’s irresistibly watchable (not to be conflated with likable), and genuinely hilarious. Her line deliveries and savage punchlines become welcome gifts interspersed throughout the series, the kind that will have the audience bracing for impact before shrieking with laughter. As much as Deb minimizes Josie’s mental health, or urges her daughters to love with less of their hearts, or subjects them to a “weekly weigh-in” it’s written so that Deb herself is the butt of the joke, her cruelty strategically defused by welcome and disarming humor (“I won’t have any eating disorders in this house!” she declares, after invoking the impending weigh-in).
Sadler’s comic voice and lived experience permeate the series, which demands that viewers find comfort in discomfort. From casual talk of self harm to walking in on her mother’s sex life to giving her sister a pregnancy test, don’t expect a relief from the day-to-day horrors of Josie’s life. In that way, “Such Brave Girls” can never be accused of inauthenticity or misrepresenting itself (look no further than the title card, with the show name written via shower hairs as they dry and slide down the tile).
It’s one of those shows where the prime complaint is that it’s over too quickly. There might have been room with eight or 10 episodes to explore more outside the central trio or go deep into their dysfunctional personal lives (I’d settle for even one single scene at Billie’s job, which entails dressing up a lot like Elphaba to supervise children at play). Instead we hop onto a narrative train already fully in motion, with Billie in a volatile situationship, Josie separated from an offscreen ex who then returns, Deb getting serious with a new man whom she brings home to meet her daughters. “Such Brave Girls” feels shuttered from the world immediately outside the girls’ door, but it’s also a glimpse into Sadler’s mind, where the show’s insular nature works in its favor. There’s nothing braver than baring your darkest thoughts and trying to laugh at them — and nothing better than a sister, a mother, or an audience accepting you just the same afterward.