Amazon’s new original series Good Girls Revolt – developed by former journalist Dana Calvoe (Narcos) – follows the careers of a group of young female researchers at a fictitious magazine, News of the Week, during the counterculture days of 1969. Inspired by the book The Good Girls Revolt by Lynn Povich, which examined the complaint, filed with the EEOC by a dozen female researchers who claimed their civil rights were being violated by a male-only policy of reporters at the magazine.
While Good Girls Revolt addresses not only the character’s feminist awakening, but also the other issues of the time; race relations, drug and alcohol abuse. However, the show is certainly not a didactic history lesion, but rather is sexy with equal parts male and female gaze; it’s compelling entertainment—irresistible beyond one’s control, and it’s surprisingly well constructe. A mixture of the Mad Men stylish nostalgia but not too self aware (seeing employees smoke in the office is amusing but soon tiresome). Ultimately, it’s the show’s characters that kept me coming back for the first ten episodes, who are richly drawn and delightfully distinct. Notably Genevieve Angelson as the impulsive and ambitious Patti who wants more than research—she longs to be a reporter. Also Anna Camp as Jane, a girl in search of a husband who realizes that she’s actually a career girl with a lot to offer; and Erin Drake as the awkward, über-sweet and unhappily-married Cindy who wants to be a novelist. It is Drake who has the most interesting journey; this is a performance that should gain some attention. This fun and nostalgic period piece is sadly quite relevant 40 years later as we witness the first woman running for president refereed to as a “nasty woman” by her presidential opponent. We still have a long way to go, yet Good Girls Revolt reminds us how far we’ve come.
Good Girls Revolt appears on Amazon Prime streaming, Friday, October 28, 2016.