Strike.TV has always been open to series tackling the subject of sexuality and gender, with Anyone But Me being included in its initial release and continuing to be one of its most popular and award-winning series to date. And with the premiere of The Real Girl’s Guide to Everything Else, Strike.TV continues its commitment to celebrating and exploring varying lifestyles and relationships.
Centering around a group of four women who are clearly very close friends, it would be simplistic to say this series is an ‘ethnic Sex in the City.’ The series itself in fact blatantly addresses this comparison within the first two minutes of the show, in a way that seems that these women (at least some of them) would actually be flattered to have the comparison made.
But the premise of the show is a bit more complicated than that: Rasha (Robin Dalea), a Lebanese lesbian and journalist is told by her agent that her book on the Afghan women’s struggle for civil rights is too political and instead encourages her to write “chick-lit”. Instead of telling her agent to f-off, Rasha’s friends convince her that in order to finance this dream project, she should first write what her agent wants and force her to go undercover as a Cosmo-drinking straight girl to research a world totally foreign to her.
Created by Carmen Elena Mitchell and directed by Heather de Michele through their Off-Chance Productions outfit, the series is also being featured on LOGO’s After Ellen. It’s delightfully pro-lesbian without the need to press an agenda. While Rasha is clearly open about her status, and is in fact about to marry her girlfriend at the start of the series, the sexuality of the three other main women is still ambiguous after episode 1. And while there is very little action in the first episode (the only time we see the girls anywhere other than sitting around a table talking is when they take Rasha shopping for “boots and booty shorts”), the actresses are engaging and, hell I’ll say it, pretty to look at no matter what your sexual preference. And most importantly, they are as advertised in the title: these women are “real.”