Teen metamorphoses still inimitably ‘Awkward’By Oliver M. Pulumbarit
Philippine Daily Inquirer
“Awkward” isn’t a traditional teen show, which was clearly evident since its 2011 debut. Centering on the self-aware but faltering Jenna Hamilton (Ashley Rickards), the show captured the essence of high-school life for the hopelessly uncool and the underappreciated.
It certainly was awkward for unassuming Jenna, who got intimate with the school’s popular hottie Matty (Beau Mirchoff) before they even became a real couple. Season one was mostly about the perplexed girl dealing with a secret sexual relationship, as well as the mistaken popular belief that she tried to commit suicide. (It was actually just a really unfortunate accident.)
“Awkward’s” main relationship teetered between unofficial and nonexistent in the second season, but Jenna settled for Matty’s best buddy Jake (Brett Davern), who was genuinely attracted to her.
When Jake discovered Jenna and Matty’s complicated past, however, both the smitten hunks openly wooed her. But not surprisingly, she effortlessly chose Matty.
Its first two seasons only had 12 episodes each, but season three has been expanded to 20. Now that Jenna and Matty are officially an item, the next phase involves the testing and exploration of the relationship. Because they belong to different cliques, Jenna is second-guessing herself. She is also intrigued by a new classmate, the well-read Collin (Nolan Gerard Funk of “Glee”).
In that regard, the show is becoming a bit formulaic, falling into some familiar storytelling tropes along the way. We see the new Matty-Jenna-Collin triangle coming from miles away, but we hope that the story line won’t yield to soap-ish clichés, and that it will offer new twists on old ideas instead.
The new episodes are still characteristically smart, accompanied by Jenna’s witty and wry narration. Like an amalgam of “Doogie Howser’s” computer journals and “The Wonder Years’” poignant recollections, Jenna’s blogging thoughts magnify the character’s unique and momentous insights.
While concurrent story lines are sometimes clearly divided as either comedic or dramatic parts, “Awkward” still offers a cohesive whole. Jenna’s BFF Tamara (Jillian Rose Reed) still has some of the best comedic lines, complementing the more serious romance issues.
And the sexual intimacy of the characters is a subject that isn’t ignored. A pregnancy scare is tackled in one episode, while the discovery of Jenna and Matty’s private activities is discussed by their shocked parents in another.
The new season reiterates that “change is awkward,” signifying more transformations to come—and change is, as usual, crucial to Jenna’s growth. In any case, “Awkward” still intelligently reflects the unspoken-of parts of high-school life and gives us a special perspective of its surmountable struggles.
“Awkward” airs Tuesdays, 11:30 p.m., and Wednesdays, 7:30 p.m. on MTV Asia.
Beauty queen, architect, and design buff Shamcey Supsup is the new host of Lifestyle Network’s design digest show “Interior Motives.”
Season two of “Interior Motives” aspires to be the country’s source of design inspirations. This new season will feature spaces that Shamcey deems beautiful, the people behind the best local designs and even the tools used by these creators. The show will premiere on Nov. 7 at 9:30 p.m. on the Lifestyle Network.
Loyalties are tested as new enemies emerge and heroes rise and fall in all-new, action-packed episodes of “Star Wars: The Clone Wars.” The Dark Side of the Force grows stronger while the Jedi Knights are pushed to the breaking point in the animated chapters of the space saga.
“Star Wars: The Clone Wars” season three airs weekdays, 5 p.m., on Toonami.
“Ben 10: Omniverse” is the latest installment of the hit Cartoon Network franchise. With Gwen and Kevin out of the picture, Ben Tennyson looks forward to being a solo superhero with his new Omnitrix.
“Ben 10: Omniverse” airs weekdays starting Nov. 4, 6:30 p.m., on Toonami.
‘2013 MTV EMA’
Nashville rock band Kings of Leon and Swedish duo Icona Pop have been added to the “2013 MTV Europe Music Awards” lineup. Presenters will include Thirty Seconds to Mars front man Jared Leto and singer Rita Ora, among others. The “2013 MTV EMA” will broadcast live from Amsterdam’s Ziggo Dome on Nov. 11, 4 a.m., on MTV Asia.
Bear Grylls shows
The six-part Discovery series “Bear Grylls: Escape From Hell” brings the TV host-adventurer to various daunting locations to recreate the stories of different survivors.
Aside from “Bear Grylls: Escape From Hell,” more stories of survival will be told in next year’s “Bear Grylls: Get Out Alive” and “Bear Grylls: Great Escapes.”
“Bear Grylls: Escape From Hell” airs Mondays, 9 p.m., Fridays, 3 p.m., and Saturdays, 6 p.m., on Discovery Channel.
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