Why "Shrill" is the Show Everyone Needs Right Now

I think for anybody who has struggled with body image, there is that one defining moment, scene, or person, that encouraged you to see yourself in a different light. For me, that show was "Shrill".     

I had just come back from my freshman year of college and was finally on the other side of a horrible living situation that felt like it lasted forever (four months if we want to get technical). For the first time in a while, I felt like I could breathe again, and I was ready for summer to take some time for myself. 

Arianna Tucker-Girl Putting Hair In PonytailI was browsing TV show options one afternoon when I came across "Shrill". I saw Aidy Bryant in a cute bathing suit and was immediately sold. I've been a fan of Aidy since she started SNL so I thought I would give it a shot and boy oh boy did this show change everything for me. I was already crying by the end of the first episode and, full disclosure, I watched the entire first season in one day. Don't judge, I was unemployed, and it was just too good to stop watching. It's hard to put into words how much I needed this show at the moment, but it became a catalyst for a process I should've started years ago. going braless

For as long as I can remember, I have struggled with my confidence. I was 5 years old when I began resenting my naturally curly hair. Later, my body was the subject of my constant criticism. I stood on the scale every day and didn't understand why my small, undeveloped body wasn't getting any smaller. I viewed my new curves and hips as signs of growing out of my body, rather than growing into myself. It was the act of taking up more space that made me so insecure, and if I am being honest, I still struggle with that. But, it was "Shrill" that completely shifted how I saw myself.

I never truly understood what people meant when they said art can change your life until I watched this show. Annie Easton (played by Bryant) is a writer for a magazine living in Portland. Now, I'm not completely sure I consented to them entering my dreams, but Annie is living the life I've always pictured I would have. Throughout the first season, you watch Annie go through a complete transformation. Not physically, but mentally as she finds out who she is and begins to love every part of it. I saw a lot of myself in Annie. She wasn't who I felt I needed to be, but rather she embodied all of who I already was. I just hadn't given myself permission to reach that.Bgb Editor'S Letter Hero Image

I had never related more to a female character on screen, and it just shows how far the industry still has to go to bring characters like Annie to the screen more often. The show, having a woman-dominated cast and crew, brings a story we haven't seen before. It is a love letter to the act of self-love. Annie completely shatters the myth that there is only one way to be, and acts as an example of what can happen when you own your power rather than shy away from it. 

So, to Aidy Bryant, Lindy West (who this is inspired by), and the rest of the cast and crew of "Shrill", thank you. Thank you for showing me who I had been all along. Without this show, I don't think I would've ever believed in myself enough to find that out. 

In the words of Annie herself, "I feel very fucking powerful."