As a massive fan of dramadies, HBO programming, and Jonathan Groff, I was very much anticipating the release of the new show Looking. If you haven’t heard about it yet, Looking follows three friends as they clumsily navigate their way through relationships, love, and careers. The first season just wrapped up, and it has been announced that the show will be renewed for a second season.
One of the best things about this show, in my opinion, was that when I watched the first season there wasn’t a lot of hype surrounding it. I think that this was partly due to the fact that the star studded cast of True Detective which airs on the same night overshadowed Looking, and also because many people wrote the show off as a less glamorous, gay centric version of Sex and the City. While the basic plot line of the show does line up with the themes that are explored within the Sex and the City, its kind of aggravating that all shows that are about friend groups are immediately dubbed as trying to re-create the exploits of Carrie Bradshaw and her infamous crew. I think that everyone knows that Sex and the City will always be in its own field, but it also wasn’t the first show to be centered on a group of friends trying to figure their lives out and it certainly won’t be the last. But the writers don’t try to hide this fact, during a few of the episodes the characters even compare themselves to characters from The Golden Girls.
Although each episode is only 30 minutes long, the writers have managed to fit three story lines into every episode. All three characters are in very different places in their lives with regards to work and their social lives but the long standing friendship between Dom, Augustin, and Patrick keeps them together and keeps the pace of the show from being stagnant.
If you’re worried about spoilers, don’t you fret, I haven’t included any major plot twists. So keep on reading to learn a bit more about Looking.
Dom is a waiter who has aspirations of opening his own restaurant but faces hardship due to the lack of funds that he has available to pursue this venture. He is impulsive, flighty, and constantly moves with a sense of urgency. Though he has passion he lacks follow through, but the approach of his 40th birthday makes him reconsider his lack of stability within his romantic life and his career.
Unlike his friend Dom, Augustin’s major character flaw is that he lacks passion. He is an artist that lacks the drive to create art. He is snarky, and rough around the edges. Augustin is equally as critical and non-chalant about his relationships as he is about his artwork. This changes when Augustin meets a male sex worker whose disregard for the way that others view his way of life inspires Augustin to create a racy new project.
Patrick is the central character of the show and acts the rock of his friends. He is my personal favorite character, and the most quirky of the three. Patrick is the most innocent and least experienced in the ways of romance, which makes him hilarious to watch. He says the wrong things on first dates, and has many awkward moments as he tries to move his way up at work as a video game developer.
I would highly recommend Looking. Although the show does have its comedic moments, the comedy is balanced with the dramatic elements of the characters’ lives. They face problems that correlate with the struggles of everyday people, and I think that anyone who watches this show would be hard pressed not to see a little of themselves in at least one or more of the main characters.
One of the other major elements that stood out to me is the cinematography, which mirrors the realism that the plot works to portray. The theme of realism is present in other aspects of the show as well. The lead actors aren’t glossed and buffed beyond belief, and there are many sharp camera shots that allow you to see the raw emotions that are portrayed on the actors’ faces. It takes an honest approach in portraying major issues including interracial relationships, gay culture, and the dangers of getting involved with work partners and it paid off because season one starts and ends on a refreshing note.