I just finished watching the first season of Pen15 on Hulu. Originally I was going to skip it but I am glad I started watching. I binged the first season in one sitting. It’s a series about two middle school aged best friends going through tween drama.
Initially, the first episode was so outrageously hilarious I couldn’t stop laughing. I am pretty sure I laughed through 90% of it. Maya Erskine plays Maya Itshi-Peters, a 13 year old half Japanese girl who is crazy funny. I had to see if she was the same girl from Crazy Rich Asians but she isn’t. She’s that funny though. Anna Konkle plays Anna Kone (yes, they play themselves) who’s Maya’s bestie.
While the show is stupid funny, it also does things that a little risky for a show about tween drama which is why it is rated R. Episode 3 was a little shocking in the same way that Big Mouth (Netflix Original) pushes the boundaries and what you can and cannot do when it comes to talking about certain aspects of growing up. You’ll have to watch to know what I am talking about.
Outside of that, it also hits on things like racism but unlike the heavy drama type of situations of 13 Reasons Why, it’s lighter and funnier but also makes a really strong point. The series, while mostly has me laughing, also had me in tears. I don’t know if it’s their acting that is so good or if it’s because it really hits the nail on the head in certain aspects of my tween life as well.
I hope there will be more seasons to come. Although I am not entirely sure that it’s appropriate for tween audiences, (episode 3) it’s also blunt about the facts-of-life which I think should be appreciated for both tweens and parents.
In any case, I fully enjoyed it. I love the characters, the situations, the content. It’s well written, it’s endearing and again it is hilarious!