25 02 2013
“Gurlz” is a single-camera comedy featuring the characters Maria, Willard, Qiana and Khadijah. They all live together in an apartment in Morningside Heights, New York City. [Harlem. It’s Harlem that they live in. The neighborhood’s different name is a creative decision.] The idea was originally conceived in summer of 2012 with some friends as a response to HBO’s hit comedy “Girls”, also set in New York City [but sadly only featuring white women because apparently Lena Dunham is only friends with white women despite having lived in New York City for most of her life. To be fair, at least she didn’t write caricature minority characters into the show to compensate for the overwhelming whiteness]. The show would just be featuring the lives and various struggles of the main characters, being a minority in NYC, and lastly, including but not limited to: gentrification, eating disorders, career issues, interracial dating, natural hair issues, and dating issues in general.
Maria is a Dominican middle school teacher with a really amazing family (except when it comes to dating) and generally has it together from a financial standpoint. She’s got a real type-A personality and is a perfectionist. Khadijah is a Bajian-American plus-sized woman in grad school and toils away at her retail job under her shitty manager. She’s got money troubles but she’s got a great sense of fashion and has a really popular fashion blog. Willard is an aspiring pop star who moonlights as a go-go dancer. No one has the heart to tell him that he’s a terrible singer and his YouTube videos have disabled comments from the shitstorm that is YouTube comments. Qiana, originally African-American from the South, is a pretty successful graphic designer, but is a real homebody and her roommates have a pretty difficult time getting her out of the house. She’s also really private about everything except her massive book collection that could function as furniture.
Single-camera dark comedy, with several takes from different angles.
The target demographic for “Gurlz” would be ages 18-29, young women [possibly young gay men], young women of color in particular.
The pilot is centered around the motley crew taking a trip to Ikea for a couch. Maria is pissed about her principal boss writing a passive aggressive email about natural hair being against school policy for the faculty and doesn’t know how to respond appropriately. She also insists on calling her Mary. Khadijah’s manager boss is a douchebag, and she puts up with his shit because he recently promoted her to a lead position just as she was about to quit. Willard just went to an American Idol audition but was one of the last people in line and didn’t have the chance to get there early because he overslept. Qiana is glued to her phone, texting her beau, supposedly.
The second episode features Khadijah’s romance with a new flame. He’s got an awful lot in common with Qiana’s on-again-off-again boyfriend who she has never introduced to anyone. Maria notices new buildings popped up in a few months, with really high rents advertised. An organic food store also pops up where her favorite supermarket used to be, and all the food is really overpriced.
In the third episode, the roomies go out for drinks to pre-game for a giant party. Everyone gets wasted, especially Maria. They all nurse Maria back to health after a bitching hangover.
The fourth episode has one of Willard’s YouTube videos becoming a viral hit, but not because he’s musically gifted. He has a nervous breakdown now that he realizes that he has no talent for music. Qiana and Khadijah find out that they’re actually dating the same guy, and post his gross nudes sans his gross face all over the Internet. Maria meets a really nice musician when she takes her students on a trip.
The fifth episode, Qiana is looking around in Willard’s room for a book she lent him. She finds some bills with the name William on it and she confronts him about it. He confesses that he changed his name to Willard to sound more interesting. Maria brings home her boyfriend to meet her parents, leading to a falling out due to the fact that he’s black, and not ethnically Dominican.
The sets would be pretty simple; a lot of the show would be located in the apartment shared by the central characters.