Now that I have finished watching the series finale of My Mad Fat Diary, I can happily say that the finale does not disappoint(no worries, I will not spoil the finale for anyone who has not watched it yet). I can also say that I will greatly miss Rae, Finn, Chloe, Chop and the rest of the gang. As a woman pushing 40, even though mmfd is a teen show I was still able to relate to all of the issues that Rae faced and was going through. That is but only one of the reasons why I love mmfd. The other reasons are:
1)The show felt and looked real. What I mean by that is that the issues that were on the show came across as real issues that teens would face, not the manufactured issues that would appear on shows such as The Secret Life of The American Teenager or Beverly Hills 90210. The issues here- mental illness, body issues,issues with selfestem, mother-daughter arguments, homosexuality, are dealt with in a way that is not neat and tidy.
2)Rae herself- Rae does not look like a normal teenage tv character. Usually, especially on American tv, we tend to like our lead teen characters to look like they just stepped off the pages of Teen Vogue. Rae and her friends looked like typical teenagers with their uniform of jeans, t-shiirts, hoodies and jackets. No J Crew and American Apparel wears for this group of friends. Clothes definitely helped to make this show come across as realistic and not hollywood. Rae is not the typical size 0 lead character that would be shown on a show about teens.
That goes doubly for Rae’s personality. Rae is protrayed as complex living breathing person. She at times comes off as insecure, self involved, not a great friend and irrational. Yet there are other times that she comes across as funny, supportive of her friends and responsible daughter. Rae is not perfect, but then again no one is. These flaws make Rae not only relatable, but likeable.
3) The Gang. Ever show has to have a group of friends and mmfd was no different. I love this group of friends, their loyalty and love for each other was evident whenever they hung out together. This is a group of people you knew always had each others backs.While we know thaey will eventually go off to different universities and may lose touch with each other, for that brief time they were their own special gang.
4)Rae and Dr.Kester’s Relationship. Rae and Dr.Kester’s relationship would not be characterized as an easy relationship. Theirs is a relationship that at times was combative but also challenging. Kester was always challenging Rae’s perceptions of which ultimately helped her grow as a person.
5)Rae and Finn’s relationship- The relationship between Rae and Finn started out with them not liking each other, but eventually becoming friends and even lovers. Along the way there were bumps in the road, from Finn getting a job in construction and leaving school, to Rae’s mental health issues and later her acceptance to Bristol University. Yet through it all there was great love between the 2 of them. Usually on a show, whether it would be a drama or comedy, the plus size character would not be considered the romantic lead, if he or she did have a love life it is shown for laughs. Rae and Finn’s relationship was shown as more realistic with all of the ups and downs that come with a first love affair.
6) The music- Since My Mad Fat Diary takes place in the mid-90’s, it is only fair and natural that much of the music played would come from some of the biggest acts in brit-pop during that time. You could always expect to hear music from Oasis, Blur, Radio Head, The verve and Manic Street Preachers as well as other 90’s artist. If you ever lived in and through the 90’s, this show and its music are for you.
It is these reasons and more that made me love My Mad Fat Diary. The last time I liked a teen show was My So Called Life, which came on in the 90’s when I was an actual teenager. My So Called Life, much like My Mad Fat Diary, gave a realistic look at what teenagers go through. Whether you are a teenager in the 90’s a teenager today, the themes of isolation, anxiety, first love and friendship is universal.
If you have seen the show, give your reasons for why you love the show in the comments below or on Plush’s twitter and facebook page. And if you have not seen the show, may I suggest you go check out a couple of episodes on Youtube.
Until next time,