Goodbye, winter caps—hello, summer hats! It’s that glorious time of year where many of us can switch from content creators to content consumers. NYWIFT members Mellini Kantayya and Kathryn O’Kane have put together #SummerHours, a series of fun summer books, movies, and TV shows by or about women.
Under this salacious title lies a feminist narrative about a floundering indie filmmaker who becomes obsessed with a cowboy artist named Dick. Kathryn Hahn plays Chris, a woman at a crossroads in her career struggling to find meaning in her life. Hahn, long relegated to the role of the “wacky best friend,” shines with the physicality of Lucille Ball and a vulnerability all her own in this breakout role. And Kevin Bacon is Dick. Bacon acknowledged that traditional gender objectification is flipped in this series, and he revealed in an interview with Marc Maron that his wife Kyra Sedgewick pushed him into the role. “Oh, you’re doing it,” she said.
Kathryn Hahn as Chris and Kevin Bacon as Dick in I Love Dick for Amazon (2017)
The series as a whole defies categorization. Yes, they are comedic half-hour episodes, but it’s not exactly a sitcom. As the AV Club put it: “It’s a serialized narrative and something that feels unmoored from traditional storytelling. It’s isolating and strange and very, very female. It’s not for everyone, but everyone should give it a try.”
The episode to watch is “A Short History of Weird Girls,” directed by Jill Soloway. First person backstories of the four main female characters offer insight into the motivations of these wildly disparate personalities. For each woman, Dick represents something different. He’s a sex fantasy, a rival, a father figure, or a role model. As each woman tells her story, the narrator cleverly appears as the witness of her memory, the moment when the seeds of her own obsession were planted.
I Love Dick is streaming on Amazon Prime.