Allison Williams Says 'Girls' Character Was 'Before Her Time'

Allison Williams says her Girls character — along with the whole show — is now “resonant in a new way” as younger audiences discover the series on social media.

Williams played Marnie, one of the four New York City-based protagonists of HBO‘s Girls, which ran for six seasons from 2012 to 2017.

“The whole show got a lot of flack when it was airing for everyone being too selfish and self-centered,” Williams told her former co-star, Ebon Moss-Bachrach, in a new video for Vanity Fair. Moss-Bachrach played Desi, Marnie’s musician boyfriend-turned-husband-turned-ex.

Now, both actors noted, many younger audiences have picked up the show for the first time via TikTok and other social media, and received the series in a more positive light. Marnie, in particular, has been retroactively embraced by audiences after being dismissed as overly cringeworthy and annoying. Williams says she feels the shift is because her character was “before her time.”

“My theory is, what was coded as selfishness among millennials is now coded as self-care,” Williams said. “Just being aware of what you need and advocating for your needs and standing up for yourself, and so Gen Z, is like, ‘No, we get her. She makes sense to us.’”

Williams added that, now, audiences have come around to the idea that the show, written and created by Lena Dunham, was actually “a bunch of girls trying to create the best environment for each of them to survive and thrive and being wrong, but still trying and caring.”

She added, “I think that’s a pursuit that is resonant in a new way, whereas before it just looked like we didn’t know that other countries existed or that anyone had lives that were less fortunate than ours, but that was sort of the point. It just got missed a little bit.”

Williams also weighed in on where her Girls character would be today. “I think Marnie’s still trying to have a singing career, in addition to other jobs,” she said. “I picture her with another marriage under her belt, I think probably on the verge of deciding to have a baby on her own.”

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