Judd Apatow and Lena Dunham Get Mad at Me For Asking Why She's Naked So Much on ‘Girls’

Judd Apatow and Lena Dunham Get Mad at Me For Asking Why She's Naked So Much on 'Girls'

“I totally get it if you're not into me, that's your problem,” says Dunham. Oh lordy.

Why is Lena Dunham's character on “Girls” naked so much?

That question made Dunham and her fellow “Girls” executive producers, Judd Apatow and Jenni Konner, mad at me Thursday during a Television Critics Association panel. Apatow later said my question was sexist, offensive and misogynistic. He asked me to transcribe what I asked and re-read what I asked Dunham, so here it is:

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“I don't get the purpose of all the nudity on the show. By you particularly. I feel like I'm walking into a trap where you say no one complains about the nudity on ‘Game of Thrones,’ but I get why they're doing it. They're doing it to be salacious. To titillate people. And your character is often naked at random times for no reason.”

Dunham said she was naked on the show because people are naked sometimes.

Also read: Lena Dunham Catches a Big Break in New ‘Girls’ Trailer (Video)

“Yeah. It’s because it’s a realistic expression of what it’s like to be alive, I think, and I totally get it. If you are not into me, that’s your problem,” she said.

Huh? But I didn't say that. The conversation continued its personal turn as Apatow asked if I had a girlfriend.

“Sure,” I said.

“Does she like you?”

“Yeah.”

Also read: HBO's ‘Girls’ to Screen in 8 Cities on Night of New York Premiere

“Let's see how she likes you when you quote that with your question and just write the whole question… and tell me how it goes tonight.”

Actually, my girlfriend has wondered about this, too. Here's why.

“Girls” has more nudity by its lead character than any show, well, ever. But my girlfriend and I don't understand the reason for it. We're cool with nudity, and if Dunham wants to be naked, great. I'm not offended by it. I don't like it or not like it. I just don't get the artistic reason for it, and want to understand it, because I'm a TV critic.

Later in the panel executive producer Jenni Konner said she didn't understand why I thought I could “talk to a woman” that way.

Huh? Talk to her like a writer who has made a bold creative decision?

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Dunham left after the panel. But Apatow stuck around, and we talked about my question, which he said was “offensive on its face.”

“You should read it and discuss it with other people,” he told me. “It is very offensive.”

“Is it sexist?” I asked. “Because I would ask the same question –”

“It's sexist and offensive, it's misogynistic,” he said.

“I'm not saying it's bad that she's nude,” I said.

Also read: Lena Dunham Explains Relationship With HBO: ‘Which Item of Clothing Would You Like Me to Remove?’ (Video)

Another reporter noted that if Louis C.K. were naked on his show, we would ask about it.

“There's a way to word a question about the reason for nudity on the show and it was not done elegantly. If you re-read it and you listen to it you will not be proud of yourself.”

“I'm not un-proud of myself in any way because everyone I know has wondered the same thing. I don't understand as a writer, what the reason for it is. I'm not against it.”

“That's another thing. It shows a lack of depth in how you watch the show.”

“I watch the show really deeply, actually,” I said. “I'm trying to understand it as a TV critic. That's my job.”

Also read: Shia LaBeouf Apologizes to Lena Dunham – With a Lena Dunham Apology

“As a TV critic you don't understand why a show about young people in New York who spend some of their time naked, and some of their time having sex, includes women who sometimes are naked and sometimes have sex?”

“Then why aren't all of the characters naked?” I asked.

He said a show about me would feature me naked some of the time.

“Then why aren't all the characters in your movies naked some of the time? … Paul Rudd wasn't naked,” I added, referring to “This Is 40.'”

Also read: 3 Reasons Lena Dunham Can't Laugh Off ‘Girls’ Porn Parody

“There's male nudity in ‘Walk Hard,'” he said. “I have people naked when they're willing to do it. Lena is confident enough to do it so we have the opportunity to talk about other issues because she is braver than other people. If Paul Rudd said to me, I'm willing to be completely naked in the movie, I would use it. If Seth [Rogen] said he was willing to be completely naked — he showed his butt in a post-sex scene in ‘Knocked Up’ — I would use it because it's more honest.”

“Well then that's the answer,” I said.

“Read how you asked the question,” he said.

“I said that on ‘Game of Thrones’ they do it for salacious purposes. I'm not giving ‘Game of Thrones’ credit for that. ‘Salacious’ doesn't have a positive connotation.”

“Just listen to yourself,” he said.

I did. To transcribe my recording of this exchange.

“I'm really, truly stupid then, because I don't understand,” I said.

“Maybe you just got nervous how you asked it and it came out much darker, edgier and negative than you realized.”

I checked with my girlfriend. She's cool with what I asked.

  • Kirsten

    Don't see anything wrong w/ your question, Tim. Doesn't everyone wonder why she's naked all the time on the show? The Golden Globes used it as a gag in their intro (last year I believe). If a female directed this question to Dunham and Apatow would their reaction have been different? I don't understand.

    Maybe the “by you” came off the wrong way and sounded offensive. Maybe it was the “feel like I'm walking into a trap.”

    • Erick the Redd

      I can't be sure, but I assume the “feel like I'm walking into a trap” wasn't talking about the show, but actually asking the question as evidenced by “by you saying no one complains about nudity on Game of Thrones”

      • SlapHappyDude

        People do complain about the nudity on Game of Thrones. A lot. And yet they don't complain about the horrific violence. But that's the Puritanical American culture for you.

  • rfk

    I wonder why you assumed that the nudity on “Girls” couldn't also be salacious.

    • chuckdaly

      It was assumed of Game of Thrones, not Girls.

      • Lily

        That's what rfk is saying. The implication in Molloy's question is that the nudity on GoT is salacious, but on Girls, it's not, so why have it at all, as if nudity is only there to titillate, be salacious, etc.

        • AnnaLynn25

          Because there is the absence of intercourse or masturbation. In GoT or even SATC, people are undressing for purely sexual reasons. From one writer to another, Molloy was simply asking Dunham what the foundation of her non-sexual nudity is. Regardless of how someone looks naked – it would be awkward to see them naked eating pasta.

          • Lily

            Lena doesn't eat pasta naked. She played ping pong naked, which I read as what the couple did after sex. Molloy didn't ask that; he made a disparaging remark which Dunham took to be the question. There was no actual question, more of a take on things from a critic.

          • Lily

            Here's a better summation than I could do from Slate:

            Except that Molloy didn’t exactly “ask” anything. His question was not a question; it was a rambling statement of his own inability to understand how Dunham uses nudity in the show, followed by a statement that the choice is “random” and there is “no reason” to justify it. The only legitimate reason for nudity that he purports to understand is its use for titillation purposes. That statement may not reveal Molloy to be an outright misogynist, but given the intensive and wide-ranging critical discussion of the use of nudity in Girls over the past few years, it does reveal him to be willfully naïve to Dunham’s work and its larger context.

        • chuckdaly

          Not necessarily. Stating that nudity in GoT is Salacious can be given as an example without making any implication on Girls. The question left it wide open for Dunham/Apatow to explain the nudity in Girls. Do you really think Dunham/Apatow would have been less haughty had Tim implied that the T&A in Girls was merely fan service?

    • sustantivo

      Because Dunham would spread her thighs for a horny Rottweiler…where's the attractiveness of that?

    • Neil

      He never said it couldn't be, just that Game of Thrones was obviously salacious, with no deeper meaning….he was assuming that there might be some “substance” there beyond nudity for nudity's sake, which is why he asked.

      DUH.

      But that wouldn't make for perpetual accusations of misogyny. Gotta keep those insecure women and idiot feminists happy in their self-imposed unhappiness, dontcha know?

      • AnnaLynn25

        I agree with the Duh part but for some reason Dunham and Apatow seemed too perplexed to answer a simple question. They could have emphasized a great point about body image but chose to go somewhere else with Molloy's question.

  • Newzheimer

    Girls (the show) is like the Emperor with no clothing. There's no ‘there’ there. It's boring and tedious to watch and I find nothing ‘real’ or genuine about it. It's a hot mess, frankly. To say that Tim is misogynist for asking why Lena Dunham's character is naked shows just how devoid of anything reasonable and relatable the argument that Dunham and Apatow make in favor of this show actually is.

    • deanayer

      I added a quote before reading through all these and I could be accused of plagiarizing yours! So I guess how folks perceive this is pretty uniform.

      • grockk

        Yeah, you and this one guy. Consensus.

        • Erick the Redd

          Me as well. Its not the nudity that is the problem. Its the fact that when faced with the question of “why?” All they did was get angry and blame him.

  • keithcalder

    Isn't the problem obvious? It's because you say that the nudity on “Game of Thrones” is titilating, and then you imply that the nudity on “Girls,” especially the nudity involving Lena Dunham, is NOT titillating. You are telling an actress that you can see why people would think other actresses will arouse sexual excitement with their nudity, but that you don't think she would arouse sexual excitement with her nudity. That her nudity is “for no reason.” (Also implying that you think the only reason for nudity is to be salacious and titillating.) It's almost a perfect storm of unintentional insults.

    • tim.molloy

      Nudity in a sex scene is one thing. Nudity when someone's standing in the bathroom isn't salacious — it's just presenting nudity. So I was asking why make that choice. Again, not for or against it. Trying to understand.

      • keithcalder

        If you had asked the question that way, perhaps it would have been received differently.

        • DepthTested

          Stop being a knee jerk pussy.

          • Alex S.

            This is the kind of reasoned intellectual you have on your side, Tim. Maybe you should think about that for a bit

        • rnggg67223e

          keithcalder is right

          • Neil

            Of course he is right. Smug wankers can never be wrong, as Apatow and Dunham so ably proved.

          • rnggg67223e

            Or as you ably prove.

      • http://pierreism.tumblr.com Pierreism

        A professional TV critic can't understand why someone would be naked in their own bathroom? Or that nakedness is an obvious motif for a show about personal honesty, centred around a body conscious, twenty-something diarist? A show that is trying, amongst other things, to widen the media landscape's understanding of the female image?

        Okay now I don't understand.

        • Lori

          Yes people can be naked in their own bathroom, but what about in the middle of a dance club or when she's playing ping pong? Just when you think there will be one episode without a boob shot, out one comes. And with no rhyme or reason to it, it becomes more of a distraction than anything that could ever be considered real. All it seems like to me is Lena is obsessed with showing her boobs. Period.

          • Overrated Lena

            Exactly. Lena Dunham is a TV Troll. She is just doing this so people will talk. The more oxygen the industry gives her, the more the rest of us suffer. She is talentless.

          • bonniesituation

            And then she bristles when the conversation gets to close to an apparent chip on her shoulder.

          • Neil

            DING DING DING! AND WE HAVE A WINNER, FOLKS!

          • rnggg67223e

            Overrated Lena, you are a fascinating specimen of the wildly, weirdly, vicious commenter. Why is this personal for you?

          • Lily

            You've been to dance clubs, right?

          • http://pierreism.tumblr.com Pierreism

            In my view the rhyme and reason is what I described above: that it's symbolic of Lena/Hannah/the show's physical and emotional honesty.

            But if you can't accept that nudity is simply a part of her character (talk about conservative) maybe examine the scenarios you suggested: In the dance club she's on coke, desperately trying to unearth a story for her sucky writing job, so she swaps clothes with a raver in order to live out that lifestyle to its fullest. It's clearly comic in effect: the yellow mesh is garish and uncharacteristic for Hannah, and later, when the drug trip backfires, she has a very serious argument while still hanging loosey-goosey behind fluorescent netting. In one horribly misjudged exhibitionist outfit choice we get laughs, embarrassments and ultimately pathos. That's just good story.

            As for ping pong: it looked hot that day. As a dude I wouldn't wear underwear, if I was a girl I probably wouldn't wear a bra. Sometimes nudity just feels good, y'know?

          • Seand0r

            Maybe that's the answer Tim wanted? Who knows, maybe you're completely wrong, and Judd and Lena meant something totally different. That's why he asked.

          • ladyjez

            if you think questioning overt nudity in a show is conservative, you might check yourself. there are plenty of shows out there that are great without so much nudity.

          • http://pierreism.tumblr.com Pierreism

            Those are completely unrelated arguments–quality vs. nudity content. There are plenty of shows with LOTS of nudity that are good, too (Hung was generally well received, and of course Sex and the City was a watershed moment for tv nudity, and it was highly influential, if not at all my thing). Questioning nudity in THIS show, with THIS character, is conservative because it's such a banal and overstated line of inquiry. Google the article “How Much Nudity Is There Really On “Girls”?” on Buzzfeed (if I use an external link it'll flag my comment for moderation) for more perspective on that. Or you could just concentrate on character & story, rather than the non-issue of seeing a normal person just hanging out in the buff.

          • rachcat

            When you're high on coke in a dance club, nakedness is sometimes an occurence. And the ping pong scene took place during essentially a ‘fuck’ weekend. The man in the scene was equally as naked. Because it is realistic that they both would be. It's just one of those times where you won't put on clothes unless you're leaving the house. Have you never spent a day or weekend naked with a partner, where clothes just aren't needed? I think that's very real, that's just what people do sometimes: cook naked together, play silly games naked together, etc. Because some people like being naked, and that's fine, and doesn't always need a reason in real life, and if the nakedness of Hannah in the show is meant to be adding realism, then it doesn't need a reason either.

            Most of the time she's naked is during a sex scene, or when she's hanging out with a sexual partner, or when she's in her own home. All very real and common times to be naked…

          • Matthew1930

            rachcat, that was far too measured, logical a comment delivered by what seems to be a clear thinking, normal person. Whatever are you doing on the internet?
            this comment also points out why the stupidest part of all of this isn't Dunham or Apatow's comment but the questioner who was completely dumbfounded and puzzled by nudity that is clearly not portrayed as salacious or titillating. Gee, you think it might be they were going for every day realistic nudity?

          • RalphCifaretto

            Her show isn't that big of a hit, because people outside here social circle can't relate to her. I certainly can't. And I still haven't seen a legitimate reason why she's gone out of her way to be the most naked person on TV…

          • Hilary

            This almost comes close to making sense. Almost.

            The reality is, Dunham has a planet-sized ego, lets it affect the show, and is using the program to work out her issues at not getting dates in her youth.

            “Your personal preference isn't for my body type? MISOGYNISTTTTTTT SCUMMMMMMMM”

            It's pathetic.

          • RalphCifaretto

            I've gone to dance clubs for decades, have yet to see someone get naked. As far as a “f@#k” weekend, if I was spending a weekend like that with a girl that unattractive, I'm pretty sure I'd want her clothes on when were out of bed…

          • ver1tas

            Clearly you've never been to the club. Come visit me in LA and I'll show you. When she's playing ping pong? So? Ever lived in college dorms? Didn't that guy/girl from ASU go viral just last Halloween for going to a party completely naked? What century in rural America are you living in?

          • Veritas

            Hey veritas, a country boy will survive long after the edgy hipsters are long gone. You have been judged and found lacking, prepare to meet your doom.

          • twix61

            Honestly if you can't see the relevance of it or how natural it would be to be with your new lover and not be dressed then I just think the show is too deep for you.

          • Paloma

            That's exactly what I feel like it is sometimes, a distraction.

          • John

            To me the nude scene while playing ping-pong was an eye-opener. As a gay man, I had a knee-jerk reaction to her nudity when I first saw it, but of course–without question–I enjoyed all the shirtless glory of the man she was playing ping pong with. Then it dawned on me, why am I reacting this way to Lena's nudity? Why should it bother me at all when it didn't bother me when the male was topless? The juxtaposition of these two different naked bodies in one scene made me realize how they aren't really different at all. It was then that I began to understand that my initial reaction was a result of years of growing up in a society where it has been taboo for the female to be completely topless for–what it seems to be–no apparent reason at all.

            This is why I totally see what Lena means when she explains that her nudity is there to make things more real, because whether you like it or not, both men and women alike get naked more often than media often portrays–or rather, censors–them to.

          • LosPer

            Lena is obsessed with making a feminist statement. That's what's going on here…

        • JpMelito

          That's a copout, we do lots of everyday things in our own bathrooms that don't make it on TV – or did I miss the scenes of Dunham repeatedly wiping her ass?

          • DepthTested

            That was beautiful. Bravo!

          • Demoriot

            I often sit cross-legged on the toilet, naked, chomping cake in public toilet stalls. Don't we all? Of course, that was a special occasion, not for the show.

          • marie

            You EAT while sitting on a toilet, frequently? No. Most of us do not “chomp cake” while squatting. Yuck!

          • Demoriot

            Clearly you missed the nude toilet skit on the 2012 Emmys.

          • ver1tas

            Then write your own show? It's that easy. Stop trying to rewrite someone else's.

          • FightOnUSC

            There are several scenes when Hannah is wiping her ass. In one scene she's yelling to someone in the next room about a burning UTI, They've also shown Marnie and I believe Jess on the toilet.. Seeing as this is a show about Girls (who happen to use the bathroom) and not Bathrooms used by Girls, that's plenty realistic for me.

        • Jimmy B

          Really widen the media landscape of understanding the female image? Through nudity? So basically it's just yet another show about an overprivileged white woman with body issues? Yeah….never seeeeeeeeeeen a show like ever. So revolutionary.

          • ver1tas

            Are you purposely that dull? Let me spell it out to you: YES, YES, EXACTLY THAT-THROUGH NUDITY. BECAUSE FEMALE BODIES IN SHOWBUSINESS ARE ALL 35-25-35s AND EVEN THOUGH I HAVE ONE OF THOSE I'M PERCEPTIVE ENOUGH TO REALIZE THAT FEMALE TYPES OF ALL KINDS ARE VASTLY UNDERREPRESENTED. What was she supposed to do? Show off her body under a winter coat while brushing her teeth in the bathroom? What an idiot.

          • James

            Your response in no way was germane to my comment. Troll elsewhere. This show is horrible it feeds the egos and concerns of people who are boring, self absorbed and boring. More than likely also overprivileged and white. Tina fey put this show in its place. Now troll elsewhere.

          • SecludedCompound

            Wow, this sounds like you're involving yourself in this discussion more than the actual events of that precipitated the discussion. Nice caps, cappy.

        • MjrMissConduct

          If the show is trying to ‘widen the media landscape's understanding of the female image’ then why didn't Lena or Judd answer his question with that?

          I think you give the show too much credit.

          • http://pierreism.tumblr.com Pierreism

            I think their feminist agenda has been made explicit in the discussion surrounding Girls from the start. Lena is an outspoken feminist and the use of her body as a feminist statement (in exposing a different body type on screen) seems obvious to me. Did you even try to view her character through this lens? Or through any subtext at all? Keep in mind this is a show written by a creative committee versed in tropes, themes, characterisation, etc. I don't think you're giving them enough credit.

          • ver1tas

            Because that's already been answered like 62531739402861 times over again since the show's inception, and is frankly embarrassing at this point to even ask, especially for a film critic who should know better by now.

          • MjrMissConduct

            Well, if they don't want to answer silly questions, they should maybe not hold press conferences.

          • Jimmy B

            Lena you can stop now.

          • SecludedCompound

            I think it's frankly embarrassing that a huckster salesman like this gets credit for “broadening the palette of television.”

            I think it's sadder still that some people are so willing to transform hucksters into heroes.

          • RalphCifaretto

            Actually, I don't think it's been answered once. This TV Critic asked an honest question, and didn't get any kind of response, except for having the creators of this show call him a sexist and mysogenist…

        • rnggg67223e

          it's stunning if Molloy really didn't understand this

          • Neil

            He obviously underestimated how hypocritical, parasitic, and shallow TV people can be.

          • rnggg67223e

            Neil, the panel may have overreacted but the lesson here is how lazy and embarrassing—or just naive and uninformed—one blog writer happened to be.

          • SecludedCompound

            Wait, because something that hasn't been defined can't be open to questioning or ruminating on interpretation? That sounds dangerously close to a dogma to me. And if you're willing to accept a dogma from “thuh teevee” then maybe you shouldn't be telling people how naive they are.

          • rnggg67223e

            SecludedCompound, That's a fun word game. It's not interesting.

          • EV

            Yeah, I don't get it. I can't tell if he REALLY doesn't get it, or is just (understandably) covering his ass.

        • Dex

          Widen the female image? In what way? Nudity does not widen an image of a person. It just shows a naked body. Its ridiculous that people take a question and manipulate that question enough to make it sound like a sexist comment. get over yourselves ladies! Its just a question. Nothing was inferred in anyway!

          • http://pierreism.tumblr.com Pierreism

            I wrote a semi-long response to this but it was flagged for moderation and hasn't been approved (I think including an external link set it off?) Curse you TheWrap!

            tl;dr – it's a feminist show trying to be a progressive platform for women, body politics is one of its themes, and sexism is *definitely* a part of the debate–the critic should know that.

        • Erick the Redd

          Okay I can understand why someone is naked in their own bathroom. Why is it on tv? Its serving no purpose that her standing in the kitchen couldn't serve, except to ONLY say “she's naked”. No sex, no attempt to make it titillating, no point being made about how she's beautiful regardless of how she looks, nothing. Yes people are naked in their every days lives. You know what I do every day? Take a sh!t. Why isn't that on there also every episode? I do that almost as much (if not more) than just “being naked” for no apparent reason.
          The fact is the nudity stands for nothing, it means nothing. It adds nothing to the show. Its not making a statement by the third season. At first I could maybe agree there was some purpose by trying to show that everyone is beautiful or something, but by now we ALL get it, and it is still happening, and when faced with the question of why all they can seem to do is get upset and assume the person is “not into her”.

          • EV

            Why does someone need to be naked for a “purpose”? All the nudity you see on American TV is for the purpose of getting men off, and then you see something that's not for that, and then it's a problem that warrants explanation. It's weird.

          • Erick the Redd

            I agree with you, the nudity on American TV is for the purpose of getting men off. So I ask you, when you say “then you see something thats not for that”, that what is it for? That was the question posed by the interviewer, of which they couldn't respond appropriately.

        • ritadona

          I think the critic would have been okay with that answer had Ms. Dunham given it, but she didn't. Why? Rather than fill in his own blank, I think Mr. Molloy really wanted to know Ms. Dunham's reason. It is weird. Yes, people are naked sometimes, but are they naked sometimes on television? Not really. Not often outside of sex scenes. Do we really want to see the nude version of a toothpaste commercial or how about toilet paper? It's real life, after all. No one poops with their pants up (okay, some people do, but it's not the way it's done).

          • Mandy

            why? because it's 2014 and the question has been asked and answered ad nauseum. As a journalist he should do his job and research before a Q&A.

          • ritadona

            Has the question been asked “ad nauseum” of Ms. Dunham? I didn't know that. What was her reply then? To assume that Ms. Dunham's reason is the same as any woman's reason for disrobing on camera would be a disservice to Ms. Dunham now, wouldn't it? Why couldn't she answer without getting defensive?

          • ritadona

            By the way, gratuitous nudity doesn't make the show any more intelligent or edgy, and what exactly does it do to advance womankind? They still won't show a man's penis. It's the censors. They say it's okay for a woman to be completely naked but not a man. Why not? Maybe she's just an exhibitionist.

          • Mandy

            Yes, did you google it? did you look up a single interview?

          • ritadona

            I did, and even Ms. Dunham admits (or at least admitted in one interview) that she's not sure why. Okay, we get it. People are naked sometimes, but wouldn't you question a friend who felt the need to get naked that much? It's not about her body. At least not for me. If it's really about who she is on the inside, then why get naked? When I see a naked woman on the screen, I really wish she'd put some clothes on because men don't get naked a third as much so why, really, why must we see the woman's nudity? Does Ms. Dunham do this at home? Is that how she is in real life? Because I know that when I usually see a woman naked on screen that it isn't real. The sex scene isn't real. Her breasts ARE on display for titillation. So is Ms. Dunham supposed to make it boring for us? Does she want nudity to be boring? Commonplace? Commonplace where? In real life? Her television show is not real life. It's a television show. Nudity commonplace in television shows? Whose nudity? Women's?! Great. As if it wasn't already.

        • annoyed

          That's my point I was trying to make above – if that's why they did it, why not just say that? Or say we are sick of this question rather than attacking a reporter who was curious to the artistic reason.

        • Mandy

          Exactly!

        • Cherilyn

          An answer such as this could have been expected from Dunham; even applauded. Instead she takes it all as a personal insult and tells the reporter that it's his “problem”. I am not impressed with her or the show.

        • RalphCifaretto

          Listen, she's been naked more on her show than any lead actress in a comedy show in America, ever. She's obviously going out of her way to do it. She's making a point of it. The reporter was simply asking why. And she's most of the time, not doing it to be sexual. On top of that, she's simply not that attractive. It stands out, and she wants it to stand out. She's counting on the attention it brings her, but she's unwilling to comment on why she does it?

          And by the way, I'm never naked as much as her. Most people DON'T play ping pong naked…

      • V

        When I read the original article in the MSM, I came here to find your response. For me, there are two things at work here: #1. We, as the American culture, are always trying to cure the symptom, and never the underlying disease, no matter what, or how often we tell ourselves these little stories of diversion and sitraction. #2. The question that brought you this heat was not creatively risky; nor was/is any nudity in media, anymore (nor should it be). It is high time we evolve culturally beyond nudity or sexuality being ‘salacious’ in any case. This pseudo-moral judmentalism is an overarching strain of, by, and for emotional infantilism, as is seen so dominantly and consistently, from Hollywood to the Halls of power in DC. Your ‘risky’ question came off as just more cloaked ‘slut-shaming’ in the face of a cultural paradigm shift toward the matriarchy rising (you'll see what I mean around 2050). Human nudity and human sexuality need to be seen and accepted as just natural, and nothing more. When that occurs, sexual predation will come to pass, for the most part, except for those who are incapable of evolving beyond the emotional infantilism that is the gown of a hopeless helplessness. Your risky question was reactionary, at best. Her nudity was pro-active. That is the difference between the dying, outdated and outmoded patriarchal social structure (and patriarchal feminism), and the new Matriarchy Rising (and matriarchal feminism); which is not the evil man-eating thing you hear all the frightened little boys of all ages screaming about all over the internet. The patriarchal social structure, and its exclusive and exclusionary incestuous chattel mentality, has created far more evil (Hiroshima, 9/11. NSA) than good. It uses the concept of ‘protecting women and girls’ (from themselves mostly) to control them. Yeah, they are pretty much done with that as of now. Your question was an insidious form of control. Aren't you offended when someone tries to control you? The larger question is, didn't you have better, more enlightening, questions to ask? This is not about political correctness; which is just as blatantly wrong and corrupt as religious censorship, This is about the underlying current now of a dominionist corporate religion of politics, and your question was all of these combined (and entirely impolitic at the same time, to boot). At a time in our nations history when a small group (less than 30%) of the population wants to replace the US Constitution with the Ten Commandments, revise history so that the founding fathers were not pagan-like deists, and instill a totalitarian theocracy (a Dominionist Dictatorship will give militant Islam a real run for its money when it comes to pure evil), you are asking ‘risky’ questions about human nudity . . . Goddesses forbid! “Freedom Forever!”

        • Le Cadien

          Geez! He only asked why is there so much nudity on the program . . . and he did so during a “panel discussion.”

        • Erick the Redd

          Yeah, any of this thought… even one sentence, was not and has never been in the minds of Appatow or Lena. If it was, they could have responded such. All they did was get mad at a man for asking why she was always naked, and then basically she stormed off asap. If they had answered your way, people might be more on your side, but it was answered with the stereotypical “he can only be asking this because he's a man and we all know I'm overweight… therefore he hates it”.

        • Erasmus1115

          Well, Tim – on the plus side, it's clear academics read your column (only a university professor could write this tendentiously).

          On the minus side, it's the typical frauds populating the Womans Studies departments, where sloganeering substitutes for critical thought.

      • Karen Califano

        I understand what you are saying and I agree with you!!!! I'm a mid 50s woman and my 26 yr old daughter and my son's 20 year old g/f are huge fans of Girls, so I've seen it on and off, and one of the first things I said one day when it was on and they were watching it was, “Why is this chick always naked?” and it wasn't intended as an insult to how Lena looks naked or anything like that, neither am I a prude or old fashioned or uptight when it comes to nudity, etc. The girls just laughed and said, I don't know, that's a good question! I don't get why it would have any artistic value either. I think maybe they (Lena and Judd) were a bit too sensitive with their reactions to your simple question. I'm surprised at Judd Apatow's response, as he is the one who makes some very lewd, toilet humor type, nasty, silly, yet very funny movies, some with heart, some without. I was a huge fan of his TV show, “Freaks and Geeks”, pure genius.

      • Mirjana Balta

        I totally agree with your assessment Tim. And the fact that they became so defensive of the nudity tells me there really isn't a good reason for it, other than shock value. As if using nudity for shock value were a new thing.
        In addition, they are the ones who come across as misogynistic just based on the fact that there isn't an equal amount of male nudity.

        • EV

          Is a pair of tits actually shocking to you? Jesus Christ, only in America.

          • bonniesituation

            The shock is to the usual conventions about nudity in, yes, America. And I wonder if part of the artistic agenda is to knowingly provoke a reaction and then shame people for reacting.

          • EV

            This is an awfully paranoid view to take, that Lena Dunham is out to shock/offend you, just by being naked. If you see no difference between someone doing something naked (like showering or playing ping pong) and Janet Jackson pulling out her tits at the Super Bowl, that's on you, not on her.
            The idea that just a human, being naked somewhere where people are sometimes naked, like in the shower, or at a boyfriend's house, has any kind of shock value, is crazy.

          • bonniesituation

            I didn't say I was shocked about anything. I said “shock to the usual conventions about nudity.” In the US TV market nudity is usually used for titillation. “Girls” breaks that convention, which is IMO a good thing. The sooner America loses some of these hang-ups, the better, But until the audience is accustomed to it, it will provoke a reaction, and it's disingenuous to be taken aback when you get the reaction.

            And trolling for a reaction, then critiquing the reaction, is something artists do all the time.

          • RalphCifaretto

            She isn't just flashing quickly or once in a while. She's being naked for extended periods of time, in almost every episode. Do you really think that's normal?

      • Lily

        I think you just answered your own question.

      • kt

        People are often naked at times when they aren't having sex. NOT ALL NUDITY IS INTENDED TO SEXUALLY TITILLATE MALE REVIEWERS. The fact that you don't see any purpose in nudity if it doesn't give you a boner is precisely why your question was sexist. Hopefully that will sink in for you at some point, since this is a terrible limitation for a TV critic to have.

        • kt

          p.s. Did you “get it” when Jason Segel was naked in FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL?

          • SlapHappyDude

            I know more than one woman who was titillated by that male nudity.

          • kt

            My point is, it was clearly intended to be funny. Nudity can be amusing, touching in its vulnerability, or simply a reflection of life. If a critic sees no purpose in it if it's not titillating, that person is a poor critic.

          • SlapHappyDude

            I personally find a lot of the Game of Thrones nudity to be touching in how it depicts the vulnerability of women in the world and how they are treated like commodities.

          • bonniesituation

            Normally, critics are allowed to ask “what's the purpose of X element in your work?” without accusations of inability to conceive of those purposes. It's understood that they're soliciting the artist's own comments on the subject.

            But ask the same question about the use of nudity in “Girls” and magically, the rules change.

        • bonniesituation

          Except… He didn't claim that ALL NUDITY SHOULD BE INTENDED TO SEXUALLY TITILLATE MALE VIEWERS. He didn't say he couldn't see ANY purpose in other nudity. He said he didn't get THIS SHOW'S purpose in it. So he asked, and was given two answers: “realism” and “you sexist jerk.” And an immediate escalation into inappropriately personal territory and an insistent shoehorning of Tim into a specific role no matter what he actually said.

          It's as if… They were waiting for an excuse to be offended so they could make these statements. Some artist like to provoke reactions and beg questions and then shame those who react and questions.

      • hum

        I get the question. I wasn't there, and the tone doesn't really come through in the retelling, so I'm ready to grant that it may have come across as more pedantic or arrogant than the interviewer intended. But, I think there's a huge leap there to misogyny, and the observation is not without merit: I don't really understand why there's so much nudity, specifically Lena's character. But my suspicion is “because narcissism,” and you can't quite expect people to articulate or explain that.

      • bonniesituation

        This show generally uses
        nudity in a conspicuously non-titillating way, even when the character
        is not Hannah (Dunham). I can think of more than one instance of
        officially telegenic actors on this show being non-titillatingly nude or
        nearly so. So there's something going on besides “challenging” those
        people who find Lena Dunham unattractive. Drawing that out
        is a perfectly legit line of critical inquiry. But Dunham and Apatow
        are apparently so defensive about the question of her appearance and What It Means, that this exploration of an
        interesting part of their work was quashed.

        • ver1tas

          He asked the question in such a way that warranted defensiveness. Sorry if you don't see that, especially if you have daughters.

          • bonniesituation

            He could have stated it better, but they overreacted, as my word choice implies. Apatow especially rushed to a conclusion a out this critic that the transcript doesn't justify, much like your conclusion about me based one comment.
            Of course Apatow and Dunham are probably tired of this topic because it's an old one but then the expectation would be that they'd have a better answer. And there was no reason to get personal with the critic, put words in his mouth or demonize him, a d then willfully refuse to comprehend his explanations.

      • EV

        I think that might be kinda colored by why you think women would be naked on TV, though. In America, women are naked on tv for exactly one reason: to show the male viewer their bodies. But actually, in life, women are naked for a lot of different reasons.

        Have you seen a European film or tv show? Men and women are naked all the time in these movies: for swimming, changing clothes, doing stuff in the middle of changing clothes, jerking off, taking off a shower, etc.

        Whether you like it or not, because this is America, and because you were asking this question, as an American tv critic, your question is just enforcing the same tired norms about the only times women should ever be naked on screen, and what kind of woman (thin, hot) that should be, and why.

        You can say it's not prescriptive, but whether you intended it to be or not, it is prescriptive. If you asked this in some kind of cultural vacuum, where you haven't seen a million American tv shows, and neither has anyone else, it'd be innocent, but in reality, in this context, it's not an innocent question.

        • bonniesituation

          Asking the show creators to talk about their non-titillating purposes for nudity –and getting a thoughtful answer instead of a witch hunt–would have helped us get to that better place you envision.

          If the typical nudity convention was perpetuated here I think that's on Dunham and Apatow for cutting of the discussion.

          • EV

            I kind of wonder why an explanation is needed, though? Is it so distracting?
            Also, he doesn't ask why she's naked on the show so much. He throws a pretty standard female-nudity show like GofT, and then says, “that I understand, that's norm, this I don't, please explain.” The whole thing was odd.

        • Elijah

          And that EV is why America is the greatest empire the world has ever known and Europe is not. Our enemies continue to try and corrupt and debauch Americans so America can be more easily conquered.

      • ver1tas

        You need to just stop “clarifying” your original intent with your question, just stick to being sexist instead of utterly stupid. Also, if you'd done your job remotely well, this question has been raised and answered about a gazillion times in the last year and a half. I can't even believe how/why anyone hired you as a TV critic. You both should be fired.

        • Gag A Maggot

          Poor guy, he dared to be that guy in The Emperor Wears No Clothes, and is promptly chastised for telling Lena the truth. Hang in there Tim, it's nice to know common sense is alive and well in Amerika.

      • Jennifer Roland

        I get what you were trying to ask, but I think it was easy for the panel to mis-read what you were saying, especially is they are over-sensitive to criticisms that Lena Dunham's naked body isn't attractive.

        I do think it's a shame that she didn't get your intention, because I would love to see the media covering issues of the male gaze and how a naked female body presented in a way that isn't salacious can subvert the male gaze.

      • Cindy

        You really should consider a different line of work if this is too difficult for you to comprehend.

      • wks9370

        Her nudity serves no purpose as far as story or plot is concerned. it's done for self promotion and ratings or to fill holes in the story

      • Daniel

        I completely understand why you asked the question. My wife and I asked ourselves the same question. We don't get. I think it's shock value. We liked the show but her nudity got old, quickly. But, it is her problem because we no longer watch.

      • Naked Millenial

        To me, a negative tone was established when you said you felt like you were “walking into a trap.” Maybe even combative.

        I can understand how Lena interpreted that wording to mean that you disapproved of the nudity rather than that you were purely curious about its artistic motivations.

        That being said, the nudity is about the only element of “Girls” that does resonate with me :/

      • HMama

        But if Lena Dunham's body looked more like, say, Emilia Clarke's or Lena Headey's or Esme Bianco's standing in a bathroom naked, would the show still be “just presenting nudity,” or would there be something titillating about it? Part of the issue with your question (at least the way it was phrased) is that it reflects our culture's unfortunate tendency to view certain bodies as sexual (and therefore, particularly for women, valuable) and other bodies as not. Naked female bodies in an objectified sexual context are fine and understandable to us, but outside of that context seem somehow inappropriate (the anger and anxiety surrounding public breastfeeding is a good example of this). Hannah's nudity isn't, after all, completely random–she's not getting naked in public libraries or grocery stores, she's naked in her own home, in comfortable intimacy with her lover(s).

        • HMama

          In other words: if you found Lena Dunham/Hannah Horvath sexy, would you find her nudity as random and confusing? The presumption of her response was that you don't, but it seems like a pretty safe guess to me.

      • http://paintingthecanvas.com/ Tamara L

        Isn't it comical that the one character on the show who's not cookie cutter Hollywood is the one kind of doing the one thing that's required of Hollywood beauties but expressly not of actresses built like Dunham? Then you throw in the everyday brushing my teeth while nude scenes, and then you show these arty weirdo poses of Hannah in the woods listening to This American Life while on her side with her knees up showing her underpants.

        I actually think that the question wasn't all that rile-worthy, but it also was kind of lame. You're a tv critic who asks a really blanket question like that?

    • AlexByrd

      Unrelated: if she doesn't arouse some people, is that a crime? I'm sorry, but being overweight is not ‘better’ than being anorexic. Both are unhealthy images. We happen to be saturated with images of too-thin women vs. healthy looking women, but images of overweight women aren't healthy either. America has a serious obesity problem and Lena Dunham is not a healthy weight (sorry, not sorry.)

      • MjrMissConduct

        Let's not pretend she's obese, ok?

    • butts n nutts

      He said, “Game of thrones is trying to be titillating with its nudity” as it's almost entirely used in sex scenes even one where a guy fingers a woman mid conversation with someone. In girls, it is a little strange how often clothes just come off. I don't see the bravery in the nudity. I don't see the point in the show in the first place though. It's like a lamer version of sex and the city, but with a slightly more self-obsessed main character. We get it, you like to be naked on camera, but it's just becoming filler in episodes anymore. The fact that Lena assumes that the writer doesn't like the nudity is one leap she took, and then she takes another leap and says that it's cause she isn't attractive to him. That's pretty telling to me. That it's his problem and that he would have to find her attractive to enjoy the show is just showing that she's doing it to exploit herself. It's a draw for the show. That's why she does it.

      • kt

        “it is a little strange how clothes just come off”

        How often do you take your clothes off (for reasons other than preparing for sex)? I am hoping at least once a day.

        • Thechairman66

          Yeah, I play naked ping pong all the time

          • og

            But if you were dating someone who owned a Ping pong table, it wouldn't be that strange.

      • annoyed

        I agree, in reading what was said I don't see the question as saying that she was unattractive. That's what he was saying, other shows do it specifically to arouse, where Girls it seems random. He never said he was against it or gave any opinion on her attractiveness. I have to wonder if a woman had asked if they would have jumped down her throat the same.

        I say this as a female reporter; I feel the question is valid, a lot of the nudity does feel random. I understand that they want it to seem like real life and that's fine, but the answer should have just ended with that. He even restated and tried to explain he did not mean offense, but no one was willing to believe him, and I know a lot of blog sites are still agreeing with those on stage. People need to grow up and give someone the benefit of the doubt. If they didn't like the question that much was it so hard just to take the next person and ignore him?

      • AnnaLynn25

        Thank you @buttsnnutts! Molloy clearly asked Apatow why the other cast members don't perform the same way Dunham does. In SATC all the characters conveyed sexuality and nudity. There is an agenda to Dunham's nudity and we're passed the shock-and-aw of the nudity. I also thought Dunham's reaction about the writers attraction was telling. I can see a chip on Dunham's shoulder that she pretends not to have.

        • W PALMER

          A very narcissistic chip. It's a “problem” if one is not into her.

        • Eddie

          SaraJsscaPrker was never nude on Sex and The City. Everybody else was at one point or another. What I really wanted to say was that there is nothing offensive about the question. The writer/critic was properly justified in asking it. I have seen a season of Girls and will never watch another. I don't get the random nudity either.

      • SecludedCompound

        This was exactly my thought: these folks are mistaking him saying that nudity is almost used entirely in salacious, sexual circumstances on GoT and insinuating for themselves what Mr. Molloy never said, that Lena Dunham somehow can't possibly titillate people.

        I wish I could say that I'm shocked that people are so willing to jump on someone that used what is basically a pretty innocent question, which may be a tad openly constructed, to denounce him for misogyny.

        It's absurd, and for Apatow to call it insulting on it's face is preposterous. It seems that Dunham has constructed a pretty nice situation that, while daring to make nudity a part of her show, she can't be questioned on it, because even broaching the subject with anything but adulation is tantamount to heresy.

        Nice work if you can get it.

        • Cherilyn

          I agree. I just want to point out that this question is neither sexist nor misogynistic. Sexism is discrimination based on gender while a misogynist literally hates women. There were so many ways to better handle the answer. I think Dunham and crew are just dense.

        • Thunderclap

          Lena can't titillate people. Thats the point they took away. Funny thing is they are right. Lena doesn't fit the Hollywood attractiveness scale. She got in because of who she's related to. Anyway, she's vanish once girls is done.

      • godofbiscuits

        You must have failed syllogisms in Jr high.

      • kymber23

        Well said! I actually “H8” watch the show because the characters are stupid and lame and Dunham going naked all the time makes it even worse because she (her character) is not attractive in mind and body. There is some good acting here and there and I like the other works from the creative team attached to it but I rarely laugh, just watch in bewilderment waiting to understand. But as a black female, I'm not suppose to understand I guess.

        • Cherilyn

          Careful, Kymber! If you made that comment about a black female not understanding the show to Dunham & crew, they would probably attack you and call you a racist which is as senseless as calling the reporter a misogynist. According to Dunham, if you do not like her nudity then you need therapy (as Dunham was quoted in this interview.)

          • kymber23

            Well I better find me a shrink ASAP because I don't understand the world those characters live in.

      • Ninty

        She assumed those things though because of how Molloy's question came across. Yes, I understand where he was coming from, more fully after reading the article, but she nor Apatow did and I can see how this guy's question could be misconstrued as “Game of Thrones has nude sexy people, but you're not sexy. Why do you get naked in your show? It's not enjoyable like Game of Thrones.” I don't think reading it is the same as how it sounded when he asked it. That's probably why she tried to insult him and defend her nudity. I do agree she probably wouldn't be as daring if her ego wasn't a bit inflated.

    • BIGtimSullivan

      They should have had you on that panel to answer the question- you did a knock up job. Bravo. Although i dont agree at least i understand where you're coming from. I still believe the incredible level of defensiveness exhibited by the “Girls” crew has to do with the underlining fact that the show is terrible though. Apatow, Donner, and Dunham are part & parcel with all the hype masters (which now even includes Anna Wintour!) instructing the unclean masses that this show isn't just amazing art but instructive. I beg to differ. Thanks for speaking for “the rest of us” Mr. Molloy.

      • davesilverman

        Why do people so often have to play the “emperor's new clothes” card when they don't like something that everyone else likes? It's perfectly fine for you not to like Girls, but *I* think it's fantastic, and I bet the people that make it do.

    • Jimmy B

      I'm not sure you read the piece.

    • MjrMissConduct

      I get your point, but I didn't read his question that way. I thought he was asking her what the reason for the nudity is. He's right, no other character is as nude as Lena all of the time.

      That said, this show is truly not that deep (or well written, IMO), so the mere fact she's portraying an annoying 20 something in NYC is probably the only explanation needed as to why she's nude all the time.

      I don't get it either, but then again, I don't relate to any of these characters and I live in NYC and am a native NY'er. Not in BK, in Manhattan, so maybe that's the caveat.

      • ver1tas

        Errm, you do realize that actors are real-life people. People who are or are not comfortable with nudity/very public nudity. You do realize that actors have to consent to being naked onscreen, especially naked a lot, that they don't just drop their panties at the snap of a director's finger? That thought has crossed your mind right? Idiot. If Lena is willing to be more naked on the show than the other actors, then Judd will use it, as he stated explicitly above. How can anyone be this dull?

        • MjrMissConduct

          I'm not sure how anyone could be this dull, but you sure exceeded it.

          Not sure, nor do I care, what your inane ramblings above have to do with anything.

          We are discussing a tv show and a character, so if the explanation on why she's nude so much is simpl that she's willing to be nude, it actually validated the authors original confusion and subsequent question, which was what does all of her nudity have to do with the story line.

          Further, next time keep your cheap attempt at insulting people to yourself, or try harder, because you just sound like a pompous asswipe who lacks substance.

        • MjrMissConduct

          Errm, you do realize this show is not a documentary or a biography about Lena Dunham but actually is a fictional tv show that she writes? I'm not sure how anyone could be this dull, but you sure exceeded it.

          Further, not sure, nor do I care, what your inane ramblings above have to do with anything. We are discussing a FICTIONAL tv show and a created character, not asking Lena what she does in her real life bathroom, so if the explanation on why her character is nude so much is simply that the actor's willing to be nude, it actually validated the author's original confusion and subsequent question, which was what does all of her nudity have to do with the story line.

          Finally, next time keep your cheap, amateurish attempt at insulting people to yourself, or try harder, because you just sound like a pompous asswipe who lacks substance.

    • sister starshine

      keith calder, you are rad. tim molloy, your question was not rad; and your girlfriend's mind has been colonized by the male gaze/patriarchy so of course she doesn't think there is anything wrong with your question. have you heard of the beautiful body project by jade beall? take a look at beall's work, it might help you appreciate the issues of fetishized gender representation. and with an expanded awareness of such issues, you will be a better tv “critic” and boyfriend with all the deeper thinkings.

      • bringerofchill

        Don't pretend that standing around naked on screen for no reason is Feminism, more so it is a lack their of. I see you've taken some intro to film classes. It's nice you know the vocab of the trade, but this has nothing to do with the male gaze or patriarchy. Lena is a troubled young lady who thinks attention can be won by disrobing on screen the first chance she gets.

        • grockk

          Of course it has to do with the male gaze. That's why all the “no fat chicks” idiots are so passionately nauseated.

          • rnggg67223e

            Exactly grockk

        • smarterthanyou

          Saying: why are you naked if not to titillate viewers? is absolutely a clear-cut example of the male gaze.

          • Erick the Redd

            I have only read the article, and was not actually present at the panel. But if the article is to be believed for its accuracy (and as its the only thing I can go on, it has to be), then he never said “why are you naked if not to titillate viewers?”. Instead he asked what was the meaning of the nudity? He said Game of Thrones does it to titillate viewers, and he can understand that purpose, but what is her purpose? He didn't say it was or wasn't to titillate viewers, although I think we can all agree that it is not used for that purpose, and I base that opinion on not the appearance of Ms. Dunham, but instead what is happening in the majority of the scenes she is naked.
            This is not a clear-cut example of the male gaze at all. Agian, allowing for the fact that I only have access to this one article and this one side of the story.

          • grockk

            Throw out the panel. Her nudity confronts the male gaze. There is evidence all over this inane comment section that confirms this. If you disagree, say why.

          • bringerofchill

            Nice paraphrasing, but that's not what was asked, He used an example of why GoT uses nudity. The fact that they couldn't give reasons why nudity was an aesthetic choice shows it is being used for the sake of nudity. There is nothing progressive about showing tit to show tit.

        • ver1tas

          The reasons have been stated over and over again for the past year and a half, the fact that you won't accept them is your problem. So keep pretending it's for no reason, misogyny is strong with this one.

        • EV

          “Don't pretend that standing around naked on screen for no reason is Feminism”
          “Lena is a troubled young lady who thinks attention can be won by disrobing on screen the first chance she gets.”

          It's funny, because you can't seem to conceive of a single instance a woman might be naked other than to grab male attention. In life, women are naked for a lot of different reasons, but you can't picture this. Every time a woman is naked, it has to be for male attention, or some other immediately apparent reason. That's the problem.

          It's not necessarily feminist for a woman to be naked on TV for reasons other than sex/plot development, but the reactions of people to this, and why she's doing it, is pretty telling about their own sexism. “If it's not for me, why does it exist?”

          • bringerofchill

            I can think of a lot of reasons why a woman might be naked, and it has nothing to do with grabbing a males attention. I didn't even say he attention seeking behavior had anything to do with males.

            What you don't seem to understand is, there should be a reason for aesthetic choices made, and the artist fail to provide a valid reason for it.

          • EV

            Why does there need to be a reason? One reason I can think of off the top of my head is that people actually are naked a lot more than just having sex, so she was just capturing this. But, I don't think she has to explain.

            And to me, writing “Lena is a troubled young lady who thinks attention can be won by disrobing on screen the first chance she gets” doesn't show a lot of understanding about why someone might be naked, outside of titillation/shock value.

          • bringerofchill

            No reason to continue a conversation with ignorant.

      • Overrated Lena

        Go back to Smith.

        • rnggg67223e

          Oh Joansie69

          • Overrated Lena

            What on earth are you talking about?

      • Dex

        Idiotic post! get over your feminist self. disgusting. Its man that creates these terrible images in society of women…what a ridiculous bunch of crap!

      • Erick the Redd

        The beautiful body project by jade beall HAS a purpose. If Lena Dunhams (and only mostly her) nudity HAS a purpose, it surely wasn't the same as jade beall. Otherwise she would have said so. Instead she assumed he wasn't “into her”, and said “i'm naked because people are naked sometimes”. No further depth than that. Instead of answering the question, what is the artistic purpose, they gave some half assed response and then got angry and mr. molloy.
        Also, who are you to assume the ONLY reason his girlfriend questions the purpose (not against it) is because or some brainwash by men? I'm sorry, do you know her? Have you met her? Based off your post I would have to assume no, but I wouldn't know.

        • ver1tas

          She HAS said so, like 62414268293 times in the past year and a half, and after so many times answering the same question to uninformed “critics” I'd be annoyed too.

          • Erick the Redd

            If you've been asked that question, and answered it, 62414268293 times in the past, then when you have a panel interview, you should expect to be asked it again. Obviously it is a recurring question. Again I am neither defending or attacking the question posed, I am questioning the way in which it was “answered”. If I was annoyed about a question I've been asked so much, my response would have been more like “I've answered that in the past and don't need to go there again”. Something along those lines. Not jumping onto the “You don't like me? Thats your problem”. That is hinting at another reason entirely for why she is naked so often.

      • Mirjana Balta

        Sorry, but it's actually sexist and misogynistic that Lena Dunham is pretty much the only one who is naked all the time. Let them show an equal amount of male nudity and re-visit the discussion.
        Taking a dump is a regular part of life but it isn't shown in movies and on TV unless it is for “toilet humour” usually. So there isn't any real need in the story lines for Lena's nudity.
        The fact that they are so defensive about the nudity question is VERY telling.

        • Gaby

          I agree what is sexist, offensive and misogynistic is that it is mostly actresses asked to do nude scene, why is that? It is time Hollywood achieved nudity parity!

        • ver1tas

          Because she's the only feminist actress willing to be naked all the time. Oh my god, did I just see a lightbulb go off? You're welcome.

      • SlapHappyDude

        Legitimate question: Is this a parody, or for real? I'm thinking it's an awesomely hilarious parody… right?

    • Andrew

      Actually, it is Dunham and the show's producers that seem to say the nudity is “for no reason” it just “is”. Fact is the nudity is to get and keep teenage viewers! Oh my, how the truth is so uncomfortable as to attack the writer/critic.

    • Dex

      No the problem is not obvious. What is obvious is that you and the other people who got mad at the question are inferring what the person who asked the question meant. Don't infer! Just take the question at face value and everything is fine. Analyze too much and you get upset because you think someone is trying to be rude or say Judd isn't sexy. That's not what was said at all. The show sucks anyway…time to move on.

      • Erick the Redd

        Exactly what you say.

      • EV

        Yeah, don't infer! This question was asked in a total cultural vacuum, where things like sexism and the male gaze don't exist. Just answer the nice man's request to justify your nudity, as contrasted to the kind that happens in Game of Thrones.

    • DPG

      Yes, well put.

    • Ripley Wolfwood

      Excellent point! People are nude for many reasons. I also understand Apatow's assertion that obviously, if she is the only actress very comfortable with casual nudity, it's a given that she will be nude more than other actresses in the show. I also feel the reporter was unwilling to give any thought to how he might have been perceived as offensive, (much like a parent refuses to admit when their kid has misbehaved, and instead defends them.) His assertions that “everyone I know” wonders the same thing. He's basically asserting a lot of ppl feel this way with no way to back up his assertion.

    • Neil

      Obviously, you are the same brand of smug, superior, dishonest hypocrite as Apatow and Dunham.

      If you look at what he said and the facts of the show and presentation, the only way any of it is “insulting” is if you are a perpetually aggrieved parasite intentionally looking for offense in everything.

      Call it “sex for sex only”, you've “missed the point”. Ask what the point is, and you're a judgmental misogynist sexist. The only point is, she cannot be questioned and is never wrong, as long as it gets internet clicks. Idiot logic at it's finest.

      If a mildly attractive to plain-looking man was naked all the time on TV, not obviously for titilation, but with no other obvious reason….people would ask why! Many would also judge, laugh, talk crap, and nobody would care.

      But if you ask a woman why she does something that will obviously be noticed, but for no apparent reason, it's a sexist insult. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

      That's what happens when you take smug idiots like you, and your endlessly self-righteous crippled logic seriously.

      By the way, have you quit beating your wife yet?

      • keithcalder

        I agree with everything I said in my original comment, and I don't believe my point requires any further clarification or defense. I just wanted to drop by again for some meta-commentary on this whole affair…

        I wonder if it bothers Tim Malloy that the posts that are defending him are mostly by people like you. People who respond to reasonable discourse with a stream of insults. People who attack the subjects of this article as “smug, superior, [and] dishonest.” People who go grossly beyond Tim's perhaps-poorly-worded question into true intentional misogyny and sexism.

        If I were in Tim Malloy's shoes, the most upsetting thing about this whole debacle would be looking at the responses from people defending me. For surely Mr. Malloy doesn't want to have a champion like you.

        • Gag A Maggot

          There are still plenty of people in America who find a brazen harlot strutting around on TV naked something that needs to be questioned as to it's artistic (?) value. As long as we continue to have freedom of speech people will continue to object to the continued degradation of women and culture. Being viewed as a sex object is not liberating for women but extremely degrading. Modesty in a woman is a virtue, a brazen whore is not.

    • AnnaLynn25

      But Lena Dunham is just standing in front of a blender naked (for example). She's not touching herself or kissing the blender – she just is. Apatow sort of answered the question later by insisting Girls is about everyday people doing everyday naked things. Fine. That's all we needed to know. I love a sexy man/woman naked but if they are just brushing their teeth or making a pb&j sandwich naked then I guess I would want to know why too.

    • mw

      keithcalder is right on. it's pretty funny that this molloy guy keeps saying that he's a “TV critic” and he “watches the show deeply.” yet he doesn't understand why dunham might be offended by a question that implies that female nudity makes no sense unless it's for (male) titillation. apatow told him to reread his wording and he STILL doesn't see it. def. not much of a TV critic. and i feel sorry for your supposed girlfriend if you really think that women's bodies exist solely for male delectation.

      • Gag A Maggot

        The degradation of women in the media, whether white, black, latina or jew should certainly be questioned by all decent people.

    • HozeKing

      She is fat and flabby. That is not titillating. If she doesn't like it, she should jump on a treadmill every once and awhile.

    • nycnycnyc

      Right on point! The writer of this article does not realize he is insulting her.

    • happycozy

      Bingo! The question was poorly worded, but Apatow was a douche for not accepting Molloy's explanation. Also, Apatow was a douche in his response to the question about the show's lack of diversity. I'm sorry but the show is set friggen in NYC and none of the characters have ANY friends/relatives of color? Then when you do see a person of color, it's in a sexualized context. Seriously?

    • Thechairman66

      @keithcalder:disqus There's male nudity on Game of Thrones as well. Why would you assume that he's only talking about the female nudity?

    • Thechairman66

      Or more importantly, why did she assume Molloy finds her unattractive? That just reinforces her the stereotype she's trying to critique

    • Hilary

      Whooooosh

    • Maxwell Anderson

      This isn't quite right. Mr. Molloy is correct in saying that nudity in Girls is fundamentally different from nudity in Game of Thrones. The problem is that he seems to object to (and be intellectually flabbergasted by) the more interesting and deeper use of nudity in Girls, and seems to condone the “titillating” use of nudity in Game of Thrones. He's implying that the only time women should be naked is to titillate men. He gives himself away in this defensive article, by re-writing the terms of his question from what he initially implied.

  • BigBroKnows

    Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner are “strong and powerful women” just ask them; much like the Wizard of Oz was strong and powerful to hide his insecurities and lack of self-confidence.

    Judd Apatow was just being an enabling mangina to Dunham and Konners’ 1970s woman's lib empowerment diatribe.

    Next time Tim Molloy should do a pre-interview check to make sure they've landed on earth before venturing an innocent inquiry as to why all the nudity.

    That's my story and I'm sticking to it… kudos to you for leaning in and taking one for the reality team. You did a good job trying to keep them tethered.

    • tim.molloy

      I like you.

      • Salacious Nudist

        I was on board with the article until I read your endorsement of this comment– particularly the first two bullshit, grammatically incorrect sentences. Lame response.

        • tim.molloy

          I also like you.

      • tim.molloy

        Hey, to clarify. I like BBK based on this line:

        “Next time Tim Molloy should do a pre-interview check to make sure
        they've landed on earth before venturing an innocent inquiry as to why
        all the nudity.”

        It made me laugh. Doesn't mean I agree with everything he says.

        I also like Judd Apatow and Lena Dunham, but don't agree with everything they say.

    • Overrated Lena

      This. Three snaps in a circle for you. Werq.

  • Luke

    So a film or television show can't have nudity unless it is “salacious” or “titillating?”

    Part of why GIRLS is so refreshing and borderline-revolutionary is in how it depicts sex and nudity in other ways other than “salacious” or “titillating.” If you really watched the show, I don't know how this couldn't be any clearer.

    • Joe

      If she looked like a typical Hollywood hottie and did the exact same show, no one would use the term revolutionary to describe it. And the people who love it wouldn't love it.

      The reason they got offended by the question was because they knew they couldn't give you the truth, which is she does it out of spite. For some reason her being overweight makes her a brave and a genius.

      • grockk

        It's funny because you are exactly right about why she does it and you still miss the point embarrassingly.

        • Chuck Jones

          If she weighted 500 pounds, you might have a point. She doesn't have a ‘perfect’ body, but the only thing gross about it are those ridiculous tats. So her ‘point’ about being spiteful misses the intended point…it's not about your body, Sweetheart…it's your OBNOXIOUS personality (or lack thereof). And if you've ever heard her interviewed, she has the same boring countenance as Hannah.

          • grockk

            She doesn't do it to spite people, she does it because her body type is never shown naked anywhere else. This comment section has a lot of evidence as to why it's important.

    • deanayer

      if it was “borderline revolutionary” it would have ratings, if I'm not mistaken “Dance Moms” crushes it on cable.

      • Luke

        It's not wildly popular, but that doesn't mean it hasn't started a discussion and made an impact in pop culture.

        • DepthTested

          Its certainly started a discussion with me. And what I've discovered is that fat chicks everywhere suddenly feel better about their bodies because Lena is bravely showing us that homely girls can have random sex too.

      • grockk

        Why in your mind are ratings in any way associated with revolutionary?

    • tim.molloy

      Ha. That's a ridiculous misread of what I'm saying. “Salacious” has a negative connotation. That's why I used it.

      • grockk

        Tim, do you now know the answer to your question?

      • Josh Danger

        I think their comment still makes sense with the understanding that “salacious” has a negative connotation. You asked Dunham why be nude if it's not going to be “salacious” or “titillating,” Luke is asking why it has to be one or the other to make sense to you. In your life, are you only ever naked to be salacious or to titillate? How the fuck do you bathe, man?

        And, by the way, the implication that Dunham's nudity is not “titillating” to you and thus makes no sense is WHY she replied with, “If you are not into me, that’s your problem,” to answer the “Huh?” you posited in your article. It's why Apatow asked you to take another look at what you asked and the way you asked it. Whether you meant to or not, the way you phrased that question – your choice of vocabulary and the structure of how you set-up your question – added the implication that you don't think she's attractive and that how attractive a depiction of nudity is to you has some level of importance that she should answer for. Maybe you should do more than look at the transcript, maybe you should break the whole set-up and question down into one of those “sentence trees” kids learn about in elementary-school English, in an effort to better realize exactly what you were communicating and how it was understood. Either you're down with commenters like “Gag A Maggot In A Cow Patty” and you're a douche, or you misspoke and you owe Ms. Dunham an apology for accidentally being rude about her appearance. Cause it's there in the question you asked, and the only real question left is why you asked it that way. Douchebag misogynist, or thoughtless interviewer?

    • Chuck Jones

      Yes, GIRLS certainly does depict sex in ways other than ‘salacious’ or ‘titillating'. How about ‘degrading’ and ‘frustrating'. Now, that's a really “refreshing” thing for viewers to see…and sooooooo progressive. How the ‘sexual revolution’ has freed females to be doormats for male idiots who like to indulge in kiddy porn fantasies, domination fantasies, and unsolicited water sports. So glad that we don't live in a ‘repressed’ era in which sex was supposed to be respectful & FUN for all parties.

      • seekingintelligentlife

        Couldn't agree more. There's a pack of morons in Hollywood who keep perpetuating their adolescent fantasies and passing it off as commonplace.

    • Mirjana Balta

      If it was really revolutionary it would show equal amounts of male nudity, which it doesn't. In fact, if it was revolutionary, it would show ONLY male nudity.

    • AnnaLynn25

      From one writer to another, Molloy just wanted to understand Dunham's continuous use of non-sexual nudity. Molloy honestly wanted Dunham's feedback and Dunham clearly took offense and ready WAY too much into Molloy's question.

  • useeknfind

    Hang in there, Tim! You're asking things we'd like to know, too.

  • brando

    There's only one person in Hollywood who's more full of herself than Lena Dunham, and that's Judd Apatow. It's no accident they work well together. Their talents are vastly overrated.

    • Evan Dickson

      Judd Apatow is a her?

      • Will

        She's one of the few female directors who can really rock a beard/penis, that's for sure.

        • Pennylane22

          Not sure why, but I literally LOL'd at that..

          • EV

            Really? It's simplebecause you're an idiot.

          • fanoboss12

            I liked your comment just so I could UN-like then dislike it.

          • Tanya

            Me too.

        • brett knoss

          How do you know she has a penis?

          • Will

            There was… an incident. Mistakes were made. I'm not saying Miss Apatow and I had inappropriate relations, and I'm not saying we didn't, but I'm about 90% sure I felt a penis before the ether in the jello kicked in.

      • Subversive

        I think the “her” was intentional and appropriate. Apatow comes off as an entitled b—h.

        • Final Girl

          And the misogyny continues..

          • fanoboss12

            Let the whining and holier than thou attitude continue.

          • SecludedCompound

            Yep, anytime someone says something you don't like about somebody you like:” Misogyny.”

            Careful, or you'll take the weight out of your own own cudgel.

          • Facepalm

            Misogyny is the hatred of women. That's not misogyny, douche.

          • Guest

            …At the very least, Subversive is acknowledging he associates Apatow with an offensive word associated with females… And apparently it would be less appropriate if we called HIM a b**ch, and more appropriate for ‘her'? It's a stupid insult for sure.

          • Bob Glover

            …and the misandry.

        • rachcat

          This is the most ridiculous thing I've heard. Why would seeming entitled and bitchy mean the individual must be a her? And that referring to someone as ‘her’ is an insult?

          Grossly sexist and offensive.

          • Json

            Women have a different perspective of the world because strangers give a shit about them. There's a base level of entitlement the average woman feels which only men born rich share with her. Men don't act entitled and bitchy because they aren't entitled to anything and being bitchy gets them nowhere. Instead, if we get mad, we take power and exert our influence on the thing that ticked us off, or walk away calmly. The insult for this person is ‘dick'.

          • Ana

            .. Narrow-minded and idiotic. Nice try, though, philosophizing about the average woman's “base” nature. Entitled? You're the one who sounds entitled, knit-wit.

      • You're Stupid

        Do you even grammar? This is a properly written sentence where “herself” refers to Lena Dunham. “One person in Hollywood” is the only phrase refering to Judd Apatow until after the comma.

        • yappy00

          The “one person in Hollywood” refers to Judd Apatow. The “herself” refers to “one person in Hollywood”. So no, it's not a properly written sentence.

          At best it should be a gender neutral “themself”, but certainly not a patently incorrect “herself”.

        • chem

          Do You even grammar?..Yes your Screen name is correct.

        • Wisconsinite

          To really be correct, the sentence should read “There's only one person in Hollywood who's more full of himself than Lena Dunham is of herself, and that's Judd Apatow.”

      • tomleykis

        Lena Dunham is a her? I hear she's just signed on for the reboot of “Have Gunt, Will Travel”.

        • Darth Rant

          Best… comment… ever!

    • LaikaCatMeow

      It amazing how, in this situation, Apatow is so desperate to protect Poor Little Lena Dunham and somehow position himself as this great defender of gender equality. Has the man even watched any of his own films?

      • MITIOR

        Judd Apatow movies are sexist as well. knocked up was sexist against men. When the female character literally “used” Seth to satisfy her emotional needs thru meining less sex and then repenting because she wasn't sexually attracted to him and he wasn't good enough “economically”.

        • A.M

          Right. It's so gross when women want to have a casual sex encounter with men but not enter into a relationship with them afterwards. Any woman who has sex with a guy should want to marry him.

          • Caitlin-Calvin Peck

            The answer as to why she is always naked seems clear to me following this discourse. And certainly the ‘why’ of the question is not offensive. No one asks why people are naked in porn. The answer is honest and adult. Seth Romans

          • Confusedengineer

            Soooo….it's not a gross where man want to have a casual sex encounter with women but not enter into a relationship with them afterwards.

          • Zach Huffman

            What is “a gross”? Is it some sort of small mammal? Or is it some kind of game? Or possibly the title of a grammar book written by a four-year-old child. Because I know that the phrase “a gross” isn't an adjective. I also know that the comment you're replying to was sarcastic and you aren't intelligent enough to realize that. So get off your computer and read a book, you uncultured piece of garbage.

    • CPO_C_Ryback

      Lena: get Ms. Kirke to use her Brit accent and behead someone, like on GoT. Works for them.

      Otherwise, your show is about as fun as listening to “you can keep your doctor” 342 times. Like 00.00% fun.

    • kymber23

      i totally agree.

  • aaronical

    Not a surprising response – Dunham is so full of herself now. That's what made Season 2 so terrible…I guess Season 3 won't be good either. All the magic from Season 1 has been lost by having such a big head and being so self-aware.

  • VannaBean

    I completely agree with you on this one. I never got the point of nudity on the show. Never seemed to have a purpose. I get it. It's scandalous, but would have seemingly the same impact without it.

  • hhm

    “Girls” deals with sex a lot but not with girls as sexual objects for the pleasure of men, as you are used to on “Game of Thrones.” It deals with girls having sex for their own pleasure. Having said that, I'm surprised at some of the demeaning sex that has been portrayed on the show. I think it's because these girls are trying to figure things out, and frankly, we all do things we aren't proud of in our 20s. So I credit Lena Dunham with writing her characters with complexity. The nudity is not always related to sex nor is it supposed to be. If it is related to sex, welcome to three-dimensional characters where exciting AND awkward things happen, not just perfectly scripted TV lorno. Why be naked in the bathroom? Because people are naked in the bathroom ALL THE TIME, girls included, hello.And clearly, Hannah is really guileless abut that. The critic is asking what's the artifice for the nudity? There is none. The artifice would be if the character walked around her apartment perfectly clothed all the time. The writer is writing characters to be real young women. The writers of “Girls” are going for a level of character honesty not usually seen on TV. Real naked girls aren't for titillation purposes of viewers, although I'm sure viewers are titillated by “Girls.”. You implied both that naked girls are only for salacious or titillating purposes, which objectifies women, and you implied that Hannah's nudity on the show isn't interesting, has no purpose. That's why your question was offensive. You can't hide behind your girlfriend's stamp of approval.

    • jfo

      if only dunham or apatow said that….

      • hhm

        I can see why the producers and writers were put off by the question if only that the critic compared “Girls” to “Game of Thrones,” ha. I find “Girls” not always comfortable but really different.

        • Jfo

          I do side with the writer that it was fair to ask though, maybe could have been better phrased. At first read I took the comparison to GoT based on the shows being on the same network. As a viewer, I've had the same thought about the nudity because in some scenes that it felt unnecessary.

          • hhm

            Nudity's pretty unnecessary most of the time, but it happens, like when you have no clean towels after getting out of the shower and have to traipse through the house to the dryer to get one, etc. What I find unnecessary in Apatow movies is bathroom-function scenes. Is that funny to anybody other than a, I don't know, maybe 7th grade boy?

          • seekingintelligentlife

            Agreed. It's just visual toilet “humor” and not even funny. Apatow couldn't get enough of putting Paul Rudd on the toilet and having him spread-eagle in This is 40. Plain gross. By contrast, I laughed hysterically in the bathroom scene from “The Hangover,” which had legitimacy in the humor department. I don't care for Apatow's view of the world.

          • Wingfoot

            I'm glad that most 7th grade boys won't behave like the panelists and whine that your comment about them was demeaning and representative of gender bias.

    • Gag A Maggot in a Cow Patty

      Look, a fat, ugly chick has no excuse for strutting around naked on TV.
      I don't care if it's suppose to be for “artistic reasons” viewers shouldn't have to watch such horrors when trying to relax and enjoy a little TV.

      • Winston Booth

        Do you viewers HAVE to watch it? Are their remotes locked up? If your enjoyment of TV is ruined by a little nudity that isn't a perfect model, then maybe you should ask yourself why you're owed only perfection?

        • Gag A Maggot In A Cow Patty

          I was first introduced to a naked Lena a few months back when my cable provider gave a free HBO weekend. So I'm flipping through the channels to see what's on HBO and I see a fat, ugly chick sitting naked on the commode eating a whole cake. My first visceral response was how cruel it was to make this homely actress do a nude scene. So I watched a few episodes and came to find out the fat chick wrote the show as well as starred in it. Nobody was making her do nude scenes. I thought that Allison Williams was a beauty and wished it had been her doing the nude scenes.
          So, like the author I was also puzzled as to why a fat, ugly chick would be strutting around naked on TV for no reason.

          • Josh Danger

            My nominee for Best Representative of “Team Tim ‘Titilating’ Mallow” right here.

      • Mirjana Balta

        While I agree with Tim Molloy I totally disagree with you. You're a creep. I think Lena Dunham's nudity on the show is pointless, except for shock value, but if she wants to walk around nude on the show, so be it.
        Her body isn't “Hollywood” but it's a perfectly normal one.

    • Chuck Jones

      No, not EVERY woman does idiotic things in their 20's like letting gross guys jerk off on them while making the woman pretend that she's 11 years old. And not all women in their 20's grovel and crawl across nails on the floor in order to please some arrested-adolescence male fantasy. The show is misogynistic in its portrayal of masochistic females who act as if they're prepubescent. The females back in the “Father Knows Best” & “Ozzie & Harriet” days were much stronger characters…the females in “Girls” are nutcases who invite abuse. That's not “three-dimensional”…unless you consider porn movies to be “three-dimensional”. Yes, getting treated like a doormat is really “exciting”, isn't it? And, believe it or not, MOST people do walk around their apartments clothed unless they're getting dressed or bathing. Character “honesty”? What a joke. Only unfunny…like ‘Girls'.

      • meme

        Chuck doesn't get out much

        • chuckdaly

          Are you implying that women in their 20's are indeed like the characters on Girls, Linda?

          • Winston Booth

            Some are, some aren't Just because someone doesn't have the same experiences as you doesn't make them WHORES OF BABYLON!

  • deanayer

    You are failing at the director's request to perform the kind of self-criticism you see people forced to do in public in places like Mao's China and Stalin's Soviet Union. You are “too dense” to correctly renounce yourself after committing a thought crime. The specific crimes are: asking why the empress has no clothes, asking why there is no “there” there and worst of all failing to see the “art” in the bludgeoning Dunham delivers with the dull axe of her nakedness. You too deftly switch between using the word “nudity” and “naked’ for the panel to understand but its nudity when it has a purpose on Game of Thrones (to titiilate) but she is simply randomly naked on her show for reasons that can't be justified past saying “I forgot to wear clothing”.

    • Winston Booth

      Yeah, this is just Stalin during Russia times! What, we can't ask questions anymore? This reporter was literally taken away from his family for years after asking this question, it's exactly the same as in China. Now here come the PC Police who area totally real organization and literally arrest people for making comments that offend people.

  • Jake Speed

    It was a valid question. The reason they feigned outrage is because the nudity literally has no purpose, artistically or salaciously. It is without substance just as the show is without substance.

    So, rather than have to confess that it is merely exhibitionist (and therefore objectifying) they attacked the question. Me thinks they doth protest too much.

    • Winston Booth

      It was a stupid, time wasting question that only served to drive up hits to this site and bring out the “fat chick cuckoo train choo choo” crowd. His question had no merit whatsoever.

      • Mirjana Balta

        His question DOES have merit. He wants to know the purpose for the nudity – shock value, artistic display, a way to promote regular bodies in a perfection-obsessed world, to promote feminism (a weird way to do so, but whatever), essential to the story?
        I think everyone agrees it's not because it's essential to the story. The fact that they don't really have a good answer and they got so defensive about the question tells me there isn't a good reason for the nudity. That's why they attacked Tim.

      • Overrated Lena

        ^Thanks, HBO.

      • Erick the Redd

        Their response to the question, which was phrased pretty well, would indicate Jake Speed is correct.

  • deanayer

    once more try at this… Aside from having angered Narcissus himself with your question you seem to have tapped a knuckle right on the fault line of their weird “artistic” codependence. I am reminded of the scene in The big Lebowski where Julianna Moore comes flying naked across a warehouse on some kind of zipline

  • Luke

    It seems like you can't be nude on camera without your intentions being questioned unless you have movie-star looks or are a man.

    • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

      it's more a matter of being ‘understood’ as opposed to being ‘questioned’

    • DepthTested

      I'm working on a show where I masturbate through most of it because that's what I do most of the time. If you question it I'll be offended.

      • Gag A Maggot In A Cow Patty

        I have a few suggestions for Lena that might help keep her show be even more realistic and edgy. Perhaps they could show Lena pigging out on beer and pizza and then she runs naked to the bathroom and sticks her finger down her throat and vomits it all back up. I'm sure all the bulimics in her TV audience would love to see a realistic depiction of their agony in action.. No doubt Apatow would declare this nude artistic portrayal of puking very brave as well.

        Since “Girls” is apparently some type of modern day freak show I can't wait till Lena shows the masses what it's like to have food poisoning while also being nude. She can sit on the commode and hold the garbage can to her mouth as her ravaged body attempts to purge the offending bacteria from both ends. Wow, if she was also experiencing her monthly cycle she could have emissions coming from three orifices at the same time. I'm pretty sure the ratings would be fantastic as well.

      • Winston Booth

        Yes, because there's no different between being naked and masturbating. Do you jerk off when the doctor checks your prostate?

    • Winston Booth

      “If you're a woman who chooses to be naked you're a WHORE and obviously have DEEP PSYCHOLOGICAL ISSUES and we want to see hot naked chicks anyway.”

  • rizzo51

    Tim, there's a simple explanation why Apatow and Dunham were so upset. “Girls” is easily THE WORST SHOW IN THE HISTORY OF TELEVISION — so it's much better for them to avoid discussions about the horrid writing and execrable acting by diverting attention to the question you asked. They can't possibly justify this series so thank goodness you gave them an escape!

    • grockk

      Your opinions don't change objective reality.

      • grockk

        These down votes are silly. The reality is that Girls is a divisive show. It is not Work It, Dads or Tyler Perry's Meet the Browns. As such, the creators aren't in constant fear of being taken to task for atrocities against TV.

    • SlapHappyDude

      You need to watch more bad television and adjust your baseline. Girls has its faults, but your hyperbole about it is just silly.

  • Cody Schultz

    I completely agree with you Tim, I just don't understand the need for a character to be nude in a scene that doesn't lend itself to include nudity: it doesn't matter who the actor or actress is. I feel some shows add in excess nudity just because they can, even when it's not needed / doesn't better or fit the scene. I applaud you for not backing down from your question or the basis behind the question.

    • Ripley Wolfwood

      Meh. I walk around naked whenever I have the chance. lol Some people are just comfortable naked.

      • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

        And some people think Vietnamese pot-bellied pigs make good pets too, I'm glad I don't live next door to them either… lol

        • Ripley Wolfwood

          Oh yeah…there's a valid comparison for sure. o.O

  • Craig Tollting

    I'd like to be the first to just call Tim a bald-faced liar. You knew exactly what you were asking – you were asking “Why are you naked all the time when you're not hot like the chicks on Game of Thrones?” Another commenter even posed your question that way, and you've approved of it. Great! That's the first step.

    You're a coward, because you phrased your question in a way that you thought was defensible (“oh I'm just trying to understand, really!”) but since you're not very smart, you didn't realize that all three on the panel would see through it instantly, and know what you were really asking, and call you on your bull$hit. And using your girlfriend's approval as further cover is almost as ridiculous.

    Either have the guts to own up to what your real question was, or just shut your mouth.

    • DepthTested

      Dude, Lena called, you can have your balls back now.

      • rfk

        Wow, Tim, you even have your girlfriend come to the comments section to defend you? Nice job.

        • Overrated Lena

          Wow, Lena's on-call poon-eaters are here, too.

          (See how that works? Cuts both ways).

      • Winston Booth

        Dude, standing up for women is for fags. Real men call women fat from the safety of their computer monitors.

    • Lisa

      Have to disagree. I could see into his question and thought it was odd the panel was offended by it until I realized, they are throwing nudity into the show because they think it is artistic, edgy and brave and will have people talking about how artistic, edgy and brave they are. The nudity is strictly for the “buzz” which is why they got mad when he called them out on it. By the way, I am a female and the only way that question would have caused me to jump to the conclusion that I was being “dissed” in some way would be because I expected to have to defend the phoniness of my actions and had this reaction rehearsed to shut the question down.

      • Craig Tollting

        You're approaching his question from your point of view of “the nudity is strictly for the buzz” – his point of view, as he stated, was “Game of Thrones has nudity that I understand because the chicks are hot.”

        I also think you're assuming an awful lot about the creators when you say they include nudity to be “artistic, edgy and brave” – sometimes, people make a show without putting artificial limits on themselves just because they don't want to put artificial limits on themselves. In any case, being an apologist for this TV “critic”, or guy with a blog, smacks of revisionism, which he himself is busy engaging in. He knows what he meant.

        • seekingintelligentlife

          Whether or not GoT “chicks are hot” is irrelevant. The nudity on that show is there in sexual contexts. GoT goes way too far with the violence in my opinion, but so far I have not considered the nudity “out of place.”

          • Craig Tollting

            That is correct; it IS irrelevant. That's what makes Tim the Blogger's question insulting. He knows it, the panel knew it, and he had a pre-planned “I don't understand!” as his cover story. Thanks for helping to make my point for me.

          • MiddleWingNut

            “The nudity on that show is there in sexual contexts.”

            oh yeah, the nudity on GoT is NEVER gratuitous. right!

            /: )

          • seekingintelligentlife

            Sure, often the nudity is gratuitous, but it's always in a sexual context, which is the difference in his comparison. Danerys gets naked in the tub versus on the toilet.

        • snapshot1

          So you assume and interpreted Tim's question into “Why are you naked all the time when you're not hot like the chicks on Game of Thrones?”, but when people assume about the creators intentions you call them out on it?

          Sorry Craig Toliting, you've just negated your entire argument with hypocrisy and can't be taken serious.

  • deanayer

    How Patriarchal of Judd Apatow to intervene and come to the rescue of the “girls” and his opening salvo is to let you know that you probably just made your girlfriend mad with your question (because Judd knows how woman think better than you do). If I had to paraphrase his further patriarchal schooling of you when he said:

    ““There’s a way to word a question about the reason for nudity on the show and it was not done elegantly. If you re-read it and you listen to it you will not be proud of yourself.”

    I would write it as “Dude you can't talk to girls like that”. So really whats the deal? are these super-fems being transgressive, post-modern and deconstructionist or do they need Daddy to bail them out? because frankly you can't have both.

    • grockk

      Hey, maybe you don't have any friends. Friends stick up for other friends when they think that someone is being rude to them.

      • DepthTested

        Rude would have been, “Hey, Lena, why do you always show your gross body? You come across as a Chris Farley routine gone awry.”

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Apatow is misogynistic himself. I thought “This is 40” was loathesome from a woman's perspective. But then again, I'm such an East Coaster, there's just no possible way I would employ a prostitute, watch videos of her having sex in my store, allow my husband to look up her skirt while she's not wearing underwear, and ask if I could fondle her big fake boobs so I could decide if I should get bigger ones. The only reason for that character's existence in the film was to indulge a man's perverted fantasies, and at the same time, the personal trainer, who was only character in the film who could and should have been there for women to enjoy – that character was played by a so-so looking soft-bodied actor who willingly gets naked in films but was not naked in this movie. I wanted my 2 hours and 15 minutes back.

    • SlapHappyDude

      Apatow is a pretty well know misogynist who is using his support of Girls to paper over that fact.

  • Titilating Alacrity

    Unfortunately for them, displaying nude women onscreen is not new, bold, artistic or daring. It is a desperate attempt at authenticy by insecure people who really have very little talent, and who will stop at nothing to distract the audience away from that fact. You started to peel away at that fact by your question, and I believe that is why they got as angry and defensive as they did.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Very well stated. Deep down they KNOW the only reason for the gratuitous nudity is the shock value and nothing more.

      • Overrated Lena

        And after all these seasons you'd think they'd have a better answer. I'm sure HBO has tried to give them one. But Judd and Lena think their sh*t don't stank, so why listen to the little people.

        • rnggg67223e

          Someone will buy your pilot one day

          • Erick the Redd

            So someone bought her pilot, and therefore she is a great person who can do whatever she wants for no reason with no integrity, and no explanation for it?

          • rnggg67223e

            Erick, Mine was a flip and unnecessary comment to a lot of the Lena hating going on here and elsewhere. However, your comment is similarly troubling.

          • Erick the Redd

            Maybe I was too over the top, but mine was as well an unnecessary comment to all of the Lena love, when personally I feel that her response, as well as Apatow's, were from a place where they feel exactly how “Overrated Lena” stated. A lot of people are defending her in many ways that she could have EASILY gone with, but instead she went the one way we all knew she would go. The “you don't find me attractive therefore its your fault” direction, which I took as very low integrity. If she can't back her own decisions and her own “art” to a simple question, then what is the point?

          • rnggg67223e

            Erick, I agree that the panel is accountable for the tone the discussion took, even if Molloy's antagonism was embarrassingly dim. But Lena has discussed this subject, at length, for two years, very articulately. She is highly intelligent—which never rubs her critics the right way—and incredibly resilient for a young woman who is the object of so much strangely personal anger.

          • Erick the Redd

            If she has already answered the question articulately (and she may have, I just tried to do some research on my own but found about 20 links to this story), then why did she not respond with what she said before, or at the very least say something like “I have answered that in the past and you can refer to that”. Instead she said “I'm naked because people are naked sometimes”, although there are lots of things I do that aren't usually recreated on TV, unless its for comedic effect. And then she responded “If you don't like me thats your problem”. I stated in a previous post I only have this side of the story, I wasn't at the panel, but from the story it was never mentioned someone didn't like her. It is these responses that leads to the feeling that she doesn't have an answer, and therefore is full of it. I will admit I don't have all the info from every interview she's ever given, so I reserve the right to change my mind, but as of right now all I can see is that.

          • rnggg67223e

            Erick, That research falls on Molloy, not you. He is ostensibly a journalist and should be doing the appropriate homework—and researching discussion of nudity on Girls is not difficult homework—particularly when planning to be confrontational. But, perhaps he is just a civilian—writing for an industry blog—and didn't know better.

          • Overrated Lena

            This!. Yes.

          • Overrated Lena

            Are you high? Another meaningless comment. Oh, wait… are you trying to be funny? Try harder. Or are you too busy servicing Judd and Lena?

          • rnggg67223e

            “Overrated Lena” see below.

  • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

    Dunham always ‘wanting to be nude’ is just another example of her bad decisions, much like the ink stains and cellulite she displays …thinking ‘that's’ what viewers want to see. She's just lucky to be on cable where content is lacking and she can almost be as popular as a Honey Boo-Boo or Snooki.

    • DepthTested

      I for one wish Snooki would decide to make a statement about femininity and get naked more often. But let's face it, Lena gets laid all the time on the show because she's probably a Borderline. And that goes for real life too. All aboard the fat chick cuckoo train.

      • Winston Booth

        “All aboard the fat chick cuckoo train.” Yep, this is the audience he was hoping for. Questions about the actual show? Boring. Oh, why she naked so much? THIS has my attention! Cuz she's FAT! HA!

      • LaurenMC

        ….she's not fat. If you think that is a fat woman then you must only be surrounded by models.

        • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

          Definitely not fat, just out of shape and sloppy, not the type that should be exposing themselves to everyone, it presents a demented sense of self worth.

    • Chuck Jones

      Hoping Dunham doesn't read your comment…otherwise, she'll crib from it & write a scene in which Adam Driver jerks off on her while pretending that Dunham is Honey Boo-Boo. Oh, wait…they did that in the first episode of Season One.

  • Michael Aldridge

    Lena Dunham is incapable of seeing herself as she is, naked or not. She should try watching the show.

  • Pmoney

    I think its kind of comical that we are all positing our theory on what has outraged the perpetually offended. It's also worthy of note that, in many ways, modern feminism has devolved into the security blanket of the pathologically insecure. Is Dunhams nudity really a celebration of the beauty in the atypical and ordinary or we all players in the final stage of personal affirmation therapy in which one individuals self absorbed quest has finally healed the wounds delivered is some JR High gymnasium? Who is this reporter who dare interrupt this therapy and suggest that she, the atypical beauty, is in fact atypical? I haven't decided if this is more offensive to women or that women must be depicted as naked and promiscuous to be considered beautiful. Your call Judd

  • Daniel Kane

    I'm going to read all of these comments. I agree with the writer of the article. Though his connection of the two shows was unfortunate in not separating them with an explanatory example of distinction, Apatow is over-sensitive, and anyone who says, ‘That's your problem', to confront a negatively perceived comment, is of an infant mentality. Just accept there are people who disagree with things personally, and don't be so offended. Especially when an adult can interpret no offense was intended.

    • chuckdaly

      The juxtaposition of Girls and Game of Thrones should have only helped Apatow/Dunham explain their inspiration/motives for the nudity, given that it is the only thing the two shows have in common.

  • Daniel Kane

    I did a quick check, suspecting that Dunham is from NY, and damn, I was right.

    • ourmanflint

      What's your point?

      • Winston Booth

        “My point is that them NYC lib tards get all naked all the time and are all perverts and whores of Babylon and one day a great flood will take care of all of them and the city ain't full of nothing but crime so why would anyone live there and white's aren't reproducing fast enough in this country”

      • Daniel Kane

        They're mostly arrogant, defensive and childish. Especially the entertainment industry folk.

  • JpMelito

    “It's now very common to hear people say, ‘I'm rather offended by that.’ As if that gives them certain rights. It's actually nothing more… than a whine. ‘I find that offensive.’ It has no meaning; it has no purpose; it has no reason to be respected as a phrase. ‘I am offended by that.’ Well, so fucking what.”

    • Winston Booth

      Well, it's not ILLEGAL to offend somebody, but if someone tells you that what you're saying is offensive, and you keep saying it anyway, you're an asshole. Which is fine, no one will stop you from being an Asshole, that's your right as an American. But it's also our right to say you're an asshole. And then you want us to stop, because that offends you. And on and on and on….

      • JpMelito

        The context of that quote from Stephen Fry relates not to personal insults, but more general opinions or statements. It is not possible or even desirable to have everyone like or agree with what you say.

  • danielletbd

    I really do wonder if the response would have been different if a woman
    asked the question. But I also think Lena's initial response is totally
    valid. People are naked in life, so she just wants to show a reflection
    of life, and she's comfortable enough with her body to do so. Such
    casual nudity can be jarring to audiences simply because it's *not*
    treating it like it's anything special when for years such a big deal
    was made out of nudity that it had to fall into key categories:
    artistic, integral to the story, salacious, pretty, etc. It's an
    adjustment to accept anything different.

    • Chuck Jones

      Makes sense that Hannah would want to run around naked since she's covered her otherwise attractive body with those horrible tats. She's spent a lot of money on that ink…why wouldn't she want to admire herself in the mirror every chance she gets?

    • Armond White is my master now

      True. People are naked in life. Not every second in life, but true.

    • meesh

      When you don't treat your body like it's special, don't expect anyone else to.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Kara-Mehmet/1512347440 Kara Mehmet

    She”s nude and has a horrible body and everyone knows it. GET REAL. Put some clothes on you cow.

    • Chuck Jones

      The tats would run even a perfect body. It's not like she weighs 300 pounds. But she's using the show as a vehicle to work out her own personal issues, as she has stated many times.

      • Armond White is my master now

        Yeah, it's working with clearly sane people like Woody Allen, Lars von Trier and Tommy Wiseau… OH WAIT!

        :-)

      • MjrMissConduct

        Agree, her tats are more unattractive than her body. She's not that overweight.

        Although, she definitely looks thinner now. I wonder why the weight loss? She's a perfectly attractive woman with her clothes on, but when she's got them off, you focus more on why she's nude than actually noticing if she looks good or not.

    • Winston Booth

      Clearly he asked that question just to get people like you to come out of the wood work. That's it. That's all. Prepare for a barrage of “dur she fat so she not be naked on my screen cuz somehow I can't change channel”

  • FrodoMcFly

    The nudity is a gimmick. Story is always most important. Lose the nudity and what's left? Is there any worthy story there? Probably not. I never even heard of “Girls” until I caught five minutes of it tonight. Eh, seems like pretentious BS trying to convince itself that it's art. I'd rather watch Ancient Aliens.

    • Winston Booth

      So, you haven't watched any of it, yet you somehow know that if it loses the nudity there's no story left? If it's not your cup of tea, that's one thing, but how about actually watching it before deciding you know everything there is to know about it?

      • Erick the Redd

        I agree with FrodoMcFly's assessment of the show, but I agree with your point about he should watch an entire episode first before having such an opinion.

  • Frodo McFly

    If you want to understand Lena Dunham's obsession with nudity, look no further than her father, Caroll Dunham's paintings.

  • Corde

    I've never liked the show. It's boring and gross. And I'm sorry but it's not a documentary so I don't want to watch “real people” doing “real things.” I see real people every day – I am a real person. I want to watch exceptionally pretty people on tv. It's fantasy and in fantasy land, I like people to be more attractive than the average person. Show of hands – would you rather see naked Lena Dunham or naked Giselle Bundchen? If you say Lena, you're lying and/or blind.

  • Daywalker

    Keep digging yourself deeper Tim, it's very entertaining. The fact that you “don't get it is what makes you a callous dumb ass. Where you naked when you wrote this column? And if so, why? Was your girlfriend naked as well? Why? Just because you are a TV critic, does that grant you the right to be an insensitive prick? Obviously……

    • butts n nutts

      He's trying to understand the artistic notion behind all of the nude scenes. It ain't that ridiculous to have an artist explain decisions they make. Clearly, the person uncomfortable with the nudity is Dunham. If she were comfortable she wouldn't have assumed he asked why because he didn't find her attractive. She would have given a simple response for a creative decision she made. It's not any different than asking say, Stanley Kubrick why Danny wears an apollo 11 sweater in The Shining. Costuming means stuff to critic types, even the lack of it. If she were consciously making a decision to be naked on camera on a show she writes herself, you'd think she'd be prepared to deliver that answer.

      • Winston Booth

        Sorry, but what knowledge could you possibly hope to gain by asking “why are you naked so much?” That question really has no merit and might as well be asked by pearl clutching mothers.

  • VT2OR

    … because Lena Dunham is brave? This dialogue just shows me that she's not brave. She must be self-conscious to jump on a question like that in the way that she did. I didn't see anything wrong with what was asked or how the question was phrased, and I'm a fan of this show. On a side note, maybe I'm missing something, but I see no depth to this show at all – everything is pretty much out on the sleeve. That's why I watch it.

    • Modesty

      Way down deep inside Lena is ashamed of herself for strutting around naked on TV and feels guilty.

      • Winston Booth

        Yeah, WHORES! Feel guilty about showing your naked flesh! GUILT! Women should never be naked by choice, only when men say so! Otherwise they'll feel GUILT! And SHAME! WHORES!

        • Modesty

          Well yes, Lena is behaving like a WHORE but I wasn't going to come out and say it, so thanks for your bravery in stating the obvious.

  • Mako34

    Tim, I dislike the media in general. I dislike the Hollywood media more. I hate stupid, inane questions.

    But despite my passionate biases, I find myself on your side on this one. I have zero idea how your question was offensive in any capacity. To be honest, I've wondered…. No, not wondered… Been confused, by why she's always naked for absolutely no reason. It's rarely related to the plot or direction of the story. She's just….. naked. It seems like it's constant. It drives me nuts. I want to shout “Put some damn clothes on, woman!”

    In all honesty, they both reacted in an extremely defensive manner. They are both aware that she's not out there for titillating reasons. She's not void of clothing in order to attract male viewers looking for masturbational fantasies. She's not exactly what guys look for as far as a sexy “boobie” flash. They are aware of this. I'm positive they've heard uncouth individuals shout ugly comments like “You're not attractive” or “Please keep your clothes on!” I know this because that's what people yell at me. Especially my wife and that lady who lives next door.

    They wanted to make an example of you daring to, in their opinion, question her lack of pristine beauty while she's in her birthday suit. Opposite the look of, say, Emilia Clarke or Rose Leslie. They wanted her nudity to come up in a question so they could pounce. This is what defensive people do.

    Yeah, how misogynistic. Look, you questioned the necessity of her nudity, not the overexposure of her unattractive body. But hey, how dare you.

    I don't get it either.

  • Sporty

    Madame Lena is an exhibitionist. She probably likes watching her naked self on TV.

  • GetbusyIzzy

    I wasn't there, so I couldn't hear it first hand, but if the transcription is accurate? I'm on board with the critic. Nothing he said was that jaw dropping, offensive, sexist, or misogynistic. For a woman that's “confident and brave” enough to bare her ass, she's pretty freakin’ sensitive. Wow.

    • Winston Booth

      It was an irrelevant question representative of a larger problem. Look at half the comments on here, they're all “good, she's too FAT to be naked all the time anyway” or “she's a sick pervert!” When you have access to the creator of a show, you should ask better questions then “Why are you naked so much?” Show some Goddamn professionalism.

      • GetbusyIzzy

        You're jumping all over the place. What does professionalism have to do with access to the creator of a show? Furthermore, he voiced none of the opinions stated in these comments, and said nothing about the actress being fat or a sick pervert. He simply asked why. The purpose. That's it. And asking the reason behind a decision isn't an irrelevant question, nor is it somehow a representation of a larger problem.
        If anything, when you have access to the creator of a show, the PERFECT question is to ask the thinking and reasoning behind specific decisions. She's not just some actress baring her tits, she's the creator and there must be a reason for her actions. It isn't, “well that's what the director wanted me to do” or “it's in my contract”. You have the source with the source material right in front of you. It shouldn't be taboo, or a difficult question to ask. And it sure as hell shouldn't be a curve ball.

      • Overrated Lena

        Dude. Chill. You're reading things that don't exist. I'm not seeing anyone on here call her FAT or ugly. Talentless? Sure. Overrated? Def. A bad writer and showrunner? Yup. But no one is calling her fat.

        You've got the same complexes Lena has, it appears.

  • muddi900

    People don't know how to read

  • robinlandseadel

    There's a lotta ego going on here. I remember being in High School, Michael Crichton [of all people, this being Hollywood High] was speaking to our Science Fiction class, 1972. Recalling that “The Andromeda Strain” managed to top the NYT best-seller list I asked the author how much did he make off that book? It was as if I yelled out “Fuck the Pope” in the Vatican.

    In any case, any non-salacious depiction of human form is its own justification. There is a taboo around the accurate depiction of your average “Girl” doing what your average girl would be doing. The real question is, why is Game of Thrones so salaciously sexist in its carnal displays? And what is so holy and taboo about the penis that it is never represented as often as female anatomy is on these shows?

  • geekgirl

    I can't stand seeing her naked all the time. I'm glad you asked that question.

  • Mae

    OK – I have two points about this.

    1) I've seen both seasons of Girls and Lena's nudity is generally on show in sexual or bathroom situations (which is normal). In fact – the only exception I can think of is the rave scene where she's on a coke bender. Having not done either of those things I can't speak to how realistic that is. Can you give me some other examples of her ‘random’ nudity on the show? Because otherwise the basic foundation of your question is wrong (that she is ‘often naked at random times for no reason').

    2) The second error you made was saying – ‘ By you, particularly'. It leads to two different interpretations of the question – that either Lena Dunham in particular is naked more often for less ‘valid’ reasons than her castmates, or that you cannot understand Lena's choice to be naked as a whole. Lena is definitely more naked than her castmates but she is the lead character and has the most sexual content in the show. To compare Lena to her castmates is illogical becuase of this – unless we start talking about the second interpretation of the question. You seem to think that your aesthetic preferences in terms of women is justification for their nudity – that a woman that doesn't turn you on is ‘useless’ in her nudity. I need you to understand this Tim – Lena is clearly a woman who does not care if you find her visually pleasing as a sexual object. And the idea that she should care, that she should modify her behaviour as a female because of your male opinion, is awful.

    I understand what you did and why you did it. You got your name out there, this column is going to have the highest number of hits your site has seen in ages – but your cowardice is clear to see. This is the third year of Girls and Lena's nudity has been a subject for discussion each year it's been on. There's no new ground to cover because she's answered the question repeatedly. So when you say ;

    “We’re cool with nudity, and if Dunham wants to be naked, great. I’m not
    offended by it. I don’t like it or not like it. I just don’t get the
    artistic reason for it, and want to understand it, because I’m a TV
    critic.”

    you are lying. You clearly have an issue with Lena's nudity otherwise you would not be raising it as a topic for discussion for a third year in a row. So own up to it – either have the balls to say what you really feel to her face or shut up.

    • Gag A Maggot

      Lena is a weirdo and needs to realize she needs professional help.

      • Mae

        Serious question: why is she weird?

        • Gag A Maggot

          You don't know?

          • Mae

            No, I don't.

        • longhorndude

          I wonder about her parents, how they raise.rear her? Are they

          just as weird and perverted as she is, or are they just besides themselves as to why their daughter decided to go down this sick road?

          • Mae

            That's a fascinating comment. Do you also wonder about Vince Gilligan's parents? Or Matt Weiner's parents? Walter White and Don Draper have done far more depraved things than Hannah Horvath.

          • longhorndude

            ..sorry Mae, I have no idea who those people are that you listed. I don't fallow the Hollywood crowd. Something came up on Drudge Report this AM and yesterday AM on the morning news (ABC) Lenna was being interviewed and made some stupid remark/answer-to an equally stupid question.

          • JS417

            This question is irrelevant and ridiculous. Though I have wondered about their backgrounds and parental influence before, a writer can be a writer without having personal connections or experiences that their characters have. Vince Gilligan and Matt Weiner are clearly writing characters that are NOT reflections of themselves while Lena Dunham is. You can create an entertaining story and characters without putting yourself in it.

          • Winston Booth

            What sick road? What perverted road? You throw those terms around but have yet to elaborate.

    • BigBroKnows

      First of all, Tim Molloy's question was not critical of the nudity in Girls nor was he expressing his like or dislike of Girls. His question was and inquiry as to the motivation behind the treatment of nudity on girls. (Don't they call that deconstructing a work of art to understand the subtext?)

      The question was legitimate while the response was oddly self-disclosing.

      Secondly, Lena Dunham, Judd Apatow, and Jenni Konner's reaction is the real story here. They completely avoided answering the question and instead reframed it as an issue of patriarchic sexism. In fact, Apatow, Konner, and Dunham's closing ranks so quickly, and hitting Molloy with a barrage of hostile ad hominem bombs, could be interpreted that this was premeditated to create a new buzz for Girls:

      “Feminist love it! Sexist hate it!—Tune in! You Decide!”

      Not only did they try to Jump the Shark, they unjustly reframed Molloy as the shark.

    • franmer

      You are so wrong in your assessment. As a TV Critic, he has a right to ask the question he asked Lena Dunham. Girls is a modern day Sex and the City. They had sex and they were naked and as the main character SJP, was barely ever seen naked if at all. This question was not an attack about the actress, if she is attractive or not. AS a journalist and writer and critic, his question was valid.

  • Chuck Jones

    “Brave” is rushing into a burning building to save someone. If showing your boobs is all it takes to be ‘brave', then Mardi Gras & Ft. Lauderdale have the biggest concentration of “brave” people on Earth. And Apatow reveals himself to be an idiot when he implies that he'd use nudity in all of his films whether the plots called for it or not…it's all a matter of whether the actor will “do” nudity. Since they continually protest that it's so “normal” and “everyday” for people to be nude, then why do they make such a big deal out of how ‘brave’ it is. This isn't 1950…there's not 5% of actresses today who haven't ‘bravely’ displayed their bodies somewhere.

    • MjrMissConduct

      I am a little disappointed that he didn't insist Paul Rudd be naked more.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      I think Apatow is not being truthful with the comment about the actors willingness to get naked…Jason Segel does full frontal and yet in Apatow's “This Is 40', he did no nudity. It was also an interesting casting selection to begin with since he was supposed to be a personal trainer and yet he looks like a professional average Joe. Compare his character to the employee/”escort” character, and I think that says all we need to know about Apatow's views on women.

  • Chuck Jones

    And a better question would have been, “Why is Dunham so egotistical that she can't hire actual actresses to play her roles…which, in her amateurish hands, come across as one-note, adenoidal, whiny, monotonous routines displaying absolutely no range in either vocal or emotive abilities?” The other actresses are fine…but Dunham is so hard to watch that it ruins whatever impression the show is trying to make (unless it's that being OCD makes you incredibly boring and unable to register emotions or anything vaguely interesting).

  • Jonathan M. Storm

    I am sorry that I did not speak up at the session to keep your line of questioning going. While the thought might have been inelegantly phrased, the thrust of it was appropriate. To say Hannah walks around naked all the time because people do in real life ignores the fact that none of the other characters walk around naked. I think Dunham is trying to make some sort of overall judgment on female nudity on TV, and, like so much else on “Girls,” it doesn't work. But she seemed willing to have a conversation before Daddy Judd Apatow cut her off with his insults and Mommy Jenni Konnor joined in. Even the most sexist TV critic would not ask why Dunham would parade her flabby body around when it's so ugly. The producers established an argumentative and confrontational tone because I think they are on the defensive about the whole show, and they did it no favors as far as attracting good publicity, which should have been their main goal in that exercise,

    • SlapHappyDude

      You're spot on the tone of their defense was defensive and not remotely objective and intellectual.

      To be fair, Jessa was naked fairly often before the actress got pregnant, and Jorma Taccone was naked post-sex, although that was more for comedy and to show his arrogance.

      I think it's unfortunate they cast Allison Williams if they wanted to make strong feminist statements about nudity. She's gorgeous, but I guarantee her daddy doesn't want to see her boobies on TV.

  • Pooky

    Tim was right in asking the question. And anyone who thinks he ‘asked it wrong’ is too sensitive. It is his JOB to ask about the show. Their nudity on it is a major factor of the show. And he was right, half the time, they are doing it just to say they did. There is no other point.

    • Pooky

      I am a woman and find nothing wrong with how he phrased it. It was not offensive or mysoginistic. I am more offended that Judd Apatow lumped all women together saying that Tim's girlfriend would be offended. Not all women think alike, Judd. And we certainly don't all think like Lena Dunham.

    • Winston Booth

      It's his job to ask questions that are actually worth the time of the people answering. Asking “why are you naked so much” is a question a troll asks, not a representative of a news organization.

      • Mirjana Balta

        As someone else pointed out – Dunham is the creator of the show and she purposely put her own nudity in the show. It is clear that the nudity is no intended to be “salacious” as it is in GoT. There are less than perfect female bodies exposed in GoT but it's done in a salacious manner.
        So what IS the purpose of the nudity. It's a question pretty much everyone asks, so it's part of Tim's job to ask the question.
        The fact that both Dunham and Apatow don't have a good answer and instead choose to be defensive and go on to attack Tim tells me there's no good reason for the nudity. Nobody cares what Dunham's body looks like and most people are not saying she should cover up because of how her body looks. They are saying, they don't understand the reason the nudity is there in the first place.
        Quit being so sensitive and faux-feminist. If you were feminist you would be wondering why there isn't an equal amount of male nudity in the show.

  • Les

    Nothing wrong at all with your question. As a woman I often wonder why she feels the need to be naked all the time on that show also. They sound like a bunch of oversensitive morons who were offended you had the gall to ask them the question people like myself have been wondering for a while. I stopped watching this show because it just become stupid to me.

    • MjrMissConduct

      I am on the brink of not watching anymore either. I want to see how they address Hannah's sudden OCD bout (weird storyline shift) and if the addressing of the storyline is as abrupt and out of sync as the introduction of it, I'll more than likely bail.

  • Armond White is my master now

    Yeah, but I want to know… Why Lena Dunham thinks her nude body is a feast for the eyes of anyone who isn't a Japanese whale hunter?

    • Lily

      She doesn't. And she's nude for the reasons you're giving. If one does not have a perfectly thin body, they have no right to be nude? That's your implication.

      • Trololo

        Not if they're on tv.

  • Linda

    You are only responsible for what you say not how they take it. Apparently there is some underlined insecurity. Question wasn't even really answered.

    • AnnaLynn25

      It eventually was… sort of. Apatow said nudity is part of the script if the actor allows it. As a head writer, Dunham places herself in the nude position whereas, someone like Kim Cattrall followsthe nudity that is required of the scripts in SATC. So Molloy's question was very valid because he's basically asking Dunham why she is always choosing to place herself in a position of being nude sans sex scene. I honestly just don't think Dunham had a response and looked way too deep into Molloy's question to the point of misinterpretation.

    • B

      You are responsible for both what you say and how it comes across. Even when intentions are innocent saying something that comes across offensive either by content, tone of voice, or disregard/insensitivity of significant circumstances puts you in the hot seat. As a professional, words must be chosen carefully.

  • billmoore

    You're kinda dumb aren't you. It was the “especially you” comment (Durham isn't a thin classic Hollywood beauty, she's a normal girl with average looks and a so so body) that got everyone goin,g including me.

    Your girlfriend must be a hot mean girl if she doesn't get this. That, or she's lying to you.

    • Jonathan

      billmoore, you're an idiot. There is nothing wrong with stating “especially you” when the character has NO real purpose in being naked to ask why they make her naked so much.

      • MjrMissConduct

        Further, that is a fact. No other character is nude as often as her. Not even close.

        • Winston Booth

          And? Why is this a question being asked? What answer would be good enough?

          • MjrMissConduct

            Not sure what you're asking. The question posed above is why did he single her out in asking her why she's nude the most. IT's factual, she IS nude the most. The OP was insinuating that the author was singling Lena out because she's not a typical Hollywood beauty, but that's not the case.

            In fact, I'd even suggest the character who plays Shoshana is not as pretty as Lena, and there would be no reason to ask why Shoshana's character is nude all of the time, because she is never nude!

      • billmoore

        Jonathan, You're kinda retarded. Are you saying people aren't ever naked in their own apartments, as depicted in the show?

        Unless of course you're one of those people from Utah that never, ever, take off their magic underwear.

  • MjrMissConduct

    I've wondered the same thing watching Girls. That said, I've also wondered why I watch Girls. I'm trying to figure out if it's just not a good show or if I'm just unable to relate to the characters. I am a generation and a half before them, so perhaps that's why. I simply do not know a single person who acts in this manner.
    I'm not offended by her nudity, nor am I offended by her body type, I simply do not understand the random reasons for her just being nude or wearing something that displays her nipples. Further, I'm not a prude, her nipples don't offend me, but I can't figure out the reason for her just prancing around with them literally sticking out of her shirts. It's odd is all and if the purpose of the nudity on the show is for me to relate to the characters, and I can't relate to them at all because of it, then it kind of defeats the purpose of the nudity.

    • Mirjana Balta

      Yeah, most women are trying to keep their nipples concealed. Even the slutty ones.

  • R Bonwell parker

    There's another version of sexism: assuming that every single girl is going to think like Lena Dunham, not like everyone thinks for themselves.

  • Gwynnie

    The primary issue is that you failed to ask a question.

  • Howard

    I think the author made an interesting revelation about himself by using Louis C.K. as a male example. Neither have bodies that would, let us say, be used as centerfolds in Playboy or Playgirl. The question the author has to ask himself is, if he was interviewing Matthew McConaughey, would one of his major questions be, why are you naked in almost all your movies (something I've joked about in my reviews of his movies)? If that question would never occur to him to ask, then I think that the problem for him is not that there is a lot of nudity on Girls, it's who is nude.

    • BigBroKnows

      Fact check: The author did not make the reference to Louis C.K., It was another reporter.

      “Another reporter noted that if Louis C.K. were naked on his show, we would ask about it.”

  • M_Danby

    The word misogyny is so overused these days it has no meaning. The boy who cried wolf would get a lot more attention if he were to cry wolf than if he were to decry misogyny in response to a remark made critical of a female. Let's dial back the over-use of that word and give it back some meaning..

    And frankly I don't want to see Lena Dunham naked. It offers nothing to the show. She's a flabby unremarkable human specimen. I have no problem with her being out of shape but I simply don't care to see her naked ever again. I do find it kind of depressing seeing her throwing her flabby body at as constantly; there is a neediness and a lack of concern for the audience that I find incredibly narcissistic and tedious. If she's going to repeatedly expose her naked body she is going to have to learn to accept the response.

    Keep your clothes on Dunham, the shock value is long gone replaced instead by a collective sigh heaved every time we have to see you au natural again.

    • Winston Booth

      You HAVE to see her au natural again, huh? And yes, the word misogyny does still have a meaning, no matter how much you try to hand wave away the voices of oh say a little over half the population.

      • George_Cliff

        Your exaggerated response only proves the need to dial back the sensitivity and overuse of the word.

  • peggy

    If they had an answer to the questionably asked question ‘…people are naked in life…she's willing to be naked on the show…she's naked on the show’ why didn't they just answer it and go on to the next question. They should start every interview about the show with that and get it out of the way.

  • sympathetic shopper

    I haven't read all of the comments so if I am repeating something that has already said I apologize.
    I think keithcalder was dead on regarding the reason the comment was so offensive so I won't bother to add to that. I will say that I think aside from being offensive your question is pointless. People have different comfort levels with nudity. I myself am a very modest person but have friends that have no problem stripping down walking through a room occupied by their friends. If everyone on the show was naked all the time that would be gratuitous nudity. Lena's character is comfortable being nude in front of other people and by herself, as some people are in real life. Why is that such a hard concept to understand?

    • seekingintelligentlife

      If there's a real answer (such as you suggest) then why did they make such a fuss instead of providing an answer? They could have laughed it off and said, “well, isn't it obvious?….her character blah blah blah… The fact that they got so offended is a bit weird.

  • Howard

    I think the author made an interesting
    revelation about himself by using Louis C.K. as a male example. Neither
    have bodies that would, let us say, be used as centerfolds in Playboy
    or Playgirl. The question the author has to ask himself is,
    if he was interviewing Matthew McConaughey, would one of his major
    questions be, why are you naked in almost all your movies (something
    I've joked about in my reviews of his movies)? If that question would
    never occur to him to ask, then I think that the problem for him is not
    that there is a lot of nudity on Girls, it's who is nude

  • astupidshowaboutcluelesspeople

    ..is it because she has less talent as an actor, and perhaps more ‘visual presents’ on screen .. simply because she is nude. Oldest screen trick in the book. Do something that really is contrary to what is going on with the scene.. cause the audience to say WTF..? Depp feeding the bird… Northern Exposure in it's entirety.. oh WTF.. now I've said it…

  • Shirley

    Lena Dunham is breath of fresh air! It's empowering to see an average woman represented this way. Life is not scripted, and the scenes are impulsive, vulnerable, and bonding experiences. It's a raw show, where nudity is used to convey far more than mere sexual attraction. This show is not nudity manufactured for men! The nudity on Girls conveys a level self-acceptance by the characters and Lena Dunham, that is so desperately needed in this society–a society wrought of eating disorders, self-hatred, and unrealistic expectations perpetuated on screen. Girls is far more complex than this critic obviously is capable of.
    You go Girls!

    • seekingintelligentlife

      If that were true, then why didn't the panel explain what they were trying to convey with the choices they make with nudity?

    • seekingintelligentlife

      So random, unnecessary nudity is somehow better than nudity “manufactured” for men? Apatow manufactures nudity and fantasy for men in the bulk of his work.

  • Emily

    I'm thankful for Lena Dunham's nudity in Girls. I completely understand how the question was viewed as offensive. In my opinion, her expression of nudity adds a lot to the show. I'm happy to watch a show that provides a realistic view of a woman's body and life. In asking the question, Tom Molloy implied that her nudity was unessential to the show because, unlike Game of Thrones, the nudity in girls is neither “salacious” or “titillating.”

    I forgot that women's bodies should only be exposed in a salacious or titillating manner. Give me a break. This critic engaged in a MICROAGGRESSION against women. Instead of continuing to try and defend his question, he should explore the sexist nature of the question and evolve.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      There's also a big problem in our modern culture where women have been tricked into believing that showing themselves naked is somehow about empowering themselves. Based on his films, Apatow is no friend to women.

      • JS417

        Couldn't agree more with all of your points.

  • dan350zr

    If you don't like nudity don't watch the show, pretty simple. People will watch horror flicks where people are beheaded, amputated and tortured, yet if a boob comes out their offended. Tim Molloy was just trying to get attention for himself by asking the question. He's a nobody and the best way to get known is to try and cause controversy.

  • Nubes1

    It sounds like to me, this person was trying to have an intelligent conversation with 2 idiots??? Sex sells….period….has nothing to do with “artistic expression” I guess thats why it pissed them off??

  • Marge Dean

    Tim … if there is any contest in this, then you totally won. Your question makes perfect sense, and their over-reaction to it is quite amusing. Nicely played.

  • mrsmass

    Apatow sounds like a mega-douche.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Based on his last film I'd say that's a fair description.

  • seekingintelligentlife

    Methinks those two narcissists doth protest too much. Underneath it all they know that they are showing random unnecessary nudity, and they tried to turn the question into something it wasn't. Apatow's view of the world (and women especially) is a bit warped, and he makes weird choices. Have a closer look at “This is 40” and it should be obvious. It's normal for men to fantasize about their wife dying so they can get sympathy sex from other women, and it's very normal for a woman to ask to fondle her employee's bare breasts (also normal for a woman not to care that her employee moonlights as a prostitute and has sex in their store!). Those scenes didn't involve any real jokes or laughs at all. Yes, his characters are such “modern” folk that none of those things are the least bit odd – but know what is odd? That the one opportunity in the film to give women viewers something to appreciate visually – the role of the personal trainer – went to a comic actor without the body to back it up. Forgive me, but I wanted to see some rippling muscles in a personal trainer.

    • ccf

      No, the whole point is that it is random and unnecessary nudity. The fact that Mr. Molloy expressed that nudity, when it's not salacious and titillating, needs to be justified is what offended the narcissists, and they were not wrong.

  • Joansie69

    So, the only reason a girl should be naked is for salacious reasons? Clearly you've been influenced by the marketing and media that promotes women's bodies primarily as a sexual tool for men. I'm sure people spend a lot more naked doing boring things like grooming or sleeping than for sex. For me, it just makes the show more authentic.

  • jsquared

    “By you particularly.” I'd say start here and work your way outward. I also take it from the rest of your conversation with Apatow that you asked this with some sort of tone (he references your delivery, yes?). And as others have pointed out, your comparison to Game of Thrones, though you meant it one way, inevitably carries with it the idea that the naked women of GoT = titillating and salacious (read: hot–I know, I know…”but salacious means bad!”) and Lena's character, Hannah = “I don't get it” (read: not).
    And yes, Lena is brilliant and brave but she's still a human being (just like Hannah, her character, who like Lena, a real person, is naked sometimes) and she has feelings. And then there's the (apparently novel) concept that women are naked at times when it DOESN'T revolve around sex with a man. Sometimes, yes. Sometimes the cake is right there and pants just don't factor in.
    Certainly there is a reason for the nudity. Many reasons for it actually. It is motif, it is in keeping with the character and the show, it is the literal exposition of vulnerability/comfort/self-esteem and/or the lack thereof. Not sure how a television critic doesn't “get it.” Oh wait. I just heard myself say that out loud. Never mind.
    An entire panel of bright-minded, not particularly self-conscious individuals all agreed you sounded like an ass. The fact that you then followed up with this article, a rather elaborate extension of a shrugging douche going, “What'd I say??” tends to make me agree. I'm sure you're not an ass or a douche. I hope you just had a bad moment, and I hope you come to understand why.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      If your theory about it being a “motif” were even remotely correct, then the panel would easily have answered the question and maybe even had a laugh about it. They know the real reason is much less about art than it is about shock value, and they were furious for being called out on it.

      • jsquared

        Oh please. Why is Lena's nudity so “shocking” in the first place? The people on the panel addressed the critic directly–he put his ignorance on a platter and handed it to three sharp tongues. I think the one caught with his pants down (ha ha) wasn't Judd or even Lena (this time). It was the critic. And I gotta say, after reading more on him/this, the idea that this guy could stump Apatow and Dunham, or “call them out” in some way, is laughable and a little sad. Sounds like in that moment, and in the article above, he showed himself to be all the things Apatow said he was.

  • Ravenkatet

    Her insecurity about herself is not your problem. As a 38-year-old overweight woman, I have no idea why they got so pissed off. And the “you just don't get it” defense is elitist hipster crap.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Well put.

    • AnnaLynn25

      Great comment! Ironic… Dunham, who contrives an in image of total body-security came off as SO insecure. I knew Hollywood was BS'ing me!

  • Andrew

    It seems quite clear that Dunham and the show's producers do not want to say that the nudity is in fact to titillate. Come on people, we all know that so just say it rather than this false indignation.

  • You literally are the worst

    You turd.

    • Overrated Lena

      how mature.

  • Look Who's Acting Offensive?!?

    I haven't WANTED to comment in a long time. I think the reaction of Lena and Judd are ridiculous and I'm so sick of this over the top need to do something that always is striking for a big reaction. If you're just telling a story of some great GIRLS and their crazy interactions, then do so. Nudity, at EVERY age in my life was not the focus of my life, and I certainly just didn't drop my clothes anywhere and anywhere. I thought the interviewer asked a straightforward question, one I would expect from someone who is NOT sexist, offensive and misogynistic. Geez, then Lena responding “if you're not into me” — what on EARTH does that have to do with anything???? Talk about
    a sexist, offensive AND IMMATURE reaction. Lena, grow up. I like GIRLS and I was into you, Lena. But this reaction is sophomoric and really not very self-evolved like you prefer to think of yourself.

  • rnggg67223e

    Tim Molloy—the panel is accountable for allowing the tone that followed your comment. But the comment was ill-researched, sophomorically delivered, and likely an attention ploy—unless you really are completely unaware of very basic gender politics, which must sound heavy and gross, I'm sure, but are real and important. Framed this way, the conversation you instigated is a good one, even if you sound like a sheltered 18 year-old at his first liberal arts college hall meeting. Or that idiot on The Real World. And the “checking with my girlfriend” device is cute. Bloggy. It doesn't hold.

  • Dex

    People are so dumb. Judd getting mad or anyone else getting mad a question like that is ridiculous. Get off your high horse, bitch! It was just a question. It was not misogynistic or anything else. Geez get over yourself! Just because you are on tv doesn't mean you are immune to nudity questions from a man. That show is definitely not a realistic view into the everyday average person in society. The show sucks, its way over dramatized and the writing as a whole is not interesting. Go away jerks!

  • thinkblue

    you could've just asked if the show had any plans to have a story arch, likeable characters, or anything remotely interesting this season.

  • smarterthanyou

    I'm sure this critic and his girlfriend are just people who like tv rather than experts in any way. The problem with his question is that it exposes him as someone who doesn't understand WHY a woman would be naked during a performance UNLESS it is for the titillation of men or those who find women sexually attractive.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Not necessarily. Nudity in a performance is never put there by accident; it is always intentional (barring a wardrobe malfunction). Therefore, it's a legitimate question if one cannot discern the reason for the choice. Typically, it's for titillation, humor, or shock value. Their reaction to the question says more about them the question does about the critic.

  • Elizabeth

    I'm a feminist, and completely comfortable with nudity, and I do agree that there's nothing offensive with what you said.

  • Grand Master Flash

    I have to agree with Apatow and Dunham here. When you start off asking a question with a criticism, it would immediately put anyone on the defensive – no matter who you are or what the topic is. I've never seen the show, but if you're trying to understand a person's artistic reasons for doing something, then just be straightforward and ask the question. Anytime you interject your own personal taste or distaste for something, then you're not being objective.

  • Rod Macneil

    Mr Molloy, if “I don’t get the purpose of…. for no reason.” is what you actually said, then I believe you are at fault here. You did not even ask a question, you just told them what you did not like and why. That isn't even a criticism. It is just a complaint along the lines of “I don't like this part of the show because I don't understand it”. What you could have done was ASK “What is the purpose of all the nudity?” ASK “Why was your character naked at (whatever random time)? What purpose did it serve for the character, show or audience?” Be positive, ASK specific questions and then critique/criticize based on the response. Don't tell someone they had “no reason” to do something, ask them “Why”.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      You may have a point, but they are supposed to be the media professionals and they didn't act professionally.

      • Sean R. Moorhead

        Frankly: so what?

        The nudity issue has come up a billion times. I don't follow the show very actively, but just hearing people complain about it exhausts me — and I'm not the one whose physical appearance is apparently a cause of outrage.

        If Dunham and Apatow choose to be decorous, that's commendable, but it's not an obligation at this point. Tired, unprofessional, insulting questions do not mandate a measured, professional response.

  • MisoMan

    I agree with Tim, I've thought the same, many times. Why is she naked again? Yuck, every time I see her naked I throw up a little in my mouth. She is gross and should stay covered up. And those tattoos are hideous!

    • MisoMan

      Also, I'm sure Archie Bunker and Wheezy Jefferson were naked many times, (because that's how people are in life) thank goodness we didn't have to see it.

    • doctor_spaceman

      This type of reaction is exactly why the question is offensive. She's gotten so much flack for showing her body on the show, with people specifically saying that she has no right to be naked on TV because she doesn't have a typical LA body. I think at this point it's hard to hear that question without reading subtext like this one, especially since she's addressed it many times before.

  • SIL

    I just wonder if the panelists would have reacted so harshly if it had been a female reporter asking the question…

  • Le Cadien

    I think your question was fine. Apparently the actress in question is wound too tightly and took your question (which I note occurred during a “panel discussion”) personally, as a critique of her body — which was not at all the case and if you ask me speaks volumes about her self esteem; and Apatow defended her because she's his coworker — doesn't matter if she went off the deep end or not, obviously. My impression is that those up on the stage were stereotypically self-engrossed celebrities, which, frankly, turns me off.

  • dejour

    There are no dumb questions.

  • bottlesflying

    As a master of gratuitous nudity, Judd Apatow should be run out of Hollywood, and tarred and feathered. Lena Dunham runs around naked to get ratings, period.

  • dejour

    I think that the problem is that you specifically said that her nudity doesn't titillate.

    So, it was a reasonable question with an insult tossed in.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      That's how they took it, but that is not how it was intended. The question was about nudity that is not meant to be titillating, which is different.

      • Sean R. Moorhead

        Intention isn't worth a pile of beans when you're stating outright, in public and to her face, that a woman's body is unappealing.

        • seekingintelligentlife

          Where does it say that, or even imply it? Unless that thought already exists in her mind or Apatow's, the critic did not put that on the table.

  • McLovin3533

    Your question was stupid, and the fact that you do not understand their response makes you look stupider. The fact that you felt a need to devote an entire column to defending yourself makes you look stupider, plus pathologically narcissistic.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Judd, go take a nap.

    • Shannon

      … “makes you look stupider”, lol. Yep. He looks soooo stupider.

  • i'm a guest

    Generally anytime someone immediately goes on the offensive as is seen here it is because they know you're correct and are trying to steer you away from the question.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Agreed. It's a common defense tactic for narcissists.

  • Gina

    Tim, how dare you ask a possibly provocative question? Didn't you know that Lena and Apatow are the only ones allowed to make people uncomfortable, even if only intentionally so? Though they sure tried like hell to make you as uncomfortable as possible, and wouldn't give you the slightest benefit of the doubt.

    The hostile reaction, I think, is for reasons to which you are not even privy. There must be some real creative torpor going on behind the scenes, and anything remotely suggesting that the random nudity crutch won't last long is something that sets off that sensitivity. Somebody's cranky pants, and you got the brunt of it.

  • bottlesflying

    “Because I'm an exhibitionist – that's why I'm naked all the time on this show,” Lena Dunham told stunned reporters.

  • Tony

    You're absolutely wrong. But at least you admit your cluelessness. The nudity is meant to be natural. It doesn't necessarily have to make an artistic statement. Critics like you are the reason actresses get all huffy when doing indie films like the ones I make.

  • sustantivo

    Yes, people get naked in real life…so what? They also take a dump and wipe their asses…show Lena doing that, Judd…is that not reality?

    Just face it you unhinged fool. We are growing ever weary of gratuitous nudity, violence and foul language just because you can.

    Your idiocy on screen may well reflect the lives you live in the ivory towers of the Hollywood elite, but most of us just want to see something that reflects our own realities most of the time.

    This is what happens when the children of the 80's get to be the ones who determine the content of today's entertainment vehicles.

    Mind porn…sad.

  • Alice Teeple

    The focus should be less about what Lena Dunham looks like and more on why anyone would want to watch a show about self-obsessed whiny rich kids.

    • Alice Teeple

      PS The answer is she wants this kind of attention for some kind of false talking point about feminism, which is ultimately about her.

  • mamazboy

    Christ, what an unevolved asshole you are, Tim Molloy.

  • SlapHappyDude

    Wow, you really owned Judd. He comes across as a total self righteous asshole. Asking the exact same question of Girls that gets brought up for Game of Thrones is quite legitimate.

    Of course, if you're in Hollywood it's hard to admit “Hey, two our our actresses have no nudity clauses and we gotta tick the box somehow for HBO!” Of course, the lack of nudity by the other female leads does throw the “realism” angle out the window.

  • Tim

    I have always wondered if the reason for the show was for Lena Dunham to get naked on-screen. I'm not saying it's bad, it just sometimes seems that's the purpose.

  • TTKIN

    I side with the 3 onstage simply cuz they all had the exact same reaction at the exact same time. I dont see a prob with what the writer said, but I wasnt there to hear how it was asked. And no one else the writer talks about (his gf for example) was around to hear how it was asked.

    • Erick the Redd

      I can understand that, but I will say its no shock that Lena and Judd reacted the same way, with no explanation and just borderline anger with no defense. But honestly I have no idea who the other woman is other than a producer, so maybe yeah I can see why she'd be angry too. Because it has no substance or meaning and they have no answer to that question.

  • edtastic

    Lena Dunham is naked all the damn time on her show. Someone needs to tell her about herself. Other than that the show is overrated garbage. Next time they should find a mature women with real talent so we can get another Sex in the City.

  • mattcable33

    The implication is that it couldn't be for salacious reasons that Dunham is naked, because… And there you go.

  • Regina

    Thank you for asking the question on the top of my mind as I finish up watching the second season of Girls. During the first season, I was very proud and excited to see Lena Dunham take off her top. It felt like she was standing up for us girls that are not stick thin. But by the end of the second season, I just find her nakedness distracting.

  • VWBEETLEFAN

    I really enjoyed watching GIRLS when the series first broadcast. But honestly got tired of it because there was nudity. Prefer good character development, plot, story line, whatever to looking at naked characters. Guess I too don't ‘get’ it.

  • Barb Adams

    Re-read your third to last paragraph. There's your answer.

  • liz smith

    Tim, you did fine. You got caught in a ridiculous trap. Her nudity is unnecessary 70% of the time. Women don't walk around naked when alone nor do we take baths together. Their attack on you was uncalled for. And, what in the heck does your girlfriend have to do with it anyway, that was just a weird response from Mr. Apatow.

    • doctor_spaceman

      “Women don't walk around naked when alone…” Excuse me? Plenty of women walk around naked alone all the time. Do you think women get naked only for the sole purpose of showing off to others?

      • liz smith

        My point was, Doc, most of us wear clothes during our waking hours. Her continual state of nakedness is not realistic and does nothing to enhance or detract from the storyline. It does nothing. Tim asked a valid question, one I had asked myself many times..”Lena's character is naked again? Why?”

        • doctor_spaceman

          But she's not in a “continual state of nakedness.” I personally think that her nude scenes do enhance the storylines as seeing Hannah's relationship with her body in different scenarios informs watchers about nuances of her character.

    • SlapHappyDude

      Yeah, “Ask your girlfriend” is a really weird defense. I'm much more ok with Lena Dunham nude all the time than my wife is.

  • joseppi7

    There was actually some Louis CK nudity in his HBO series. He had a tiny penis and I didn't enjoy seeing it. Tim shouldn't have asked the question because the answer is obvious: she is nude to get a reaction out of viewers. For me, it's a distraction from the story (lol, what story) because I then think about the actress instead of the character. Also, Judd Apatow's work mostly annoys the shit out of me. Sharing your superficiality does not make you deep.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      That is a fantastic way of describing his work!

  • rnggg67223e

    Tim Molloy can be useful like a Sarah Palin.

    • rnggg67223e

      Kind of.

  • Sean R. Moorhead

    Mr. Molloy, does the quality of the comments defending you cause you any measure of introspection?

  • Helene Marie Taylor

    Oh dude. This is NOT journalism.

    • Overrated Lena

      Because you're the journalism police now? Hey, everyone: HELENE MARIE TAYLOR says that this isn't journalism. We can all move along now. HELENE MARIE TAYLOR has spoken!

      • Sean R. Moorhead

        This simply does not represent a good-faith effort to address a meaningful problem. Mr. Molloy is reiterating the oldest, tritest question about this show — one that he could lay to rest instantly by watching it with any measure of care.

        • SlapHappyDude

          I dunno, I've watched the show with a lot of care and enjoy it, as does my wife, and we often ask “Why is Lena Dunham naked so often when no one else (except Jorma Taccone) is?”

          • Sean R. Moorhead

            Why Dunham but not others? — The answer is the same for Girls as it is for Sex and the City and innumerable other shows and movies: different actors and actresses have differing levels of comfort with nudity. This is something that anyone writing in entertainment should understand.

            Why the awkward nudity at all? — Because deromanticization/dedramatization is the entire point of the show.

            If those answers didn't suffice for Mr. Molloy, surely he could have looked up one of the (rough estimate) fourteen thousand thinkpieces and interviews about this subject?

          • SlapHappyDude

            I would have loved to hear them discuss the various actors and actress's nudity clauses and how they struggle as creators to work within those limits. That would have been a good, interesting answer.

  • radar326

    You have to be completely stupid to not realize why saying there is no reason for her nudity since it's not “titillating” is an insulting thing to ask.

    • Overrated Lena

      Um… she sits on a toilet eating cake. Pretty sure no one on earth finds that “titillating.” It says more about your own biases and insecurities that you and others are reading this whole “no fat chicks” angle into his question. Take a beat and read it again… he was doing his job and asking the question that most people who have seen the show have asked (WTF is up with all this nudity at random times?)

      The answer, as has been rightly pointed out, is there IS NO REASON. But they can't come out and say that. So, yeah, let's all yell at the big mean sexist critic.

      • radar326

        If she was sitting on a toilet eating and looked like Megan Fox he would not be asking that.

        • MjrMissConduct

          Um, who the fuck has ever sat naked on a toilet and eaten cake????? Megan Fox or not, the nudity in that is questionable.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      It's only insulting if the nudity was mean to be titillating, which in this case it is not. Her character appears nude a lot in non-sexual scenes, so it's obviously a choice on their part. Seems fair to ask what the thinking is behind it.

  • mel

    dude you're an idiot. truly. shes naked because sometimes in the bathroom, or in ones bed, or whilst having sex, people are naked. naked more often than other characters? (and other characters in unrelated films like This is 40?). does everything have to be applied to all to make sense to you?

  • seekingintelligentlife

    You would think that the highly paid professionals who deal with the media on a regular basis would have a more professional answer to any question, even one that they feel is unworthy or insulting. Apatow tried to verbally castrate Molloy for no good reason.

    • SlapHappyDude

      A much classier response would have been to simply say “We've answered this question before and are frankly bored with it.”

  • Mike

    The question was “I don’t get the purpose of all the nudity on the show. By you particularly…” Lena's answer showed that the show focuses on unapologetic reality. The fact of the matter is, sometimes I'm naked in my house. Especially in my bathroom. Is it so hard to comprehend that they want to film life as it really is? Remind me never to read a review written by a moronic, mentally impaired TV critic named Tim Malloy. And to Tim's girlfriend: really? Does Tim ask you why you're unnecessarily naked when you're in your bathroom? This whole article is laughable. For the record, I have never seen the show ‘Girls’ and I haven't actually heard of Lena Dunham before happening across this article.

    • MjrMissConduct

      If you've never watched the show, why are you commenting?

      The nudity is not just in the bathroom, which BTW is not unnecessary.

      It's random sometimes and doesn't flow at all with the story line, which makes it distracting and seemingly unnecessary and therefore up for questioning.

      • Mike

        I'm commenting because I'm offended by this critic's misogynistic questioning. The way he worded it obviously caused offense to the actress he targeted. It doesn't matter that I haven't seen the show before, and I didn't mean to narrow my scope strictly to bathroom scenes. I'm just saying people are naked in many different instances, and it's a part of human nature to be naked in certain respects. The fact that the actress and the director said this to the critic–and he still doesn't get it– is ridiculous. This article is pointless, in all honesty. I feel the critic, by writing this, is slandering the pair and trying to bring hatred towards their show.

  • Lily

    Tim: Here's the question within the question. And this is where we all have to check ourselves. If Dunham's body looked like the bodies of some of the “Game of Thrones” gals, would still have asked the question you asked of Dunham?

    • SlapHappyDude

      I think then the discussion would be if Dunham was exploiting her sex appeal to market her show.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      As a Game of Thrones watcher I read it differently. That show only uses nudity in sexual scenes whereas Girls throws in nudity more randomly. They could have responded from a writer's perspective, but they didn't, which is weird.

  • ElderKing

    Nothing wrong with the question. That they reacted the way they did shows there is something wrong with their reasons for it. Why are the characters naked at random times? “For the ratings”. That is the right answer but not one they want to admit to themselves because they are “artists” lol.

  • FightOnUSC

    Hannah is the sort of hot train wreck to get high and take her top off in the club. She’s the sort of physically venerable person who’d play naked ping pong with a guy she just met. She’s the sort of sexually honest
    person who’d lie naked in bed waiting for her boyfriend to return. The overabundance of nudity on the show doesn’t feel like an overabundance to me because it fits with my idea of Hannah’s personality and character. I don’t think
    the characters on Girls are supposed to be particularly likeable but they are relatable (for some, myself included, in varying degrees of exaggeration). Some
    people are naked more than others and if you make an honest TV show about that sort of person, you’ll probably see their ass a lot.

    I would think someone who watches the show “really deeply” would
    appreciate Hannah’s nudity as part of an expression of her character. An overabundance of nudity speaking even more to that character – she’s sexually active, entitled, spontaneous, uninhibited, occasionally overconfident and kinda hard to like. Just because you don’t appreciate the way someone looks (which is exactly what Molly’s original question and defense seem framed around) doesn’t mean their being nude is gratuitous. It’s a character doing something you don’t like because that’s the type of person they are. If I were Apatow and Dunham I would have gotten equally annoyed with this. It must be incredibly frustrating to have to explain and validate your creative choices regarding developing a character because some TV critic doesn’t like looking at a certain actress’ tits.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Oh, please. If you don't want to explain and validate your creative choices, then work in poetry instead of television. If Lena could have said anything remotely close to what you just, then maybe I would think these are artistic choices, but with her defensive remark followed by Apatow's completely unprofessional tongue-lashing, I think they were being babies.

      • Sean R. Moorhead

        Here's the problem:

        1. They have fielded similar questions dozens of times. The show has been on the air for three seasons at this point and has a well-established modus operandi.

        2. Artists in any medium have the right to play their cards close to the chest, and, in fact, the vast majority do even in very public settings like film and television.

        • SlapHappyDude

          I agree with you, but again, this is where the classy response is just to dismiss the question as dull and previously answered.

          But that doesn't drum up internet rage and show promotion. Hollywood!

      • FightOnUSC

        The idea that people creating a TV show you don't have to watch owe you an explanation on their creative process or should switch to creating art in a different format is an interesting one. Arrogant and totally ridiculous but interesting.

        I'm sure Dunham and Apatow could have been more polite in their response to Molloy. I'm also sure that after two seasons of answering the same question about why you feel comfortable being on TV naked when you're so desperately unattractive gets tiring so any question along that vein may be met with a cold shoulder. If I'm giving Molloy the benefit of a doubt as a TV Critic – someone who has an appreciation for character development and story telling and someone who claims to have watched the show then I'm legitimately perplexed how he'd view Hannah's nudity as random or gratuitous. Hannah is a hot mess doing hot mess things. Dunham's show airs on HBO and they can get away with nudity. If the question hadn't been asked and answered by Dunham so many times previously it would answer itself. I don't know if i'd call him a misogynist or sexist but I'm definitely skeptical at Molloy's innocuity in asking his question.

        • seekingintelligentlife

          I don't feel they owe me any sort of explanation, despite the fact that all of us who pay for HBO ultimately pay their salaries. My point was that they choose to work in a business where you have to have a very thick skin and you have to be able to handle the press and the public even when the questions are uncomfortable or have been answered many times before. Dunham chose to take it as a personal insult, and Apatow then verbally castrated the critic, which made him look like the bigger ass in the situation.

    • MjrMissConduct

      lol@watching this show ‘really deeply'. C'mon, it's hardly a deep thinking tv show.

  • Jessica

    I get the nudity thing. I have a body like Lena's and I walk around my house naked all the time. I live alone and I love the freedom. I don't think it needs meaning or is for artistic purposes at all. It's just something some girls do!

    • SlapHappyDude

      This answer is way better than Lena Dunham or Judd Apatow's!

    • AnnaLynn25

      That's all they had to say. If cleaning your toilet naked conveys some sort of statement about everyday women then so be it. I think the original question had a lot to do with the fact that Dunham is the head writer. You can't really ask Kim Cattrall about her nudity on SATC because she isn't writing the material. So as the actor and head writer Dunham was put on the spot and choked.

      • Jessica

        I'm not so sure Lena choked. She answered her answer truthfully — people are sometimes naked. And Hannah is allowed to sometimes be naked. I think the way Molloy's question was worded was a little strange — the whole “I don't get the purpose of the nudity on the show.” It sounded more attacking than anything, which is probably why Lena responded with her comments about him not being into her. I was just saying that I don't think there needs to be some grand reason for nudity in a show. That's all.

        • Gag A Maggot

          So Lena is allowed to be a brazen harlot on her TV series but Tim is not allowed to ask why? Why is that? Tim is obviously not the only person who wonders why Lena would degrade herself in this manner when it's really not necessary, and certainly not artistic. Glad to know there is still one man in the media who is not afraid to speak truth as he sees it, instead of meekly following the party line. This is America Jessica, and we won't be as easily corrupted as the poor Europeans were.

    • meesh

      I also live alone and walk around with no clothes on sometimes. But that's because I'm alone – there's no camera watching me. And c'mon – Girls is hardly cinema verite. This is a fictional tv show that relies on advertising dollars for existence. But then, it's HBO, so maybe that's your answer – all HBO shows must have nudity, no? I disagree with you – nudity should have a purpose. All dialogue should have a purpose. Maybe it's for the plot; maybe it's for establishing who the character is. If you're going to direct viewers away from the moment by showing a nude body, then you better have a good reason for it. These are things you're supposed to know as a good writer. And when you have a restricted amount of time to tell your story, anything that doesn't help tell it is waste. There is a reason why there are awards for film editing.

  • KatKan

    I've only seen “Girls” a few times and I agree with Tim Molloy. Lena Dunham may be comfortable with her nudity, but I wasn't comfortable seeing her nude. She is not attractive nude and therefore shouldn't appear nude as often. There was also nothing wrong with how he asked his question. The directors were way too defensive.

    • Lily

      Only attractive people can appear nude?

      • IHateFatChicks

        Preferably, yes. Put a burqa on all fat women.

        • Lily

          Really? Do you know any women who are fat? Why would your username be about something you hate?

  • Moochie

    They might have taken offense because you said that “Game of Thrones” does it because it is “titillating”. When you asked why they were doing so much nudity, maybe they thought you were implying that there was no reason to do it because Lena Dunham is not “titillating”.

  • gpike

    You're totally right. There's nothing remotely realistic about Lena Dunham's nudity on Girls. It's her own personal exhibitionism and doesn't seem reflective of any women i've ever known. Dunham's nudity occurs with such frequency and frivolity that it pushes the content of the show beyond realism into mere solipsism. Women with far more conventionally beautiful figures than Dunham's are not in my experience parading around naked in real life or in front of the camera. As for Judd Apatow response, it's more of the same. He's an enormously empowered voice in Hollywood but not a thoughtful or in this case coherent one.

  • Heisenberg

    How dare you ask a woman a legitimate question …. Female hypoagency.

  • seekingintelligentlife

    Nudity in a performance is never put there by accident; it is always intentional (barring a wardrobe malfunction). Therefore, it's a legitimate question if one cannot discern the reason for the choice. Typically, it's for titillation, humor, or shock value. Their reaction to the question says more about them the question does about the critic.

    • SlapHappyDude

      Yep. It's for shock value and ratings, but they can't admit that's the game, so they can only play the rage card.

  • Really?

    How do you not understand that your question was worded offensively? It seems as though you're implying Lena Dunham cannot titillate with her nude body, that her body naked is not capable of being salacious, only of being random. I genuinely don't understand how you don't see that…

    • IHateFatChicks

      Because it wasn't offensive, you half-wit of a fat slob.

  • Heisenberg

    “I don’t get the purpose of all the nudity on the show. By you particularly. I feel like I’m walking into a trap where you say no one complains about the nudity on ‘Game of Thrones,’ but I get why they’re doing it. They’re doing it to be salacious. To titillate people. And your character is often naked at random times for no reason.”

    There is not a single sexist, offensive, or misogynistic syllable in that question … This whole transaction is simply these people creating a problem where none exists in service of some twisted sense of political correctness. They can't legitimately criticize the question, so they go after the interviewer.

    • AnnaLynn25

      After responding to a lot of other comments I realized Dunham was placed in a position to explain the nude scenes, which she writes for herself. I can see now Dunham was thrown off and wanted to turn the question against Molloy. I haven't seen Girls (no reason other than I just haven't) but it's not looking like I want to binge watching start any time soon.

  • Pennylane22

    OMG, I never thought we would have any actress more insufferable and full of herself than Katie Heigl, and along comes Lena Dunham. Ugh.. at least Heigl was attractive. Yeah, I said it.

    • AnnaLynn25

      Yeah… Apatow knows how to pick em!

  • http://www.qualiaquotesforlife.wordpress.com/ Tracy E. L. Poured

    Tim,

    A discussion means you assume that the party you’re asking the question of has a different perspective than you – otherwise, you wouldn’t have a question for them.

    There’s polite discourse in public Q&A. You messed up. For your consideration:
    Something makes “no sense” to you because you don’t personally value it.
    It’s safe to assume those who write and act in it DO value their art.
    You managed to insult their value of it by projecting your “no sense” value onto their work, their art – disguised as a question. Bad form.
    That would be like asking why Frank Lloyd Wright built buildings for housing manure. (He didn’t.)

    If you want to succeed at Q&A, assume that the position of the parties you’re
    interviewing is a good one, a valuable one, and find the basic courtesy to rephrase your questions positively (or at least neutrally) rather than antagonistically.

    • IHateFatChicks

      EABOD. Look it up, fatso.

  • SMC

    I don't watch the show, but if a critic asks you a question, actually answer it nicely instead of being a humongous asshole. For some reason Molloy's question hit the wrong note with Apatow and Dunham, and they decided to turn into giant bullies. Their exchange sounds like a lot of mean double-speak and evading. If the real reason there's so much nudity on Girls wouldn't sit well with the public or the critics, there's no need to start pouncing on the guy who asks you a perfectly legitimate question with personal attacks and rude questions.
    Aren't the two of you trained how to respond to questions from interviewers and critics? You're supposed to brush them off with a little tact if you don't feel like sharing.
    If I were Molloy, I wouldn't have taken that crap from anybody who was attacking a critic at a Television Critics Association panel. I'd have them kicked out, but Mr. Molloy knows how to properly conduct himself at this type of thing better than me.

    • SlapHappyDude

      Absolutely. A far classier answer would have been to just dismiss the question as dull and one they have spoken on too many times before. Their NerdRage defense hints they know he's right.

    • AnnaLynn25

      Molloy actually stuck to his guns and never let down that there are varying points to nudity. For example: There is also nudity for comedic purposes (Remember Dennis Franz anyone?). Dunham couldn't explain herself and had a very feminist reaction and Apatow is a tool. Enough said.

  • LogicalRisk

    Here is why your question is bad and you should feel bad. First you claim to be “just asking the question”, an attempted to increase your understanding of the show and the artistic choices made to create it. The question you asked however is not framed that way, particularly telling is how you end it, “. . . your character is often naked at random times for no reason.” If you are asking a question to understand why a character is naked and then end with the assumption that you understand the character is naked for no reason or randomly you are not inquiring to satisfy your curiosity but rather to openly state your prejudice opinion. You've already made up your mind that the nudity is random and has no purpose so what answer would convince you otherwise? The replies you've made to comments are further damning evidence against you that the only reason you can understand to show nudity is for sexual reasons: “Nudity in a sex scene is one thing. Nudity when someone's standing in the bathroom isn't salacious — it's just presenting nudity.” You understand nudity when used in a sex scene or for salacious reason, but you can't for any reason comprehend why or how presenting nudity could be used for any other purpose; as if nudity is not the natural and most exposed state of a person and no metaphor can be drawn from that for a story. Had you left out your already formed and ignorant opinion at the end of your question without the comparison to overly sexualized nudity in other shows your question would have been less offensive. Finally you are just a terrible art critic because this is not the first time this question has been asked, some simple research would have provided you with the answer to the question you asked and save you from the embarrassment of asking it in such an offensive manner.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Based on everything you just said, ask yourself why these media professionals didn't handle the ill-worded question properly? Anyone who's been on a press junket gets used to answering the same question again and again – it's not a big deal, nor an insult. Having been asked about the nudity before, you would also think they have a good answer at the ready. The fact that Malloy's clumsy delivery touched a nerve the way it did tells me that it's a hot-button issue for them.

      • LogicalRisk

        No, it's a dead horse that's been beaten repeatedly and Malloy just wanted a turn with the stick. The fact that you describe Malloy's question as a “clumsy delivery” and an “ill-worded question” is why he shouldn't be considered a media professional and never should have been allowed in the room as a peer. Now if he wanted to beat that dead horse in a professional way, he could have done so by presenting his question in a professional manner. It's no surprise that he got an emotional amateur response to an ignorant amateur inquiry.

        • IHateFatChicks

          And, yet, Lena Dunham is still fat, ugly and lacking in any talent.

  • Ophidian

    I don't see the sexism, offense, and hatred of (white) women in asking why a show fetishes so much tasteless nudity. But to smug, over privileged white liberals, any kind of inquiry that makes them think hard is an attack on their delicate sensibilities.

    “It's sexist, offensive, and misogynistic!” Boo-f—ing-Hoo, homey. Let the big girl speak for herself. She has a mouth, a voice, and a mind of her own.

    • Heisenberg

      I don't know if you could have hit the nail any harder with that comment. Solid Gold!

    • diffstrokes

      why is merely being naked tasteless?

  • Miles Howard

    This
    is why I can't stand Girls or Lena Dunham: the show and its creators
    carry themselves with such absurdly high self-regard, which I feel is really undeserved. Has Dunham opened doors for women in film and
    television? Maybe. But Girls isn't really
    that unique as a television show, and in the interviews I've read, Dunham seems to be entirely oblivious to the
    inherent privilege she was born with by being white, wealthy, and
    embedded within NYC's elite arts community. So when people build her up as
    this progressive beacon of plucky creative entrepreneurialism (or worse,
    the voice of our generation), I kind of want to vomit.

    • Nana Berry

      Best post on this entire page.

  • Tony Dodge

    whether intended or not, there's pejorative to “don't understand” and “just don't get it.”

  • AnnaLynn25

    I truly want to applaud Molloy for going toe-to-toe with Apatow (no pun intended). Anyhow, I get Molloy's question and it can be easily answered in any number of shows that make the reason for nudity blatantly obvious. For example, “Sex & The City” had a slew of nudity but really focused on Samantha's overt sexuality; thereby making Cattrall's character the most nude of the four friends. However, Nixon, Davis and Parker all placed themselves nude situations at some point because the show is about sex in the modern day woman's world. What I got from Molloy's back and forth with Apatow and friends is that Dunham's nudity seems to lack any real foundation. So is it to shock people? Try to start word-of-mouth about a girl who is randomly naked on a show? To break barriers on body image? And why aren't the other girls placed in same “naked everyday people” situations? My bottom line is that there is no other way to really ask Dunham the nudity question or pussy foot around it. I found Molloy's question in no way insensitive and think that Dunham probably has an invisible chip on her shoulder about her appearance versus that of the models in Vogue magazines. If Dunham wants to change the way we perceive nudity as being a spokesperson for the unusual body type that gets nude screen time then that's fine – that makes sense. If Dunham really didn't care what people thought about her nudity then she wouldn't be offended by the question – just answer it honestly. Molloy had to shift the question away from Dunham's character for Apatow to give a valid and honest answer – but why? Why couldn't Apatow just say Dunham is the only actor comfortable with being nude on the show (which I highly doubt). What's the harm in honesty here?

    • Jessica

      “What I got from Molloy's back and forth with Apatow and friends is that Dunham's nudity seems to lack any real foundation.” I just don't think nudity needs any real foundation. Like I said in my own post — I walk around naked in my own house ALL OF THE TIME, but I know my closest friends don't. That's just who Hannah is. I feel like Lena was being honest, but everyone is still searching for some unknown answer. Her honesty was: “Yeah. It’s because it’s a realistic expression of what it’s like to be alive.” And for Lena/Hannah, maybe that is her realistic expression. I know it is for me. But the other girls may not think so. And I totally get why Lena/Judd found offense in Tim's question — the way he asked it was a little off. I get what he was trying to ask, but maybe wording it a little different would have rendered a different answer. Who knows. All I know is that I'm excited for the new season!

  • NakedSexist

    It's because she is an “attention whore” and they want to get their ratings up. To be in the HBO ratings competition means to be more racy, more “shock and awe” , and more scandalous than the other shows. Apparently being naked all the time is the only way this show can hold it's viewer's attention spans long enough. Besides, Lena Dunham is a mediocore “beauty” while naked anyway, compared to other actresses on HBO. Apparently by their reactions that they are not as comfortable with their “nakedness” as they protray.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      The show is probably getting a ton of feedback telling them “enough already” with her nudity, so the question touched a nerve.

      • Nana Berry

        I think you are absolutely right. They have probably heard from loads of people about this. It is ridiculous.

  • August

    Couldn't agree more with you Tim. I could care less about seeing nudity on the show (i'm a GOT fan), but why is Lena Dunham the only one naked and why all the time? It is a very inaccurate portrayal based on what Apatow basically said about showing real life. I do, however, see why he responded that way based on the phrasing of the question. You started it with a negative phrase and while there are plenty of negative things about Girls, the self-serving Dunham and Apatow don't want to hear it.

  • Julie

    It seems that the main thing missing here is the sound of voices and intonation. Written words mean and sound like whatever we decide they mean within certain perimeters. Spoken works are another thing as a voice and attitude is communicated that words alone would not. Too bad we weren't all there to hear what you said. When three seemingly reasonable people all react to a question in the same manner it makes one pause. Seems pretty sophomoric of you to feel the need to publish the discussion.

  • karehelene .

    Here is the offending sentence – “By you particularly.” As if she isn't good enough or thin enough to be naked. That the writer's girlfriend doesn't get this just shows she's never been under the Hollywood/media scrutiny where only thin is beautiful.

    • seekingintelligentlife

      Her character is the one who is always naked though.

  • prettygirlww

    This comment thread is way too long to sort through to see if anyone else asked this, but I am curious to HEAR how you asked the question you transcribed. The context your tone would give might be illuminating with regard to the way everyone responded to you.

  • CR

    I'm with you. I'm a 35 year old woman who really likes this show, but neither myself nor my boyfriend nor my best female friend EVER understand why she is naked BUT NOBODY ELSE is. Your question wasn't sexist – gah – women are their own worst enemies.

  • seekingintelligentlife

    I sincerely hope that all of the comments that just disappeared were caused by a glitch.

  • VanessaCR

    I think it was a badly worded question, but I understand what you meant. As for her, well, I might reacted the same way but I think the panel was hoping for a fight and you got to be lucky guy to get trolled. Bummer! But free press for everyone! :)

  • Rowegd

    @timamolloy good on you mate for sticking up for yourself. Your question was misinterpreted, caught them off guard, and then two celebrities decided to bully you.

  • Neil

    What??? A couple of smug Hollywood douche-hipsters spinning idiot B.S., looking for free “internet feminist outrage” press?

    SAY IT AIN'T SO!!!!!!

  • Alex Notman

    I think the real question here is why you care about nudity at all? It's a body in a natural state. It's a non story. I cannot ever see this question being asked by reporter, say, in Europe, where people are adults and don't blush if they see a tit or a penis. Grow up.

  • Final Girl

    Good grief, how blind can a person be? I don't watch Girls but I've seen a few episodes & I get it. That question was an offensive mess.

    • IHateFatChicks

      You must be one fat, ugly mess of a steaming pile. :)

      • Final Girl

        Oh come on now, you can do better than that Troll.

  • IHateFatChicks

    If I was losing my virginity and Lena Dunham was the succubus, I'd prefer to remain a virgin. She's fat, unattractive and without an ounce of talent, whatsoever. Oh, and did I say she's fat. Because she is…..fat, that is. Judd Apatow just outed himself as a total doormat, white knight ass kissing loser.

  • IHateFatChicks

    Soon, her “career” will be over and she'll be back in her trailer park, getting even fatter.

  • geeteekay

    Not here to pile on you, Tim. I hate the internet mob mentality. However, I sort of got the idea you were implying that Lena's nudity wasn't titillating, whereas GOT nudity was. I wouldn't disagree with you either, but it's probably not the best thing to bring up in such a forum. I can see why offense was taken.

    • casualobserver77

      I can see why offense was taken, but I applaud Tim for having the balls to say it. It needed to be said. And this is coming from a woman. I am beyond tired of trying to search for story lines in between all of the gratuitous and–quite frankly–unpleasant nudity. This is not representative of real life. No women I know are naked and/or f*cking every time I encounter them. People have much more substance to them than what is represented in this show.

      • MjrMissConduct

        I'm not so sure 20 something women do have more substance to them at this point lol

  • diffstrokes

    Adam may not have been naked, but he was shirtless for most of the 1st season.

    Not all of the other actors are necessarily interested in revealing that much of themselves. Marnie has sex with Charlie season 1 in his loft bed and keeps her bra on, when she has sex with Booth Jonathan he's buttnaked and on top of her, again you never actually see Allison Williams’ body.

    • Gag a Maggot

      I bet her daddy Brian is so proud of her!

  • Guest

    Who elected Judd Apatow to speak for other people's girlfriends?

  • Nana Berry

    I quit watching the show because of it. This young woman claims to be all about her “art”. But, the fact is when you do something continually that takes the focus off of the storyline and makes you say, “Shes nude again!”. Then you are NOT about the art, you are about distracting attention to yourself. If she wants her show to be about people tuning in to see how quickly she is nude this week, then be honest and say that is why you are doing it. If you want a show where the audience is allowed to enjoy the story you are supposed to be delivering by your acting then do so. If you are a show about one naked woman, then do that.
    Skinny, fat, or in the middle, even naked gets boring after while.

  • http://www.compulsivecollector.com/ Compulsive Collector

    The little guy's girlfriend was okay with her boyfriend asking the question, so that means the women he offended are wrong in describing it as misogynistic. Brilliant.

  • Jim

    seemed like a personally reasonable question to me.

  • Chil_Cruise

    What they were really offended by was that you implied that her nudity doesn't elicit any kind of salaciousness to anybody at all. Unattractive women (and their defenders) always use the “sexist” or “misogynist” card when they are confronted with a similar question. But it's more “lookist/sexy-ist/attractivist” (if there are any such words) than anything else.

    But you were talking past each other because, in their being offended and defensive about her nudity in particular, they missed the real point of your question of why does she have to be the ONLY one who's always nude? If it wasn't to titillate but to make it as realistic as possible as they claimed, then why not make everybody be nude once in a while, which Apatow did answer eventually (that she was the only one willing to be naked all the time) after being all defensive about it.

  • jsquared

    Read the article on slate. Written by Amanda Hess. She sums it up nicely.

  • MGorgAZ68

    I'm not an intellectual. I'm jut a regular guy. I didn't find the question offensive. Possibly this situation/misunderstanding could have been mitigated if the questions were provided to the panel in advance and the “wording” adjusted.
    Perhaps the panel could have taken the “high road” by offering (spinning) a reworded question back and answered it. Or perhaps the demographic that watched the interview would expect a reaction like that. Not sure why I'm responding this – I better get back to work ;)

  • Nikki

    I thought it was a totally valid question. The nudity in season 1 was appreciated. In season two, not so much. It was OD. It felt arbitrary. A digital high five to you Tim!!

  • commenty_mcgee

    You're totally in the right here. It's a valid question, especially since when Marnie or Shoshanna has a sex scene it's edited so ridiculously it could be aired at 8pm on a network sitcom. Lena should just admit she gets off on being naked on TV and the other actors don't. She freaked out because she knows the real answer is that she is a narcissist who thinks she is doing something brave for women because being naked for no reason at a place like Oberlin is an automatic A.

  • Alisia

    Seriously, this is a thinly veiled body shot. You're uncomfortable by her nakedness because you're coarse enough to feel as though your television set should only be graced by female forms that are media presentable – you are brainwashed into think only one type of female nakedness is acceptable. I'm turned on by her bravery, and that's why I return to the show. I think the show is a very modern show for bright young women in the clique style of Sex and The City. Women like it, and we like to see real females… Because Hollywood has been showing the asses of unattractive males since the beginning of film – Vince Vaughn and many others. But, we don't complain because we don't expect every man to look like Micheal Fassbender.
    This is completely untrue – “Girls” has more nudity by its lead character than any show, well, ever.
    On HBO, Hung had far more nudity from its main character… And, that's on the same network.

    • MjrMissConduct

      Yeah, but Hung was a show about a male escort, so it was perfectly logical and asking why there was nudity on it would've been mindless.

    • Gag A Maggot

      I think the most perplexing aspect of the whole kerfuffle is why would a fat, pudgy and plain female want to show her naked body to the world?
      Being well aware that she is fat, pudgy and plain, curious people the world over are just trying to make sense of this odd behavior. Is she crazy? A weirdo? What gives Lena? So thanks to the author for being the mouthpiece of curious tv watches who can't personally ask her the same question.

      • Alisia

        We live in a sad, shallow world. Lena Dunham is far from plain, as are women, and men, and children. Human beings are gifted to be inherently different and unique in physical appearance. In real life, Lena Dunham probably gets a lot of attention for her beauty. But, you'll insist that's untrue and that she has no business showing her body on television. You question her motives? Simply because she threatens your ideal of what a naked woman on television, or in movies, should look like. Perfect everything, right? Perfect everything until you realize that the beauty is in the imperfections. It's the imperfections that the most alluring, and strangely, it's the imperfections that become the beautiful things about people because we all have them. To see past that, to see what someone finds sexy about a real person, is to hold a mirror up to society. If you can look back into that mirror and feel comfortable and collected, you're the show's audience. If you can't, and you simply view a woman as nothing more than a sexual object and if she's imperfect she's not good enough for you, then the shows not for you – plain and simple. And, this author's girlfriend should really think about what agreeing with this author means. He literally learned nothing – NOTHING – from Judd Apatow a creative type, who took the time to helped the guy understand why this would be infuriating to people. It's sad really because this hits on a core issue of what's wrong with people. Acting like only your definition of “skinny” is what causes people to go insane trying to lose weight – and it's about as anti-feminist as you can get – which is sickening. I think even P-Diddy considers himself a feminist these days.

  • Juwan Dickerson

    The way it sounded came across as shaming. When watching ‘Girls’ I assume the reason the character is sometimes naked at home is because people sometimes are naked at home. I don't think it's going for art so much as its going for realistic comfort for that character. Don't get me wrong, I don't ride for Lena Dunham but asking a woman who in character chooses to display her body unabashedly and unashamedly and asking her why are you naked all the time is kind of problematic.

    • Gag A Maggot

      OK Juwan, there are a lot of things everyday people do at home that don't really need to be exposed to the world and presented as art on a TV series. What next? Lena having a bowel movement on the show? Lena puking her brains out after drinking too much? I mean the list goes on and on doesn't it?

  • Clever Connections

    Louis CK addressed that on the Lucky Louie commentary.
    HE said that HBO wanted nudity. HE didn't want to force anyone to do nudity especially the women so he and Rick Shapiro did the nudity. He tried to use it for comedy and to steer away from titillation.
    It seems like she is doing the nudity so her female castmates don't have to. She is also portraying it as not necessarily glamourous, just a fact of life.

    • meesh

      I respect Louis CK for addressing the issue. That makes HBO seem exploitative. That they'd require nudity on a show called “Girls” about young women none the wiser just seems wrong. There's something I don't buy, though. The defensiveness of the creators of Girls in the guise of feminism is highly insulting to me, as a woman.

    • Gag A Maggot

      Your scenario of Lena bravely taking the fall for her co-stars just doesn't ring true. I suspect the Mamet and Williams daddy's paid her a hefty sum to spare their family the shame of having their daughters presented as whores and harlots. Yes, I'm sure both daddy's absolutely do not want their little darlings degraded in such a manner and I can't say I blame them.

  • Tracey

    Why does there have t be a artistic reason for it, maybe theres a political reason, social reason or simply comedic reason for it. I wonder if you would ask the same of Brad Pitt in his earlier movies? I appreciate seeing a real women's body like mine on screen that hasn't been photoshopped in a world obsessed with image.

    • Gag A Maggot

      The degradation of women in the media should certainly be questioned by more people than just Mr. Molloy, who seems to be the sole voice of reason in this kerfuffle.

  • Lemma

    The important thing to bear in mind is that these people are not feminists, they are Americans.

  • Matt A.

    “I’m really, truly stupid then, because I don’t understand,” I said.

    Bingo.

  • Stevart

    “Moral indignation is a technique used to endow the idiot with dignity.” Marshall McLuhan

  • Lily

    Great rebuttal from Amanda Hess over at Slate:

    On Thursday, Girls executive producers Lena Dunham, Judd Apatow, and Jenni Konner appeared at a panel at the Television Critics Association to talk about the upcoming third season of the HBO show. The first question from the critics came from The Wrap’s Tim Molloy, who asked:

    I don’t get the purpose of all the nudity on the show. By you particularly. I feel like I’m walking into a trap where you say no one complains about the nudity on ‘Game of Thrones,’ but I get why they’re doing it. They’re doing it to be salacious. To titillate people. And your character is often naked at random times for no reason.

    Dunham responded: “Yeah. It’s because it’s a realistic expression of what it’s like to be alive, I think, and I totally get it. If you are not into me, that’s your problem.” Apatow had a question of his own for Molloy: “Do you have a girlfriend?” Apatow asked. “Does she like you?” Later, Apatow and Molloy spoke privately about the tenor of his question. “It is very offensive,” Apatow said. “It’s sexist and offensive, it’s misogynistic.” Molloy disagreed. “Everyone I know has wondered the same thing,” he told Apatow. “I don’t understand as a writer, what the reason for it is. I’m not against it.” Later, on Apatow’s advice, Molloy checked with his girlfriend; for the record, “She’s cool with what I asked.”

    Except that Molloy didn’t exactly “ask” anything. His question was not a question; it was a rambling statement of his own inability to understand how Dunham uses nudity in the show, followed by a statement that the choice is “random” and there is “no reason” to justify it. The only legitimate reason for nudity that he purports to understand is its use for titillation purposes. That statement may not reveal Molloy to be an outright misogynist, but given the intensive and wide-ranging critical discussion of the use of nudity in Girls over the past few years, it does reveal him to be willfully naïve to Dunham’s work and its larger context.

    Asking why Dunham regularly appears naked in the show was a legitimate question—in 2012. Dunham’s many answers on the topic—that pantlessness is inherently comedic, that showing average-sized women’s bodies in the media is so rare that it constitutes aradical act, and that the outsized attention and criticism she’s received for it wouldn’t be placed on a naked actress with “tiny thighs”—have demonstrated that there are copious and pointed reasons justifying the choice. For Molloy to approach the question from a place of total obliviousness to that discussion makes his statement not only lazy and dated, but ignorant.

    When faced with charges of offensiveness, Molloy transcribed the entirety of his exchange in an attempt to prove that there was nothing sexist in the letter of his (not a) question. But the ickiness of his statement lies in not what he said, but in the vast, unstated context of the show that he fails to understand, with no indication that he’s ever even tried. It’s a mind-numbingly obvious place to begin a discussion of a show that’s now in its third season, and everyone except for Molloy who pays attention toGirls has advanced beyond that point. They’ve already cycled through all the fascination and the backlash and the measured justification; Molloy’s question effectively reboots the discussion to a place where Dunham is again prompted to rationalize her body for critics who can only comprehend the more traditionally sexualized bodies on full display in a show like Game of Thrones. My colleague David Haglund put it this way: “To him, ‘by you particularly’ means ‘you, in particular, are naked with a frequency that I don’t understand.’ But it sounds like ‘I especially don’t get why you are naked; the nudity of the other [read, possibly: more conventionally attractive] actresses I get.’ ”

    Of course, it’s not particularly noteworthy for a critic to ask a stale and naïve question at a press conference. And the simple charge of “misogyny” from Apatow doesn't feel quite right. What makes Molloy’s question so grating is that it operates through the soft, ambiguous sexism that marks modern discussions of women in the media, not in an old-school display of blatant misogyny that everyone now immediately recognizes as unacceptable. Lena Dunham isn’t just working against a media landscape that devalues and objectifies women; she must also contend with critics who are so casually unaware of that landscape that they just can’t “get” her work, so they throw up their hands and call it “random.”

    • not a duck

      when i first picked up this article today, i knew nothing of this gal, and only inferred from the question, was in the area of “why are you such a screen slut,” but after reading a few comments here, and actually looking at a picture of the actress in question, i have to say, the gal in question, just gained allot of respect from me. people that look like that, and can make themselves so vulnerable, are very brave, and deserve a nod on that. their are tons of gals out their, that are great people, but will never fit the movie star role, but that in no way makes them inferior lovers, wives, or mothers.

      that said, i do wish that nudity and sex weren't such the selling points of entertainment. but i'll give this gal credit, for being bold enough to forge her own path, and maybe be an example for many gals, that you don't have to be perfect to love and admire your body.

  • howard

    I've tried to join the discussion twice but my comments keep disappearing, so I'll try again: I
    think the author made an interesting revelation about himself by using
    Louis C.K. as a male example. Neither have bodies that would, let us
    say, be used as centerfolds in Playboy or Playgirl. The question the
    author has to ask himself is, if he was
    interviewing Matthew McConaughey, would one of his major questions be,
    why are you naked in almost all your movies (something I've joked about
    in my reviews of his movies)? If that question would never occur to him
    to ask, then I think that the problem for him is not that there is a
    lot of nudity on Girls, it's who is nude

  • marie d

    It's offensive because you stated that the show is unlike Game of Thrones, which uses nudity to be titillating, implying that Dunham's nudity is not/could not be titillating. It's misogynistic because it condemns a perfectly normal female body type. I don't think you'd ask the same question of a male actor. I say, go Lena!

    • ScottCU

      Fat is not a normal female body type. Lena has the body of a lazy slob. It is not hard to be thin. All you need to do is burn more calories each day than you consume. This is done by eating healthy food and exercising at least 30 minutes a day. When people are too lazy to go to the store and cook, rather than eat fast food, and too lazy to go to the gym, they get fat. There is nothing admirable about that. It's gross and sad.

  • TruthTeller

    The writer who wrote this is actually an idiot and an even bigger idiot for writing this as defensive – you clearly DONT like seeing Lena naked, and yes, you could have asked it in a more elegant way and saying that watchers don't like nudity on their show but they like it on THRONES when it's “sexy” is sexist and you are still clearly putting her down. YOu say “You don't like it or don't like it” but clearly if it was Uma Therman naked all the time you'd LIKE IT. You really thought this letter would make it better – dude, really.

  • Chase

    I think they “dost protest too much!” I have tried a few times to watch ‘Girls’ but find it too self-indulgent, narcissistic and vacuous to be enjoyable or culturally valuable. In my opinion (and memory) the worst show HBO has ever done, it raises or lowers (depending upon perspective) the bar for “trash TV.” Now there is nothing inherently wrong with ‘trash TV’ provided you know what you're getting (think The A-Team in the 80s), but this show tries to pass itself off as something serious.

    Tim – it's not you it's them, the name calling and personal attacks demonstrate the weakness of their position. Keep up the good work and never be afraid to ask the ‘hard’ questions – the audience deserves answers.

    • Viewer

      I've never seen the show. I once heard the name of the show mentioned, but today, I know the show's premise, etc. So what did this overreaction to a simple or (not so simple depending on who you ask) question cause? So much media attention that they are bound to get more viewers. That's what I can't help feel this is about. All the discourse below about female roles, the male gaze, etc. All valid points, theories and analyses, but not every artist intends the reactions that they receive. Which is why I do believe the question asked was valid. I can't help feeling “played” here though and I'm just not falling for it. Someone is trying to pull our strings and I won't be controlled.

      • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

        Not sure about this nonsense getting more viewers, if people know they're going to be seeing Dunham nude in every episode, they're most likely not going to watching the show.

        A delusional Dunham may believe that's “their problem” and ‘they’ need ‘professional’ help if they're not attracted to Dunham, but the reality is …very few people are attracted to Dunham.

  • Lisa

    Wow. I couldn't believe this piece would turn out to be as utterly pointless as it's lead subject line… and, yet… it is actually more so. Do you not have an editor? Come on – we know you and your girlfriend are only asking about this because of a judgement you make on Lena's body. Argue it any way you want. I personally love that titillation isn't the goal of any of the human moments explored in Girls where Hannah – or any other character – is nude. How strange you seem to find this concept so confusing… (“Wait… if it's not for titillation, then – what's it for..?- I hear your brain spinning from my desk). You get a couple of chances to ask a young woman who by any standard has tapped into a cultural zeitgeist, who has made a show that will be referenced long after she has moved on to other projects – you have her sitting next to her producer and Judd Apatow – and this is the BEST QUESTION you could come up with? I make it a habit not to write anything negative online – but I feel the sheer silliness of your (might as well have been called “Lena was such a bitch to me! – and I'm “very sad!')” article deserves it. Might think twice about clicking a WRAP link again.

  • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

    Sad how desperate Dunham is for male attention, But I bet she couldn't get laid in prison with a carton of cigarettes under each arm.

  • Lemma

    Apatow and Dunham strike me as being… well, dummies

  • Thechairman66

    Why does Dunham automatically assume you find her unattractive? Doesn't that reinforce the stereotype they're trying to critique?

  • Miriam

    Way to go! Those people are insecure and a little rotten. I find the show completely gratuitous and unrealistic in the area of romantic relationships. Hannah is a figment of Lena's fantasy world that she could have kept private!

  • glisanst

    Your question was kinda silly though. You're really confused why a show about mid 20's women in NYC has sex/nude scenes? Why is it even an issue to bring up? I know we live in the United States of Prude but it seems like all you wanted to do was get a rise out of them – mission accomplished I guess.

    • ghebert

      Because some people use nudity as a crutch to get higher ratings. I think Tim, and he can correct me if I'm wrong, may have been trying to determine if a show like girls has a valid reason for having nudity in it. Could Girls still be as good of a show without it? If so, then is the nudity really necessary, does it add any substance to the story or is it just eye candy to keep those with short attention spans interested. I would guess it's the latter.

      • glisanst

        You're basically saying people shouldn't be allowed to enjoy nudity. Why does it offend you so much? Furthermore, many people do not feel Lena looks good naked so it's not like they're parading skinny models around naked. Howard Stern even referred to her as a naked looking Jonah Hill. If anything, the nudity turns off more people (including many in these comments who seem repulsed by the idea) rather than attracting viewers, thus negating your only argument here. Try harder.

  • jad555

    Right on, Tim. The gratuitous nudity for Dunham–”Hey, look at me, I'm fearless, I'm brilliant, I'm naked!”–deserves to be called out, and the utterly absurd feigned indignation by the producers is even more ludicrous. Adding to the unintentional hilarity is the fact that Williams’ character goes out of her way to cover up when she should plausibly be nude (following lovemaking, for ex), lending an Alice in Wonderland vibe to the whole sorry mess of a show.

  • buhda

    HE IS SOOO UGLY!!! KEEP THE CLOTHES ON DUDE!!!

  • kt

    Ok, I'll make a tackle at an answer: most of the times, the nudity on GIRLS is for laughs (as in Booth Jonathan & Marnie's awkward sex, the sweaty coke dancing, Adam's constant shirtlessness, etc.). Sometimes it's endearing, as in Jessa & Hannah's bathtub scene. Sometimes it is necessary to the plotline, because people are having sex or are in the shower. Sometimes it's dramatic and dark, as in Adam and Natalia's sex scene.

    People are naked on GIRLS because oftentimes people are naked in life. Homestly, to me it seems like a silly thing to focus on or question. Why did Seinfeld always wear jeans and sneakers? Is there any story reason for that? I don't think so.

    Perhaps you might want to consider why you find nudity so distracting. It is just a part of life and it is certainly not limited to sexual contexts.

  • KBoss

    “I totally get it if you’re not into me, that’s your problem.”

    Ha ha!!! Doesn't that sum up her entire show? She seems to be OBSESSED with her assumption that men are not into her, and she has projected that onto you, Tim. You have done nothing wrong, except that you were the first innocent male who took the bait of her random, flagrant nakedness. Actually, it's not random at all—it's strategic. The point is to entrap you into acknowledging it, then BAM! Your a misogynist and she's the victim.

    This is my own theory about writing these days… If it's good, it doesn't need to be shocking. Lena is talented. It's unfortunate she feels she must rely on being shocking. Tina Fey was never shocking—she never had to be.

    • KBoss

      *You're

  • ghebert

    When they throw around the term “misogynist” like that, it's indicative that they are feminist lap dogs. Yes, they actually think asking questions that challenge them or criticize them is misogyny…in other words, it's hateful towards women. You're like Hitler to them now.

    • glisanst

      They've answered the question about “why is there nudity on your show” countless times, yet people keep asking expecting a different answer. If someone asks you the same question over and over you'd grow snippy with them too. The bottom line is the nudity makes you uncomfortable. If that's true, change the channel. Nobody is forcing you to watch.

  • Facepalm

    Judd Apatow, knight in shining armor.

    Judd, you're a dipshit.

  • godofbiscuits

    Well, if your GIRLFRIEND is cool with it.

    Holy shit.

    Tim Molloy, are you a never-nude?

    If not, and you still don't understand what Lena Dunham meant, then….wow.

  • ScottCU

    Surely, Lena can afford a personal chef and personal trainer. She needs to use them. There are people perpetuating the idea that fat is normal. It is not. Men should have no more than 15% body fat and women no more than 24%. Kids are being misled by the lies that some people are just bigger and to love your body how it is. If you eat a healthy low calorie diet and exercise everyday, you will be fit and normal size. It's not just fat, but lack of muscle tone, that makes Lena and others like her unattractive. She has a cute face. Put her on a 1500 calorie diet and lock her in a gym, and she might turn out ok.

    • godofbiscuits

      Well, aren't you quite the martinet. Endomorphs, ectomorphs and mesomorphs should ALL be 15% or less? People whose metabolisms run hot, run slow, all 15%?

      Good for you.

    • KBoss

      Whoa! That is quite a statement. Actually, studies have shown that thin doesn't necessarily mean healthy.

    • glisanst

      Just. Shut. Up.

    • Googlyeyes

      “Put her on a 1500 calorie diet and lock her in a gym, and she might turn out ok”

      I agree with your comment overall. Excluding that last line of course. You were making a valid argument till you ended it with a tasteless statement. There's no downsides to fighting the fat and living a healthy life. But don't use it to be so judgmental about something like attractiveness, that needs to be subjective. You and I might find her unattractive, but there are guys out there who don't. You can even go as far as to say that the reason YOU don't like her is because she's pudgy and out of shape. But don't make it look like that's the general consensus. That she's unattractive in general just because of the way she looks. That's extremely shallow.

      The reason kids are being told to love the way they are is because the world is filled with shallow people. Not everyone can adapt to a ‘in your face’ sort of lifestyle. I needed my ass kicked to lose my weight, but the same sort of treatment would break someone else. Every body is different.

      That being said, I find her unattractive myself. But it has nothing to do with her body. She's extremely annoying and full of herself. Her show is proof of that. There's confidence, and then there's being annoyingly over-confident.

  • JustSaying

    People, it's a show. It's not even a reality show. It's HBO, nudity is part of the equation. I bet if she is not naked for two or three episodes or an entire season the show flops. It's just another overrated piece of crap. Move to Netflix and watch Orange is the New Black… there's a show that makes sense and it is well written and not overrated as this alternate universe lame version of Sex in the city as someone presented it in the comments. Just switch the channel and If Lena and Judd cannot take criticism their egos are in the wrong business and should stop being divas.

  • glisanst

    Wow this site has more stuffy and old prudish curmudgeony commenters than even the worst right wing news sites.

  • Googlyeyes

    Lol, I don't know who has the bigger butthurt in this article. Judd or Tim.

  • HozeKing

    Apatosaurus is so much smarter than all of us. We just don't get it.

    • Ivy Shoots

      I get it, and so do many other people. YOU and Tim proudly don't get it, even after it was explained so clearly by so many people here. So yeah, looks like we're much smarter than you, Buffalo Bill.

  • HozeKing

    Oh, and if you weren't so fat and flabby Lena, I wouldn't be so offended. However, your attitude isn't attractive either

    • glisanst

      “Oh, and if you weren't so fat and flabby Lena, I wouldn't be so offended”

      So nudity is fine as long as the woman is physically attractive to your standards? Thanks for completely revealing your true colors.

      • HozeKing

        Shocker! As a man I'm not attracted to fat, flabby, ugly chicks. Blame nature.

  • nycnycnyc

    It is hard to believe that the writer of this article is as dense as he sounds, but it appears to be so.
    She naked on the show because she is depicting real life. That's one reason “Girls” is so refreshing. Another reason is Lena Dunham's unique and fearless voice.

    • glisanst

      You can't reason with them. I've tried.

  • mandawg

    I'm glad Tim didn't back down, and he wasn't sexist or stupid or thoughtless. The woman is naked for no damn reason. Listen/read other interviews she's done. She has a weird nudity fetish (she wants to see a film where David Strathairn and Rooney Mara have sex. WTF???). But they're wrong about Louis CK. I'd RATHER see him naked than Dunham. I'd rather see my grandmother naked. I wonder what Judd, the defender of woman, thinks about Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, who also implied that Lena should try doing something without getting naked for a change. Are they sexist, too?

  • josh

    pretty reasonable question, especially when they claim there was a reasonable answer. why respond with the insults. apatow and company got carried away…it happens, but this isn't even close.

    as someone on another site said, it would've been totally cool if you had the presence of mind to say, “no, no…I'd totally do you.” but that would've been attacked as stalkerish, so it's a no win situation.

  • Snow

    “Interpretation is the revenge of the intellect upon art. Even more. It is the revenge of the intellect upon the world. To interpret is to impoverish, to deplete the world in order to set up a shadow world of “meanings.” Susan Sontag

  • Linnsey

    You seem to think the female form only serves one purpose – to titillate you. Sometimes women are just naked, and there's no you involved. Get over it.

    • MjrMissConduct

      Well, if it's on a tv show, it kind of does involve him if he's watching it.

  • Marie

    The problem with this guy's question is that he presupposes that nudity is inherently sexual. Doesn't matter if she has sex on the show, and doesn't matter who is a fan of whose. This guy was naked when he was born, and he's naked in the shower, when he dresses, when he has sex and any other time it is normal and otherwise unremarkable to be naked. Dunham seamlessly – not to mention blamelessy – advances the concept that a woman can be nude onscreen for any of these reasons, and for that matter, any reason that suits the character. There's a problem with the author's question, but really, any thinking person would fail to see “the problem”.

    • marie

      Also, if one female character gets naked on the show, it doesn't necessarily warrant the other female characters getting naked. If one female character is naked, why aren't all of the female characters naked? You assume that female nudity serves one purpose, and that the purpose is male viewership. If you've watched the show, you know that Marnie, for example, is more uncomfortable with her own nudity and sexuality than Hannah. This is suitable for the character, just as Hannah's nudity is suitable for her own character. Why would you assume that a writer writes her characters to satisfy your views, or with your misogyny in mind? I don't use the word misogyny to denote a hatred of women here – I use it, based on your reasoning, to suggest you hold female performers to a different (and thus prejudicial) standard.

  • irishbearaz

    So YOU were the asshole who asked such a sexist and patronizing question. Bet you feel real proud.

  • Robin

    Louis CK is naked on his show!!! He also has sex scenes. (OK we don't see his genitals, but we see everything else, numerous times.) This illustrates the point exactly. His middle-aged, not typically attractive MALE body is not remarkable or noteworthy — one barely recalls seeing it. But everyone freaks out when a not 100% “perfect” female body is shown on TV.

  • h

    “I don’t get the purpose of all the nudity on the show. By you particularly. I feel like I’m walking into a trap where you say no one complains about the nudity on ‘Game of Thrones,’ but I get why they’re doing it. They’re doing it to be salacious. To titillate people.”

    What I find wrong with this question is how it's asked. For someone who doesn't watch Girls this is what rubs me the wrong way: “I don't get the purpose of all the nudity on the show. BY YOU PARTICULARLY.”
    He might not have meant it the way he said it. But with the following comments about GoT using nudity to be salacious and titillate people; I would take offence. The one time I have been naked on film was for a friend's final project in college, I was covered up with special effects you couldn't see most of my body, but it was clear I was naked. Still got asked the question by another friend. “Why are you naked? I don't get it. Not that I mind it.” Simple will save you. It's the pointing, and the perhaps unintentional claim that if you are not trying to be sexy, there's no point in being naked on TV. There's no reason for nudity beyond trying to entice people.

    “And your character is often naked at random times for no reason.”
    Does no one here stand in front of a mirror at home and inspect their body? For whatever reason? No one sleep naked on their own? No one dance around naked in the bathroom before having a bath or a shower? Cry in the shower? (I trust most people don't shower with their clothes on?) And does no one know anyone that loves to take their clothes off? Maybe randomly at a party, or they're that first person to suggest skinny dipping or nudist beach on a holiday. Being naked can be freeing, Swimming naked in a river with your lover is one of the best ways to celebrate the end of summer.

    So yes showing nudity is showing life. Being nude is being honest.

    But since I haven't watched the show save for a couple of clips I should really have stopped this rant ages ago.

    I get tired of nudity too, sometimes I might pass it off as there being no reason for it. But there is always a reason. When it feels more like it's there to shock, I can understand the annoyance. If it's simply because you're not aroused by the sight of that particulars person's flesh then we have a problem. And it's you voicing your appalling opinion that who ever doesn't please you shouldn't take their kit off.

    Thank you very much, rant over

  • You are all fools for caring

    I just wonder why anyone even cares. I think the fact that anyone cares defines it as something that is less than pleasing to you, on a superficial level. Get over yourselves. It is art and if you don't ‘get it', then welcome to the rest of the population who doesn't always ‘get’ art.

  • MyName

    I think it is pretty obvious that you don't care on critical level but that it bothers you personally. Trying to spin it so it seems like you ‘just don't understand it as a critic’ makes you sound ridiculous. Just be honest about the fact that it bothers you personally. You don't find it attractive and you wonder why someone would show their unattractive parts to the world. It has been explained over and over again why Lena and Apatow have chosen to do it yet you still ‘don't understand'. Maybe you fail at English comprehension.

  • Jon Shore

    When you don't have a good answer, attack the person asking it. Judd was 100% wrong and kind of a douche in his reaction. Lena is just out of touch.

    • not a duck

      we was calling her a slut, but not because he was offended by nudity, but because he was offended by HER nudity. he wasn't asking a morality question, but jabbing at her looks. and like she said, if he wasn't into her…

      • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

        Maybe Tim didn't get it that this show is ground breaking, most programs will use nudity to titillate, express sensuality, sexuality and appeal to the audience ..Lena doesn't do any of that.

  • BC

    I don't watch the show, don't intend to..but as a woman I do not think the question was ‘sexist’ or “misogynistic” –as a movie watcher I often wonder why the nudity in many movies, and even why they add so much foul language when the movie would be just as good if not better without it.

  • Denise

    so stupid… I'm never watching the show again because of this.

  • Cat

    “Girls” has a very small audience – one of the lowest on HBO if not the lowest. The show seems to survive based on the amazing amount attention it generates. I think that helps explain the random nudity and the reaction to Tim Molloy's question. And it appears to work.

  • not a duck

    i think the problem is, the question, is just a veiled way to say she's a television slut/stripper. which i personally don't really see a problem with, until the fact comes out, its not really a moral issue for the “critic,” as it is a comparison of this woman to the more stereo-typical hard-body type. at that point, its no longer a morality question, but a subtle jab at this womans looks. which she does not deserve.

  • sus

    In their snap offense at the question, Apatow and Dunham missed an opportunity to actually shape people's views of beauty. I agree that your question wasn't offensive. In fact, when nudity is used so often, and when one character is nude more often than any other, as is true in “Girls,” it's worth asking what motivates that choice. I find Dunham's nudity often courageous – refreshing – and I am grateful that she challenges our standards of beauty….but she also often uses her body as a sight gag, and that saddens me. Showing that you don't have to look like Gisele to be beautiful is a good thing; getting an audience to laugh at your thighs is a terrible message.
    It's also ridiculous to suggest that there's nudity in “Girls” just because “people are naked sometimes.” In episode 7 of the new series, Dunham's character stays in a string bikini all day long and night – drives to town in it, eats dinner in it, all while everyone else has changed into jeans. This is not casual undress, who are we kidding? It's a pointed message.
    And when she bends over in her string bikini, we are meant to laugh. (Anyone bending over in a string bikini looks ridiculous unless they're a porn star, in which case they look…pornographic.)
    That's what I find sad.

  • Randy

    I find it hilarious that Tom thinks he asked a question. He never asked a question. He made a statement. If he would have asked the question at the top of his article his might have received an adequate answer. But instead he decided to make mumbled statement that was filled with distain for her nudity. That is why he is received the reaction he did. Next time, ask an appropriate question, you might get an appropriate response.

  • Mandy

    To be honest your question is super dumb. You're two seasons into the show and you're asking why she's naked a lot? Like if you just googled “why is Hannah always naked on Girls?” you would have found your answer…like a year ago.

  • http://www.doggienista.wordpress.com/ DaisyJoBudEarl

    “I don’t get the purpose of all the nudity on the show. … And your character is often naked at random times for no reason.” That's not a question, that's a statement. The question is, “What's behind your artistic choice of personal nudity on Girls?” Then maybe you would've gotten a decent answer instead of this ridiculous overreaction.

    • Evie Boudreaux

      I could have saved myself some time if I had read your post first. Very succinct, thoughtful, and probably correct.

    • politeness expert

      Indeed, just realized I typed the same thing but less succinctly above. And I feel weird defending Dunham since I think her work has lots of problems, but Malloy's initial statement and his defense here are both so annoyingly faux-naive, like “why get mad at li'l innocent me?”

  • politeness expert

    I wonder if what set the panelists off isn't the GoT comparison but the statement “And your character is often naked at random times for no reason.” Clearly there is a reason (even if it's a sociopolitical goal of showing “imperfect” female bodies as much as possible that doesn't have to do with the plot of the episode…which quite frankly seems to be the obvious answer). He could have just said “What's the goal of the huge amount of non-sexualized nudity in your show?” Saying “Random times for no reason” already implies a negative judgement when it seems like the reporter should have kept a neutral tone if he didn't want this reaction.

  • Lillygirl06

    Lena Dunham sure has thin skin for having so much of it. She and her equally annoying producers should not get bent out of shape when 95% of us wonder why a poorly tattooed big girl thinks it's appropriate to shed her clothes for no reason. Most celebrities in L.A. treasure their personal trainer. Lena needs to get some references. Once she drops 75-100 lbs, she can drop her clothes all she wants.

    • Cat

      I do wonder why the character sheds her clothes so often, but it's not about weight. Regardless of body type, I do not see the purpose of nude ping pong. If Lena Dunham is trying to convey something, the message is not coming through. Whatever the body type, female characters randomly taking off their clothes has always struck me as lazy storytelling.

  • John Doe

    The way you said it is basically this:

    “Obviously you're not naked on the show for sexual appeal. I mean, obviously.” Apatow puts it perfectly when he says it's offensive on the face of it. You're telling Dunham that her body isn't beautiful enough to be shown for sexual pull, so why else would she be showing it.

    Listen to her answer, “It's a realistic expression of what it's like to be alive.” This whole show has always been an incredibly honest look at the writer's being. She puts it all out there. All of it. Do you see what I'm saying?

  • Kevin Miller

    HI Everyone. coming up on 600 comments, I'm going to put a stop to all this right now!

    1) There is no narrative reason why there's nudity on GIRLS.
    2) it's a socio-political statement about body types in a pop cultural medium. it's meta.

    the truth is Tim probably agrees with that statement, but doesn't realize that asking about the narrative purpose, drawing attention to the fact that there's no narrative purpose, undercuts that statement.

    The defense of course is to point out it's not a TV Critics job to agree or disagree with a socio-political statement, but to ask questions about narrative purpose.

    In theory I agree with that defense. In practice, nudity in a pop cultural medium so rarely has much of a narrative purpose that to pick on GIRLS gives people the impression that GIRLS is being targeted unfairly.

  • twix61

    His comment ““Girls” has more nudity by its lead character than any show, well, ever.” Seriously, has he never watched Trueblood? I really don't think Lena is naked that much in Girls. I have seen Sookie naked way more times in Trueblood. Honestly I think the real reason he is asking this question he because she doesn't have the perfect model body that people get tricked into thinking that is realistic. I like the show for that reason. I would say that 60% of woman have the non perfect body that Lena has and that is what makes the show more realistic instead of showing all the beautiful people all the time. Like seriously who know that many gorgeous people in one place in real like most of these shows have. THAT is his real problem. If she was all svelte he wouldn't be uttering a word.

  • Evie Boudreaux

    Both Molloy and Appatow expressed themselves poorly. Lena Dunham isn't following the rules. This seems to confound Mr. Molloy. Mr. Appatow didn't explain clearly why he found the statement/question offensive. Mr. Molloy is saying that since the nudity is not your typical HBO nudity, why does she do it? He doesn't realize he is making a value statement on the way Ms. Dunham looks naked. She's naked in the show for many reasons, the obvious being she is making a socio-politico point as Kevin Miller point out. Also, her character likes being naked. I like being naked and walking around in my underwear. I'm typing in my underwear right now. That could be titillating or gross depending on how you feel about my body type. I think the critic, Mr. Molloy, should be asking himself if he likes the show or not. If he doesn't like it, if it baffles him, if he doesn't understand Dunham's nudity, that's valid. But don't act surprised if people are offended that it appears you are saying her nudity makes no sense as it isn't as aesthetically pleasing as the nudity on GoT.

    • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

      being naked and walking around naked is fine, if that's your thing, but when you invite guests over and you walk around naked you become bizarre and people would question your behavior. It makes no sense to make others uncomfortable for no apparent reason.

  • Lena

    You worded the question very poorly. I had to read it twice before I realized that you weren't saying that you were walking into a trap because of Dunham's nudity. And there's also the context that she's not conventionally attractive, which she's talked about before, so when you said “by you particularly” and then “walking into a trap” it comes across as you not wanting to see Dunham naked. I can imagine the question sounding much worse spoken than written.

  • Concourse D

    Tim, you asked this question in a reasonable and comprehensible way. I think they heard the question they were expecting (or fearing?) rather than the one you asked. Don't lose any more sleep over it.

  • Drew

    wait, but really. why is she always naked in the show? I don't get it either…….

    • Kevin Miller

      it's performance art, but if Lena Dunham really was following in the tradition of someone like Adrienne Kennedy, she wouldn't be on HBO.

  • delwilliams

    When people don't have a reason for doing what they do, they lash out. There is no reason for her to be naked all the time, except that it brings in male viewers. That's the real reason. Maybe when her casts stop acting like victims, they will see there was nothing wrong with the question. Maybe she took offense because she wanted to be viewed as salacious.

    • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

      I seriously don't believe Lena being naked could draw-in male viewers from a state prison.

  • mycent

    She was obviously offended by the question. The other people on the panel are her co-workers and probably her friends as well, so it's no surprise that they spoke out in her defense. Wouldn't it make sense to apologize for unintentionally offending her, explain what was meant and move on.

    I can see how the question could be offensive and I'm surprised that the writer doesn't know anyone who could explain that to him. People are discussing semantics but this a question posed during a panel discussion. Who knows how much time she pondered it. Maybe she didn't have time or the means to go over the semantics of the questions like many on this discussion board. She answered and that's it. Next.

    For what it's worth, I LOVED her answer, and as a consequence, I appreciate the question.

  • lainer51

    I don't think she should even take her clothes off in the shower…. one could be traumatized for life if they happen to look her way.

  • Hah

    “But ‘salacious’ doesn't have a positive connotation!”

    C'mon, let's get real. You know exactly what you were doing, Molloy. You continue to try to reshape the scenario as Apatow/Dunham being overly defensive about the question itself rather than admit that you asked a (what could have been legitimate) question, in a very offensive way. This is obnoxious. Do you really think that this question hasn't been asked and subsequently answered a million different times without issue? You're right – there's no way YOU could have been the problem there. Good for you – you got a little attention for your outlet and some misguided pity. And good for Apatow/Dunham for calling you out.

    • Lillygirl06

      He was not the problem. The problem is Dunham and the producers’ inflated sense of self worth. Being fat is not artistic, noble, or, admirable. It is unhealthy, unsightly, and shameful. Nobody has to be fat. A low calorie diet and daily exercise will cure it. It is not some to be glorified or used as a plot device.

      • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

        Fat, I don't know?

        Sloppy, over-weight, unsightly, unappealing …yes definitely.

        “inflated sense of self worth” .. bingo!

    • something287

      How the hell was that offensive? They got defensive and started asking him personal questions about his girlfriend expecting to turn the tables, but his girlfriend expresses the same sentiment, so is she offensive and misogynistic? Just get out of here, Judd.

  • Noiresque

    I have zero problem with how you asked your question. When her nudity is publicised as a banner of personal body positive revolution and presented weirdly in the actual show (bra-less ping-pong? really? Cause that bouncing hurts.) As much as I love Freaks and Geeks and Undeclared, Apatow is a massive hypocrite when it comes to presentation of women in his films. And Lena Dunham suggesting that the reason her nudity would be questioned is because someone isn't into her is dim.

  • Irene Wei Lo

    sure, the question “i don't get the point of nudity in girls but i get it in games of thrones” does not explicitly translate to “why is dunham naked all the time when her body does not make me hard?” but it, to all intents and purposes, basically does.

    the question completely misses the mark first by comparing Girls to Games of Thrones – one show is groundbreaking/millennial/hipster etc. Game of Thrones is pure escapism – a fantasy jerk-off. its use of nudity is not being explored. when you compare girls to thrones, you ARE implying nudity can only be used on television in the way thrones uses it – to get a rise out of the viewer, because of course nudity can't be a natural state of existence but a sexual one. and when you imply this, this, given the context of all things news-related to girls, pretty much puts you in the sexist flack camp of people who have strong and negative opinions about naked dunham.

    the question might not have been trying to insinuate anything negative, it sounds as if it's coming from a true ignorance on the idea and concept of nudity, which – fair enough but what's also fair is that you don't get a pass for asking a dumb, cringe-worthy question that you deserved to get called out for.

    your question reveals absolute obliviousness to the conversation Girls contributes to tv so do some reading up on gender and women studies because your questions make people want to punch you in the face

    • Jelperman

      So now you can read minds?

      • Irene Wei Lo

        i'm a regular sookie stackhouse

  • R F

    I can understand why Ms. Dunham would be offended by that question. Your wording and comparison with “titillating” GoT nudity pretty obviously made a statement that her nudity is more unappealing, further making it seem like that form of ‘unsexy’ female nudity is thus unnecessary or unworthy to put on the screen. Pretending that this question would be asked as often in the case of a male or a more conventionally attractive female is just dishonest.

    • Lillygirl06

      Lena's nudity is not sexy and is completely unnecessary. Thin people with good muscle tone are pleasant to look at. Lena, on the other hand, is a complete dumpster fire. There is no justifiable reason for her to be naked on screen. Of course, if she dropped about fifty pounds and toned up, she might be able to pull it off, assuming she didn't have stretch marks.

      • R F

        You seem delightful and mature.

  • WarOnMugs

    Seems to me the whole thing started off badly with the “I don't get it.” That sets up an opposition between you and the panel. By “not getting” something, as a critic, you are implying (if not directly saying) that you don't like it; that it doesn't make the grade in your critic's mind. I really don't see the sexism or misogyny that Apatow and others heard, but I can totally see why they felt the need to circle the wagons, protect their star/creator and shout down the reporter.

  • Paaven

    There's definitely a subtext of “you're not hot enough to be naked.” I assume she just likes making people uncomfortable

    • http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9D0CEED81431F935A35750C0A9619C8B63 ɹǝzıuɐƃɹo ʎʇıunɯɯoɔ

      …or even worse, Lena may actually believe she's hot and that people want to see her naked, now ‘that’ is uncomfortable.

  • something287

    Pretty sure he was asking, as a writer, where the idea to be naked more than any other show ever comes from. It's a simple question of what inspires a writer to see if there is any more to it than “people are naked sometimes”. There is nothing misogynistic or sexist here and they are totally out of their minds if that's how they view a simple question like that.

  • http://www.facebook.com/alex.anifantis Alex Sam Anif

    This show is simply a fail. I used to watch “Sex and the City”, simply because it described a female POV on life and that's a good thing to have an insight on if you're a man. But what “Girls” (and specifically Lena Dunham) is doing is pathetic in my opinion. I have female friends, and I do not recall them ever sitting in a bathtub, eating ice-cream. This show is vulgar and disgusting and should not be considered “art”. Dunham's problems with her own personal image showed as soon as she said “if you're not into me, that's your problem”. Nobody said that to her, yet she totally saw it coming. It is one thing to be “ok with oneself” and another to promote a bad figure and an unhealthy lifestyle. Yes, girls are having problems with their lives in the big cities, but instead of promoting and ridiculing them, we should be trying to find healthy solutions. What Dunham and her collaborators are doing (getting rich through the struggles of everyday women) is detestable and this show is an abomination. I don't think this is the reason women fought for their equal rights.

    • Craig Tollting

      Fortunately, nobody cares what you think. They're busy writing season 4. Some “fail”, indeed.

  • Kiumars Rahmani-Fard

    I watched only 3 episodes of Girls. I found it so disgusting and offensive I decided never to watch it again. It wasn't even funny.

  • Bob Wheeler

    Though it is true that nudity has become nearly ubiquitous in broadcast media, and that human beings are wonderously formed in varied shapes and sizes, when stretching the bounds of decorum for artistic sake it is always wise to remember the elegant phrasing and simple gripping truth so eloquently stated by American poet, bard, and social commentator D.L. Roth, who opined, “no fat chicks”.

  • Hugh Goggins

    Oh boo boo. Everyone is being so mean to you. :'(

    Maybe if you read some of the nasty comments on here from your troglodyte readership and thought seriously about the context of your rambling demands for titillation, you wouldn't feel the need to get so defensive or claim the support of your fake Canadian girlfriend.

    • Wombatika

      same could be said for Apatow and Dunham, couldn't it?

  • ladyjez

    i don't think your questioning was out of line at all. i was having a discussion with my aunt about this show and topic just the other day. i gave the show a try after all of the awards it won, and after season 1, threw in the towel for this very reason. i don't have a problem with nudity, but i certainly don't think so much nudity is required to tell a story. or sex for that matter. i find the story done more creatively when alternative ways to imply sex and nudity are incorporated rather than constant all out nude shots. she is 27, her response does tell a lot. if i wanted to see her naked so much, i'd date her. your questions and points were valid, not sexist and misogynistic. i thought women were fighting against women being nude all the time in various media outlets because it is exploitation and men aren't nude all the time?

  • Wombatika

    Muriel's Wedding Vs “Girls” – Opinions?

    Personally, I think “Girls” would have made it more as a sitcom style comedy than the mess it currently is. And actually I think she could be naked even more… but instead of a plot device, the nudity is just an abstract punchline.

    A character quirk that comes off a bit more disturbed than natural — natural as in being either comfortable with her body or as self conscious as most of us (blokes included) would be. It's made a focus than just being naked because you're too lazy to do the laundry, you don't want to ask the question of how/why your underwear is on the ceiling fan, you've got a nosy neighbor and you're giving them a show, you don't want to think about how your friends can eat at an all you can eat buffet but you have a sunflower seed and need crisco just to slide into your jeans — or because you've joined a gym and started losing all this weight except now you've got muscly thighs that require a bigger waist size than your actual waist so now you've got perpetual plumber's crack but can't find any bloody jeans to fit and it's easier to just go naked than find a tailor or the problems of other casual pants that look like you're always pitching a tent everytime you sit down… so naked, going naked, sitting here naked, typing naked and making you all feel gross.

    She's touted as “brave” for it but it's lacking, it's gimmicky and there isn't much point to it. There's little in regards to self awareness and the nudity has become a punchline without a laugh track.

    we could toss in Fried Green Tomatoes — the hand mirror and the girdle for more female empowerment than this.

    So what are they really selling here?

    And that's another issue here, Saint Dunham has been packaged and sold as some kind of neo-feminist icon while hiding out from issues like ethnicity and the need to present this in a major city when perhaps all of it would have been more empowering for all the writers that end up in the middle of nowhere before catching a ride to the big city — and we'd probably give her a break for living a racial/ethnic/cultural salad bowl than an urban melting pot.

    The empowerment issue is a bit flawed here ‘cuz it's being sold in a “Muriel's Wedding” sort of fashion – although they share quite a few similarities, we don't see the same kind of growth, personal reflection, redemption from Hannah.

    The promise of the next episode, next season, just hasn't panned out so far…

    the only selling point is fishing for people to hate it to rile up the groups looking for diversity — at least diversity in body types and not much else, but the show really isn't offering diversity in a realistic fashion to what many women representative of those types feel — it discounts their experiences as unimportant and defeats the martyrdom protest here.

    what other aspects are reflective of real life here?

    Honestly it's the more annoying bit of the show… there's so many little odds and ends I would have liked to seen explored — liberal about the nudity but remaining conservative about everything else?

    this show doesn't feel as if it knows what it wants to be or even what it is.

    Other than a cash cow embracing feminism like a weapon against the critics but turning around to sell it and the audience out with every new episode.

    What's the point? It mind as well be a sketch show… a cartoon or a sitcom

  • Kevin Miller

    one other thing, Mr Molloy. asking why there's so much nudity on GIRLS is like asking why they kill so many zombies on THE WALKING DEAD, ok!!!!!!

    it's OFFENSIVE and only illustrates that, after three years, you still DO NOT understand this show!!!

  • Darth Rant

    All I read was a self-important panel take a knee-jerk defensive stance on a perfectly legitimate question; makes them all look really stupid. I've never seen the show – never will – but it sounds like the writers just “create” random scenarios to show this woman off naked for no reason, other than her own ego; she comes off kind of pathetic, just wanting to “get it out there” to get people to talk, and bask in the spotlight. She really needs to get over herself.

  • Darth Rant

    I also find it interesting rather than actually address the question, all of them – Apatow, particularly – turned it around to focus on the question itself, and how it was asked. Pathetic.

  • Gavin

    The problem, as mentioned below, is you've contextualized her nudity by stating the use of it in Game of Thrones serves the purpose of being “titillating”. By virtue of this framework, you're then inadvertently implying that Lena Dunham's use of nudity is unattractive – which is pretty offensive even if unintended. If you can't understand that, then your level of insight as a critic, in this day and age, is reasonably poor. The level of nudity portrayed by the character isn't necessarily unrealistic. People are obviously quite liberated in their own homes and further, the character is obviously quite eccentric and free in her own way. I'm not sure this in itself requires further analysis. Perhaps if you'd framed the question differently this wouldn't have created the ripples around cyberspace and popular media that it did.

  • MissJillTracey

    I don't understand what Lena being naked has to do with a critical analysis of the show? Why did you ask is the better question.

  • kymber23

    Love that he asked this question that everyone wants to know but interesting how they all took the defensive stance and never gave a reason. Dunham does this because she (and her based on real life character) is self absorbed and she knows this will get people like us talking. She's gross!

  • comfortablynude

    I've been catching up on Girls to see what all the fuss is about, really hoping I would like it half as much as the industry people do. Seriously? I ask myself the same thing. uh, why Lena? I agree with you and defend your question, especially the way you ask it. Maybe the most answer is that by blatantly and unexpectedly shoving her nudity in your face you won't miss the lack of talent, substance or purpose. I find the show stupidly self absorbed and depressing for no reason. Get a real life Girls, or at least start entertaining.

  • Mark Myers

    Tim, I don't know you and have never read any of your other work, I don't mind the nudity in Girls, but I think your question was entirely appropriate to ask and there was nothing wrong with the wording. Furthermore, I think Appatow's and Dunham's attempt to shame you was classless, and their justification for the nudity was pretentiousness covering a lot of bs. Yeah, people are naked for a certain part of their daily lives. People also spend a certain amount of their daily lives taking a crap or a piss. Women spend a certain part of their daily lives for a few days every month changing out tampons, but Girls doesn't show all that in every episode, and when they do show it, rather than showing actual poop and pee and bloody tampons coming out of people's bodies, they coyly show someone sitting on a toilet, just as TV shows for ages have been able to coyly convey a character is naked without showing them from every angle the way Girls does on a weekly basis. Obviously Girls shows everything because they are trying to be “edgy” and create a stir for ratings. It's a gimmick they are going for – show a slightly zaftig main character completely naked all the time and then congratulate themselves on how “daring” they are. In their own way, their nudity is as exploitative as Game of Thrones', which is fine, they should just be honest with themselves instead of lashing out at you instead of talking about the elephant in the room.

  • Martine Olivier

    I could care less about whether she ever gets naked again or not. I think she just has some sort of tic about taking her clothes off in public/on film. I think whatever the point may have originally been, however important to her it was, has been totally watered down by her gratuitous use of it now. It's predictable. I think that may be what the question was really asking …'why are you STILL getting naked for no reason?’

  • Jon

    I have a 25 year old niece who loves this show so I've tried watching it a few times. Ugh! Could Judd Apatow have found a more crude, talentless, self-absorbed blob if he tried? Cannot see the appeal of the show, Lena Dunham or any of it and I would have asked the same question as Tim if I was at that panel.

  • Gagge

    Lena Dunham is decidedly unattractive. Your question is on the lips of anyone who has ever been subjected to her sorry nakedness.

  • Paloma

    I've wondered the same thing since I started watching girls. I get that for her it's to be edgy and real because her body is not perfect and the show is raw. But I also wonder why no one else is as naked as her. She's the writer and I can't help but feel like she's writing herself to be nude in scenes all too often. They took the question offensively because they assumed the critic was being rude without giving the question a chance. They hear all the time that her body is not skinny and people do not find her attractive so they just assume because he wants to know “why” she's naked that he must not find her attractive. I wonder what kind of answer the question would have gotten if he were a woman with Lena's body type. I'm glad he asked that's his job

    • zazzers

      I don't think this is fair- she's the main character and she's nude the most. That's OK. It's the way she writes it. The show is largely about sex, and it appears on HBO where I see a lot of nudity. I wouldn't ask why there's so much nudity on Trublood. Would you?

  • zazzers

    It would be really weird for an HBO show to explore sexual topics without having a main character that we often see nude.

  • bob

    What a pretentious load of crap. Stop making it more important than it really is.

  • Wojo

    How's the saying go?

    People say unfortunate things sometimes, others blow this things out of proportion.

  • Mary

    Reading this article is like listening to someone justify why they were rude to their waitress for no particular reason. It's always fun to read published works that boil down to “well, it's not MY fault that everyone took it the wrong way”.

  • kg

    I like the way you've handled this. I think the question is valid. She's naked a lot more than most characters on tv.. And interestingly, after watching the first two episodes of the new season, I fond myself wondering exactly the same thing. its a shame she didn't answer it head on.

  • jet199

    The argument seems to be about the tone the question was asked in rather than the question. I think it is a bit off to try to get readers on side with a long rant about how misunderstood you were but you don't provide the audio which would actually prove your point.
    I had a similar situation with my sister once where she was upset that people at work had responded badly to some oh so reasonable statements she had made. I couldn't work out why they had acted the way they had when she described it all to me in a calm manner. Of course it turned out she had screamed her “reasonable statements” across the whole office.
    The writer seems to be trying to pull my sister's trick of playing the sweet innocent not just with us readers but with his girlfriend as well. Note that she says his question was ok but the tone was never discussed with her.
    Outside of the internet tone is everything.

  • Kisses4Katie

    Sorry, I had to look you up just because I was outraged by what they had to say to you. Seriously? They couldn't take your question at face value about what the artistic intent was to include seemingly random nudity? If there is a reason, just say it, but the fact that they attacked you PERSONALLY really disgusts me, and I don't think I'll watch another Apatow movie, especially thanks to his response. They are stupidly overrated in my opinion and just not that funny. I'm sorry, but the personal attack was so uncalled for in this situation, and I felt sick to my stomach knowing that they are on stage to take questions, and they blew off a legitimate one, and continued to attack and heckle you. Oooh…. JERKS. Oh I wish I could go off to their faces right now. She wants to act feminist, but her nudity serves NO PURPOSE and she basically uses it as a way to attract viewers…. so in that respect she is against what feminism stands for. Disgusting wooden actor.

  • MJ

    The fact that people still don’t know why what Tim Molloy said was totally sexist and utterly ridiculous just shows what a messed up sexist, media reality we live in, and how low we’ve sunk with the state of women’s liberation. He basically found it hard to understand why anyone would show any realistic female nudity in a film, because women are just supposed to be objectified by men so why would you have any other kind of nudity, duh? Forget what your personal opinion of Lena Dunham is, it’s irrelevant to the core issue we are talking about here, and the fact that Tim can’t see the problem with what he said speaks more to his intellectual capacity than anything else. By the way – checking to see if your girlfriend is ok with your sexist perspective on the world as proof you’re ok is like saying you have black friends who don’t mind your racists jokes. Also, I see Tim's really inspired a lot of seasoned misogynists to come out and comment on this post, rallying behind him. He may want to reflect on the kind of people he is inspiring and ask himself why these kind of people are identifying with him.

  • rcdcr

    So.

    Because Lena Dunham does't give Tim Molloy a boner, her nudity is without reason?

    Sometimes people DO get out of bed naked to go to the bathroom, Tim. Or walked naked to the kitchen for a bottle of water. Surely a stud like you knows this, no? And sometimes they don't look like the ladies we might find in your browser history.

    AND THAT'S KIND OF THE POINT.

    You come off like a kid who watched too much internet porn while his parents were at work and grew up thinking he was someone special and that women are here to ‘titillate’ you. Like it's their job, or something.

    After reading this, I can only wonder does there exist anything under the sun more fragile and delicate than a heterosexual male's ego???

    You're ALL ego, dude.

    Ask your girl about your ego. She'll confirm this. If she doesn't, well, you've met your perfect match and should marry her on the spot.

    Time to grow up and be a man, little boy.

  • JUST SAYING…

    I don't really watch Girls, I don't find it interesting… But every time that it happens to come on, I see Lena naked. She makes herself naked all of the time but none of the other characters. She's focusing on herself and doesn't want to own up to it. If he had said this and all of the characters were naked, maybe I could see where she's offended. But even still not then because she is naked with no purpose. And honestly, she really doesn't need to be…

  • LC3203

    So, because I wouldn't just be naked for no real reason, I'm not “as brave” as other people? Judd Apatow, I love your work, but you should read what you said there. Just read it. You'll see. And then ask your wife how she feels about that statement.

  • Bronwen

    I think it might have to do with the beginning of your question. “I don't get it… what's the purpose…I feel like I'm walking into a trap…” I can't speak to their reaction, but I think the point is, the purpose is that people are naked sometimes. As a culture, we see nudity as something to be used to shock, and it keeps us narrow. We think nudity should be attractive, not normal. And sometimes, we shouldn't have to “make a point” to make a point.

  • Pamela

    As I read this article, I am topless. Just in my home, not wearing a shirt. If you don't hang out naked, I am sorry for you. I think THAT is why she is naked all the time: because, at least for some of us, it's real.

  • anon

    Tim- The reason why your question was received the way it way, is that you basically said you only understand the use of (female) nudity to be titillating or salacious. With that in mind, you basically said the nudity in her show is neither.

    How can a critic only see a reason for nudity as a means to titillate it viewers. Sounds like someone is watching a little too much Californication.

  • @lenadurhammustremainclothed

    Lena Dunham should never EVER..EVEREVEREVER…
    EVEREVER…EVEREVEREVER…FORTHELOVEOFGOD
    EVER!…Take her clothes off where another person can see her…
    I propose that LEGISLATION BE PASSED preventing this…
    no MAMMAL with the gift of sight should be subjected to
    seeing her nude…in ANY CIRCUMSTANCE, AT ANY TIME,
    POINT IN HISTORY, NOW OR EVER…

  • Lili Sosa

    Tim, how unaware are you? You just told her she's not attractive enough and shouldn't be naked because there is no reason for it! Implying you even find it uncomfortable and not aesthetically pleasant to your sensitive eyes???? You were, indeed, offensive, sexist and much more.

  • Siddhartha

    The reason your question was received so poorly by the panel is because you addressed it to a bunch of progressive navel gazers. You need to show proper deference and avoid facts or opinions which might offend their overly irritable Hollywood sensibilities. Once you know who can be ridiculed and who cannot, you will be able to live a thought-crime free existence.

  • T

    I watch the show and I think she is naked so much because she wants to showcase an average woman's body and maybe the writing isn't as good as other shows. As it was noted before, Sarah Jessica Parker was never naked on Sex and the City. In fact she even had in her contract that she couldn't be filmed without a bra after the first season.

  • Nudity is Natural

    Has Lena not explained this enough in other interviews? This interview was poor journalism, and the question contained your bias. “…Often naked at random times for no reason”, it is obvious that you don't like her nudity in this statement. Of course there's a reason! Instead of trying to understand or explore why this question was upsetting to the artist (which would have lead to the actual answer to your question, that's if you sincerely did not understand her choice), you just continued to ask the same uninventive question. How do you still have this job?

  • Confusedengineer

    I wonder if she will introduce an overweight guy…

  • Scope

    The journalist basically said that GOT nude scenes are sexy. Lena Dunham's nude scenes are not. I mean to say that to someone's face is offensive. Like, you don't get to do nude scenes, because you're not aesthetically pleasing in a sexual way. Dunham's choice is an artistic direction. It's shocking to see a closer to normal nude body. it's funny, it's sexual, it's puzzling.

  • LosPer

    I'll answer the question that Apatow and Dunham didn't answer, but instead chose to attack the writer personally. Lena is naked all the time in the series because she has a political agenda of putting her much-less-than-traditionally attractive body out there as a feminist statement. If we don't like what we see, we're invited to ask ourselves why…and to feel both embarrassed for ourselves (for preferring more attractive naked women), and metaphysically, for her. They won't be honest discussion about it, because saying they have this agenda spoils the trap. Done.

  • Hg

    It wouldn't be so bad if she wasn't so fat with mosquito bite boobs.

  • Json

    I know the real answer to the question: Lena Dunham is self conscious of her weight and looks, and wants to overcome this by a few ways; ‘confidence’ in her body, gratuitous sex scenes to prove her validation in the eyes of men, and getting naked all the time in hopes that someone would like her for it. Getting money and furthering her career also help her overcome her fatness. However, the great irony, to me at least, is that all of the things she's done is much harder than just realizing you're fat and ugly and working out and using makeup to slim down and look better. If she just lost like 30 pounds, Girls would be like sex and the city.

  • HelenWheels68

    I am an older woman (sixties) and retired writer who watches “Girls.” I found Molloy's question (and his observation that watching the show felt like “walking into a trap”) to be relevant to the show and its characters. I'd say the thin-skinned reaction he received from the show's creative team was due to the fact, (unpleasant or otherwise depending on your perspective) that Lena Dunham doesn't represent the female body-type we're used to seeing nude, on-screen, i.e., the one as close to willowy perfection as possible. Apatow and company know this and, I think, go out of their way to challenge this stereotype by pushing an obvious agenda. We should all love ourselves and others based on the real and not the ideal. This is juxtaposed with the contradiction of the main character played by Lena Dunham. Hannah, Dunham's character, is anything but happy in her own skin no matter how insouciant she appears to be about her own nudity. That dichotomy is one of the forces that drives the show or at least brings me back each week.

    However, I found their umbrage amusing as their pique seems to mirror the “Jezebel” debacle. Jezebel sought untouched photos from Dunham's Vogue shoot because they too buy into the nude stereotype as much if not more than the industry they thought they were going to expose. In a delicious irony, the only thing exposed was Jezebel's hypocrisy.

  • Marnie

    What I think Apatow really wanted to say is… if it were someone that looked like a Victoria Secret model would you ask the same question. It is obvious no man would mind all the nudity if Lena looked like that. But that would require Apatow to admit Lena does not looke like a Victoria Secret model.