Awkward Season 4 Review “Snow Job”


Awkward‘s fourth season has been a bit of a puzzle, promising a more grown-up Jenna with grown-up problems to go with her grown-up boyfriend and impending graduation, but the issues she has been facing have still been firmly rooted in high school drama. That’s intentional, of course, deliberately juxtaposing her old teenage life with the life that she might very soon, but it’s been a little frustrating at times.

In many ways we’ve been like Tamara, the comfort and familiarity of the friendship group stripped away right when it was most important, and that doesn’t necessarily make great, watchable television. The moments where this season decided to deal with the issue head-on, mostly through examining the dysfunction of Jenna and Matty’s relationship post-breakup, have been really great but, along with that has come previously great characters cast aside, an uncomfortable frequency of soap opera-esque storylines and a lack of purpose.

It’s a problem with the structure of Awkward‘s season structure – a worthwhile discussion given that it seems to be the way many shows are now going – as this episode was far more concerned with Eva’s cliffhanger than paying off storylines for any of our main characters. Jenna and Luke are now over, Lissa has given in to her feelings for her ‘brother’ and Jake and Tamara were granted a single scene to re-establish their friendship, but the only character besides Matty to really get a satisfying conclusion was Sadie.

Which is why Matty and Sadie are by far the best characters – when the show likes someone then it’s more than likely that the audience will too. Not only is their relationship one of the most sweetly platonic on any teen drama right now, but as characters they have been allowed to grow and change in a more or less organic way. I have a weakness for jocks and cheerleaders who become sympathetic characters, and Awkward has arguably done a better job of that than its original mission statement of focusing on high school’s losers and invisibles.

Over the course of the show, we have been posed a strange question. Is Jenna automatically a good person just because she’s one of the ignored? She’s had her troubles, and I’ve written her off on more than one occasion, whereas previously antagonistic characters have emerged as the more sensitive and caring of the bunch. It’s more credit than a 20-minute sitcom on MTV might deserve, but it’s possible that Awkward has intentionally flipped that familiar trope, and is the better for it.

But just before we leave for yet another break, it’s revealed that Eva is definitely pregnant. Where does that leave Jenna and Matty’s obviously unfinished business, and does this mean that Eva will be sticking around for longer than we thought? I can’t honestly see the show introducing a baby – though it would be extremely interesting if they did – so is this going to turn into another ‘who’s the daddy?’ mystery? If it is, then I’m 100 per cent sure it’ll be Sadie who cracks the case.

What did you think of the episode? How do you think the baby drama will resolve? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.