Freeform’s “The Bold Type” should be the only show you binge before the fall semester starts. It’s basically the three musketeers, only instead of swords they have a feminist agenda and it’s actually worth watching.
“The Bold Type” follows Jane Sloan, Kat Edison and Sutton Brady: three best friends who work at ‘Scarlet,’ a feminist magazine modeled after ‘Cosmopolitan.’ Throughout the 10 episode second season which wrapped up on Tuesday night, the three leading women navigate their friendships, relationships and careers.
Warning: Spoilers ahead.
The season two finale of “The Bold Type” left viewers with not one, but three cliffhangers: Will Jacqueline still be at Scarlet at the start of the next season, will Jane choose Ben or Pinstripe and will Kat and Adena be able to work things out?
Jacqueline, the editor-in-chief of Scarlet Magazine, is one of the most refreshing characters “The Bold Type” has to offer and seeing her go would not only take away the main trio’s mama bear, but it would certainly hurt the show.
Jacqueline takes the dragon-lady stereotype perpetuated by characters like Meryl Streep’s Miranda Priestly in “The Devil Wears Prada” and tosses it out on the curb alongside everything else deemed out of vogue. She is as unapologetically in-charge as Priestly without sacrificing the character’s humanity. When Jane, Kat or Sutton are struggling she doesn’t put them down, instead she gives them the emotional support they need to do their best work. Jacqueline’s character proves that women in positions of power don’t have to act like men to be good at their jobs, but rather, it’s when they choose to exist somewhere in the middle that they thrive.
One rom-com trope that even “The Bold Type” couldn’t stay away from was the love-triangle. At the end of season two Jane has to choose between the two men in her life: Ryan the rebellious writer and Ben the doctor with a heart of gold. While I am not a fan of love-triangles (particularly the scoundrel vs. the gentleman variety), Jane’s dilemma offers a change of pace from all of last season and the beginning of this season. Jane was focused almost entirely on developing her career as a writer and on finding her voice so I’m interested to see how her wants and needs in a relationship have changed too.
Where Jane must figure out whether or not to start a new relationship, Kat must decide if hers is worth fighting for. Throughout the season, Kat and Adena went from being the closest they’ve ever been after going abroad together, to growing more and more distant as Kat explores her bisexuality and as Adena struggles to find the time and space to make her art in America. Because they need different things, I’d bet that they’ll break up at the beginning of next season as they figure everything out.
However, I stuck with the “The Bold Type” not for the cliffhangers or tumultuous relationships, but for the things the creators consistently bring to the table.
“The Bold Type” succeeds where most shows don’t even try. They depict female friendships without making them into competitions to be the most beautiful, or successful or both. Instead they created these three amazing, compassionate and driven women who constantly support one another. They’re just women supporting women and it’s fantastic.
“The Bold Type” also covers relevant topics like Me Too, the BRCA1 gene, sexism in healthcare, LGBT relationships, race and gun violence. Most importantly, they talk about these issues without gratuitous violence that only serves to sensationalize the conversation. They don’t need to show someone being raped (I’m looking at you, “13 Reasons Why”).
A love letter to friendship and the middle finger to the patriarchy, “The Bold Type” accomplishes so much without sacrificing optimism for relevance. No, “The Bold Type” doesn’t have the realism of a documentary, but the naivety is maybe a way of urging creators to make media that inspires people to be better. In a time where it’s so easy to be cynical, “The Bold Type” gives viewers a reason not to be.
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Alexis Taylor is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.