The millennials are all grown up, but that doesn’t mean we should change the channel and break out of our Saturday morning cartoon habit, especially if it means being the live-action version of Ginger Foutley to this day. As Told By Ginger was personal then and it still is now, a decade after it ended. It comes across as real as it can ever be in 2018 to the point where we do have to wonder – is Ginger inspired by our own experiences, or are we inspired by her?
Representing what young girls needed way before realizing we needed it, Ginger traces a multi-faceted character that wrestles with this awkward struggle of wanting to be noticed, but hating to be looked at. She captures the slippery slope of adulthood where we’re one-part confident and two-parts insecure, and we’re rendered as a mess of confusing emotions all in one, all while going through growing up and finding our own identity. This is hands-down, one of the trickiest time of our lives, and Ginger is the kind of friend we’d all love to have on our side.
Tracing a perfect dichotomy of pre-teen past-times and millennial’s infamous quarter-life crisis, 2017 drowned us in a macabre series of romantic horrors through cartoons that deceptively paint eye-candy characters with a surprise filling of dark-flavored musings, and before we lose ourselves into the grotesque humor of everyone’s favorite uncle, Bojack Horseman, maybe we can take a step back to the heydays of Nickelodeon and take some advice from our everyday heroine, Ginger Foutley.
Everyday heroine for the everyday girl
Who’s the red-headed ladykiller who knows how to kick ass? Ginger Foutley may not know how to fire the big guns the way Black Widow does, but she knows how to fight her own battles through seasons of awkward growing-up moments – from her own self-discovery of her identity to being torn apart by the social structure of her school, she represents your everyday girl who’s just trying to survive life as we know it.
She taught us that you can rely on your Mom to have your back
Growing old is mandatory, but growing up is optional – and no matter where we are at a point in our lives, there’s always someone you can rely on to have your back. While a lot of us keep a distance from our parents and see a line between us and them, Ginger showed how sharing your vulnerability to someone from your own kin may pay off too, especially if you try and get to know them for yourself beyond the role of a parent. That, and Lois Foutley is just plain cool. “You can’t know those kinds of things, you can only trust how you feel in your heart, and take a blind leap of faith. You have to, that’s what life is all about. You know we’re not put on this earth to live perfect lives where we never get hurt and we never make mistakes. We’re put here to hurl ourselves head first into this crazy world and the bruises and scrapes you get along the way, they just mean you’re living life.”
Maintaining friendships can be complicated growing up
This show just perfectly captures growing up with, and sometimes without, your friends. In a time where cutting off people seems as easy as hitting the unfollow button, 99.9% of the time, it’s usually because people change and our schedule can no longer allow us to constantly sit with our BFF’s for lunch break. This shift in dynamics with your relationship can push you to drift apart for stupid reasons, but Ginger showed a strength in character as she taught us how it’s okay to move on, but also learn how to invest in the friendship that you built and to the people who helped you become a better person, no matter how rarely you guys get together and how different your hobbies are now. It’s always okay to have new friends, but that doesn’t mean leaving behind the rest.
Someone once told us the grass is much greener on the other side, but Ginger taught us there’s a kaleidoscopic garden blooming in our own fence.