Like Dunham, [Louis CK] writes, edits, directs, and stars as a character based on him. Of course, Louie is a recently divorced middle-aged comic with two kids; [Dunham's "Girls" character] Hannah is a twentysomething memoirist hooking up in Brooklyn. Yet the two share many qualities: They’re Mr. Magoos of the dating world, stumbling into mortification, then exploiting it as material. Each exposes an imperfect body for slapstick and self-assertion. These characters are sensitive solipsists, artists struggling through a period of confused limbo, prone to fits of self-pity—although the fictional personae are far less driven, hardworking, and ambitious than their creators.
Has the slacker finally gone female?
Think of popular culture's great slackers – Bill, Ted, "Dude" Lebowski, the many schlubs of Judd Apatow's movies – and you realise that what unites them is not just their use of the word "dude": it's that they are all dudes.
On screen and on page, slackerdom has forever been a curiously male preserve, as if the glorification of idleness and a cheerfully non-aspirational attitude were dependent on an extra chromosome. This might be the year that changes that. Right now, a welter of films, books and TV shows from both sides of the Atlantic is yielding a new cultural archetype: the girl slacker. The version of twentysomething womanhood being reflected back at us in 2012 isn't dressed in Louboutins, busy ball-breaking in boardrooms: she's eating cereal, in her pants, in her parents' basement.