Female-centered, funny, fresh, and lovable, this comedy follows in the Orange Is the New Black mold in all the best ways. Namely, it finds a world where women, many women, are forced to coexist and thrive despite their many differences, slowly teasing out their backstories. The 1980s setting gives the whole shebang a shot of vintage fun, too -- GLOW sets the period tone with neon opening credits scored to the apropos 1984 hit "The Warrior." Viewers who did time in the 1980s will enjoy glimpses of high-cut leotards, giant TV sets, and Swatches, possibly as much as they enjoy sequences such as the pilot's cattle call for wrestlers, the first time the show's big cast is brought together. When a cranky Maron asks each to step forward and hand over a photo, Ruth has a professional headshot, Carmen has a snapshot of herself blowing out birthday candles, and one gothy gal (Gayle Rankin) hands over a picture of a wolf.
Despite the outsize theatrics pro wrestling demands, the interactions between characters ring true. You get the feeling that these are real women in an outrageous situation that wouldn't be believable without historical precedent (the GLOW league did air a TV series from 1986 to 1990), real characters with entire awkward, funny, beautiful lives outside the ring. And with creatives like Kohan, Liz Flahive (Homeland, Nurse Jackie), and Carly Mensch (Nurse Jackie, Orange Is the New Black), pros who have already proved their adeptness in spinning tales about complex and strong women, we couldn't be more excited to get to know the women of GLOW.