PEN15: Season 1 Reviews

July 22, 2019
Rarely has the maddening insecurities of being a teenager been so ably mocked but utterly understood with sympathy.
March 6, 2019
The creators' commitment to their bit pays off, not merely with Y2K-era realism but emotionally, giving every humiliating moment a double edge.
March 5, 2019
It sounds gimmicky, but it works.
March 1, 2019
"Posh" gives teenagers-and former teenagers-a road map for a beautiful kind of reconciliation in the face of discrimination, and I think the world is truly better for its existence.
February 13, 2019
Erskine and Konkle slip effortlessly back into their younger skins, them and co-creator Sam Zvibleman evidently sharing very vivid emotional recall.
Top Critic
February 11, 2019
It'll sneak up on you, this gem.
February 11, 2019
PEN15 turns out to be a lot more thoughtful than it's rather embarrassing, unnecessarily juvenile title.
February 8, 2019
PEN15 loiters amid its difficult mysteries and discovers an embarrassment of riches.
February 8, 2019
Erskine and Konkle commit so fully to the premise, and contort so convincingly into their teenage selves, that the result is far more heart than schtick.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
February 8, 2019
Nothing more thoroughly conceived, delicately acted or emotionally true will be coming your way, sitcom or drama or in between.
February 8, 2019
I think it will appeal to anyone willing to revisit the hellscape of their teen years. Its comedy is more naturalistic than broad; think Welcome to the Dollhouse without the nihilistic streak.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
February 7, 2019
The show doesn't have the kind of narrative momentum that pushes you to find out what happens in the next episode.
February 7, 2019
It feels so authentic that it actually borders on suffocating at times. Luckily, it's also very funny; Erskine in particular seems destined for big things.
February 7, 2019
[It] is a cleverly envisioned and tenderly executed 10-episode dramedy about two girls in seventh grade.
February 7, 2019
It's at the halfway mark that Pen15 grows into an equally affecting and raunchy coming-of-age story.
Full Review | Original Score: B
February 7, 2019
"PEN15" often walks a line between sweet and crude, between memoir and sketch comedy, and sometimes it falls smack off it.
February 7, 2019
The more physically convincing they become, the more emotionally rich and fascinating Pen15 turns out to be. It's primarily a balls-out, Broad City-ish comedy throughout, but it also evolves to become keenly observant, wise and empathetic.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
February 6, 2019
The show is so relatable and well-written that even if you're too old or too young to have hit puberty around the time of Y2K, you're still likely to be charmed by it.
February 5, 2019
In its best moments, PEN15 is like a juvenile version of Broad City... But the downside is the repetitive sketch feel of the whole thing, which can wear thin over 30 minutes.
January 31, 2019
"PEN15" is incredibly smart about the way it explores the social dynamics shaping (and being shaped by) young adults - in this case, in the early 2000s.