How Allison Williams Really Felt About Her Girls Character Marnie

Whenever any TV show becomes popular, there are bound to be plenty of different opinions that viewers have to share. Many of us have likely heard friends use a disclaimer similar to, "It gets better after a few episodes" when recommending a new series. For fans of the HBO series "Girls," this has probably been said more often than not.

Premiering on HBO in March 2012 (via IMDb), "Girls" drew mixed reviews from critics and audiences alike. On Rotten Tomatoes, the show boasts an 89% rating from critics, while the audience score falls lower at 75%. This doesn't necessarily come as a surprise when considering the social media conversation surrounding the show. One viewer's post on Twitter summed up the thoughts of many who watched the series finale in 2017, writing, "girls was very brave in that it was one of the first shows to explore a world where every single one of your friends is the f****** worst." Some critics shared a similar distaste for the Emmy-winning series. Mother Jones reporter Asawin Suebsaeng wrote that "Girls" is "profoundly bland as it is unstoppably irritating."

Despite its proclivity for sparking divisive conversations, there is no denying that "Girls" truly made its mark on 2010s culture. With a star-studded cast including actors Lena Dunham and Allison Williams, the HBO hit showcased distinctly memorable characters, especially Williams' Marnie. While we know how others received the show, many fans may be curious about how Allison Williams really felt about her "Girls" character, Marnie.

Allison Williams has a unique perspective on her Girls character

Although viewers understand that each actor is portraying a persona different from their own while watching a show or movie, the actors themselves have an incredibly different experience. Especially in the case of more dramatic or emotional moments for a character, an actor can really experience what their character is going through, and often relate to them on a personal level. Allison Williams has shared that sentiment in regards to her time playing Marnie.

In "Girls," Marnie's storyline saw considerable life changes, heartbreaks, and mistakes. In an interview with Buzzfeed, Williams said, "As an actor, you have to wholeheartedly be in your character's corner and I've been in her corner for four years now. In this weird schizophrenic sense, it's painful to watch someone go through such hard stuff because I feel for her." Williams' empathy for Marnie's struggles may also come from a more personal place. As she mentioned to Buzzfeed, the "Get Out" actor was matched with her own character when she took the "Which 'Girls' Character Are You?" quiz. So, it seems that she shares a special connection with Marnie, both on and off the screen.

She didn't always agree with Marnie's decisions

Allison Williams may have her own similarities to her "Girls" character, but she doesn't always condone the choices that Marnie has made. In fact, there is one particular move Marnie made that Williams really disapproved of.

Speaking to Buzzfeed, she shared that Marnie sleeping with Booth Jonathan, an artist character on whom Marnie had a massive crush, was definitely not something she was thrilled about. "I was fighting that the whole time as Allison," she said. "I did not want her to go down that road. I thought Marnie was better than that, but she wasn't, so I had to be OK with it too. I had to believe Booth was a genius when I walked out of that TV tower, whereas I, as Allison, couldn't stop thinking, 'It puts the lotion on its skin.'" 

Although she didn't approve of Marnie's choice, Williams still admits that she can understand why her character fell for someone like Booth (played by Jorma Taccone, per IMDb). Speaking to MTV, Williams explained that Booth is "just the kind of guy that you know better, for every reason, and yet you just can't avoid him. You just can't run away from him."

Allison Williams understands what fans don't like about Marnie

Despite her notable beauty and penchant for attracting countless men, Marnie is definitely as imperfect as the rest of her "Girls" counterparts — just ask Allison Williams herself. "Marnie would drive me crazy if we were friends in real life, but I have to put that in my head in order to play her," the actor told Buzzfeed. She also mentions that it was difficult for her, as an actor, to "support" many of Marnie's decisions, especially when it came to her trysts with several of the male characters in the show. As the show's fans know well, Marnie's choice to sleep with certain men on the show ended in more than quite a few hurt feelings and chaotic fallouts.

While she knew she had to stick by her character's proverbial side, Williams also understands the negative reception her character has often had. Marnie has been described by critics and the show's viewers alike as a narcissistic, unbearable young woman. Vox once called her the show's "disapproving aunt who thinks she's much more fun than she is. She does embarrassing karaoke numbers to prove her worth and speaks condescendingly to her supposed closest friends; her default expression is a derisive sneer. She has no patience for people who can't get their lives together." Although this is a largely shared sentiment, Williams' talent and dedication to her character's experience still shines through.

She supports something the show was often criticized for

Anyone who has seen a full episode of "Girls" has more than likely seen a character fully in the nude at some point. The considerable nudity has always been a major source of contention within online discussions about the show, but "Girls" creator (and the show's star) Lena Dunham has simply said, "It was a decision about who this character was, the way that I wanted the sex scenes to look and feel, [and] how we were using them in the story," per The Hollywood Reporter

Allison Williams approves of this choice and happens to be proud of the show from a holistic view. As she told Buzzfeed, "I'm incredibly proud of the show because it actually has something to say and, for good or for bad, you saw it in that moment. I would absolutely be OK with 'Girls' serving as a time capsule for this current generation. I feel contained in it and I feel my friends are contained in it; I have been out to so many dinners where there have been so many conversations that are basically transcripts of our show. It's meaningful that 'Girls' is able to be successful in that way."