Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
The Schmooze

On Lena Dunham’s Wacky New Yorker Video

Who better to herald the next lurching step in the death march of print media than Lena Dunham? The 25-year-old writer-slash-director-slash-star of “Girls” also wrote, directed and starred in a five-minute web video introduction to the publication’s “head-spinning” new portable portal, where a bizarro, slacks-clad version of herself named “Lanny Donhom” (?) takes to a fake talk show and uses host Jon Hamm as interlocutor to elucidate crucial questions like “what is an iPhone?”

In a clip-within-the-clip, Dunham goes “Devil Wears Prada” as a fictional New Yorker editor and berates a bewildered Alex Karpovsky on how the app will put each week’s worth of articles, reviews, and cultural goings-on at the fingertips of iPhone subscribers. (Apparently, skipping straight to the cartoons has never been easier. How handy!)

Still, the video’s Instagram-like palette and awkward semi-sexual bantering have left Internet opinion divided over whether it’s droll or deadpan to the point of rigor mortis. The New York Observer calls it “perplexing” while Complex concedes that “at least the app looks cool.”. YouTube commenters, as is their wont, were profane and blunt: “I like all of these people, but that was f—ing stupid,” said one. (By contrast, last year’s intro vid for the mag’s iPad app by Jason Schwartzman earned a “ZOMG this is so good” and “best video ever”.)

Regardless, the clip gives the savvy jane-of-all-media some strategic synergy: The inaugural, first-week-free issue of the magazine app includes an essay by Dunham about an oddball boyfriend.

Weird Or Wonderful? You Decide:

Engage

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.