Maggie Is Younger's Unsung Hero

Photo: Courtesy of TV Land.
We've said it before, and we'll say it again: The heart of Younger is its female friendships. And while Liza's (Sutton Foster) relationship with Kelsey (Hilary Duff) takes center stage, they each have BFFs who predate their work wives. Kelsey has Lauren (Molly Bernard), and Liza has Maggie (Debi Mazar).
In terms of best friends in TV shows and movies, it's easy for characters to fall into one-dimensional traps. Too often, they only discuss the lead's personal lives and problems, and we don't get to know much about who they are on their own. But Maggie never falls into this trap. Her character is incredibly dimensional, and we learn new nuggets about her in each episode. She's also never stereotyped as an LGBT character — and her storylines aren't only about her relationships, either.
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Even though Liza is the one leading a double life, in many ways, Maggie's life is far more interesting. In season 2, Maggie hosts a sex party in her apartment, unbeknownst to Liza. Her art attracts the eyes of legitimate collectors. And I'll maintain that season 1's "Girl Code," when Lauren and Kelsey help Maggie after learning her former gallery has dropped her, is still one of the show's best episodes.
Plus, when Maggie's in relationships with other women, they're not just an afterthought to the episodes' A plots. We actually see the real struggles and emotions that dating entails, as in her relationship with Malkie (Sally Pressman). And when Maggie and Lauren were together, it was almost a meta commentary on the best friend trope: They didn't need their leading counterparts at all.
Aside from not being a sidekick, Maggie's also a breath of fresh air because of how comfortable she is with herself. While Liza attempts to reinvent herself and her age, Maggie's never had an identity crisis. She's fine with getting older, as is Diana (Miriam Shor), Younger's other underrated star. Maggie is almost twice Lauren and Kelsey's age, but she's having the time of her life, with no intentions of slowing down.
Maggie isn't relegated to the sidelines; she's often the best part of Younger. Other shows could stand to learn from TV Land's example — best friends can be way more than sidekicks.
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