Based on the comic book series of the same name by Brian K. Vaughan, Paper Girls is a sci-fi drama created by Stephany Folsom for Amazon Studios.
What Is Paper Girls About?
On November 1, 1988, four young girls, Erin, Tiff, Mac, and KJ, begin their early morning run of delivering The Cleveland Preserver in their neighbourhood.
The four girls don't know each other very well but decide to stick together.
After Erin is mugged by a group of bullies, they follow the thieves into an abandoned house to recover one of Tiff's walkie-talkies, but they encounter two hooded men.
Running for their lives, they head back to Mac's home for safety, but everything goes a little crazy when the sky turns pink, and lights start flashing outside the windows.
In full panic mode, Mac accidentally shoots Erin with a pistol, and as they rush her to the hospital, they are captured by the hooded men and brought to the forest.
Attackers known as the “Old Watch” kill the hooded men but before they die, one of them gives Tiff a device and Erin is miraculously healed. KJ accidentally kills a member of the Old Watch with her hockey stick, and the girls flee.
They rush back to Erin's house, only to discover that it is no longer 1988. It is in fact, 2019, and that's when they come face-to-face with Erin's older self (Ali Wong).
So now the four girls must figure out what is going on and how they get back to 1988. That is, of course, if they all actually want to go back.
The problem is that with two time jumping factions and with the evil Old Watch soldiers out for revenge, the girls find that things are not going to be easy for any of them.
Paper Girls Official Trailer
Is Paper Girls Worth Watching?
Being totally honest, I wouldn't normally gravitate towards teen time-travel sci-fi shows. However, I was pleasantly surprised as Paper Girls is really well made, with four stellar young actors in the leading roles.
The story is quite complicated, and you do have to follow closely as the decisions the girls make have far-reaching consequences. So the choices they make when they fast forward in time have repercussions for when they jump backwards in time. If that makes any sense??
Ultimately the story pans out in quite unexpected ways but with an overriding sense that everything that happens is by design, creating a time loop of sorts.
It's clever and engaging but it's not perfect. First off, these girls are supposed to be 12-years-old. The problem is that they are far too mature in the show to be that young.
Even if you buy into their maturity level, it leads us to the second problem. Paper Girls a great sci-fi mystery with four young female leads, which is a rarity in itself. But the bad language used is pretty hefty and frequent so the show has a 16+ rating.
Shame, because it would have been great for young girls to actually see themselves represented in such a cool show. As it stands, it's just not age-appropriate.
Otherwise, if you are an adult, Paper Girls ticks a lot of boxes and is well worth watching if you like time-travel, sci-fi drama.
Paper Girls Season 2
Despite being a clever show that was a fresh addition to the Amazon Prime line-up, the studio cancelled Paper Girls after just one season.
The main reason appears to be a lack of viewership but then again Amazon did absolutely nothing to promote it. I guess that's what happens when you put all of your marketing budget into the Lord of the Rings basket!
There is a chink of light at the end of the tunnel though. Legendary Television, who made the show, is shopping it around to see if it can get picked up somewhere else.
For now though, sadly there will not be a Paper Girls Season 2.
Paper Girls Cast
Camryn Jones as Tiff Quilkin, an very, very smart girl with a high intellect
Riley Lai Nelet as Erin Tieng, a girl on her first day delivering newspapers
Sofia Rosinsky as Mac Coyle, a tomboy who lives on the outskirts of Stony Stream
Fina Strazza as KJ Brandman, a girl whose family owns several businesses in Stony Stream
Adina Porter as Prioress, a high-ranking officer of the Old Watch
Ali Wong (Always Be My Maybe) as adult Erin Tieng, a struggling paralegal in 2019
Nate Corddry as Larry, a farmer and member of the STF Underground
Sekai Abenì as grown up version Tiffany Quilkin, a lighting designer in 1999