Portlandia’s Riot Grrrl Is A Real Riot

by | Jan 4, 2012

The second season of IFC’s Portlandia airs this Friday. The show is much anticipated in Puddletown and beyond.

Carrie Brownstein and Fred Armisen — the show’s stars — have been out “doing press” for the show. Thanks to the deeply sarcastic nature of the program and its willingness to skewer hipsters over an open fire, The New Yorker is biting. In a sweeping article by Margaret Talbot we learn about Brownstein’s childhood in the Seattle suburbs, how she rocked hard in Olympia’s riot-grrrl scene and how she eventually moved to Portland and tried her hand a day job in advertising.

Brownstein said working at Wieden + Kennedy proved alienating, because of the way “the work mimics art.” Ouch.

Another interesting reveal in The New Yorker piece is this bit on the so-not-Hollywood writer’s room:

For the second season, Bill Oakley, a former head writer for “The Simpsons” who had moved to Portland, has helped out on the show. He says, “I’ve spent a lot of time in writers’ rooms. They’re pressure cookers. In most cases, they’re heavily male. You work long hours and many of the people in them have a really negative view about themselves and life.” The “Portlandia” writers’ room, however, is collaborative and laid-back. Some meetings have been held in the loft of the director Gus Van Sant, who has become friendly with Brownstein. “Gus’s dog was wandering in and out,” Oakley says. “There was a microbrewery downstairs.”

Answer me this…where in Portland is there not a microbrewery downstairs?

[UPDATE] The dynamic duo appeared Thursday on “Fresh Air” with host Terry Gross on NPR. Listen in.