<em>Girls</em> Talk

You go, Girls. Having survived all the hype and finger-wagging, the HBO ensemble comedy is back for a second season. The four young women who make up the primary cast are, too, and the photographers at the show’s busy premiere last night were noticeably more eager to shoot them this time around. Zac Posen, stuck in the bottleneck, decided to skip the red carpet altogether. “I mean, we’re all wearing black,” observed Jemima Kirke. “I think we’re all really taking ourselves very seriously now.”

Jokes aside, Girls has become a bona fide cultural phenomenon: It’s a conversation starter like nothing else on TV, and creator and star Lena Dunham is up for two Golden Globes on Sunday. There’s even a Girls nail polish.

Meanwhile, the hapless postgrads the show depicts haven’t exactly reached their full potential. “Single, unemployed, homeless,” is how one actress (we won’t spoil it by saying which) sums up her character’s situation in season two, and all four continue to find the road to adulthood anything but smooth. “It’s, like, stops and starts, and off on a weird detour somewhere, and then full steam ahead. It’s sort of all over,” offered Zosia Mamet. “But I think that’s what your twenties are.”

Against all odds, a show whose main character eats Cool Whip out of the container seems to have found some common ground with the fashion community. The crowd at the Cinema Society premiere, and supersized after-party at Capitale, included Cynthia Rowley, who gets a shout-out in the season opener, and Joseph Altuzarra, who dressed Allison Williams for the evening.

Still, Dunham admitted, that world remains at a comic distance. “I had some professional assistance, recommending I do an over-the-shoulder shot,” she said of her red-carpet moment. “That is not in my personal arsenal, but I tried to do it the best I could.”

—Darrell Hartman