Culture / TV

Gobbled up ‘Conversations with Friends’? Here are 8 more TV shows with characters that live in their heads

conversations with friends TV shows

We'll be the first to admit that in the world of Sally Rooney TV adaptations (a grand total of two) Conversations with Friends is our least favourite. Is this because we're a pack of horny teenagers, quite possibly? Still, we watched it all the same, if only for the chemistry between Sasha Lane and Jemima Kirke.

To be fair, they're completely different books, let alone shows, and to compare them would do them a disservice. Although, as is the magic of Rooney, they're both united in that their characters are painfully bad communicators. Alas, aren't we all?

In all honesty, we did enjoy the show. It was simply a slow burn. Few other series have captured the layered and complicated nature of modern romance like this one. And if you find it infuriating, is that because it mirrors life and our own experiences to a tee? That, and we'll never turn down an opportunity to travel, albeit through our screens, to Dublin, Croatia and beyond. So if you're in the mood for more nuanced dynamics and characters that live in their head then we've compiled a list of 8 TV shows to watch once you're finished with Conversations with Friends.


1. Fleabag (2016)

Yes, we know, another Phoebe Waller-Bridge recommendation. Forgive us but it simply makes sense. Fleabag struggles to be understood by her family, and like Nick and Frances, has found herself in emotional hot water once or twice. Do we love it? You bet. Will it deliver on sexy scenes? If you skip to the hot priest, then yes.


2. Normal People (2020)


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I know we said we wouldn't compare the two, but if you're already in Sally Rooney's world why leave it? Normal People is the obvious next step if you want to stay tangled in a web of interpersonal drama. It resonates on your first watch and your seventh, so enjoy. P.S send our regards to Connel's chain, we miss it.


3. In My Skin (2018)

Take all the themes from Conversations with Friends then leave them to ferment. That's this BBC comedy-drama In My Skin. There's family issues, substance abuse, queerness, the UK and poor communication. Where the former show left you wanting, this will have you sobbing into your pillows like a wounded animal. Enjoy, I guess?


4. High Fidelity (2020)


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Talk about characters that live in their head! Zoë Kravitz's Rob is messy and tortured and completely relatable. Music is to her what books mean to Frances, and the two will choose them over living in the human realm every single time. Plus, you'll end up feeling sorry for everyone in Rob's orbit, just as you did for Bobbi, Melissa and Nick due to her unwillingness to sort out her stuff. Ah well, she gets there in the end.


5. Girls (2012)


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At this point it's clear that the characters in Sally Rooney's world are imperfect, selfish and to be frank, really f*cking annoying. What's also clear is that this is by design. You know what other series received this critique upon its release? Lena Dunham's Girls. Yes, we're handing you more Jemima Kirke. We'll let you two get acquainted.


6. I May Destroy You (2020)


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If we're talking relationships, consent and queerness, Michaela Coel's semi-autobiographical stands in as a solid blueprint. She delicately strings together our current conversations about these themes, while shifting the perspective from Whiteness and creating characters you feel empathetic for.


7. Sweetbitter (2018)


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Here for the love triangle then may we suggest Sweetbitter? Also based off of a book, this time by Stephanie Danler, the two seasons focus on naive Tess as she turns her attentions towards New York City and its unforgiving hospitality industry (Union Square Cafe anyone?), making her entry into adulthood truly a baptism of fire.


8. Everything I Know About Love (2022)


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Want know-it-all twenty-somethings living, for better or worse, cooped up in each other's company and going through the motions of love and loss? Here's your next feeding frenzy. Granted, we're going to have to wait a little while longer to sink our teeth into the series, but if it's anything like Dolly Alderton's memoir then the show is Conversations with Friends sans inhibitions and with a dancefloor on every corner.

There's more where that came from. Here are 18 TV shows and films to binge if you're a fool for Euphoria.

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