What is Geek Girl about and why every parent of a teenager needs to watch this sweet 8-part Netflix hit (we binged it and it is joyful)

The new Netflix series teaches kids (and their parents) about navigating neurodiversity, non-acceptance and bullying

What is Geek Girl about?
(Image credit: Netflix)

Netflix's latest teen drama Geek Girl is a show that every parent of a teenager needs to watch, with the storyline educating viewers on bullying, neurodiversity, and the impact of non-acceptance.

While we often turn to TV to escape from the mundane everyday, most recently travelling back in time to delight in the bright and bold colours of Bridgerton, there are so many shows out there that brilliantly reflect real life and teach us some pretty important life lessons. 

But, from BBC Three's Such Brave Girls that shows us how the mistakes our mothers make will continue to be passed down to our daughters, to Normal People, rumours about which are circulating and promising a second season, that reminds us of our own 'first love' stories, many of these shows make for uncomfortable, and age-restricted, viewing. 

That's why, when we stumbled across Netflix's new teen series Geek Girl, we were delighted to find that not only does it tackle many issues prevalent in teen's lives, including bullying, neurodiversity, and the impact of non-acceptance, but it's also parent and teen friendly! 

What is Geek Girl about?

Netflix's new teen series Geek Girl is a feel-good story following the life of Harriet Manners, a bullied secondary school student who, by accident, becomes a supermodel. The plot follows her as she rises to stardom while still navigating her education, school bullies, teenage friendships, her first love, family relationships, and neurodiversity. 

The show's main character Harriet, as shared by the writer of the books Geek Girl is based on, has both autism and dyspraxia. The actress who plays Harriet, 21-year-old Emily Carey, has autism herself and told the BBC that she 'learned a lot' about herself and her autism by playing the character.  

"I was unmasking on set and to then portray that on camera was very new to me and difficult to navigate at times," she said candidly. "But truthfully, the character is so much more than being autistic - Harriet is so many incredible things." 

Geek Girl NEW SERIES Trailer | Netflix After School - YouTube Geek Girl NEW SERIES Trailer | Netflix After School - YouTube
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Why every parent of a teenager needs to watch Geek Girl

David Harris, the director of Mastery Services, a tuition service for neurodivergent students, believes the show is a must-watch for its great representation of neurodiversity and it's brave tackling of subjects that can teach parents to better connect with and understand their neurodivergent children. 

"Media like Geek Girl gives people the opportunity to learn and gain profound insights into the experiences of individuals with autism," he told us here at GoodTo.com. "Such representations are vital in fostering empathy and understanding. They help parents engage with their children in a more compassionate and informed way, and offer neurodiverse individuals a clearer understanding of themselves and their relationships."

He added, "By increasing the visibility of neurodiverse experiences, shows like this play a crucial role in education and support. They bridge gaps between parents and children, helping to build stronger, more empathetic connections, and provide solace to teens who see their struggles and strengths reflected in the characters they encounter. This representation is not just about awareness; it's about fostering a world where everyone feels seen, understood, and valued."

Similarly, and especially with research showing that 89% of girls in the UK feel pressure to be 'perfect', Geek Girl's author Holly Smale believes everyone should watch the show as it ditches the 'glossy TV' version of the teenage years and reminds kids - and their parents - that 'teens are allowed to be imperfect' as they work out who they are and where their place in the world is. 

"We're all flawed in multiple ways and for me, regardless of what character I'm writing, it's really important to show people react in ways they regret later or say things they wish they hadn't said," Smale told the BBC

"That's human and it's really important for teens to know they're allowed to be imperfect, they're allowed to be unlikeable sometimes."

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News writer

Charlie Elizabeth Culverhouse is a news writer for Goodtoknow, specialising in family content. She began her freelance journalism career after graduating from Nottingham Trent University with an MA in Magazine Journalism, receiving an NCTJ diploma, and earning a First Class BA (Hons) in Journalism at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute. She has also worked with BBC Good Food and The Independent.