Summer loves have an expiration date included in the name itself, but their effects usually last well beyond the start of fall. These are some of the series that have explored the topic of short-lived loves tied to summer vacation.
What was supposed to be a bourgeois family vacation on the East Coast turns into something completely different for Noah Solloway when he accidentally runs into Alison Lockhart, the waitress at the restaurant where he eats with his wife and four children. What could have been a simple summer fling also becomes something completely different: an earthquake that ends up affecting anyone near the epicenter formed by the adulterous couple. Narrated from multiple perspectives, “The Affair” became a series of twists and turns, but the first season does a good job of capturing the passion associated with summer love. That “now or never”.
Master of None
Aziz Ansari paid one of the most beautiful tributes for film buffs in the first episode of season two of “Master of None”, which was filmed in black and white. His character went to Italy after breaking up with his girlfriend, spending three months there. His initial objective was to learn to make pasta, but he soon begins to pursue other interests, especially when Francesca appears—with the seriousness of neorealist film heroines—and he starts to develop feelings for her. But there’s always a “but”. In this case, the obstacle has a first and last name: his lady love’s boyfriend.
Lena Dunham outside New York? Lena Dunham outside New York. Despite having claimed to be allergic to sand, the star of “Girls” accepts an article assignment: older women who sign up for surf lessons. While doing field research, she meets Paul-Louis, a charming man she gets close to. She mentions she has considered leaving the toxicity of New York. He takes a step back and shares a small detail he hadn’t mentioned: he already has a girlfriend. Although angry, she eventually understands and they share a blanket at a bonfire. But, as those who have seen the entire series know, this brief encounter—as David Lean put it—will have consequences.
One episode of this series about cute love stories based on the New York Times column stars Dev Patel and Catherine Keener. She interviews him as the brilliant founder of a dating app. He confesses his spectacular failed love: a love he didn’t know to hold on to. And she responds by recounting a summer spent with a man (Andy García) who was her own great love, but it never went anywhere because neither of the two –she only later learned the intense feelings were reciprocal– dared to make the first move.
The Love Boat
“Everything started with you.” The name itself makes the premise clear. Starting in 1977 and over nine seasons, 248 episodes and five specials, the creators of this hour-long sitcom explored all the romantic possibilities a cruise had to offer. The crew was (more or less) stable and a group of guest stars added light-hearted stories of seduction in each episode to entertain (and perhaps motivate) ABC audiences on Saturday nights.
Although collectively classified as a summer series, the legendary series from Antonio Mercero actually premiered in October. Nerja was the scene of a love battle between town local Pancho and tourist Javi trying to charm Bea, stereotyped as the pretty girl in the group. Pancho stole a kiss at the Gato Verde cave, but their story was short-lived because, as Dúo Dinámico sang in the last episode: “The end of summer came / and you will leave / I don’t know how long / you’ll remember this love.” Infinite reruns made it easier to remember.
This is My Love
One of the most highly acclaimed Korean series tells the story of a famous actor who, with the help of the ghostwriter he hires to write his autobiography, tries to understand why his great love story didn’t work out. Looking back, it all started when he was 17 and met an orphan girl that summer who shook him to his core. She disappears and he doesn’t see her again until she is a young woman. And, even though they fall madly in love, the melodrama forces act against them and she vanishes again.
I Love Dick
Jill Soloway (“Transparent”) offered this exploration of the new artistic and sexual identity, based on a middle-aged woman from New York, an unsuccessful filmmaker who moves with her husband to a Texas town where he’ll complete a university research fellowship. There, she’ll meet title character Dick, whose name is no coincidence. Kathryn Hahn and Kevin Bacon star in this extremely dry story about how tough platonic love can be.