Modern Love review: best essays and episodes from the new Amazon series

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Modern Love, the Amazon Prime series exploring love has finally landed on the streaming platform. Here are four key episodes to look out for – plus the essays they’re based on

In October 2004, The New York Times launched a column called Modern Love. A place for writers to explore the joys, challenges and meaning of all kinds of love (from romantic to friendly to familial) it was an instant success – and in the 15 years since, it’s spawned a book, a podcast and even an email newsletter like Stylist Loves.

Now, there’s a new TV series based on the newspaper column. Modern Love was released on Amazon Prime on 18 October, with a glittering cast and an acclaimed team of writers and directors (notably John Carney of Once, Begin Again and Sing Street fame). 

Here is our pick of the four key Modern Love episodes to look out for – and the essays that inspired them. 

  • When Cupid Is A Prying Journalist

    In this 2015 essay, journalist Deborah Copaken reflected on quizzing Hinge inventor Justin McLeod about his love life during an interview. At the time, Copaken (played in the Amazon series by Christine Keeler) had recently exited her 20-year marriage, while McLeod (Dev Patel) was downcast about pushing his first love away. Copaken had some advice for him – and he took it. 

  • When The Doorman Is Your Main Man

    Love doesn’t have to be romantic or sexual. In 2015, Julie Margaret Hogben wrote a beautiful Modern Love essay about her relationship with her doorman – a kind, perceptive Albanian man several years her senior, who looked out for her like a father figure. When Julie (played in the show by Cristin Milioti) learned she was pregnant, it was her doorman who stepped up. Read the essay

  • Take Me As I Am, Whoever I Am

    Dating is hard. Dating when you have bipolar disorder, and you’re not sure whether you’ll wake up feeling supremely confident or unable to get out of bed, is even harder. In this episode, based on an essay from January 2008 by author Terri Cheney, Anne Hathaway plays a woman who can successfully hide her mental health condition from everyone – except her lovers. 

  • Rallying To Keep The Game Alive

    All we need to say about this episode is ‘Tina Fey and Sharon Horgan’, but we’ll expand. Directed by Horgan and based on an essay by Ann Leary, Fey and Mad Men’s John Slattery play a middle-aged couple whose marriage is flailing. Leary’s 2013 essay covers tennis, therapy and March of the Penguins; if you can finish it without welling up, you’re made of sterner stuff than us. Read the essay

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Images: Amazon Prime

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Moya Crockett

Moya is Contributing Women’s Editor at stylist.co.uk and Deputy Editor of Stylist Loves, Stylist's daily email newsletter. Carrying a bottle of hot sauce on her person at all times is one of the many traits she shares with both Beyoncé and Hillary Clinton.