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BYT is recapping Girls Season Three for your reading pleasure, with Svetlana and Alan doing a he-said-she-said take on things.


Alan: He’s not without his flaws, but I’m convinced that Dunham feels that Adam is the show’s moral center. There a parallels between this episode and “Weirdos Need Girlfriends Too,” the episode from season one where Hannah realizes Adam is a person, except now the wounds cut deeper. After an ill-advised bender with her Vanity Fair colleagues – one that includes vomit, kissing men that aren’t Adam, and a night in Joe’s apartment – Hannah does not what to do next. She’s worried about Adam after Patti Lupone poisoned her mind, and she needs affirmation badly. The trouble is that Adam is too focused on his play to notice, and, well, he thinks things are fine.

Hannah’s solution, rather than an actual conversation about her needs and desire for intimacy, is an outrageous role play scenario. She puts on a blonde wig, meets Adam in a bar, then pretends to be a horny cougar. The whole sequence is funny and pathetic in equal measure – Hannah cannot fake sexiness to save her life – and it’s also frustrating since whenever Adam tries to play along, Hannah says he’s breaking the rules. There’s mutual improvisation in any kind of role play, Hannah! Aren’t you familiar with the “yes, and” rule?
The other dysfunctional relationship in this episode is Jessa and Jasper, who is now shacking up with her and Shosh. Jessa and Jasper are downright annoying, and since Shosh is a semi-empathetic person who understands the importance of family, her ears perk up when she finds out that Jasper has a daughter in New York. She reaches out to her, which then leads to a protracted intervention scene in a restaurant. It’s startling because, finally, Jasper is shaken out of Withnail mode and displays some real self-awareness. Perhaps he was playing with Jessa along? Either way, Jessa resents Shosh for reuniting Jasper with his daughter – Jessa’s sense of entitlement is never more loathsome – and when the episode ends, she finally acknowledges she’s a junkie.
Svetlana, this is another dark episode from a mostly dark season. Which storyline did you find more devastating? Honestly, I had a stronger reaction to the Jessa/Jasper business since it goes in unexpected ways and, well, Adam and Hannah’s undoing was a long time coming.
Svetlana:  Hi, Alan, so obviously A HARD EPISODE TO WATCH.

I think in this one, more so than any of the other ones this season, Dunham thrives on awkwardness and cringeworthiness.

It is like a veritable check-list of “omg, I have to look away now” moments:

  • her insecurities
  • the least sexy role-play of all time
  • the Shosh/Jessa/Jasper dynamic
  • the Shosh/Jessa/Jasper’s Daughter (Felicity Jones, who I love) dynamic

I just kept hiding behind my bangs through it all.
But, the episode does address something that most young people do encounter for the first time truly around that age: the notion of being with someone long enough and not knowing what to do when certain comfort levels are achieved. Her and Adam are, in theory, happier than ever (last week, when he stormed over to Ohio the second he got her “car crash” text should have eliminated any sense of nagging doubt the maybe had in this week’s episode, but…) and yet, she can’t recognize that/be content, and is instead essentially seeking drama:

  • drama in these silly, frivolous outings (Which, as anyone who has ever been out in their lives, don’t have to end in making out with people who are not your boyfriend. It is not that hard to do, trust me, I go out and make out with no one all.the.time.)
  • drama in WANTING TO BELIEVE essentially that Adam is ignoring her (instead of being happy/supportive that he is experiencing some success in his dream field)
  • drama in this awful blonde wig/role play scenario
  • drama everywhere

The problem is that, naturally, not everyone around her needs her drama and the finish of the episode is as heartbreaking of a moment as any I’ve seen on TV of late (not so much because I feel for Hannah, but because you can see the disappointment in Adam’s face).

What now?

(Also, to answer your question-I guess I find the Hannah and Adam scenario more devastating, because that is ALL I managed to talk about here)
Alan: You raise a good point about how it’s a difficult for a woman in Hannah’s position to maintain the status quo. Unless things are GREAT, then they’re failing, which is why she goes out of her to create a situation that’s at least a little familiar. What now? I guess one of two outcomes: Hannah gains some self-awareness and shows that she’s ready for the long haul, or her downward spiral continues. Given the dark turns of this season, I guess the latter is more likely. Adam has a vested interest to ignore Hannah, anyway, since his success on stage requires him to be on an even keel.

Let’s go back to the Jasper/Jessa business. What now? Where do you see Jessa’s rock bottom? At least Jasper has something that’s worth an attempt at sobriety.
Svetlana:  Yeah, I fully anticipate the next episode to be a weekend ruiner, as we call it.

Regarding Jessa: I think her fundamental problem is that without all her vices she secretly fears she is maybe not all that interesting. Take away the drugs and the doomed romances and the swirl-of-self-destruction that surrounds her, and she is just a poor, little, lost girl with a nanny or retail job or …. you get the picture. And I think, of all the people, she doesn’t have the guts to accept being just boring. So she keeps at it. Yes, substance addiction is part of it, but also addiction to the attention she receives from it.

The only reason she may stop is if Jasper and everyone else just stop paying attention.
Speaking of which-in this episode of emotional turmoil and humiliation, Marnie is forming a new bond with Adam’s costar. What did you make of it?

Alan: I’m feeling positive about Marnie’s new bond. Someone realizes she has talent – it’s clearly there – and what matters is how there’s now a prism through which she can channel it. Girls has been a show where you’re challenged to love characters, or hate them. Maybe now it’s time where we love Marnie? Could you ever love her?
Svetlana: I think I kind of do love Marnie already. She so perfectly imperfect. I was watching this episode with some friends and someone said “God, I just hate her face, it is so perfect”. But you know, it is not her fault she has that face. It is what she does with that face. In general, she has not been given enough time to grieve in this season: after Charlie, after her career, after Ray even. And in this episode, her letting her guard down for someone, even just a little goes a long way. So, here’s to having at least ONE thing to cheerlead for in this episode, right? The redemption of perfect-face Marnie.