Those Who Can’t Do, Teach
Girls Season 4 Episode 6 recap
I thought that maybe last week was an anomaly, but now I know the truth – I want every episode of Girls to be about Adam and Mimi-Rose.
I don’t know if this was the intent. I have no idea if Dunham & Co saw the chemistry and the completely different energy that Gillian Jacobs brought and decided to focus on it intensely.
I want this to be the show. I want to watch the show about Adam figuring out why it wasn’t okay to react that way after his girlfriend’s matter-of-fact abortion, and trying to woo her with smelts at breakfast. I love that it’s a character trait to love so intensely he gets sick about it, and that he might be dating a woman actualized enough to remind him that that doesn’t compensate for not being an adult.
There’s only one problem, of course.
None of the girls, who comprise the show’s title, Girls, are in any of the interesting parts of this episode. Which is ballsy, in a way. I know it’s not the first time the show has dealt with abortion (although maybe the first time we’re dealing with one that absolutely unquestionably happened?); it also seems organic-ish for the Adam character to be going through this, but most certainly it’s in a parallel universe.
In our universe, things are a lot more mundane. Hannah cries, she keeps Elijah close, she thinks she’ll maybe be a teacher. This is an ill-fated decision, of course, but I appreciate that she’s walking through it to its eventual conclusion. I extra-specially like that she doesn’t bat an eye when everyone calls her selfish. This is a weird kind of progress, but progress. And Marnie arguing with Desi that yes they ARE like She & Him is just worth the price of admission. These two are hilarious, of course they f*ck to their own music, and I love that she thinks a hundred downloads makes a difference. I’m never going to get over that.
But I’m finally, finally coming to one of the reasons that this show has never quite hit reality for me. The whole point of Hannah’s story is supposed to be that the world is kind of against her. No matter how she tries to get ahead, her book editor dies or her Iowa situation implodes and you can see that she’s kind of sort of right – the world is against her, in a way.
But for the others – this week it’s Shoshanna – their terrible behavior has no discernable effect on the rest of the world. So Shosh behaves abominably and decides she’s going to be a trophy wife, but gets a date out of it? I mean, one time, sure, but every single time this is the response she gets? I feel curmudgeonly but this is the same for all of them. Marnie does the weirdest weird move ever of wanting to smoke in the middle of their A & R meeting, and she isn’t cringing about it still, two weeks later. That’s real self-flagellation. Is that what makes a millennial a millennial? Being able to completely ignore and forget the humiliating things you did yesterday?
Interestingly, only Ray is exempt from this – his self-hatred goes on and on – and notably, he’s the oldest by a mile. Are we to expect, based on his experiences with municipal politics, that he’s going to get a spinoff about trying to make a difference in Bushwick?