Girls S2E6 – Boys Have Feelings Too
This weeks episode of Girls seems to be making up for what some people call the “WTF is going on with Girls?” debacle of yesteryear. We are back on track with a glimpse into the lives of Hannah and her buddies. Episode 6, cleverly titled “Boys” is quite the little mini-study of the forgotten gender. In fact it’s the first time in Girls history I can think of where two males discuss their feelings on women. This isn’t some sugar coated indie-movie crap either about their smiles, quirky hair or taste in obscure music. It’s the kind of talk that will probably piss off feminists but pleases me to no end. And that brings us to one of the main stories this week.
Adam and Ray.
Now, my immediate reaction upon seeing Adam and Ray face-to-face is, “Wait, why hasn’t this happened before?” It seems like the most obvious friendship in the world yet the two are only meeting now for the first time. But why you ask?
Well, Hannah is offered the chance to write an e-book for Pumped Magazine a publication she has adored since adolescence. The supposed editor or some sort of high ranking official there is absolutely amazed by the essays she’s been producing for JazzHate.com. He presents her with an opportunity most struggling writers would kill for but there is one catch…he needs his e-book in a month.
For those of us that know Hannah we realize this is a problem. She likes to call herself a writer but we very rarely actually see her doing that. It’s mostly talking about writing. Like that friend we all have that claims they are going to be starting school soon but then one quarter they miss registration and the next financial aid didn’t come through so their waiting on their overtime at work. It’s basically never is going to happen.
Naturally, Hannah is a bit terrified at the new endeavor but she has told those around her in excitement. At Café Grumpy while discussing her future writing adventure Ray is reminded that Hannah has his copy of Little Women. Now, this isn’t just any copy of Little Women, this is a very special one as Ray describes,
“My Godmother gave me that book, okay? She writes notes in the back of books explaining how they relate to my shit.”
Classic Ray. Mostly because he is taking an act that a lot of douchebaggy people would describe in some deep poetic way and simplifying it. Hipsters would gallivant over the ways their Godmother reaches out to them through books and words. Not with him, Little Women and his Godmother’s affinity for writing notes in the back is merely a way to feel comfortable about his “shit.” What shit constitutes Ray’s life is something I don’t want to know about.
Hannah left his copy of the book at Adam’s house and given that she recently got him arrested in one of her more awkward spectacles she is not able to get it back. Shoshanna plays the man card telling Ray that as a man he needs to step up and get his book. Yep, because that is what I want all my manly men to do. Step up and retrieve their copy of Little Women with notes from their Godmother that justify their mopies.
On a subnote, after having a very touching moment two weeks ago Ray and Shoshanna have reached that point in their relationship where she isn’t quite sure about him. It’s something I think many couples face especially when one is on a higher level of “having their stuff together.” Hearing his speech of how he isn’t good enough for her but he so deeply loves her is great and all but that river can run dry real quick.
It’s like a girl getting in a fight with her boyfriend about any number of things. Because ladies we all know there are numerous things to get upset about but let’s say it’s the argument about not going out enough. After that fight the next two weekends are jam packed with getting drinks, hikes and other noteworthy activities. Your boyfriend has really improved, but then that magical switch happens. He starts to get comfortable and slowly but surely makes his way back into popping a squat on the couch every night getting high. You let the first 1 or 2 times slide but eventually a month has passed and you haven’t done anything. Oh how men revel in their comfort. This brings us to Shoshanna.
She may want to be with Ray and his charm is great for a while but now she is at the point of suggesting he go watch Donald Trump speak about success. That’s a real low point. I’m not sure she can handle the fact that Ray ultimately doesn’t want to own his own coffee shop one day. He’d rather just have less responsibility and live his life freely.
We see her over the course of the episode have moments of realization that Ray may not be satisfying her enough in every department. They are subtle but hilarious moments like comparing him to a boyfriend from Twilight but all of this is hinting to a bigger decision she may be facing in the coming episodes.
Ray ventures to Adam’s industrial layer to find him pounding away and quite hostile after his recent encounter with Hannah. He has essentially kidnapped an extremely aggressive dog and locked it in his bathroom because the owner had him tied up and didn’t seem to care. Ray lectures him on the care one is supposed to give their dog and how Adam can’t just go around stealing other peoples pets regardless of the poor treatment they’re getting. You know something is wrong when Ray is lecturing you on proper behavior.
The two set out to return the dog to it’s rightful owner but that means going to Staten Island..with a dog. They share a nice conversation on the ferry about girls because they are guys and that’s what dudes talk about when they are together. A favorite moment of mine is when Ray suggests if he made a reference to the beaches at Normandy Shoshanna would give him the“slow blink.” It’s so great mostly because it wasn’t until that moment that I realized she does often blink at a glacial pace when contemplating and it’s a perfect description.
The boys discuss what types of girls are easier to date and Adam has some sage wisdom yet again,
“Young girls and older ladies. It’s the in-betweens that are a problem.”
Being an in-betweener myself I can wholeheartedly agree. We are a problem at times. Like when we say “It’s fine” but we are fuming inside or when it’s not enough that you did the dishes but we need you to WANT to do the dishes. But I would also say that if we reversed this conversation young boys and in-betweens are the problem while older men are more of a solution but maybe that’s just me. It’s things like Adams direct nature that are going to upset women but it was fascinating to see an honest conversation.
I’m sure many men would agree that it’s pretty sexy when a woman can be comfortable with her body rather than constantly worry about how she looks. Yet, many women don’t think about it like that, they want to think that every guy needs a girl that is some idealized version of beautiful.
This raises a bigger issue that I think was more prevalent in last weeks episode. With critics and viewers alike complaining about the believability of Patrick Wilson and Lena Dunham hooking up we have girls not thinking yet again. I had surveyed many of my male friends and they agreed that if a twentysomething was offering sex for the most part they wouldn’t think twice about plowing her. Stranger things have happened. But this is another issues for another time and place, more specifically a lecture hall full of college kids on their laptops reading status updates.
Ray likens their connection to the fact that they have “meaty ideas” and are “honest men.” First off I love the notion of “meaty ideas” there is just so much to run with. I think it’s more a dynamic where Adam says something outright and Ray softens it up a bit making it more kosher with big words. Or their relationship could solely function on what Adam refers to as the fact that they are both kind of weird looking. What’s funny about that is when the show first started I used to get them confused, they really aren’t that far off from one another looks wise.
When they reach the island a discussion of Hannah and her relationship with Adam ends the whole thing in a disaster. Ray has made it very clear throughout the show that he doesn’t get why anybody would be attracted to Hannah. This is understandable given that the girl looses her dumpster key, shows up late to work and doesn’t mop the floors on time.
Even though Adam has claimed he is over her and even talks a little shit there is something very familiar going on here. We have all done this where we talk loads of shit about a family member to our friends. In the moment we are angry and say things that probably shouldn’t be said out loud. But, the minute your friend chimes in agreeing with you and throws in a extra thought of their own in about how they always thought your brother was a little annoying or your sister was weird things change. You get super defensive and realize only YOU can talk shit about your family. That role is reserved for the inner circle.
It’s adorable to hear Adam almost realize while saying it that Hannah put up with all his weird crap with no complaints. There is a hint in his voice that he misses her dearly so when Ray tries to take a shit all over it Adam is not having any of that. In a classic guy move he just ditches the situation without a care in the world.
Ray attempts to return the dog on his own but is met with the owner’s daughter who seems more hostile than the dog. She throws out insults and racial slurs that honestly were a bit much. Needless to say Ray and the dog end up alone at dusk like sad little broken down toys by the water having a cry. I get that Ray is 33 and should have his life together but there is some part of my heart that always goes out to him, can’t the guy just catch a break.
With the other half of the episode we have Marnie and Hannah’s relationship. Marnie and Booth appear to be in some sort of relationship but even from the first glimpse we get it doesn’t seem like he’s aware of it. They wake up together and when his assistant barges in the room he doesn’t care that his junk is out and about. Booth has many clever ways of laying to hide that meat stick of his.
After questioning his assistants choice to take a scoop of his rose water ice cream he fires her for her lack of remorse. But in reality she quits as quickly as she was accused of such an atrocious act. With his assistant out of the picture he asks the next most capable person he knows to host a party for the night at his house. Marnie of course..I mean she is a hostess.
She spends the next few hours happy as a clam that her and Booth are “having people over” as if it’s a dinner party they’ve been planning for months. In reality it’s a bunch of uppity artists that takes themselves way too seriously. To Marnie nothing she owns is good enough to wear and she needs to impress.
She invites Hannah who on the side has been struggling with her writing. Falling into the trap we all do of working on anything with our laptop. We have the word document open and begin to type but when we need to pause for a thought suddenly the newest Buzzfeed list of Beyonce pictures seems more appealing. Next thing you know it’s been 2 hours and you have no work done.
Jessa is now living with her and doing some impression of going about daily life. It seems she is permanently in the room Elijah used to occupy and we see her for one scene but a very memorable one. As Hannah describes her writing as of late Jessa abruptly interjects making it clear that the little e-book essentially doesn’t matter to anybody. Once Hannah has that clear she can really begin to write.
Having been the Jessa in this situation many times being “truthful” I found myself almost agreeing with every word she said. But then I realize that is the glass half empty in me. These words are coming from a girl who is deep in her depression about her looming divorce and is probably even upset that she is upset!
Taking a break she attends the party in a comically childlike rain jacket that Marnie slyly tries to put away for her which essentially means hiding it from any of the guests at the party. It’s clear form the moment Hannah walks in that she isn’t very high on the priority list for Marnie. They didn’t even seem like friends and it begs the question why they are even trying at this point.
Hannah is surprised by the change in lifestyle for Marnie which is displayed almost too well in her dress choice. It’s something you’d see on the runway but never on the street however Marnie is wearing it at a party, go figure. It’s not long before Hannah is taken over with disgust and has to leave.
Before things go south we get to see a nice little cameo by Ezra Koenig of Vampire Weekend. I’d know that hipster mop top anywhere. In Booth’s amazing wine cellar that has entirely too much wine…even for an artist shit really hits the fan. Booth suggest to Marnie that he pay her $500 for her services.
Having been under the impression this whole time that they were together this confuses her but not for very long. When she suggests that they are couple so there is no need to pay her he appears flabbergasted and admits he didn’t know he had a girlfriend. Her immediate reaction to break down and cry reads to me as she knew this was coming all along yet he hit her like a ton of bricks.
He questions whether she likes him or the idea of him as an artist being her boyfriend given that she’s admired his work for so long. I think honestly Marnie does really like him as a person but who can ever know a person like Booth Jonathan. Even he knows that it’s impossible. This is conveyed in his mondo-sized tantrum that is more suitable for a 5 year old. I mean the dude literally just throws down a wine bottle like that’s acceptable behavior. It’s a real woe is me kind of moment as he complains that he hates his friends and his whole way of being only to sulk on the floor.
My boner for Booth Jonathan has quickly subsided.
Marnie makes her way back home and we see Hannah attempting to write her book. I have to make note that the way she is laying on the bed with the laptop on her chest made me supremely happy. I didn’t think anybody else used a Mac like that. It’s just so efficient.
Hannah calls Marnie as she is awkwardly making her way through the subway with a plastic dress and golden undergarments. It’s clear that both girls need someone to talk to about the troubles they are both facing at that very moment but neither can give in. Their friendship has gone through some rough patches in the recent days and both don’t know where to pick up. Been there done that.
Even after Adam left Ray alone on Staten Island if those two see each other again I imagine it will be a quick convo about how messed up that was but then be squashed immediately. But Hannah and Marnie are girls and things get complicated. All of their bullshit and the fights they have had are still fresh. If one surrenders the other is going to win. Even with their emotions running high and their need of friendship at that moment their stubborn behavior wins out.
I don’t think Marnie can admit that she is unhappy and has made poor decisions and Hannah can’t admit she may not be able to write a book. These are thing you can say to your best friend without feeling judged. They are clearly not on that level anymore and as each conversation passes with no mention of the tough times in their lives or what the hell is going on with their relationship they are becoming more like acquaintances.
Episode 6 feels like one big lead up to many different arguments that are in the near future. I have a feeling Hannah may not be able to make that deadline and Shoshanna can’t handle Rays indifference much longer. There is also an overwhelming sense of loneliness as all our main characters up in a terrible spot all by their lonesome. But none are as unlucky as Marnie. Girl has to walk through the subway basically in underwear carrying an extremely stiff plastic dress. All thanks to the insanely talented Booth Jonathan. That’s just not right.