Girls S2E8 – A Blind Date & The Number 8
As some may have noticed my thoughts on episode 7 of Girls were missing last week. That is mostly due to the fact that I found last week’s encounter with Jessa’s family and Hannah’s UTI rather useless. I think I must have felt the way people did about the Patrick Wilson episode. To all of you I apologize, I now fully understand.
While I enjoyed that bottle episode, Girls is at its strongest with multiple storylines due to the often prickly and over-whelming nature of the characters. I found episode 7 full of this with Jessa and her wacky sometimes mentally ill family. In the series premiere of Girls she is introduced as the type of person that floats from place to place at her own speed. Frankly, I’m surprised she stuck around this long.
Jessa has always struck me as the type of person that abuses the excuse of her absent father and shaky childhood as a reason to act out. Many people have come from shitty childhoods only to come out on top but Jessa acts out as a way to cope but appear wild to those around her. The time spent with her cliché distant father and nutty stepmother could have been utilized much better with the other characters in the show.
That brings us to episode 8 where I feel the show has gotten back on track. Man, this season has really been a rollercoaster which to be fair is not surprising for a show like Girls. With the quick rise to popularity and harsh criticism Girls reacted by spicing things up and taking bold moves.
Let’s start with Adam who has decided to start attending his AA meetings again in the attempt to get his life in a more stable condition. This is fascinating for a variety of reasons but mainly because we get his back story. This fool quit drinking at age 17. A time when most of us young angels haven’t even had a brief moment of feeling alcohol warm our insides and make everyone look attainable.
At a meeting where he awkwardly spills his story we get a glimpse at the true Adam, something that we have only gotten snippets of previously. If we get to the core of it he is more mature than most would like to give him credit for. As he says, early on (you know, at the ripe age of 17) he realized there was a problem with alcohol and resolved it before it got the better of him. This is something that takes alcoholics years to come to terms with.
His divulging is cumbersome yes, but also touching with a hint of brutal honesty. He breaks down his relationship with Hannah in what feels like 30 seconds yet you feel every bit of his pain. The most memorable part is when he describes how he viewed their relationship in the early stages. When Hannah was pawing at him like a lost puppy dying for his attention and he merely thought she was a piece of ass that would always be there. I have heard almost those exact words from a guy and I remember being quite shocked at the breakdown of a female in the male mind.
I’m not saying I was unaware that a male could think that way but it’s another thing entirely to hear it out loud and confirmed. For a brief moment you think of Adam as an asshole for such thoughts but he so sweetly continues talking about how he fell in love and when he was vulnerable Hannah ripped it away. Anybody who has been on the Adam end of a breakup where the other had already moved on before the initial parting of ways can relate. It’s a shock to the system to realize you and your ex were not even on the same page but reading entirely different books.
Adam’s honesty hits a cord with a zany women also in AA who sets him up with her daughter Natalia played by Shiri Appleby but I know her better as LIZ PARKER.
That’s right kids, this girl right here used to be obsessed with Roswell. We’re talking breaking out the VHS tape to record all the episodes I missed while at school. I even own the DVDS. I’ve flushed out my DVD collection many times but have yet to let them go. Who doesn’t love aliens as hot as Jason Behr? Enough said.
Damn, this picture just makes me depressed about the fashions of 1999. Oh and look, there is Katherine Heigl before all of the carbon copy romcoms she has “acted” in. How cool!
From the beginning Adam starts off his blind date with a bang attempting to leave a very odd message on Natalia’s machine. Among other things he describes himself as creepy, something every guy knows is a word to avoid. Yet, the two share a date I think most of us only dream of. Their chemistry gives us hope for Adam and I think makes him realize that he can move past Hannah. Only time will tell what happens with those kids but not only were we able to see a stable, mature Adam but his quirky misshapen smile makes more than one appearance.
While Adam is slowly coming together Hannah’s life is unraveling…and quickly. Up until now the bulk of the series has focused on her so-called issues. I’m spectacle to give them real credit because essentially they are things we all deal with. However, with episode 8 much like we are let into the true life of Adam we get down the real issues with Hannah. It’s revealed that she has dealt with extreme OCD in the past and unfortunately it has returned upon the stress of trying to write her e-book.
From the moment she is on screen it seems like something is wrong with her. Her dress is even more disheveled than usual and her ticks have kicked into full gear. Counting becomes her enemy as does the number 8. There have been a few subtle mentions that Hannah may have had issues in the past throughout the show but I do remember one specifically when she and Marnie have the argument that leads to the end of their relationship as roommates.
Marnie accuses Hannah of being crazy since before she met her when she had to masturbate 8 times a night. Hannah’s reaction describes that as her most “painful, shameful and private secret.” It’s a moment that wasn’t very important at the time but has paid off in episode 8. What’s funny is that Hannah always wants to think that she is a special case. It’s something that was prevalent in her big speech to Patrick Wilson where she even acknowledged it herself. Still, when her parents grow concerned that the OCD is back in full force and attempt to give her special care she could not be more disgusted.
This probably mostly due to denial but she has clearly made moves to shy away from being anything close to unique. As the episode moves on we see her completely fall apart to finally being on the subway with bags under eyes looking utterly terrified. She has a conversation with a doctor where she reveals every detail of her OCD back in high school that is actually hard to listen to. She describes behaviors that spiral out of control until her life was completely overtaken by them. Girls is always full of laughs but there are some genuine moments such as this that open viewers eyes to the real problems that twentysomethings face.
Nothing at this point indicates that Hannah has any work on her book done and I’m not sure she will make her deadline. What started as an amusing look at Hannah’s lack of drive has developed into a scary view into her psyche and the world of OCD. My guess is this little incident will bring Marnie back into her life as a best friend, especially after what happened with her this week.
That brings us to the never ending mope fest that is Marnie Michaels. Upon hearing that Charlie has developed an app, was bought out and now works for company overseeing the app she goes to see him at his new digs. Shocking that she can’t just leave well enough alone. However, she is not visiting the pushover Charlie we have encountered through most of the show. No, now he has a tight button up shirt and even tighter jeans with confidence that takes her completely by surprise.
When visiting his office he quickly gives her a tour mincing words and chatting it up with everybody except her. Naturally she doesn’t seem to understand why. He informs her that the app really is all thanks to her since she inspired him. His app prevents people from calling ex’s or anybody they probably shouldn’t be calling by adding their name to a list and charging $10 a pop if you do call them. I can’t tell you how many times this app would have come in handy and I think we can all say the same.
Marnie returns from her hostess gig to find Ray alone reading in bed and does what she does best. Bitches about a person in her life that is better off than she. But, Ray is there to put it in perspective for her. With all the sage wisdom he has to offer all those around him it’s amazing he can’t use a little for himself. I guess it’s like the age old tale of a chef that eats like crap at home.
In looking back to review the Marnie and Hannah argument I stumbled across something interesting. One of Marnie’s main complaints in that squabble was that she liked being around people who know what they want and Hannah didn’t fit in that category. At this point Marnie must HATE being around herself then. Leave it to Ray to point out that she can’t look like she’s a magician’s assistant forever.
She comes in complaining to ray that Charlie isn’t sad enough for her because she expected “6 years of sadness.” She then goes on to say the people who end up with the short end of the stick are the ones that “have their shit together” such as herself but “sad messes” like Charlie come out on top.
I only react this way because I honestly feel like this isn’t far off from how some people think. It seems this might be a true to life depiction of a reaction to another’s success, particularly an ex-lover. For Marnie, it’s completely fitting. Ray demands that she stops thinking and rather starts doing. When asking what her dream is she admits it would be to sing. For those that don’t know this is how Allison Williams got famous, they might be expecting the next few notes she attempts to be god-awful.
For the rest of us we knew it would sound great, but of course it’s Norah Jones. Jesus. Ray is impressed enough to suggest that she get out there and start singing! After all she will never be any better looking than she is in that very moment. He may have a point there.
Marnie and Charlie are almost another display of what’s going on with Adam and Hannah. One has picked themselves up and begun the process of moving the f*** on and the other has crumbled under stresses of their new lives, Marnie with no job and Hannah with too much of a job.
While Marnie is busy singing with Ray, Shoshanna is at a party he refused to attend given his elderly nature of 32. This is a legitimate concern of his as it would be possibly creepy for him to show up at a college party with guests that are nearly 10 years his junior. Nevertheless Shoshanna realizes through her friend Radhika she may have become “that girl”, and what I mean by that is something we are all familiar with.
When her friend finds out Shoshanna has a boyfriend she realizes that is where she has been all summer. Shoshanna became the girl that gets a boyfriend and begins to neglect all the others in her life to the point where they can’t find out where the hell she has gone. It happens to the best of us. On a mission to prove she is still alive she attends the party where an attractive doorman catches her eye.
When Shoshanna feels she has done all she can in terms of trying to attend a party she leaves only to find the doorman who has to get one last word in. Needless to say they end up making out and the rest of their story remains a mystery. She did not strike me as the type of character to pull this little maneuver but then again I’ve been saying it for a few weeks now, things are building up. We had her realization of Ray as a slacker and then he doesn’t want to have fun at a party. Gentleman, you can only push a woman so far.
I highly doubt that a person such as Shoshanna will be able to keep this little ditty a secret for very long. I can already hear the moment when she tells Ray and blurts it out as he stares at her blankly.
Overall, the episode focuses on the moments in our young lives when we make the decisions that are going to matter. Each character is at a point where they need to have some drive and see what the word has to offer but are scared to test the waters. While some have begun their journey others seem to be sinking and quite fast. But even with all that I only have one real question, is this hairdo really what’s in style these days?