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GIRLS recap: Season 2, Episode 9 & the lines we liked best
GIRLS Season 2, Episode 9
Awkwardness is a part of life at all ages, but there is something specific about feeling awkward in your early twenties. You feel like you have some idea of how to behave like an adult, but then something happens – you run into your ex on a date for instance – and all of a sudden the overwhelming awkwardness feels so strong you might black out from it. Each person responds differently to it, but it tends to bring out the strange in all of us. This is certainly true of this episode of GIRLS, where each and every character is wildly awkward in their own way. Read on to see what feeling awkward will lead our girls and guys to do.
Hannah As we learned last week, Hannah has OCD, and it is immediately apparent this week that she is still suffering from it. She is on her way to her editor’s office, the one who assigned her the ebook and our heart broke for her as soon as the meeting started. He has not finished reading the pages she submitted, because he isn’t sure “who wrote them”. You see, he wanted the “chubby face with come on it” writer and got someone writing about friendship, more Jane Austen than Anias Nin. His helpful suggestion – if she’s not having enough sex at the moment, make it up – she can pull off writing a novel, correct? At home and once again struggling to write, Hannah manages to literally get a pain in the ass – more specifically, a splinter in her bum. After removing it, she opens a box of Q-tips and starts to clean her right ear when the OCD kicks in, leading her to jab her eardrum so hard she seems to puncture it. The noise it makes – a sickening squish-crunch – is still ringing in our own ears. She calls her parents for comfort and then off she goes to the hospital. She is treated by a brusque ER doctor, who points out she must be feeling rather silly (thanks Dr. Tips) and has no time to listen to her attempt to explain her mental state and struggle with anxiety that lead to the ear-cleaning snafu. He believes it is only an abrasion, but can’t tell from all the blood (comforting!) so suggests she see a specialist if it’s still bothering her in a few days. She asks if he could clean the other one out since it is feeling a bit uneven (OCD red flag) and he declines. It is the law of first major heartbreak that when you are feeling your absolute worst on every level you will run into your ex. Not only that, they will seem like their life has improved immeasurably since you. When Hannah sees Adam on the street outside the engagement party, which he explains he is attending with his girlfriend, Hannah takes another giant blow to the gut. Natalia is a cool girl name, and Hannah is on the street in a nightie coming home from the hospital. She and Adam have a moment when he calls her “kid” and she comes close to crying. She tries to salvage her pride with a mention of the book she is working on but Adam is already heading inside and she’s left knowing in this moment she lost. At home she sits on the edge of the tub, she begins to clean the other ear. Hannah’s anxiety makes her crave balance, but whether that balance can come in a healthy way or whether it will lead to two punctured eardrums is yet to be seen.
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Shosh Shosh made out with a doorman in a mailroom (perhaps more) last week, and she is having the common reactions to infidelity – guilty over-graciousness mixed with avoidance. This is not a girl who lies well. When Marnie comes in to ask Ray’s help using Garage Band to “lay down a track” she urges him to go help just to get him out of the room. If my boyfriend was wearing my pastel Snuggie backwards I’d want him far away too. They attend Charlie’s office party together and Shosh is still ducking and diving to prevent Ray from noticing something is wrong. She isn’t very good at it, and instead draws even more attention as he tries to figure out why she won’t talk to him, but will talk to ever other dude there (including telling Charlie she would sleep with him – at least Ray isn’t there for that). Finally, Ray corners her and demands to know what is wrong. Shosh caves and begins to tell him, then chickens out and explains she “held the doorman’s hand” Ray’s visible relief is heartbreaking, and he is so happy he can’t see that Shosh is less than sure of her answer of “mmhmmm” when he asks if she still wants to be with him. He also can’t see her crestfallen face when he hugs her, and it is clear to us that the awkwardness is far from over for these two.
Marnie Taking the advice Ray gave her last week, Marnie is following her dream of singing by “laying down a track” on her laptop. She’s also still randomly dropping in to Charlie’s office, although this time she has a good reason – they had “concrete lunch plans” and he kept her waiting for 45 minutes. His excuse is semi-reasonable – the company had a breakthrough involving something called “MAU’s” and he forgot lunch. It would have been more convincing had he not been eating on the patio with his blonde hipster babe employee, but he is sorry nonetheless. He invites her to the company’s party that night and she happily accepts. Not only does Marnie attend Charlie’s “bougie” (according to Ray, and anyone with eyes) party, she has a little something special planned. As soon as she asked Ray how good a singer she actually was since she had something a little special planned, we practically broke out in hives while chanting “DON’T, DON’T, DON’T!” at the screen. But of course, she does. Marnie, who because of her beauty, poise and general success at everything has had very little experience embarrassing herself, does an unthinkable thing – she gets up in front of a room of people and sings her heart out. What is the appropriate song to perform as a white girl at a hipster tech-kids party? Why, Kanye West’s “Stronger” of course. Our face mirrored Shoshanna’s slack-jawed horror through the entire scene and when she started bobbing her arms like Kanye would if he were a 105 lb girl from Conneticut, we closed our eyes and wished for death. Ray, who knows a thing or two about horrible failure, sweetly cheers for her as the rest of the room twitches in judgmental silence. Charlie was appalled, and drags her to his office to tell her she needs to get it together. Despite the crashing failure of her performance, Marnie still stands by where her life is at – she is on a journey, and not being good all the time is freeing. After telling him not to pity her, the inevitable happens – they kiss, and quickly begin having sex on his desk. When she asks if someone might see, he answers “Who gives a fuck?” and suddenly he is the man she always wanted him to be – one with an important job who knows how to take her like a man.
Adam Adam is dating a very non-Hannah kind of girl. She is unambiguous about being normal, where Hannah has only just started to realize that normalcy has its value. Adam is definitively not normal, so the fact he would go see a Sandra Bullock rom-com with Natalia indicates he must really like her. One reason is that she tells him exactly what she wants. She is ready to have sex, but is quick to fill him in on exactly how she wants it. After the confusion that Hannah made him feel, this directness is a major turn on for Adam. Whatever the reason, he is so smitten that he volunteers to attend her friend’s engagement party with her, as her boyfriend. Adam and Natalia sitting in a tree… On arrival at the party however, Adam is quickly aware he is out of his element. Nat’s friend is the special kind of bitchy reserved for engaged women to their non-engaged friends. When she and Nat head for the bar, it isn’t clear if he hears her mocking his appearance but it is clear this isn’t his crowd. When a bro tries to chat him up about the sports game they are missing to be there, Adam heads outside for some fresh air. Unfortunately, his timing is not ideal. He runs into Hannah, on her way home from the hospital, and their encounter is as awkward as it could possibly be, and yet seems to remind him why he was so hung up on her. Her uncertainty and messiness is as attractive to him – or more so – than Natalia’s cool confidence. When he returns to the party he falls off the wagon, drinking for the first time in years, and it is clear that it was seeing Hannah rather than feeling awkward at the party that caused the relapse. He drinks hard, dances hard, and it seems to be going alright, until they get to his place. Natalia is grossed out by his man-cave with its weird contraptions and dingy furniture. Her criticism flips a switch in Adam, and he takes a turn at being direct and assertive. He orders her onto all fours, and sends her crawling into the bedroom. He scoops her up, takes her from behind, and then flips her on her back and comes on her chest. He hasn’t broken any of her rules (no her-on-top, no coming inside her) but he has crossed a line. It is Hannah, the one who accepted his complications, who set this off in him – the attempt to see if Natalia could accept him for who he is, weirdness included. Her rejection of his apartment (“It’s darker than you are”) made him think that she couldn’t take his true self, and after the awkward, alarming sexual encounter, it seems likely that she can’t.
1) Natalia’s engaged friend
about Adam: “He has the face of an old-timey criminal!”
Natalia: “What are you talking about? He looks like Peter Pan.”
: “Why are you acting like an alien just stepped out of a spacecraft for the first time and just decided to use Shoshanna’s body as a fucking vessel??”
Hannah’s mom: “What’s going on?”
Hannah’s dad: “It seems Hannah stuffed a Q-tip very deep into her ear.”
Hannah’s mom: “Nothing smaller than an elbow in there – ever!”
GIRLS recap: Season 2, Episode 8: “Hannah that’s ridiculous, you’re not anorexic. I’ve seen you in a bathing suit.”
GIRLS recap: Season 2, Episode 7: “These women should be really proud because in a way it’s the most noble thing you can do – to help a boy find his sexuality, help a boy become a man you know?”
GIRLS recap: Season 2, Episode 6: “I don’t like the idea of it cohabitating with that sociopath.”
GIRLS recap: Season 2, Episode 5: “I could really be putting myself in like a Ted Bundy situation. He also looked handsome and clean and probably had a brownstone.”
GIRLS recap, Season 2, Episode 4: “I’m going to look 50 when I’m 30!”
GIRLS recap, Season 2, Episode 3: ”It’s a Wednesday night, baby, and I’m alive!”
GIRLS recap, Season 2, Episode 2: ”I’ve always thought he was sexy in a murdery way, but what if he’s murdery in a murder way?”
GIRLS recap, Season 2, Episode 1: ”When you love someone, you don’t have to be nice to them all the time.”
GIRLS recap, Season 1, season finale: ”Are you punking me?”
GIRLS recap, Season 1, Episode 9: “YOU are the wound.”
GIRLS recap, Season 1, Episode 8: “I’ve never been this miserable in my life.”
GIRLS recap, Season 1, Episode 7: “I can just tell when someone thinks that it’s spelled with a ‘c’.”
GIRLS recap, Season 1, Episode 6: ”I have been dating someone who treats my heart like it’s monkey meat.”