Papa don’t preach, but also Patrick Wilson don’t preach. Just when you thought this week’ episode of Girls, “Painful Evacuation,” was all out of twists and turns, one shocker followed another until we were so overwhelmed we collapsed right into Elijah’s briefs. Hannah’s in trouble deep.
After last week’s stunning “American Bitch,” an episode that I’ve personally witnessed no less than half a dozen conversations about on the streets of Brooklyn since it aired, we’re back in the throes of our core characters’ daily drama. This was an episode HBO withheld from critics/lowly television recappers, which generally means it’s going to be chock full of surprises. Boy howdy, was it.
Just in case you’re one of those people who read TV recaps and then get mad about spoilers (you’d be surprised!), we’ll save the most salacious surprises for last. The least surprising: Jessa and Adam have found a new way to be completely insufferable. It’s easy to say “Marnie is the worst,” but these two, fuck. Adam has walked off the set of some garbage film he’s working on (but what? never read the script before getting on set?), so Jessa recommends they make their own film, just like that! It’s easy! Not just any film though, a film about their relationship with Hannah. Gross!
Marnie is having sex with Ray that is both utterly bizarre and painfully boring. When she’s not bent over her sink getting the business, she’s in couples counseling with Desi (I think it might just be Desi’s sponsor), getting yelled at for making his addiction all about her. Ray, meanwhile, shoos away a coffee shop regular chewing his ear off only for the old man to drop dead on the sidewalk outside. Ray is shook, but Hermie (Colin Quinn) uses it as an opportunity to tell Ray — the most “together” Girls character we’ve got — that his priorities are cuckoo bananas. (Ha! Has he even met Hannah?) This obviously doesn’t sit well with our cantankerous coffee shop manager, so Ray storms out, feels bad about it later, goes to apologize to Hermie, but when he gets to Hermie’s home, he finds him dead.
Still, that’s like maybe only the third-most shocking thing to happen. Hannah is dealing with a painful UTI (not even the three-hundredth-most shocking thing to happen in the series), but when she goes to the ER, her doctor is PATRICK FUCKING WILSON, the man she spent a whirlwind weekend with back in the classic episode “One Man’s Trash.” Well, that’s embarrassing! He confirms that she does have a wicked UTI, oh, and also SHE’S PREGNANT.
Let’s all take a breath, email that one interesting lesbian we know about getting into that Vanity Faire party and discuss the moments from last night we loved so much we can’t even and the parts that were so ridiculous we can’t even below.
We Can’t Even
Tracey Ullman, everybody! As a means to acclimate us back into this world after “American Bitch,” the episode kicked off with Hannah interviewing another author. This one is meant to be the polar opposite, reverse-Flash version of Matthew Rhys’ character last week. She’s some sort of complete feminist caricature (braless, brewing tea as Hannah holds her cat), and we’re utterly in love with her. Where’s her bottle episode?
Our favorite trope to establish a character’s old-school New York City cred is a story about gay Ed Koch.
I honestly gasped when Patrick Wilson appeared from behind the curtain. Man, he is one handsome dude.
Speaking of handsome dudes, super glad Andrew Rannells has stepped up his on-screen lack of clothing from just briefs to bare butt shower scenes. (Also loved his assessment of the party he begged to be invited to: “It was sort of bullshit, just a bunch of old gays being like ‘Oh, I’m so busy during the week I can only do uppers on the weekend.’ Oh, well, good for you, Anthony!”)
I’m not ready to assess the big news of Hannah’s pregnancy until we see how it all plays out, but the reveal was actually pretty great. Hannah got to be a little humiliated (“A hug kind of feels like the wrong thing”) and a little self-righteous (“What makes you think I want an abortion?”) with Patrick Wilson, which is definitely her sweet spot.
We Can’t Even
The navel-gazing going on here is getting exhausting. The idea for the awful Adam-Jessa-Hannah movie allowed Jessa and Adam to basically talk about how their storyline was loaded with heavier meaning. (“it explains everything about human nature. How even with the best of intentions, we can’t help but hurt each other. It’s a metaphor for war and corporations and religious strife, all that shit.”) Then, Desi and his counselor gave us (yet another) critique of Marnie’s general awfulness. Even Ray gets a read of a basic recap of his own life by Hermie. Some of the self-referential stuff Girls crams in ends up being a commentary on Girls in this insufferable ouroboros of television commentary. It’s like watching a black box theatre production about a talkback.
Why does Marnie insist on fucking while bent over her sink? I could not think of a less sexy place to get stuffed than over a sink full of what I’m sure are pots with quinoa burnt to the bottom soaking in Dr. Bronner’s.
I also really hope Marnie’s line “I wanna die inside the mouth of a lion with you. That way we can be together forever, even in the moment of our own death” makes it into Jessa and Adam’s film somehow. Or at least a Marnie & Desi b-side.
Oh, god, everything about this fucking movie Jessa and Adam are making. They immediately have an idea in their first brainstorm session, and in next week’s episode they’re fucking filming! Not even like on iPhones, Tangerine-style. I think I even saw a boom mic in there. I don’t need to see every painstaking step of the crowd-funding process or every email begging for PAs to work for free, but holy fuck slow your roll.
And another thing! I don’t for a second believe Adam and Jessa would go to Hannah for her permission to make this film. First and foremost, they are complete monsters with utter disregard for everyone around them. Secondly, Hannah already put the whole thing on blast in the New York Fucking Times.
Tell us what you thought about in the episode in the comments or I will FaceTime you the inside of my toilet!
Bobby Hankinson is a writer and comedian living in Brooklyn. Send him your favorite screengrabs of Andrew Rannells in his underwear on Twitter, @bobbyhank.