HBO’s Girls and its creator/star/enfant terrible Lena Dunham have been a lightning rod for controversy for years now, bringing about discussions of millennial entitlement, body image issues, racial diversity and gender equality. But was the show any good? Prior to this season I’d say the characters neediness and self absorption was so believable that it almost made the show hard to watch. The Girls (and guys) are growing up though, and their trials and tribulations have become not only more realistic and believable but more relatable and amusing.
Most will remember this as the season where Hannah (Lena Dunham) and Adam (Adam Driver, on his way to bigger and better things in the Star Wars universe) broke up, spurned by Jessa (Jemima Kirke) introducing him to Mimi-Rose (Gillian Jacobs), who Hannah wants desperately to hate but can’t help but admire after viewing some of her lectures on YouTube. The episode where Hannah returns to their apartment on a visit home from College to find Mimi Rose there, freaks out and stages a sit-in in her and Adam’s former bedroom is a cringe comedy classic on par with anything in Larry David or Ricky Gervais’ oeuvre.
Another favorite storyline saw loveable goofball Ray (Alex Karpovsky) storm city council (including a hilarious cameo from Marc Maron) to protest traffic being rerouted to his street and making his formerly peaceful apartment stressful and noisy. This wouldn’t have been out of place as a Kramer plot in a late period episode of Seinfeld and was seriously funny in a way this show had never been before.
As the season comes to an end, Shoshanna (Zosia Mamet) takes a job in Tokyo and Marnie (Allison Williams) takes control of her music career after being stood up by uber-douche Desi (Ebon Moss-Bachrach) at a record industry showcase, possibly because Ray told him off, obviously still having feelings for Marnie, while Shoshanna still has feelings for him. But both Shoshanna and Marnie seem to be finally realizing that they didn’t need a man to be successful and fulfilled. Adam tried to get back with Hannah after breaking up with Mimi Rose, but she resisted, again carrying on the theme of female empowerment.
This season showed the most growth of all of the characters, in fact the underlying theme seemed to be strength and independence.
It is sometimes difficult to watch the character of Hannah, she can be obnoxious, immature and self-absorbed, but somehow you always end up rooting for her. The season wrapped up so perfectly it almost seemed liked it could’ve been a series finale, with a post credits sequence showing Hannah and new co-worker/boyfriend Fran (Jake Lacy) happy together 6 months after the events of the season finale, but we’re glad it wasn’t. We’ll be looking forward to Season 5.
– Kevin & Megan Hawkey