Manipulation, resentment and deceit are the central conceits at the heart of this week’s Girls. Hannah attempts to be friends with Adam, and this overture is both genuine and disingenuous at the same time, highlighting the conflicting emotions that go into such well-meaning and painful post-break-up trials. And while Lena Dunham’s anxiety-ridden performance captures the vast array of emotions during this period, it’s Gillian Jacobs’ exceptionally complex performance as Mimi-Rose that ultimately steals the show, proving the hinge around which Adam and Hannah pivot.
Over the course of the last few seasons, the twentysomething girls of Girls have hardly changed at all, which makes them more empathetic, if a little frustrating — but only because, if you’ve ever been in your early 20s, you can see some of yourself in each of them. If insanity is repeating the same behaviors/actions over and over and expecting different results, then you might consider these women (and yes, the men, too) insane. But tonight’s episode brings some real signifiers of change, even if we remain skeptical.
At one point during this week’s episode of Girls, Hannah off-handedly describes the only way to solve a Rubik’s Cube: by taking the stickers off and re-sticking them in the proper arrangement. It’s such a casual comment, but one that easily defines the way Hannah — and her friends, and so many of us coming of age in our 20s — approaches problem-solving: by forcing things into the shape she’d like rather than doing the imperative work and navigation.
“How do you know if you’ve made the right decision?” That’s the question at the heart of this week’s ‘Girls,’ which sees Hannah struggling to figure out if she belongs in Iowa, while Shoshanna has a hard time finding the perfect job back in New York. All we want to know is if we’ve made the right choice, but it’s impossible to know until the choice has been made.
The dust has barely settled from the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, and already we’ve got a look at the lineup for the 2015 South by Southwest Film Festival. After an initial announcement that included opening night film ‘Brand,’ about comedian Russell Brand,’ things have filled out really nicely with a ton of promising-sounding selections.
There’s something vaguely gnawing and anxiety-inducing about this week’s episode of ‘Girls,’ which splits its time between Hannah in Iowa and her friends back in New York, and finally gives us a clue about what Adam’s been up to while Hannah’s away. By now we’ve become very familiar with the willfully regressive nature of these characters, who function in juvenile, narcissistic cycles, with each revolution back around only bringing them the tiniest baby step further in their maturation. Two steps forward, one step back.
Some of the best episodes of ‘Girls’ have taken Hannah out of her comfort zone and away from New York, whether that’s back home to visit her parents or going with Jessa to visit her absentee father. Moving Hannah to Iowa to attend the renowned Writers’ Workshop is an incredibly wise decision, not just for its potential to shift dynamics between characters or create new plot paths, but also because it immerses Hannah in a new world where she doesn’t know anyone—here we see Hannah differently, not surrounded by anyone or any places she knows; we see her the way others might see her.
In tonight’s season 4 premiere of ‘Girls,’ it’s all relative(s), with appearances from Hannah’s parents, Marnie’s mom, and the introduction of Shoshanna’s parents, and it’s these relationships that help us understand who our girls are and why. As Hannah prepares to head off to the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and Marnie continues to pursue her dreams of being a successful singer, paths diverge and neuroses are reinforced. Hannah appears to be more calm and collected, but we’ve seen this from her before, and how long will (can) it last?
We’ll see quite a bit of Lena Dunham this coming weekend by the ‘Girls’ season 4 premiere, but only hear her when ‘The Simpsons’ returns for its 27th season. The erstwhile Hannah Horvath will officially lend her voice to the FOX animated family’s fall premiere, but what surprising relationship might her character have to Homer?
Pictionary! It's one of the few games that Jimmy Fallon makes his 'Tonight Show' guests play that hasn't been totally twisted from its original form. It's a classic. But it's also an interesting way to gain keen insight into the way various people operate, even away from the game-playing stage of Fallon's late show.