Girls' Season Finale: Falling Down and Growing Up
Sometimes the most shocking conclusion is none at all. As seasoned viewers of television, we've come to expect that season finales should contain a twist, a game-changer, at the very least a cliffhanger. So when a series politely sidesteps that expectation by closing out a season with a low-key, quiet moment, it can seem almost bold. "Bold" is an appropriate descriptor for Girls, surely one of the most assured and casually confident comedies of the year. Its 10-episode first season knew exactly what it was, what it wanted to do, and where it would leave us. Specifically it left us with Hannah sitting on the beach—having lost her wallet, keys, phone, and boyfriend all in the same night—eating a piece of old wedding cake. Even without unpacking all the metaphors, it was a perfect closing image.
When we left off last week Hannah and Marnie had concluded their brutal, friendship-fracturing argument by agreeing they couldn't live together anymore, and "She Did" picked up about a week later to find Marnie actually making good on her threat to move out. With Adam and Hannah's help, Marnie was soon all packed up in her U-Haul and exchanging measured goodbyes with her former roommate. After Hannah began to fret to Adam that she didn't know how to find a new roommate, Adam casually suggested that he'd move in. It was a dubious offer from someone as mercurial as Adam, so Hannah was understandably skeptical about his seriousness.
Meanwhile Marnie moved in temporarily with Shoshanna, who mentioned she hadn't seen Jessa in "a full 24/7," a highly suspicious amount of time. But it wasn't long before everyone received a cryptic text message from Jessa insisting they show up for a last-minute party or else. Because parties don't usually start at "7pm sharp," everyone knew something was up. Few people, however expected this to happen:
That's right, Jessa up and married Thomas, the douchey guy who'd berated her for not agreeing to a three-way and for spilling red wine on his terrible rug. As it turned out, following Jessa's heart-to-heart with her former boss, she'd made some sort of life decision to become a wife (and possibly a mom) and this guy seemed to fit the bill. Her friends' reactions pretty much said it all:
Still, though, the wedding was kind of amazing. For one thing, Jessa and Thomas's post-vow music cue was the hilariously vulgar Lady song P**** Be Yankin'. Also, the dessert table looked amazing! And because it was a wedding on a comedy show, some interesting drama definitely went down. First off, Marnie and Charlie reunited, sort of. His girlfriend couldn't make it to the wedding and it wasn't long before his awkward conversation with Marnie turned into a clumsy suggestion that they go have a quickie in the bathroom. Marnie obviously interpreted his ballsiness as a joke—ironic since his lack of spontaneity made her instigate the break-up in the first place—and by the end of the night she was making drunken advances on the shy best man (SNL's Bobby Moynihan). Un-smooth Marnie was definitely one of this season's funniest innovations.
Meanwhile Ray informed Shoshanna that he'd become infatuated with her ever since her crackcident and by episode's end it seemed like he was well on his way to, um, addressing her virginity issue. Or at least it seemed that way. Much less in question, however, was the status of Hannah and Adam's relationship. After Hannah ran into her gay ex-boyfriend Elijah, she learned of his less-than-stellar living situation and offered to let him move into Marnie's room. Unfortunately this news caused Adam to fly into a rage and shout at Hannah in the street for an uncomfortable amount of time, stopping only when he was accidentally swiped by a passing van. Not even the painful-looking injury calmed him down, however, and soon he was being carried away by an ambulance while still cursing at her. One of Girls' strenghths was that Adam definitely made good points, he just made them badly; the same was true with Hannah. Didn't matter, though—some words can't be taken back and so it looked like Hannah and Adam were done for.
Which led us to the saddest montage in Girls' short existence: Hannah taking the subway all alone, then falling asleep only to wake up at the end of the line in a neighborhood she didn't recognize and discovering her purse had been stolen. At which point she solemnly walked across what seemed to be the entire city in her vintage party dress and heels. When she finally walked across the sand and sat to enjoy her piece of tinfoil-wrapped wedding cake, we could infer that her life was not in the best shape. However, a recurring element of Girls' first season was that Hannah had actively avoided most of the normal pitfalls of an exciting life and had openly lamented that her life hadn't been interesting enough to write about. Well, if it was a sad story she needed, she now has a new batch of source material to draw from.
Girls was pegged as a lot of things when it premiered and all of those things were endlessly debated and picked apart by viewers with occasionally baffling agendas. But ten episodes later it's just a show—a fantastic one—and the low-key surprises of "She Did" point to an increasingly rich and possibility-laden Season 2. No matter what happens between these characters in the future, a few things are clear: They'll still make mistakes, they'll still struggle to become adults, and they'll still provide us a constant reminder that being in one's twenties is totally overrated. All that plus Jessa will have more conversations while peeing.
What did you think of the Girls finale?
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