Sometimes, when watching Girls, I am struck by the layered storytelling, the unassuming simplicity that manages to depict raw truths and the pure genius it takes to make something so out there so relatable. And sometimes I just think, this is fucking weird. “On All Fours” was one such episode.
Any hopes that these girls would get it even almost together has gone out the window. Living alone with nothing but her own manic thoughts, Hannah’s OCD has reached a fever pitch. She’s busy scooting around pantsless on hard wood floors and jamming Q tips inter her ear drums and somehow this doesn’t make for a gripping memoir of a lost generation. Instead of musings on friendships, Hannah’s publisher wants torrid exploits and if they could possibly get Hannah arrested all the better. He makes the consoling suggestion that, since her own life isn’t sufficient, perhaps the book should become a novel. Because nothing inspires like being told your life is boring. So now, Hannah has two weeks to write her first novel, which will probably be about having sex with teenagers and doing heroin, her OCD has reached debilitating levels and she has no one to confide in because all her friends are just as messed up as she is. This will end well.
Marnie, on the other hand, somehow manages to get her way no matter how messed up she is. As Charlie continues his success, Marnie continues to force her way back into his life. After Charlie forgets about their lunch plans (a pretty obvious sign), Marnie worms her way into a party invite at his overbearingly hip office. Therein, she continues towards her newfound dream of being a singer by performing the strangest version of “Stonger” by Kanye West ever attempted. So of course Charlie has sex with her in an empty office. Note to all future desperate exes, unless you look like Alison Williams and live in some sort of scripted reality, all the striped down raps in the world will not make this work for you.
“On All Fours” did provide a little homage to the first season in that Adam was the weirdest part of the episode. Last week I was surprised to be happy for Adam’s good fortune and this week reminded me why it was so surprising; Adam is not particularly likeable. But, I don’t think that’s the intention. Truthfully, I’m not sure what the intention of that storyline was, but it felt like it was attempting to explain why Adam and Hannah should be together. The entire episode went to great lengths to show how incompatible Natalia and Adam are (she likes Sandra Bullock! And engagement parties! And normal sex!), and then highlighted how evenly match Adam had been with Hannah by giving us the kind of sex scene that was common during the Adam/Hannah era of the show and making Natalia completely close minded about the whole thing.
But really, when surrounded by people making out with doormen, throwing themselves at men they’ve dumped and running around the city with no pants on, a girl who has a job, has friends who get engaged before they get married (and presumably know the fiancé’s last name), knows what she likes (and doesn’t like) in sex, and isn’t afraid to ask for it doesn’t seem like the weird one. It seems so refreshingly normal in this sea of “raw truths” that it just brings to light how unrelatable these girls can be.
Furthermore, it doesn’t at all speak to some great love between Adam and Hannah just because she would have allowed him to make her crawl all around his apartment and come wherever he liked without a peep. It doesn’t even speak to the contrived “they’re so messed up they belong together” theory. It’s just a reminder of how horrible Adam was to Hannah when they were together, how horrible she was to him after they broke up. The last time they saw each other the cops were called and now this time seeing each other drove Adam to relapse. These are not people that belong together. These are people that belong in therapy.
Type your email address in the box and click the "create subscription" button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.