Monday, January 28, 2013

Girls Recap: You're From the Seventies, But I'm a Nineties Bitch

Posted By on Mon, Jan 28, 2013 at 9:45 AM

I hated basically everything about this episode.
  • I hated basically everything about this episode.

Can we all just agree to pretend that this episode never happened? Because, did it even happen? It didn't seem to happen. It didn't, after all, seem real in any way. And I wanted it to seem real. But it didn't seem real. It started off real enough, and then it all went horribly, horribly wrong. It could have gone in such a good direction, what with Hannah finally getting a freelance writing job from Jazzhate.com—which, I guess, Buzzfeed? Vice? xoJane?— and being told to go outside her comfort zone to write something great. And Jazzhate pays $200 for an article? That is crazy money. So, the pay structure isn't exactly real, but at least its relative unreality explains why Hannah would compromise her "weird nasal passages" by snorting massive amounts of coke in order to "make the magic happen." Because, as anyone who has ever done coke or been around people on coke knows, it's pure magic, like newly driven snow that tastes like aspirin going down the back of your throat, making you really thirsty. That kind of snow. That kind of magic.

So, after Hannah has determined that she will do a lot of drugs instead of embarking on a threesome (too complicated as she has enough trouble "focusing on one other person's body") the only issue is where to get the drugs. Which leads Hannah to do the one smart thing she does all episode—she goes to see Jessa. Unfortunately, this visit with Jessa and Shoshanna is all too brief because stupid fucking Marnie (more on her later, ugh) recommends that Hannah get coke from Laird, the junkie neighbor who lives downstairs from Hannah and always hangs out by the mailboxes. Thus, we only have a few brief shining moments with Jessa, in which we see her selling her clothes on the street, including a blouse that one of Tom Petty's Heartbreakers complimented her on because of its well-cut sleeves. This seems realistic to me because I went to a Tom Petty concert once, as a favor to a friend, and all of the Heartbreakers and Tom Petty seemed like very nice guys who would compliment a lady's blouse. Anyway, Shoshanna agrees with Marnie that Hannah should ask Laird because "all the junkies in my building totally hang out by the mailboxes." And so Hannah is off to get some drugs and write an article that she claims will "expose all of my vulnerabilities to the entire Internet." This is, without a doubt, exactly what the Internet needs more of these days.

Hannah visits Laird, who is apparently now clean, though perhaps addicted to pomegranate juice, and gets some drugs after a little bit of friendly/creepy neighbor bantering. We do learn Hannah's WiFi handles are "MuffinsAreTasty" and "MadameOvaries" which, great, though I am still partial to my neighbors' handles, which include "LoudWhale" and "DangBrooklynGurl" and "SunnyfromtheMob". The last one scares me, but in the right ways.

Coke friends.
  • Coke friends.

And then we see Marnie, at her awful waitressing job that involves old men grabbing her ass and ordering Sauvignon Blanc, wearing her "slutty Von Trapp family" uniform. And who should Marnie run into but Booth Jonathan? He asks her when the last time she had sex was and because that is such an effective line, Marnie immediately leaves work to go to his house so that she can be completely tortured by a Duncan Sheik song and videos of babies crying and maggots squirming. The combination of 90s music and images of suffering dogs really get Marnie going, so after Booth finishes making espresso and checking his email on an AOL ACCOUNT, they fuck. And Marnie laughs when it's over. And if I had any faith in Marnie as a person, I would think she was laughing at him, because he had her describe a doll's mood to him during sex, but I think Marnie is horrible and I think she liked the sex and I think she enjoyed the whole doll thing because she got to call the doll sassy even though she meant that it was she, Marnie, who was sassy. Again, Marnie is the worst.

So, now it's time for Hannah and Elijah to do all the coke and first Hannah needs to put on a horrible outfit that Elijah selects because it reminds him of a girl he knew in middle school who had fucked "her uncle and her step-dad." And since nothing prevents Hannah and Elijah from doing coke in the middle of the afternoon, or at least "no rule but human decency" which does not exist for them, they get to it. And this begins a strange coke experience that seems a little more touchy-feely, a little more MDMA-y than most coke experiences, but what do I know? I mean, they definitely talk a lot. So, that's real enough. And Hannah writes on her wall, like it's a big canvas, which is really only something that 20-somethings do when they're high. So, that was real? I guess I was disappointed in this mostly because good drug scenes, like the best coke scene ever in "Boogie Nights", just put you right there in the scene and make you want to do massive amounts of drugs yourself. Hannah and Elijah did not make me feel like doing that. At all.

And in terms of the best part of being coked up, which is the awkward, therapeutic confessions you make to your friends, Hannah really has only one, clearly supposed to be revelatory moment, when she and Elijah are dancing at Greenhouse. Hannah proclaims, "It is my greatest dream to have sex with myself, but also my biggest nightmare." Which, I guess that's supposed to be be indicative of her narcissism, but that is one of the least narcissistic things about her. That's just normal sexual curiosity. I think?

More Jessa.
  • More Jessa.

Anyway, there's dancing, and shirt exchanging, and line after line on top of a toilet seat. Gross! But, I guess, real. And Elijah confesses to having fucked Marnie, which, predictably, freaks Hannah out. Even after Elijah assures Hannah that he "didn't even cum in her" and that he "lost his boner" and that Marnie is "very ribby", Hannah is still upset enough to track Marnie down. On their way to find Marnie, Hannah and Elijah run into Laird in Metro Drugs where Elijah asks, "Are we 'In the Night Kitchen'?" Laird has been following Hannah all night. Because? He wants to protect her, "like the mom in 'Extremely Close and Extremely Loud'." Sweet? No. Not really.

But they all head over to see Marnie anyway, interrupting her conversation with Booth about the differences between growing up in the 80s versus the 90s. The 90s were "suburban" and therefore not as real. Anyway, because it is "a Wednesday night" and Hannah is "alive" she decides to confront Marnie and make Marnie feel like a horrible person—which Marnie is, but not for this reason—and it's just kind of miserable. Also, Hannah informs Elijah that he can't live with her anymore, because he "ruined her article, ruined her night, ruined her relationship with Marnie, and ruined her relationship with cocaine, which could have been her favorite drug." Which, if Hannah can't get a good article out of this? Then she's a worse writer than I would have otherwise thought. Hannah storms out with Laird and goes back to her building, where she decides to fuck him so that she can write about it. And, really, Hannah's made stupider decisions in just this episode alone, but still. This episode was probably my least favorite of the series. It felt like every opportunity to parody something genuinely ridiculous—like what coked-up people are like and how absurd many New York artists are—was blown. The situations weren't inherently absurd, but they were rendered unrecognizable because they were handled with zero nuance and lost total touch with reality, which sucks because coke talk and the New York art scene are so perfectly exploitable. Instead, this was predictable and banal. And, when making art world references, try a little bit harder than Damien Hirst. Everybody's heard of Damien Hirst, but nobody cares.

Follow Kristin Iversen on twitter @kmiversen

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