While the hairy leg we see at the beginning of last night’s Girls premiere is sadly not Lena Dunham’s (as I silently hoped and prayed), I for one am happy to welcome back Dunham’s naked body to my regularly scheduled programming! I know, I know, we’re not supposed to talk about how Lena Dunham has a less-than-great body and how that’s actually important for women and TV because . . . God, I don’t know. Because acknowledging a woman isn’t superhot is seen as the worst insult imaginable? As a lady with prominent back rolls, a double chin and creative control over this recap, however, I could not be more pleased to see Lena’s perfectly average looking boobies front and center, right where they belong.
Front and center and in Donald Glover’s face, actually. Seems that Hannah has moved on from Adam to Sandy since that fateful wedding reception. “This was fun at the beginning but it’s really hard to run with a boner,” Sandy pants as he chases Hannah around a bookstore. Since Sandy seems nice enough, there is a 100 percent chance Hannah will blow this relationship to hell. Hannah gives Sandy a list of things he can’t do (utter the word love in any context, etc.) as a means to protect herself from the “dementos and slugs and weirdos” she typically dates, which virtually guarantees Sandy will turn out to be some kind of secret troll after she lets her guard down. Of course, Hannah has yet to tell her demento ex about her new man, seeing as how Adam is still in a leg cast from being hit by that car. Muses Hannah, “I should probably wait until he can wipe himself.” Based on what his character was like the first 10 episodes of last season, she might be waiting forever.
It seems important to note that between snuggling with her boner-wielding gay ex-boyfriend roommate Elijah, sleeping with Sandy and nursing Adam back to health, Hannah’s life is full of men, all of whom she can hold at a distance. She’s living the dream, if the dream is never having to mature into a person who can deal with their loved ones’ vulnerabilities. The question of imbalanced love seems to be the premise of the season premiere. What happens when a person loves and needs you, and that love and need seems totally repellent? What happens when you tell someone that you’re just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love you, and instead of being thrilled, he or she is secretly praying you’re too drunk to remember staggering to their apartment. On a related note, how often can you hold your ex’s chamber pot while he fumbles with his wiener before you are leading him on? Once? “I came. You came. We all laughed,” Adams says by way of explaining their connection. “When you love someone, you don’t have to be nice all the time,” he adds. Of course, sometimes it’s when you don’t love someone that you feel obligated to be kind. If only Hannah could lead Adam outside, then run back toward the door like she does with Elijah’s drunk boyfriend George. What a great sequence that was! (A sequence that also reminded me how Girls is at heart a hilarious show about a bunch of quasi-jerks.)
Speaking of obligations, Marnie officially has none. Between her absent-minded boss forgetting to fire her over lunch (“I run a fucking art gallery. I can’t afford two employees,” her boss complains), lack of a love life and new living situation, Marnie is primed to spin out this season. In case anyone was wondering what specifically is wrong with her, Marnie’s mother pretty much explains it all. “You look . . . can I be honest? 30 years old,” points out Marnie’s mom (the flawlessly-cast Rita Wilson.) In one of the series’ best written scenes, we can see Marnie become incrementally more prudishness and proper as her mother bares down on to be more open, more free, more sexual. “Sometimes all you need is a pair of rough hands on your body,” Marnie’s mom informs her. “Honestly, I’m a little hurt that I can’t just be your friend.” She’s not like a regular mom, she’s a cool mom! A cool mom Marnie will be talking about in therapy soon!
But I’m getting ahead of myself. Most of the season premiere takes place at Hannah’s party, which acts as a perfect teapot for their collective tempest. Steeled for a meeting with her erstwhile lover Ray, Shoshanna arrives with her cute little dumb hat, her sage-burning mantra and her rage at being devirginized by a loser, and once again claims her place as my favorite character. If Ray ends up kissing a furious, befuddled Shosh near the pile of coats along her road to self-creation, so be it. As the Creator wills.
Really, the only thing that truly bugged me about tonight was all the passionate kissing. Two guys just grab two women and kiss them? Not in my Greenpoint, baby. In real life, Ray would have failed to sustain eye contact, then immediately gone home to write a passive-aggressive Tumblr post about it. But hey, this isn’t real life, this is HBO, which also explains why Elijah and Marnie totally have sex. After George gets ousted from the party, a drunk Elijah finds himself pondering his latent heterosexual side. “Bisexuals are like the last group you can make fun of. Bisexuals and Germans. And I happen to be both,” he explains. After he grabs her for a kiss, Elijah and Marnie immediately start boning. I’m pretty sure I don’t have to tell you he couldn’t stay hard and it ended with awkward silence and sputtered rationalizations. Oh, it’s good to be back.
All of which made for a great season premiere, I thought. The decision to have Marnie slip back into Charlie‘s bed (did anyone think for a hot second she was at Adam’s? No?) or have Hannah explicitly refuse Adam’s love (“I changed my mind.”) or show us a deliriously happy Jessa and Thomas Jane returning from their honeymoon are all interesting, weighty narrative choices. But having an impulsive bisexual character that might at any point have sex with anyone, even his ex-girlfriend’s best friend? Well, it’s the stuff dreams are made of. Thank you, Lena Dunham. See you and your Golden Globe-winning butt next week.