Girls: 6.02 Hostage Situation
”That’s my best friend by the way. She’s, like, stuck on this, like, psychosexual hamster wheel with this total fucknugget.”
If the Girls season opener, last week, brought the slapstick comedy and occasional cringe, episode two Hostage Situation brings the odd titter amid the tragic. Don't get me wrong, it’s still funny but the humour is definitely found during the more awkward and disturbing moments. A balancing act which, let’s face it, Dunham has down. If there were any doubts about Marnie and the fucknugget, sorry Desi, the pre-credit scene puts those to bed, so to speak, in borderline mortifying fashion as Marnie climaxes but Desi struggles. Her facial expressions are hilarious.
There’s a trip to Poughkeepsie planned and Hannah has been roped into going too, to keep the couple in their “house of lies”. As Elijah quite rightly points out, she doesn’t have to go but then when has Hannah ever done anything glaringly obvious? Plus, it gives her the opportunity to work on her article about Staten Island’s last remaining sex cult. As a side note, kudos to the genius who dressed Andrew Rannells in the “I survived the 3rd season of Ally McBeal T-shirt. And nowt else.
Upstate, Hannah is gifted a bone china tea-set by glamorous third-rail survivor and dog lover, Joy Bryant. She who, allegedly, gave up a career in fashion to “live her truth” selling secondhand junk in Poughkeepsie. The accident gave her psychic ability and she can tell Hannah’s life depends on her having the teapot, and just like the referential Teen Witch it does seems to have a magical effect on Hannah and calms her completely, in light of the Desi and Marnie scenes. The pair are ridiculous.
In Hannah’s absence, Elijah has reluctantly agreed to “hang out” with Shoshanna at a business mixer for successful W.E.M.U.N. Shosh and Jessa record a birthday message for their grandma, at Jessa’s convenience obviously thus reminding us that they are, in fact, related. I miss Shosh’s energy, she does seem to get less screen-time than the others and can only hope that there is a decent conclusion to her story arc. Something good needs to happen for her. Jessa, of course, crashes the soirée dressed as a professional women i.e. 80s yuppie/Working Girl extra.
Once at the cabin, things take a turn for the former Mr and Mrs Harperin as she opens his “private” briefcase and discovers his mason jar of Oxycontin. Desi has always been somewhat of a question mark. I mean does the man own a jumper without holes? He does appear drippy and almost-always stoned, “it looks like someone in the Pacific Northwest kinit a man”, so okay, this isn't *that* surprising but that’s two-for-two drug/Marnie addicts if we include Charlie.
Desi goes ballistic, I mean batshit, complete meltdown, with lots of yelling, (stunningly) ad-libbed dialogue, and snorting crushed pills off of the floor. It takes both girls to throw him out of the house and lock all doors and windows and for a brief moment, scenes inch towards horror with the psychopath attempting to get in, canted camera angles, and lots of hysteria. Ebon Moss-Bachrach really comes into own here, he’s quite brilliant - threatening with underlying pathetic, is I would’ve, thought hard to pull off - as he puts his fist through the window repeatedly screaming “bitches and c*nts”. His breakdown precipitates a really wonderful moment between the two best friends thought which sees our Hannah ostensibly saving the day.
“But seriously Marnie, it can be pretty hard to have observations about other people when you’re only thinking about yourself… I would know. And I’m not judging you, okay. I promise. I’m done with that. I’m done judging. I’m done being superior. I’m done acting like I know anything at all. None of us know fucking anything!”
Shosh is rejected by former friends and CEOs of “Jamba Jeans” Zeva (Barret Doss) and Rachel (Annie Q) over something really petty but linked, once again, to Jessa, who steals a plate of pigs-in-blankets and stands chomping away on the sidewalk as they leave. Shosh finally gets some things off her chest. As does Elijah, who makes the not-so-subtle link to the stealing of food to the stealing of boyfriends. Jessa still can’t understand why people are mad at her as they don’t even like Adam. She can’t bring herself to even mention the other one...oh whatsername...it begins with a 'H'...
Hostage Situation is a superlative episode and has left a few set-ups to be unpicked over the remaining eight weeks. How is Ray going to cope with Marnie’s deceit? What’s next for Shosh? Will Hannah and Jessa ever speak again? Etcetera, etcetera…
Free Man in Paris by Joni Mitchell ℗1974 Asylum Records
Chasing the Sun by Sara Bareilles ℗2013 Epic Records
Grizzly Bear by Angus & Julia Stone ℗2014 Republic records
Karma Police by Skeye ℗2013 No Robots Were Harmed