TV Talk: GIRLS 1.07 “Welcome To Bushwick a.k.a. The Crackcident”
"Welcome to Bushwick a.k.a. The Crackcident" will be heretofore called "Welcome to Bushwick," because that episode title is unwieldy as hell. But what a fun episode! I'd recently bemoaned the lack of equal pacing on Girls, with one woman always left without a meaty storyline because the other three (or often just Marnie and Hannah) take up the lion's share of screentime. And of course last week was just The Hannah Show - not that I'm complaining, because it made for a terrific episode. But this week brought all of the ladies together and looking bangin' for a Waterworld- like warehouse party in Bushwick that takes a catastrophic turn for each of them. But first - a jamming title card!
Marnie smugly approaches Charlie, confident in her ability to still slay him with her gorgeous purple backless dress and high ponytail. But after a cordial greeting, she wigs when she sees him "climbed like a gym class rope by a tiny Navajo." Yup, ladies and gentlemen: Charlie has moved on. And congrats to him, I say! The tiny Navajo in question seems pretty fun, she's cute and she's definitely into Charlie. She doesn't appear entirely substantial - she thinks Marnie's a Real Housewife - but christ knows Charlie could use some commitment-free fun after the drag dating Marnie must have been.
I still really like Marnie despite the fact that she acts like a real a-hole in this episode. She dumped Charlie in essentially the worst way possible, and she needs to leave the boy alone. But her feelings of jealousy and consternation are understandable here. Two weeks is a very short time for Charlie to gain a new girlfriend. That's his prerogative, and it's the sort of thing she should be bitching about over beers with her friends. Don't call the poor dude a sociopath to his face! Not that he seemed to mind much. He makes out with Tiny Navajo and Marnie bitches and moans to everyone who will listen...including Elijah! I don't like the way any of these ladies talk to Elijah, by the way. Sure, down-lowing Hannah was kind of uncool, but none of them has any respect for the pressure he must have been under to remain closeted, and how freeing it must be for him to be out now. Quit calling him "queer" and "fruity" immediately please, okay?
Next we have Jessa, who looks like a fabulous exotic bird and sums up her entire life philosophy with the following phrase: "As jaded as I am, I hold out hope that the next party will be the best party ever." That's a beautiful way to live and the reason I adore Jessa so much. Unfortunately, she later dubs the party amateur hour and only finds amusement when Ponytail Dad arrives. UGH PONYTAIL DAD. What are you doing there?! Jessa does her friendly (and admittedly flirty) best to help him get over his miserable mid-life crisis, but when he ends up in the hospital after being assaulted by some crusty punks provoked by Jessa's big mouth, he asks her to come home with him. And this show continues to surprise on all fronts as she declines. Thank god! He cries and calls her a tease and verifies every unpleasant instinct I had about him.
Shoshanna, looking quite perky in a sequined skirt that she quickly removes under crack-related duress, has been waiting at the party for two hours and is so happy to see her tardy friends that she could murder them! She stumbles up on Jessa and Ray as they flirt and it turns out she inadvertently smoked some crack. It's happened to the best of us. Jessa offers to be her crack spirit guide, but then she has to leave to deal with Ponytail Dad's bullshit and Ray takes up the mantle of crack spirit guide. Crack spirit guide! I just love that arrangement of words so very much. Shoshanna takes off like a wily little jackrabbit, and Ray sweetly chases her down the street. Ray entirely wins me over this week - all of the guys do, actually! Except Ponytail Dad. He takes an attack to the groin when Shosh thinks he's chasing her with sinister intent, which she then admits might have something to do with the crack. So she gives him a non-sexual groin massage and I celebrate the initiation of an intriguing new romantic prospect on the show.
And finally we have Hannah, who looks adorable in a shirt I totally own and a saucy little ponytail. She finds Adam, looking like the original man and in a shirt no less! He's dancing with some lesbians and charming away my last resistance with his dorky moves. Adam and Hannah dance exactly the way I like to dance, and that makes me happy. Adam's friend Tako is also pretty great and I hope we see more of her. But when she reveals to Hannah that Adam's in AA, Hannah realizes she doesn't know him as well as she thought she did. Adam points out that's because Hannah has no interest in actually knowing him. She only wants to have weird sex with him and then leave to write about it in her essay book because Adam makes a good story, not a good human. They have a compelling scene and I find myself understanding their dynamic in a totally different way, which is a pretty marvelous bit of writing on Dunham's part. But Marnie pulls up in a cab and scares Adam off by trumpeting some crazy business before Hannah can delve any further. Marnie's only being protective of her friend here; all she knows of Adam is what Hannah chooses to tell her, and like us, her picture of Adam has been colored by Hannah's perspective. This week we get to see a bit of Adam independent of Hannah, and it makes all the difference.
The girls still don't interact with each other as much as I'd like this week; I especially love watching Jessa connect with her friends, for instance. I'd love more more moments like when she asks "What the fuck is she doing?" and grins in admiration at Hannah's crazy Adam stalking. But "Welcome to Bushwick" is a very strong episode. It's fun, well-written by Dunham and executive producer Jennifer Konner, and beautifully directed by Martha Marcy May Marlene cinematographer Jody Lee Lipes. It's an episode that marries dance parties and crackcidents with deep character reveals. It's hard to fit all of that in half an hour, and this episode manages admirably.
Sarah asked last week how I feel about Hannah at this point in the season, and the simple fact is I adore her. She's a mess, but she's honest and I continue to appreciate her more every week. As she, Adam and Marnie sit crowded in the backseat of the cab, she smiles as she thinks of how she'll write up this latest adventure. She may be selfish and she may be detached, but she's irrepressible. And yeah, every week I'm more impressed with Adam Driver's performance, as he piles layers upon layers to the character of Adam. Sarah, do you wish the women interacted more with each other rather than others? Are you as surprised as I am that Jessa didn't sleep with Ponytail Dad? Can you forgive Marnie's selfish behavior, or is she veering into villain territory for you?