I joined ScreenCrush's Girls Talk with Britt Hayes, Kate Erbland, Allison Loring and Gwen Reyes this week. Check it out!
So Jessa up and married Thomas-John, the ugly rug-owning yuppie creep who thinks he's a DJ! Otherwise known as the wonderful Chris O'Dowd, so I hope and assume this means we'll be seeing plenty more of him next season. Jessa's wedding takes everyone by surprise, of course, but not so much me. Well, the groom being Thomas-John is a surprise, but after Jessa's talk with Kathryn Hahn last week (the entirely implausible one that drove Sarah crazy), it looks like Jessa might want to prove to herself that she's capable of settling down. Of course, she does it in her typically impetuous, all-in manner, and that will probably bite her in the ass...but you never know with Jessa. Although her toilet shrugging hardly convinces me that she actually does feel like a grown up now, sometimes the most bizarre, unlikely relationships are the ones that work. When Season Two premieres, I will be equally unsurprised if she and Thomas-John are already divorced, or if they're proving the haters wrong in nuptial bliss. Nothing Jessa does surprises me anymore. The girl is unpredictability incarnate, which means she defies all predictions. I'm just going to roll with her.
So how did the rest of the Girls react to Jessa's marital blitzkrieg? Some better than others.
Marnie was a delight in this episode, bucking convention by exhibiting no jealousy or censure at Jessa's spontaneous wedding, particularly considering their awkward past with the groom. ("Whassup, Marnie?") The moment she realizes what's happening, she grins and enjoys herself. She even looks more relaxed than usual with her "J-Lo at the Grammys" dress and wavy hair. She has a blast, avoids drama with Hannah, makes amends with an aghast Elijah and avoids ill-advised post breakup bathroom sex with Charlie, who seems eager to step out on Tiny Navajo in her absence. Marnie, instead, finds herself attracted to the World's Corniest Wedding Emcee (played by Bobby Moynihan of SNL), and she shoves cake in her mouth and then gives him a big kiss, and I love her for it.
Shoshanna, however, does not handle the wedding well. She has an ominous feeling about the day to begin with, and she's already frustrated and angry that everyone in New York City except herself seems to be getting laid. So when she learns that her cousin didn't bother to tell her that she's getting married - and when she realizes that she's committed the ultimate faux pas by wearing white to a wedding - she is pissed. This provides the perfect opportunity for Ray to swoop in and tell her that he hasn't been able to stop thinking about her since the Crackcident. Let's give three cheers to Ray and Shosh, shall we? These two total weirdos seem ideally suited for one another. Shoshanna wants Ray to stay out of her "emotional way." Ray isn't sure if he deserves all of the responsibility inherent in taking Shoshanna's virginity, but he "probably" does. Ray gets Shosh - he gets that under her neuroses and virginity and spazzy ways, she's brave and honest and adorable. I love these two together.
It's funny how the men have turned around this season, isn't it? Well, Charlie's still pretty gross, but I used to loathe Ray and Adam and Thomas-John, and I really like all of them now. A big complaint a lot of viewers had about Girls is how improbably villainous all of the men were, but I think that was intentional, because it was from the women's perspectives. And once all of the women got over themselves and started seeing the men for who they really are, they realized they're mostly great - and the audience realized it too.
And that brings us to Hannah and Adam, who have diametrically opposed reactions to Jessa's wedding. Adam told Hannah that once he's committed, he's committed, and boy is he. He loves her, he wants to move in with her, he wants to slow-dance with her at weddings. He tears up at the beauty of Jessa and Thomas-John's union; he's very moved. Hannah is caustic and skeptical, and she casually invites Elijah to be her new roommate because she assumes Adam won't mind. She breaks his heart, and Adam rightly calls her out for chasing him like he's the Beatles and then shrugging him off as soon as she gets him.
We talked about this some in the Girls Talk linked above, but I think what's really happening with Hannah is a fear of complacency. A lot of writers - particularly young writers - have this fear; I had it myself. The fear that being healthy and happy means that we're boring and we won't have anything to write about; the belief that true genius is borne of tragedy and solitude. It's bullshit, naturally. Happy people can be brilliant writers too, and if you require tragedy to write, then you're just not working hard enough at it the rest of the time. But I think Hannah sees contentment looming and she unconsciously pushes it away - and then of course instantly wants it back the moment it disappears over the horizon. Hannah wants to want, not have.
The first season ends with Hannah lost and burgled, sitting barefoot on a morning beach eating leftover wedding cake in silence. It's a beautifully introspective ending that I think wraps up this season on just the right note. Hannah has no idea where she is in life, she makes mistakes and chases away happiness like it's a flock of birds eyeing her lunch. But she never fails to enjoy the little things, and I think that's what I love about Hannah. She dances to Robyn and eats cupcakes in the bathtub and runs after the ice cream truck and watches the sun rise over the ocean. I love Jessa because she's impetuous and cavalier and joyful. I love Marnie because she's loyal and scared yet taking risks for the first time in her life. I love Shosh because she's courageous and eccentric and outspoken. I love all four of these women, and I love them best because they're flawed.
So Season Two - what do we think? Will Hannah chase Adam again? Will she get him back? Will we get to see her embracing some new romances (like Hot Teacher)? Will Marnie be dating Bobby Moynihan or enjoying the single life? Will Jessa be happily married, miserably married, divorced, separated, annulled or cuckolding? Will Ray and Shosh be dating, or will she be a swingin' single? Will Hannah and Marnie eventually return to their wonderfully rare friendship they've both so taken for granted this season? And most importantly - will Elijah be in every episode now that he and Hannah are roommies?!