Girls – Episode 1-4 Review – “Dear Diary…”
by Jill Mader on May 8, 2012

I’m continuing to really enjoy Girls, and I think the series is only getting stronger as it goes along. We’re only four episodes into a ten episode season, and I think the show is already hitting its stride.

This week, Hannah worked at a paying job, Jessa realized she might suck as a nanny, a guy was a jerk to Shoshanna and everything fell apart for Marnie.

Let’s start with Hannah. I love that she’s got a job now because, let’s face it, girlfriend needed to pull it together. She has coworkers to interact with (and, critics take note, a person of color!) and a weird but super nice boss. I think the show has a lot of material here.

Hannah’s big issue this week was not only getting a gross photo text from Adam, but then getting a follow up text saying “SRY”, that it was meant for someone else. Everyone including Hannah herself thought she should dump him, but after delivering her empowered, I’m-leaving-you-you-jerk speech, Hannah ended up right back in bed with the loser. Sigh. Well, she got a job. She can’t figure everything out immediately. And let’s face it, we’ve all either been Hannah in this situation or have been Hannah’s best friend. I certainly know more than one girl who keeps going back to a lousy guy.

Jessa’s realizing that having a job is lame, and that kids can disappear if you don’t watch them. Jessa is still my least favorite character, but that’s what makes her real. There are people this obnoxious in the world, and I do dislike them. I will say, I didn’t love how all the other nannies were other ethnicities and couldn’t fathom the idea that Jessa was also a nanny. They thought she was a movie star? Really? I have read The Nanny Diaries. There are white nannies in New York. In fact, I almost joined a program once where you could go be an “au pair” in New York and they’d let you take one college course at a school there for free, but then I didn’t because I hate kids and learning. But yeah, there are young, white, female nannies out there.

Shoshanna bumped into an old camp friend on the street, and pretty soon ended up in bed with him. I love her character, and I think the drastic difference between Shoshanna and Zosia Mamet’s character on Mad Man shows what a great actress she is. Shoshanna is so anxious, insecure and desperate to please, whether she’s talking to her cousin or trying to impress a guy. She wanted to have sex, even though it was under completely unromantic circumstances, and was crushed when the guy said he didn’t want to be her first. Does anyone else think Shoshanna and Charlie might hit it off?

Yes, Charlie. Poor, naive Charlie. He was hanging out with Ray at Hannah and Marnie’s apartment when Ray began reading Hannah’s diary. A total breach of privacy, but you can’t un-read something. When the four girls assembled at Charlie’s show later, we found out what he’d read. He sang a new song “Hannah’s Diary” that revealed he’d read all about how Hannah thinks Marnie should stop whining and break up with Charlie already.

Hannah wasn’t wrong. Marnie complains to her girlfriend all the time about her boyfriend, something we all do. Hannah wrote her private thoughts on that, both witty and contemplative, in her journal, because she’s a writer and that’s something writers do. No one else was ever supposed to see it. I don’t think Marnie is really mad at Hannah, but she was hurt and embarrassed and, probably once it’s all over, relieved. Now she can go be with that hot artist guy.

As always, there were a lot of little things I liked in the episode, from Hannah’s awful drawn-on eyebrows thanks to her new coworker, to Charlie and Ray trying to build Marnie a coffee table out of trash from the street, to Shoshanna telling Jessa “I’m a student” as though Jessa didn’t already know (or cared, for that matter). What did you guys think of “Hannah’s Diary”?





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