Okay, okay, okay. Sorry. I’ve had this sinus thing that turned into this upper respiratory thing, and essentially I slept a lot last week. Then I had all kinds of real-life stuff to take care of, since I had been sleeping during real life. You all need to find a way to pay me to make you laugh about what I think about TV shows, then you could have something new every day. I watch a lot of TV. Regardless, none of my real-life stuff has taken me to the place Hannah’s real-life stuff has taken her to. I’m worried about everyone right now, Pritchard doesn’t agree with me, he wants to grow up to be Charlie, I don’t think even Charlie’s on solid footing right now. Want to know why? Get to clickin’…
Episode 8 – “It’s Back”
Adam is in bed, either he’s been drinking, or that is some seriously bad milk. Hannah is walking down the street when she receives and ignores a call from him. She looks left then right 8 times, she arrives home opening and closing her door 8 times, she opens a bag and eats 8 Utz potato chips, all at once, which she chews 8 times. Uh oh.
Shosh is worried about Jessa, Ray and Marnie are unconcerned. Hannah’s friends are putting her lack of caring on this subject, and apparent disappearance from their lives, up to working so hard on her book. It just occurred to me that these three are roommates. In a studio apartment. That would be the best bad reality TV show ever. Suddenly Shosh mentions that they forgot to talk about Charlie selling his app for a very large sum of money. Marnie was completely clueless about any of this. The fabric of Shosh’s life is… something, she sees the richest Hindi she knows, Radhika (Anjili Pal), who seems like a pretty annoying hipster in “retro roller blades”. Ray, as he should, dislikes her on sight. It appears that Ray & Shosh are about to have their first separate night out since coupling up.
At AA, Adam tells the story of he and Hannah, and volunteers to buy cookies for the next meeting. His forthrightness and honesty cause fellow alcoholic Cloris (Carol fucking Kane) to want Adam to go out with her daughter Natalia. This scene was the MOST attractive I’ve ever found Adam. He is indeed cuter than a dimple on a bug’s ass here.
Somehow, Marnie wanders into Charlie’s office, where someone is trying to bro him into going to Jack Johnson on the 29th. The awkward is awkward. Marnie is not good at life right now at all. She says she’s there for support, Charlie awesomely asks, “From me or for me?” He then explains that the app, Forbid, prevents you from calling someone you shouldn’t call. You have to pay $10 to call people you shouldn’t, Marnie was the inspiration. Awesome. Their meeting is interupted by some sort of office lip dub, “Dougie” flash mob.
Back in his apartment, Adam leaves Cloris’ daughter Natalia a message. He does weird shit like I do when he’s on the phone, wandering all about. Turns out Natalia has a land line and was screening, so that makes her a little weird, right?
Hannah’s parents are in town for a conference. She’s meeting them to see Judy Collins at a cabaret. Hannah looks lovely, but clearly not okay. She’s counting. Her parents are very, very worried. What’s back is Hannah’s OCD. I’ve read about Lena Dunham’s own OCD, she’s got lots of firsthand on this. They fight, and when Hannah walks out, she bumps into someone, then has to bump into him 8 times. Judy Collins tries to shame her. In the bathroom, she repeats “You are fine and good.” then “You are good and fine.” 8 times. No bueno.
When Natalia arrives at the restaurant, she’s being played by Shiri Appleby, who is incredibly gorgeous, and into Adam. Turns out she works for a private eye, he lets her be the decoy sometimes, so she loves it. They’re actually having a good time, although this all seems really normal for Adam. Too normal.
Shosh arrives at Radhika’s impromptu and meets the cute doorman, who is checking out her ass hardcore. She’s whining about Ray to a fully bored Radhika. Shosh bolts, but makes out with the doorman in the mail room first. When Marnie arrives home, she goes off to Ray about how “sad messes” like Charlie live the dream, and Marnie who “has her shit together” flail behind. You don’t really flail behind if you have your shit together. Ray gets real with Marnie about her dreams, turns out she wants to sing. She sings a little Nora Jones for Ray and it’s pretty good. He thinks she should strike while the iron is hot, cause she can’t dress like a magician’s assistant forever.
Hannah’s parents get her to a therapist. They want to fix her and go to cheeseball New York landmarks. Multiples of 8 are a problem for her. She’s no longer on her meds. She’s got a lot of stress. Hannah’s pretty smart, but self-deluded, so she’s not seeing the problems. Her parents are very concerned. I am too.
Episode 9, “On All Fours”
Adam and Natalia are returning from a movie, he clearly hated it, she clearly did not, regardless, Natalia’s ready to have sex now. Adam’s been super-nice all week, so she thinks it’s time. There are ground rules, not something Adam’s used to, he likes how clear she is with him. After Hannah, I guess so.
Speaking of Hannah, she’s picking a wedge 8 times in an elevator on the way to a meeting with her editor. He hates her eBook so far. He wants to know where the sexual failure, the pudgy-face slicked with semen and sadness, went. Ugh. She mentions the sexcapade with whathisface in the graveyard, and now her editor wants a novel. Okey doke.
Shosh is pulling a classic over-nice to compensate for doing something bad by serving Ray tea. It’s a good thing Shosh is hyper-manic and weird, or he’d be totally on to her. Marnie is singing in the other room, she wants Ray to help her lay down a track.
Hannah is scooting around the floor of her apartment, eating olives and gets a splinter in her butt. Apparently, while she was out buying supplies, to get it out, she also bought q-tips, one of which she shoves all the way into her ear canal. She calls her parents crying, then goes to the hospital, in just a t-shirt. The disaffected doctor is unimpressed by her mental troubles. Hannah is finally recognizing her troubles. Not enough yet, she wants the doctor to clean her other ear, because it’s feeling “uneven”. She also wants to keep the q-tip. This won’t go well.
Marnie randomly shows at Charlie’s work again, oh wait, not she doesn’t there were concrete lunch plans that Charlie forgot about. They’re up to 20,000 MAUs (monthly average users) which is a big deal. He invites her to a party later to celebrate. At the party, Shosh and Ray look highly uncomfortable, Shosh’s head, it’s um, interesting. Ray hates everything.
Adam and Natalia are at her friend’s engagement party. I’m pretty sure Natalia’s friends are awful people. The engagement party girl thinks Adam looks like an old-timey criminal. Outside, Hannah wanders by in her dirty t-shirt, exactly what you want to look like when you run into your ex. She could have solved that by putting on pants, at least, Adam points that out. He also mentions that he has a girlfriend, and that Hannah needs to get her shit together. Back inside, Adam decides to drink. Bad. Seeing Hannah has shaken him up. It’s also shaken Hannah up.
Shosh is talking to some dude, Ray is irritated and Marnie wants to know how good her voice is, because she has something special planned. That special thing is a slow version of Kanye West’s “Stronger”, it is terrible and bad and awful and awkward and it just keeps going. It causes Charlie to take her into his office, tell her she doesn’t seem okay, and then have sex with her. So, his whole “you will never have any of this again” claim from a few episodes ago was patently false. Charlie isn’t okay, because he doesn’t want any of this, so he’s backsliding. Everyone needs to get their shit together.
Ray confronts Shosh about her weird behavior. She admits to holding hands with the doorman, I guess that’s what the kids are calling it today. He’s pretty okay with it, Shosh seems to have been hoping this was the end.
Back at Adam’s place, shit’s about to get weird. Natalia comments that Adam’s place is “darker” than he is, no, it’s really not, she’s about to find that out. At first, it’s kind of hot when Adam tells Natalia to get on all fours and crawl to his bed. She’s uncomfortable with what’s happening, clearly, Adam is reverting to his dark places. He pulls out and jerks off, finishing on her chest. Natalia doesn’t think she liked that. I know she didn’t like it. I didn’t like it either. Adam wants this to be the end of their relationship, that’s why he did this. The drinking and the bad, aggressive, violent sex. Aggressive sex can be hot, this was not that kind. It was, well, I didn’t like it.
(Okay, so the internet is telling me that a lot of people considered this to be a depiction of rape. I can sort of see where they’re coming from here, it’s not what Whoopi Goldberg once horribly called “rape rape”, it’s not what some would term date rape, in the strictest sense. It did cross a line of consent from simply bad sex to sexual violence. If I were Natalia, I don’t think I would have much to do with him again, but I don’t know if I would call it rape. I’ve watched it twice. I’ve, and this is the first time I’m saying this in any sort of public way with my own, real name attached, about 5 people in my life know, so please no body freak out. I was date-raped, in college. It was bad, and scary, and I said no, and I still couldn’t call it what it was for a long time afterward. I’ve dealt with it, there are still triggers, this scene wasn’t one. I don’t associate what happened that night with sex, it was about power and it never enters my brain when I’m in a sexual situation with someone I want to be with. What happened to me was bad, but I’m okay now. In retrospect, I can partially credit that to the incredibly sweet, caring, gentle boyfriend I had after that incident, and he doesn’t even know. My experience certainly does not make me the arbiter of what is and is not a consensual sexual situation for every person. Was Natalia comfortable with what happened between her and Adam? Absolutely not. Did she feel powerless to stop him? Probably. Was this about power for Adam? Actually, I think so. He ignored every cue she was giving him, even the “no” about going down on her, especially that. Man, I may have come all the way back around to calling this rape, but I’m still conflicted. Is it because I, and by extension we, aren’t used to seeing something like this happen on television? Something so difficult and ambiguously presented. Something so real-life and all too commonplace for so many girls and women. I’m at odds with how to take it, maybe that’s how the artists involved intended the scene to be. Possibly because women don’t always know how to interpret or perceive or process sexual violence that is perpetrated against them. Society is pretty shit for teaching us how to do that without blaming ourselves. And, ladies, it is never our fault. Bottom line.)
In her bathroom, Hannah is counting again. She takes out the q-tip out of the hospital baggie and begins digging in her other ear with it. Oh, honey.
I’m seriously worried about EVERYONE. Marnie is a manic mess who is terribly deep in denial and is going to think Charlie is her boyfriend again. Charlie is having success foisted upon him that he doesn’t want and doesn’t think he deserves, he’s going to fuck it up on purpose. Shosh doesn’t want to be with Ray anymore, but doesn’t know how to get out of it. Ray is way too into Shosh and I still predict a full meltdown for him. Adam is drinking again and rapidly devolving into the worst version of himself. Hannah is shoving q-tips into her motherfucking ears, this is bad. BAD, I SAY! And, season finale next week, so I guess we’ll all find out just how bad, huh?