Sunday’s night’s episode of Girls contained a lot of surprises. It’s Back revealed that Hannah has OCD, Adam isn’t all that bad, Shoshanna is unfaithful and Marnie’s biggest dream is to sing. It was a lot to digest in 30 minutes.
Hannah has OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) and she counts things in multiples of 8. For example, she has to shut the door 8 times or move something 64 times. My understanding from the episode is that her OCD was really serious in high school, it got better while she was on medication but she stopped taking it and now it’s back. Hannah is the main character so I assumed we knew all about her and I assumed that she couldn’t hide something like a mental illness for almost 2 seasons. I was wrong. While Hannah’s OCD doesn’t define her, it is something she struggles with on a constant basis. Lena Dunham has admitted that she has OCD herself and wanted to write about it so people could “feel like their own emotional distress is normalized a little.” Aside from shedding some light on OCD and mental illness, this was some much needed character information on Hannah. I harp on Hannah for thinking her life is so hard when she’s very privileged in a lot of ways, but maybe I shouldn’t be so quick to judge. Even though we may think we know someone, we really have no idea what they may be dealing with at any given time.
I have not exactly been Adam’s biggest fan; in fact I’m often quite critical of him. I’ve never really gotten over the way he treated Hannah in early season 1, and I think he’s creepy and kind of a loser. In this episode, we see Adam at an AA meeting, where he talks about his alcoholism as well as his relationship with Hannah. It was good to see things from Adam’s perspective; he is truly heartbroken over Hannah. Adam ends up going on a date with the daughter of a woman in AA, and they get along fairly well. I don’t know if anything will come of it, but we got to see a new side of Adam – one where he was charming and funny and maybe even dating material.
Shoshanna is at the park with Ray when she runs into a friend she hasn’t seen in a while. There’s a lot of squealing and “oh my gods,” and excited hand motions. The friend, Redekah, invites Shoshanna to her “impromptu.” Shoshanna suddenly realizes that she’s “that girl” – the gurl that no one sees anymore because she spends all of her time with her boyfriend. Shoshanna ends up going to the party without Ray, but she doesn’t have a lot of fun, so she leaves. Then she makes out with the doorman. After making her sexual debut (I’m stealing some Laci Green terminology here), Shoshanna immediately entered into a relationship with Ray and things got very serious, very quickly. After all, he’s practically living with her now. Shoshanna is the youngest of all the gurls, and the most inexperienced. While she loves Ray, she also wants to experiment and do things like make out with sexy strangers. This is obviously a conflict of interest and time will tell how this will affect her relationship with Ray.
Marnie finds out that Charlie’s doing exceptionally well professionally and this upsets her on 2 levels. 1, she’s bothered by the fact that her ex is doing better than she is, and 2, she’s upset that everyone around her is achieving things and she isn’t. She has a really honest conversation with Ray where he asks her, “what’s your dream?” Marnie’s response is that she wants to sing. This came as a shock to both Ray and viewers, since the only time we’ve seen Marnie sing is karaoke with Elijah. Ray tells her that if that’s what she truly wants to do then she needs to pursue it and “stop being a cartographer and become an explorer.”
After watching It’s Back, I have a lot more empathy for all the gurls (and guys). None of them really have it easy; they’re all constantly dealing with both their past baggage and their current problems, and they’re all dealing with it in their own way.