'Girls on Girls (+ One Guy)' Podcast: Grave-Dancing, Soul-Searching and One Beautiful Brownstone
Adam and crazy sister Caroline come out on top in fourth episode of "Girls." Here's why.
Death was on the minds of our favorite dysfunctional bunch in this week's episode of Girls. THR staffers Rebecca Sun, Brandon Kirby, Jessie Katz and Pret-a-Reporter editor Erin Weinger took a dive into their psyches to find out who wins and loses in the face of the water-logged demise of a friend. Is Hannah in need of a humanity check? Where did Gaby Hoffmann get her cemetery-frolicking outfit? And who is Jessa putting a hex on?
Below, find the transcript and full audio of this week's podcast, episode three of Girls on Girls (+ One Guy):
Erin Weinger: This week we had a very interesting episode. There was a death in the family, if you will. Hannah’s beloved book editor, who, as we saw last week, came to her birthday party and acted a fool. He has passed.
Jessie Katz: “Goings, goings, gone.”
EW: And he went! They found him, what was it – face up?
JK: Face down!
EW: I’m sorry. Face down in the Hudson River.
JK: I think that’s generally how corpses go.
EW: I don’t know these things.
Rebecca Sun: The buoyancy!
EW: All right, well, he was buoyant.
Brandon Kirby: Dead buoyant.
EW: Dead and buoyant and Hannah did not deal with it well. I guess we start with Friendship because a lot of people had to rally or not rally around Hannah in her time of grief or non-grief.
JK: Jessa was kind of trying to comfort her by talking about the space-time continuum and how time is not linear and we have already died and also not yet been born.
BK: She compared death to jury duty and floods.
JK: But she tried. It was a little harder for Adam.
RS: A lot harder.
EW: Well, I think Adam tried, but they just weren’t on the same page. They grieve very differently. Adam thought Hannah should have been much more visibly upset, and Hannah was concerned about her e-book deal. People around her thought it was pretty cold-hearted that she wasn’t more invested in grieving over this person whom she developed a relationship with.
RS: This episode really shined a light on how the main characters deal with grief. And I thought Ray said something really interesting; he pointed out how he was taking David’s death harder than Hannah, even though Ray’s one and only interaction with this guy was being thrown into a table. So both of the main male characters, Adam and Ray, had more normal, empathetic reactions to grief, whereas the girls all had varying ranges of sociopathic detachment.
BK: What did Ray say to Hannah? “Why don’t you put a sprinkle of compassion on top of your fat-free muffin of sociopathic detachment?”
RS: I think that Hannah kind of knows something’s off. She’s just really pragmatic. She even said to Adam, “Look, give me a break. If you died I’d be sad AND I’d be worried about paying rent.”
BK: “I think about you dying all the time!”
RS: We had a brief interlude with Shoshanna where she talked about how she was sad that her friend died but that it was good because they couldn’t compete for the same spot in their friend dynamic anyway, and it was again classic cartoonish non-human Shoshanna.
EW: It was a very interesting episode, seeing how all of these different personalities interacted, and the people you'd think would be the least affected by something like that were the most affected.
RS: I feel like Hannah, Jessa and Shoshanna all get a Down for friendship.
JK: So let’s talk about Jessa’s own experience with death. Her friend Season, who Jessa thought had passed away because she was invited to her funeral, and then she calls up a mutual friend to find out where Season’s tomb is located, otherwise known as a “sarcophagus,” otherwise known as a “grave” to most normal humans. And it turns out that Season (Melonie Diaz) is alive and well. So what kind of friend was Jessa, that someone had to fake their death?
EW: Melonie Diaz, aka Season, said that she was an enabler when she was a drug addict. Jessa doesn’t seem like the kind of person who would be a good Twelve Step buddy. So I can imagine the frustration or the sadness and weirdness that Jessa felt when she realized that not only is this girl alive, but she’s living in a beautiful brownstone, impeccably decorated, with this stylish husband, beautiful baby, and Jessa is divorced. She’s a rehab drop-out.
JK: Is this the life that Jessa imagined for herself when she married Thomas John?
BK: It probably is the life she thought she could have with him.
EW: Jessa reminds me of the type of people that put on this big front. They’re too cool for school, they don’t want happiness, they want to wander and be nomadic and wear flowy dresses, but at the end of the day…
JK: They see everyone else’s happiness…
EW: Yeah, and I think this is what this age group is about. When you get to your mid-20s you do start to see people who have things that you don’t and you start to imagine what would my life be like with those things. It was interesting when she stormed out of Season’s house…
JK: It was like a Shakespearean prophecy: “None of this will work out for you!”
EW: But it kind of already is, so…sure? Season did not care. Season was chillin’.
JK: I would have loved to have seen a flashback of Jessa and Season back in the day.
EW: It would have been rolling.
BK: It would have been Jessa saying, “Come on, just a little coke!”
EW: For Friendship here I think Up for this week would have to be Adam’s sister Caroline, because no matter how weird she may be, she tried to talk to Hannah about what she was going through. She could tell Hannah was upset. She took her out for a day and they frolicked through a cemetery.
JK: Which was an amazing scene! I can’t even pinpoint why I love that scene so much. There’s something very…
JK: Yeah, mystic about it…it’s like a Marx Brothers movie, but also like Fellini-esque…
BK: I get that. Especially with Laird’s turtle.
EW: Yes, Laird the neighbor came with, wearing his lovely knitted cap, and bringing his dead pet.
RS: I thought what really drove home Hannah’s detachment for me was Caroline, who really is the most outer space character of all of them, but she concocted this fake story about their dead cousin Margaret, and she was like, “I did that as a test to see if you were actually a sociopath, which you indeed are, and I love you anyway!” Even Caroline has the presence of mind to know, “Your reaction is super abnormal!”
EW: Of course, when bad things happen it’s natural, Hannah’s dream was lying in this man’s hands. It’s understandable to be wondering about that. It’s maybe something you don’t say out loud. Hannah really made David’s death all about her book.
JK: I mean, when Caroline was telling that story, I also wondered what the tiny dress meant exactly, and then I wondered for myself, am I a detached sociopath? Because I actually had the same reaction?
BK: But again, it’s something you think internally, but you don’t ask, “Wait, but why was the dress actually tiny?
EW: Well, Hannah’s weird.
JK: No less weird than Laird, apparently.
EW: Well, Laird is another story. I see romance budding for Laird and Caroline.
JK: I think Laird is that hot stoner who played Hacky Sack in high school, that a lot of girls had a thing for, and now this is what he is.
EW: He stayed on the same level and never got a job.
EW: Speaking of jobs, and people who are burned out – Marnie. Marnie had a little altercation at her place of business. She was serving a pasta dish?
JK: A tricolore.
EW: And something else.
BK: “Here’s your thing.”
EW: She heard some music coming from the office.
JK: The siren song of Edie Brickell.
EW: A fight ensued. Her music was being mocked and she basically made it very clear that fancy people wanted to hire her and she just bounced. She left the job and it’s anyone’s guess where she’s off to.
BK: Can we talk about Ray’s soul patch? How fast did he grow that thing?
JK: And why?
EW: We don’t know their shooting schedule so it might not have been that fast.
RS: Maybe it was covering up a scar from being thrown into a table.
JK: Ooh, backstory.
EW: So Marnie has no money and she’s unemployed. Back at square one. Up for Finance, we’re going to have to bring back Season and her stylish husband in his plaid shirt and contrasting green tie. They lived in a sick brownstone.
JK: Prospect Park West. That is some prime real estate.
EW: It looked like Dwell could come and take a picture of it. Apartment Therapy could have been by. This thing was really primo. Someone was doing something right in the career field there.
JK: Big Finance ups to them. Never met them before, but glad they’re doing well.
EW: That brings us now to Fornication. I hate to say it, but we go back to Season and her husband!
RS: They have a baby!
EW: They have a really beautiful child.
JK: We can presume they probably have good sex.
BK: In the brownstone.
EW: If anybody is watching and listening to this, we all would like to meet a beautiful person, live in a brownstone and have a child with them.
JK: And we’ll be accepting applications.
EW: Yes, send them over to firstname.lastname@example.org. Season and her husband, way up. Down? Hannah and Adam fought, man. They fought bad.
JK: They’re not doing it in this episode.
EW: There’s no fornicating. Adam seemed really freaked out that Hannah…
JK: Has no soul.
EW: Has no soul.
JK: That’s a big turn-off for Adam Sackler.
RS: It’s interesting that Hannah kind of knew that, too. That’s what she confided to Caroline. She didn’t really care that her reaction was so off, except in the implications it would have for her relationship.
EW: So she’s not soulless; she cares about something.
RS: She cared about Adam.
JK: You know how I’ve been talking about how I feel like Hannah’s really flat this season? She does talk to Caroline about the effect of being on meds, which she’s on for her OCD, and Caroline does say “it fucks with my emotions,” so maybe that’s something that they intended to be going on with Hannah, that she’s flat-lined from her meds.
BK: And the way she disturbingly recites that Margaret thing to Adam again, that shows she’s fabricating emotions because she’s still cuckoo.
JK: Yes. That for me was like, OK, she’s still fucking crazy. There’s my girl. She’s back.
EW: It was weird too, though, because I feel like if you -- maybe this makes me a bad person -- but if someone’s that upset that you’re not upset about something, I don’t know, just go “Oh no, I’m kidding, I am." And go get food. Indulge the other person!
BK: That’s what she tried to do at the end but it was creepy. That slow zoom-in on her, like, “Everyone look how crazy she is!”
JK: With that Nancy Sinatra song creeping in.
RS: I seriously almost thought that that story was going to turn out to be real anyway and that Caroline was going to turn out to be extra cuckoo for lying about that being a fake story.
JK: And Adam would be like, “Why are you talking about my cousin Margaret?” I was waiting for that, too.
BK: Shoshanna’s bandanas!
JK: Her most developed collection!
RS: I’m going for Mister Season.
EW: Mister Season looked like a moneyed hipster. Maybe he has a boutique digital shop of some kind.
RS: Like a Creative Director.
EW: Ooh, a Creative Director. He had, like, a job.
JK: Feelin' it there, ladies!
EW: Put on a green tie, and come forth!
JK: Wait, but there was a clear fashion loser.
JK: Which part do we start with?
BK: The pantaloons.
EW: Gaby Hoffmann’s pantaloons!
JK: Then zoom up to the over-size braless Mickey Mouse tee.
RS: Upside down Mickey Mouse tee.
JK: Then pan out to the letterman jacket. Then pan up to the messy bun situation…
EW: A rat’s nest, I believe, is the proper term for this. She also did not get her eyebrows done in quite some time. They looked worse for wear than even last week.
JK: She did not listen to the last Girls on Girls podcast.
EW: She was wearing some cool sneakers, some cool hightops.
JK: She was preparing for a run in a cemetery.
EW: Combined with the pantaloons.
BK: What century did they come from?
EW: They came from the Goodwill.
RS: They came off of a Mother Goose book. Those were straight up Miss Muffet bloomers. I was looking at them really closely and at first I was like, are those rolled-up shorts? Oh my god, they’re cinched and they have lace coming out of the end. They’re bloomers and she was sitting on a tuffet.
EW: There have been times when I’ve worn what my old roommate called Smee pants, sweatpants that are cropped at the knee because you’ve cut them. So you look like you’ve been in a shipwreck. Watching Gaby brought me flashbacks to some of my late-night runs to the grocery store across the street. Whatever is lying around, you put it on and you go.
RS: I could deal with everything else. I actually thought the upside down Mickey Mouse tee was cool. I would not advise cartwheeling braless in a loose T-shirt, but…
EW: Maybe she slept in that get-up.
RS: And decided to keep her grandmother’s underwear on.
EW: At least we didn’t see her bush this time.
BK: Never an episode, guys, without a vagina reference.
JK: They didn’t give us a lot to work with, but we found a way!
EW: Does anybody else have a general last statement?
RS: I think we should talk about the very meta debate that Adam and Hannah had about Jezebel and Gawker. What was interesting is that Hannah Horvath the character was an avid fan of the website. She saw Jezebel as a refuge where feminists can battle against the forces of slut-shaming and girls tearing each other down, for which we know there is a special place in hell reserved. And Adam was the one who was like, “Those people are losers.”
EW: He said the Gawker writers were celibate against their will. Which could be true.
JK: So this was shot months and months before this week’s Jezebel controversy. Lena Dunham was on the cover of Vogue. Jezebel put out a bounty soliciting the untouched photographs from that photo shoot.
BK: What would Hannah Horvath think about that bounty?
RS: She loves Jezebel, and this is not the first time Jezebel has pointed out photoshopping of women in magazines, so I don’t think Hannah would have blinked.
JK: I don’t know, I mean, I feel like my Twitterverse is something I imagine would be similar to Hannah’s Twitterverse, and my Twitterverse exploded with women who were objecting to what Jezebel did.
EW: Jezebel has done a few things that women object to.
RS: Jezebel and Gawker Media have had really interesting coverage of Lena Dunham over the past couple of years, too. There were some very vocal critics of Girls, a lot of mocking that happened on the site, and obviously Lena is not unaware of those. I think it’s interesting how she cast Adam as the critic. And, as Hannah, I thought she really wrote for herself a valid, maybe overly idealistic, but a rosy view that didn’t totally come off as total mocking.
EW: Oh, but I thought it did. I was watching that and laughing inside.
JK: Hannah referring to herself as a “media-ist.” By what qualifications? Because she has an unpublished e-book? I think Hannah’s intentions are always good, but she is still very naive. That’s what Lena was probably trying to work out there.
RS: Yeah, a lot of people are aspirational without having fully made it into that world.