Girls on Girls (+ One Guy) Podcast: Hannah Sings, Shoshanna Stings, and Gaby Hoffmann Bares It All
In this week’s podcast, we dissect Episode Three, in which the ladies of 'Girls' find themselves at various crossroads as Hannah celebrates the big 2-5.
Welcome back to Girls on Girls (+ One Guy), our weekly roundtable discussion and podcast that serves as a collective group therapy for those of us trying to unpack the often murky and misdirected lives of our favorite girls. This week THR staffers and Girls aficionados Rebecca Sun, Brandon Kirby, Jessie Katz and Pret-a-Reporter editor Erin Weinger debate the winners and losers of episode three, using the always helpful FML index to guide us as we go. And, boy, is there a lot to dissect this week, as our hearts were full (frontal) with the arrival of our favorite '90s chick, Gaby Hoffman (no offense to Marnie, whose own 90's throw-backs this week gave us plenty to debate as well).
Below, find the transcript and full audio of this week’s podcast, part two of Girls on Girls (+ One Guy):
Erin Weinger: We are discussing episode three of season three of Girls, which is titled "She Said Okay." As always, we are talking about four very important topics -- friendship, fornication, finance and fashion -- to see who in fact is the winner and loser in the big game of Girls life.
EW: This episode focused on Hannah's 25th birthday party, so we will start with friendship. Who is up, who is down in the friend zone here?
Brandon Kirby: Marnie is technically up because she threw the party, but as she tells Hannah, the reason she threw the party was for her own reasons. She's still flailing, so she thought doing something nice for Hannah would help herself.
Rebecca Sun: And more pointedly, even when Hannah specifically told her that she never wanted to sing Rent again at her birthday party, Marnie totally ambushed her with a stage performance so that she could show off her own Disney princess voice.
Jessie Katz: It was another very musical episode for Marnie. We were wondering if Marnie's musical trajectory would pick up again this season, and here we had two big musical moments for her.
RS: Both fails!
JK: Big fails in the music department for Marnie. But it was a good friendship moment for Hannah by going up on stage to perform Rent, even though she requested not to do it.
EW: She looked really happy.
JK: Well, her hat said "birthday bitch," so she was allowed to have her birthday bitch face on if she wanted to.
RS: Oh, she was completely allowed to just tell Marnie to eff herself.
JK: And she didn't!
EW: So Marnie is a down in the friend department due to her selfish ways.
RS: And Hannah is up not only for being a good sport with Marnie's song request, but also towards Adam and his sister. She was initially really hospitable towards his crazy sister, and then when Adam asked her to trust him that Caroline was the devil, she also chose to trust him. It's not really her fault that Caroline still managed to sneak into her bathroom and take off her pants.
JK: And stab herself.
RS: I thought that Hannah was all in all a really good friend and girlfriend.
JK: It takes a lot to be the biggest person on your own birthday.
EW: What I feel is interesting about Hannah being a good sport is that Hannah is typically a selfish person and the thing that made her happiest in that whole episode was the tooth necklace. Adam gave her a fine, fine piece of jewelry.
JK: A piece of his DNA -- not the first piece of DNA I think Adam has given her.
EW: He's given her some DNA in his days, as have some other people. But he gave her his tooth on a chain and called it her birthday jewelry. And this just shows how happy she is in this episode.
JK: But again, I get this sense from Hannah that she is very flat and even-keeled about everything in a way that is very un-Hannah like, so I wonder what she's really thinking because it's strange to see Hannah be the big one in every situation.
EW: Well, things are going okay for her. She's got the relationship, she's got the book deal going on, her parents are in town for her birthday, she'll get some free food. What more can a 25-year-old want?
RS: I think she's trying to grow up. It's interesting because one thing Adam said about Hannah early on was "my sister is the opposite of you -- she doesn't have a kind heart, she is incredibly selfish, and when she implodes she takes everyone down with her, " and the fact that that's something that can't be projected onto Hannah now at this point really says a lot about her growth. I feel like 25 is a classic quarter-life crisis year, but Hannah, so far, seems to be avoiding that. So far.
JK: I'm always waiting for the other shoe to drop.
RS: Well she said 25 is not that bad and her friends were all really surprised. Shoshanna said, "You've accomplished nothing in four years," and Hannah took it really well!
JK: She leveled that at all of her friends! Actually can we give Shoshanna a friendship down? She told all of her best friends that they've done absolutely nothing with their lives since college.
BK: And she brought a creepy rando to the party.
RS: An ongoing inability to assess Shoshanna as anything more than a cartoon character.
EW: This brings us to a good point: Brandon mentioned the creepy rando that Shoshanna picked up on the street and brought to Hannah's hipster birthday party.
JK: A guy she met looking for some "dank weed."
BK: So is that fornication up or down?
EW: You know, it takes some mad skills to pick up strangers on the street. Sometimes it doesn't work out well. I give her props.
BK: And she told off Ray! Well kind of. Not really.
EW: I think Ray told her off a little bit.
JK: I've never been a big Ray fan, but I actually felt for him for the first time this episode. He came to her with a bullet-point list of all the criteria she was looking for that he had failed in before, and that's supposedly why she broke up with him, so he comes to her and says, "Look! I'm doing this and this and this, all the things that you wanted," and she has nothing to say about it.
RS: Shoshanna seems to clearly have changed. I don't know if we want to talk about fashion, but she just looked so exquisitely alluring and cool, with her cool cigarette, as Ray put it, and I just felt so bad for him. It was just this classic case of the ex who has clearly moved on. Even when they're talking, she is miles away.
JK: And that's why he loses it on the DJ. The only time I've ever been kicked out of a bar was for getting in a fight with a DJ, so again I really felt Ray on this point! But he yelled at the DJ, "It's not fair to end things in the middle," so there you have it. Basically it's all about Shoshanna breaking things off when he feels it's not finished.
EW: Well, I think she's at a classic age. If we're talking about realism in Girls, she's still in college. You change in college. There's an age difference between them, people change, she's sewing oats, he's manning up and they'll meet again one day. Maybe. Or not.
EW: So, Shoshanna is up in the fornication department. She has gained some cool factor. A couple of seasons ago she had never been with a man. Now she's just hollering at people on the street! Down on the fornication scale would have to be Adam's homeless sister.
JK: Let's talk about Gaby Hoffman for a second.
EW: Who we love so much. Now and Then was a classic film.
JK: What an amazing welcome to this cast. I hope that she never leaves because she just chewed up the scenery completely every time she was in there.
RS: She was like an 80-year-old theater queen trapped inside a cat lady's body.
JK: Like Blanche DuBois!
EW: It's so nice to see her on the screen again. I have such fond memories of her.
JK: Which she's doing her best to erase now.
RS: She is the spirit animal of all us girls who grew up in the '90s.
JK: You know what she is? Exactly why Tom Hanks was so afraid of her in Sleepless in Seattle, she's turned into exactly the kind of girl that he didn't want his son to be with. It is the perfect through line of that character.
BK: And then she hit on Ray in a really bizarre way.
JK: She did a mating dance. She bit him.
EW: We have to give her a down in the fornication department for that dance. That's not how you're going to pick up a man in a bar, by biting him. Well, maybe you will …
JK: Depends on which bar.
EW: She was in a relationship that apparently ended badly on the side of the road. There was some bruising on her thigh. We're not exactly sure if that was intentional or not.
JK: It looked like ten fingerprint bruises, I don't know what creature …
EW: Don't ask, don't tell. Let's just give her a down. She's single, she's got no house. It's not going well.
RS: Well, I would say poor Adam and Hannah as well because they were about to have a really romantic moment …
RS: Nothing dampens it more than seeing your crazy boyfriend's sister's muff on your birthday!
EW: Well, let's talk about the muff for a second. That was a big fashion down for me.
BK: Full frontal is usually a fashion down in any scenario.
EW: Yes, Cameron Diaz just wrote a book and there's an entire chapter devoted to the hair down there and the beauty of the natural look. Now I don't want to hinder anyone. I'm not here to push feminism back or anything, but I think the value of good grooming goes a long way.
JK: Just a little trim, even.
EW: The eyebrows could be cleaned up.
JK: She really was, top to bottom ...
RS: She's consistent!
EW: She could use some grooming. I just want to grab her, get a manicure on her, get a nice wax going.
JK: Shoshanna could do that for her.
EW: The full bush was definitely a fashion down for me. Again, without pushing feminism back …
JK: To each her own.
RS: Maybe just don't do it in a place that is not your own home. Very bad houseguest etiquette.
BK: We're on a good vagina track record for this show.
JK: Maybe that is the theme of the season so far.
EW: Vaginas of the wild. Now, I did not have a fashion up here on my list.
BK: What about the tooth necklace?
JK: A little DIY jewelry lesson.
EW: It's an Etsy moment.
RS: I also liked Shoshanna's outfit. She was overdressed for the party.
JK: She probably had somewhere else to go afterwards.
RS: That sort of structured miniskirt with the peplum waist, she looked super-super hot, her makeup looked hot. She looked really mature. It tortured Ray. Her presence itself would have tortured Ray, but she just looked like such a hot ex-girlfriend.
EW: I didn't think Hannah looked particularly good at her own birthday party. I have a personal birthday rule: wear something in your closet that you would never wear any other day of the year. Something with sequins -- just wear something fun. It's your birthday. And I feel like Hannah doesn't have that rule.
RS: Marnie had this great passive-aggressive slam. Because Hannah cleaned up well, I thought she looked nice, her makeup looked great, and again we're talking about Hannah, we're not talking about Lena Dunham who, as we know, is a Vogue cover girl. We're talking about Hannah Horvath, poor 25-year-old writer. I thought she looked good. So Marnie, that line "you could look this good every day if you wanted to," so back-handed. Poor Hannah. She was a good sport and she cleaned up well.
EW: She's happy! People are giving her teeth! What girl doesn't want a tooth that arrives in an aluminum foil envelope? So that's a fashion up.
JK: And the Keith Haring t-shirt on David.
EW: That’s very indicative of that whole persona. He showed up, he got on Grindr, he had his Keith Haring t-shirt on.
RS: I feel like he was on PCP.
EW: Or bath salts.
RS: Yes, that's a lot more current.
EW: So moving on to finance, for up we have Ray. There is a scene where he is making hires. It was a nice, vulnerable moment when he hear Ray talk about how he is scared of all these big decisions that come with being a boss and being a man, essentially. It was nice to hear that because you don't always hear a man in his young 30s talk about the fact that it's actually quite scary being that age and having all this responsibility and eventually have to think about taking care of a family, and a lot comes with that. I think he's up, he's doing well.
JK: And lucky for him, he has Colin Quinn to offer great life advice. "Don't schtup anybody" was number one.
RS: He loves him like a bastard son.
JK: Okay, Ray -- clear up.
EW: Clear up for Ray. Down, we have, again, the homeless sister. She has no home, apparently no money for a wax.
RS: The teacher's union is ageist and prefers old, smelly teachers.
JK: "No one trusts a beautiful teacher." That was the quote there.
EW: I think they just want her to cut her hair or wax her eyebrows. I think she's scaring the kids.
RS: Or maybe not be crazy and bite people in the shoulder and take her pants off in other people's homes.
BK: I hope Gaby Hoffman makes our index a lot.
EW: I'm excited to see what's to come for Gaby. I think that Gaby is a very complex character. She's an amazing actress. She's interesting.
JK: And she's a great counterpart to Adam, who has reigned in a lot of his quirkier behavior, but she's kind of Adam's id that's just out there.
EW: Can we talk about Marnie's music video a little bit in depth?
BK: What was her fashion in that?
EW: Many fashions.
JK: A '90s throw-back.
RS: The song is Edie Brickell. She had half Alanis hair, maybe three weeks away from white girl dreads, a lot of colors, some Natalie Imbruglia looks.
EW: The whole thing was very, very '90s, but maybe not the cool '90s way that is so predominant now on Instagram.
RS: Like that YouTube commenter said, Marnie is just too Disney princess, and her voice was more like Mandy Moore trying to sing an Ani DiFranco song.
EW: She tearfully called the Internet to get her YouTube video taken down.
JK: Why would Charlie ever ask her to make that video? Again, I feel like there's a whole Charlie storyline that was tossed on the floor and all they had left from that was this music video.
EW: I wonder if that video is actually on YouTube as we speak, as a marketing ploy.
JK: Well, podcast listeners, check it out!
EW: Do we have a clear winner or loser from the episode?
BK: I want to say Gaby Hoffman, but she's not winning, she's losing.
JK: Gaby Hoffman won. Her character lost.
EW: Hannah kind of won. It's her birthday, she got jewelry from a boy. Who doesn't want jewelry from a boy, be it tooth, diamond, lock of hair. It's the thought that counts, as they say.
RS: I would say Hannah won because, again, your 25th birthday can be very traumatic for many people, and she seems to be handling it pretty well. So good job for getting past that.
BK: Birthday bitch?
JK: Birthday bitch for the win.