Girls Season 4, Episode 1 – ‘Iowa’ Recap

Girls-Season-4-PortableGirls Season 4 starts off including everything that makes Girls such a good show. It picks up right from where the last season left off, excellently capturing the vulnerabilities, struggles and loneliness of people in their 20s who are trying to be successful in their careers and relationships.

This is episode we see Hannah saying goodbye to her friends in New York before she moves to Iowa for Graduation school. Right from the very beginning of the episode I am laughing at the complex character dynamics.

The season begins with Hannah and her parents back at the same restaurant from the start of season 1.

I love their family dynamic and how they’re always subtly criticising each other. Their toast is absolutely hilarious, her dad starting off his speech with “Our dear Hannah, slow to grow but how very beautiful is the blossom…”

Hannah: Can I please get some fries?

Hannah’s mum: You don’t need any fries.

Hannah’s dad: I’ll share, it’s Friday so…

Adam rushes in angry and flustered and joins in on the toast.

Adam: To Hannah, taking the next step, in a series of random steps, how strange our journey is through life, we try to inject it with meaning but all we have are days marching on.

The next scene continues Adam and Hannah’s typical relationship, where they are both struggling to succeed career wise whilst trying to have a successful connection.

We are then taking to Marnie and Desi who are having sex which reaffirms Marnie’s character; as she has an absent father in her life and has constantly struggled with loneliness and insecurity throughout the series, she is continually seeking the validity from men and she has now shown how far she go to seek that security – to a man who has a girlfriend.

In the next scene Shoshanna picking up her diploma. The audience is giving a new depth to Shoshanna’s character as we are introduced to her parents who argue like dogs, who are very bitter, ironically making snide comments to each other while insisting that this moment is so important to Shoshanna.

Next we touch base with Jessa’s life, who is still working for the elderly lady Eadie. Eadie is moving to Connecticut with her daughter after her daughter found out that Jessa gave Eadie some pills for her to pass away. Jessa who is “so full of contradictions” as Eadie points out, is extremely vulnerable and needs to be told that Eadie loves her more than her daughter. I think she becomes much more vulnerable as Eadie and Hannah are both leaving her.

Marnie and Desi have a lunch gig and Marnie is being smothered by her overly supportive mum. She is then confronted with Clementine – Desi’s girlfriend – and they have an awkward confrontation about how Clementine was sorry because she was “threatened by the musical connection” that Desi and Marnie share and that she might lose him, which is “crazy” and Marnie says how she is sorry that she gave her the impression that she was even “remotely capable of doing something like that”, which we know that she is.

At the lunch the characters all begin to connect again, Jessa is very pissy that now Hannah and Eadie are leaving. She says to Hannah, “It’s certainly hypocritical of you to leave after you told me I have to come back and stay for good… you’re pussing out on this whole thing… you know what else is pussy? You don’t even have the bravery to break up with Adam. If you want to be alone, be alone, no one is going to be angry about that”

Elijah comes into the lunch where he awkwardly is confronted by his very rude ex-boyfriend.

Shoshanna and Ray meet again for the first time in the season with a mixture of awkwardness and happiness that they’ve seen each other – I have never seen the character Ray that smiley, calm and happy.

Desi and Marnie’s songs are apparently written by Lena Dunham’s boyfriend. Their gig starts off quite well however the kids start crying in the café, people start laughing and Marnie starts getting inside her head, she cries and leaves the café. Desi says “we’ll be right back; this might be a good time to talk to your kids about respect and about how your behaviour effects other people etcetera.”

Hannah is consumed in the adventure that she is about to start and is very stressed and anxious; is this the right move that she’s meant to be making? Will her relationship with Adam survive? Throughout the episode Hannah tries to ask Adam if they should talk about how their relationship will go long distance and he avoids the topic each time. At the lunch she says that she’s thinking about “the maze of their future” to Adam. I love Adam; “I like being amongst your stuff… The plan is there is no plan, that works for me.” Then the two have very sad sex.

girls_season_4_teaser_a_lHannah wakes up in the morning and Marnie greets her at the door and the two hug. Hannah doesn’t wake up Adam before leaving, who is pretending to be asleep in the next room, then he watches sadly out the window as Hannah drives away with her parents. Marnie cries again.

The episode finishes perfectly, with the sound of Hannah’s parents arguing about trivial things and a shot of Hannah’s expression in the back seat; tired, unsure and confused if moving is taking the right step in her life.

I am so excited for the rest of the season.


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