This episode was great and took such a refreshing angle. Hannah has started her new job as a substitute teacher where she meets Fran – played by Jake Lacy who was also on the Office. He asks her out for drinks and Hannah says yes. Her first official date post-Adam and she can’t believe that she’s dating again like a 45-year-old whose just got out of a bad divorce; “My Pilates teacher inspired me to take a chance.”
Their date starts off quite well until Hannah suggests they go to an art show together which was fine with Fran, till they get there and he realises it’s Mimi-Rose’s show, Hannah’s ex-boyfriends new girlfriend. Her friends and Adam all confront Hannah nervously asking why is she there, which she replies, “I don’t know”. This conveys the message that Hannah is clearly not over Adam.
Fran leaves – understandably – when he realises he is caught in the middle of the drama and Hannah follows Mimi-Rose, Adam and Mimi-Rose’s ex-boyfriend Ace (played by American Horror Story’s Zachary Quinto) to the after party. Mimi-Rose insists that she travel with Hannah and Adam travel with Ace – much to Adam’s disgust – because “our past relationships are a part of who we are, Ace was a big part of my life”.
Hannah is very passive aggressive the entire way whilst Mimi-Rose is almost creepily empathetic and compassionate. I think Hannah is extremely envious of Mimi-Rose, is irritated by her kindness, trying desperately not to like her but finds that she is everything that Hannah isn’t. When Mimi-Rose says she’s writing a book, Hannah looks so disappointed.
Mimi-Rose is very compassionate towards others and believes it’s important to always ask a person’s name – ‘Ask My Name’ being the name of her art show. She explains she was inspired by a photograph she saw from the 1940s of a Japanese girl about 5 or 6 years old standing next to a row of American soldiers on her way to an internment camp and the caption just said ‘girl’ and she was shocked that no one would know her name. She said it’s “so easy to get so wrapped up in ourselves and our own lives that we just completely lose our empathy… it’s easier to not know someone’s name.”
On the taxi ride there the driver hit an elderly lady and while Hannah was quick to say she wanted to leave because it was “bullshit,” Mimi-Rose wanted to know the elderly lady’s name, the driver’s name and said they could not abandon them. This shows a clear distinction between the character’s personalities.
Mimi-Rose says that Hannah can have Adam if she wants him; “I wouldn’t just give him to you but I’m sure we could figure something out. I will subtly distance myself from him while you incrementally work your way back into his life… are you mad because you gave up on art or because you gave up on Adam?” Hannah says that knowing her physically pains her, because of her success in art, because she’s with Adam, because her “doll’s face.” Hannah says that Mimi-Rose is an artist and she herself was not talented enough and will now just be normal, “do you think I want to be normal?”
After their confrontation, they have formed a mutual respect and Hannah tells Adam that she really likes Mimi-Rose and “gets it.”
Ace however, says that Mimi-Rose has a whole ‘act’ and thinks she is very ‘manipulative’, pretending to be a sweet, weirdo girl but is very clued in and knows what works. Ace says that he will get Mimi-Rose back, much to Adam’s horror. Adam tells Jessa this who is very disappointed; revealing that she only set him up with Mimi-Rose so she could be with Ace.
I loved this episode; very refreshing how the character’s confronted each others grudges and insecurities and changed their judgements and assumptions of each other.