GIRLS: Episode 5 Recap
Episode 5 of GIRLS goes the Bottle Episode route by locking Hannah away with guest start Patrick Wilson for two days allowing the audience a mediation on connections, loneliness and intimacy as these characters make choices for what to, and what not to reveal in themselves as they self-consciously get caught up in a whirlwind relationship with the each other.
First off I just have to say I am taking over for regular GIRLS recapper Dan while he is away, but not to worry he will be back next week.
Anyway, to the episode.
This week opens up with Ray and Hannah at work at the Grumpy Cafe. There is deep and manful discussions about ‘sexit’ a new word Hannah believes she had made up to term the instances where people leave a social gathering for the sole purpose of having sex with each other. This then leads into a discussion about the heartbreak of feeling unoriginal when Urban Dictionary punches you in the face.
This little exchange is then interrupted by a neighbouring resident concerned and irritated that he is finding rubbish from the cafe in is personal trash can. Ray takes this as a threat and an accusation and responds by basically puffing his chest and displaying his dominating and powerful manhood. In the last episode we were privy to just how insecure and unsure of himself Ray really is, seeing Ray react to this character’s concerns by raising his voice and totally ignoring to listen or attempt to help this guy is quite telling of this mentality within Ray that seems to be quite concerned with how he is perceived. Having this man tell Ray that he has no control of his staff and that there is disobedience amongst them is seen as an attack on Ray’s character, he reacts to this by belittling the customer and showing Ray as an individual of power, which is everything that he revealed himself not to be last week before telling Shoshanna that he loved her.
This is the first introduction into the major theme of this episode; a foreshadowing of the events that will unfold.
During this entire exchange Hannah can be seen just out of view and generally with a very guilty face, so it was no surprise when Hannah followed this mystery man to his house to confess (after some awkward small talk) that she was in fact the guilty party. This was then followed by the two having sex – which seems to be the choice device to follow awkward talking on this show – and the revelation that this man’s name is Joshua.
After the awkward sex Joshua implores Hannah to stay and they eat food and discuss the beautiful house Joshua owns. Throughout all of this small talk there is a surprising sadness that appears to laces everything Joshua says, and when his ex-wife is brought up he nearly closes off completely. Just like Ray before him Joshua is ever conscious of the persona he is presenting. His home is meticulously designed and he express the importance of being referred to by his full name Joshua rather than just Josh as there was someone earlier in his life that went by simply Josh that he did not like.
From here the two have more sex, play naked ping-pong and then Hannah passes out in the shower.
In the later portion of the episode the drama moves to Joshua’s bedroom. Moments into the shot Hannah begins the break down from what appears to be both surprise and happiness for the experience she is sharing with Joshua. This is the moment where the previous attitudes of perception cultivate and Hannah reveals to Joshua all that she does in her life to construct the perception of herself to others. Hannah speaks about how she purposefully seeks drama and extreme experiences as a way of feeling more in her life. She speaks of how she presents herself as someone not merely satisfied with being like any other average girl, however the experience with Joshua has shown her that maybe wanting to be normal isn’t such a bad thing to want; that connecting with someone on a basic level could possibly be more satisfying.
Joshua’s reaction to the flory of honesty is not exactly an open embrace. He is trepidatious and a little scared of Hannah’s sexual explorations.
When watching this scene I didn’t know if I was fully convinced by Hannah. I’m not sure if it was an intentional decision from Lena Dunham but the acting from her in this scene made me question weather or not I was believing whether Hannah was being entirely truthful or not. She seemed to speak in a very nasally voice which made it sound like she was trying to cry rather than actually being overcome by emotions. For me it added a layer to the episode, but it also took me out of the episode because I was questioning the acting rather than being engulfed in the drama.
Either way, I believe this to be a very interesting episode from GIRLS, it is probably one of the more flawed episode of the season but thematically very strong.
Check out the trailer for Episode 6 below.
Words by Luke