‘Girls’ season 4, episode 4 review: When change is not change at all

Sometimes, we wonder if the purpose of “Girls” is to occasionally make us question our own sanity. Within the span of thirty minutes on last night’s new episode “Cubbies,” the series accomplished a rare feat in how it made us go from having zero sympathy for Hannah Horvath to feeling completely sorry for her.

It’s too bad that this particular spectrum of emotions did not happen in a more surprising manner. Seeing the Iowa experiment ending after just four episodes was almost a letdown, but at the same time expected. No show ever chooses to deviate from the path for too long, and it feels like Hannah took off right when the going got tough. This trip was without a doubt for her a complete and monumental failure. She made no real effort to fit in, and when she “apologized” for her insults, she did so in a way that was overly defensive and claimed that it was everyone else’s fault that she felt bad about being a jerk to them. She learned nothing during her time there, and that is depressing, given that this is supposedly a show about a journey. Hannah has not evolved at all since the beginning of season 3.

Then, we still somehow felt terrible for her seeing Adam back in New York with another woman. He obviously never had the same intentions of staying true to her during this absence; while you could put some of the blame on her for not defining the parameters enough, it’s hard to. She clearly loves him, and did not want to give him such rigid rules in fear of the consequences. There was almost no way for Hannah to win if she wanted to both stay with Adam and spread her wings at the same time.

Elsewhere, “Girls” managed to be slightly more successful as we saw Marnie for the first time really think that she had Desi for herself … at least until she learned that Desi’s girlfriend Clementine was probably going to be breaking up with him, and what he did was almost a preemptive strike so that he could save face and have Marnie for himself. This guy’s a terrible person, though; it is not working for Marnie in the long run.

As for Ray and Shoshanna going shopping, it was random and served very little point. With that being said, we continue to believe that Ray is the best character on the series, and we could watch him paint his living room with excitement for him. His point of view is grounded, and yet he finds new and creative way to lose his mind in the process. Episode Grade: C+.

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