Last Night On Girls: Neurosis, The Number 8, & Yet Another Missed Opportunity For Diversity

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Annie: ‪"So I had to watch the whole thing with subtitulos‬."

Nathan: "Subtitles?"

Annie: "Yes, but the episode was in Spanish for me. The subtitles were in English. ‪All the previews were in English, but this episode was entirely in Spanish for me — HBO, what's the deal?‬"

Nathan: ‪"That is really weird‬."

Connie: "I bet it was even stranger considering that Hannah's OCD just came out of the blue. You must have thought you were in some parallel dimension where Girls was in Spanish, and the characters' quirks were all different."

Annie: "Haha yeah, something like that!"

Connie: "On the whole, I enjoyed that the episode was about each characters' neurosis — clinically diagnosed ones as well as personality eccentricities. We all thought that Hannah was our generation's Woody Allen, but this episode really made it clear that it's not just gags and jokes with her. Her OCD is really serious."

Nathan: "‪It was never mentioned before, and Hannah seems to hate talking about it.‬ But is that off-character? That someone who is obsessed with self-diagnosis wouldn't constantly talk about having had OCD?"

Connie: "‪I don't have experience with OCD besides watching My Crazy Obsession on TLC‬ (which probably doesn't really show anything other than sensationalized OCD), but it seems odd to me that ‪it could be so intense, but could disappear and reappear like that‬, without going on or off medication."

Nathan:  "Especially for someone like Hannah.‬ I guess we have to take the show's word for it. But from what I know, it isn't like a switch that you turn on and off."

Connie: ‪"But knowing Hannah's personality, and knowing how much she likes to talk about her own weird ticks and habits ‬in a ha-ha look at me way, ‪she must feel like her OCD is completely horrible and beyond embarrassing.‬"

Nathan: "‪I guess that's the point‬ — that even though she constantly points out her faults, this one is too intense and embarrassing to point out."

Annie:  "I felt for her parents too. They seem concerned in a real and appropriate way, and all she wants them to do is back off and stop worrying.‬ ‪That was the one thing that made it real — that they've obviously known her since she was a 'counter.' Still, when they asked 'Are you counting again?' I couldn't help but reply in my head "counting again!!? When has the Hannah that I've known for two seasons ever been a counter?'"

Connie: "I‪ know!‬ But also — all the sexual tie-ins that she has with counting. All the stuff she talks about at her therapist's, with the vaginal pulses, and the forced masturbation…‪the show is trying to provide some psychological reason behind her sexual proclivities‬. ‪It's not just her being horny and adventurous‬."

Annie: "She spends a lot of brain power thinking about sex, ‪so it's only natural her neurosis would manifest that way‬. Or vice versa."

Connie: "Also — and this is spectacularly weird and serendipitous — but I talked with a numerologist the other day specifically about the number 8 and what it signifies about a person when it's a special number in their life…"

Nathan: "W‪hy did you talk to a ‬numerologist‪?‬"

Connie: "Umm…I got my tarot cards read for an upcoming story. BUT. 8 is supposed to be the number that signifies an impending change in your life. It's a positive, forward-moving, growing change, but the point is is that it hasn't actually happened yet. People who see the number 8 as important should know that changes are coming, but they need to push to get there. It's not just going to fall into their laps. I think it's interesting that at this stage for Hannah, when it's so important for her, career-wise, when she's experiencing shifts in her friendships (with Jessa disappearing, and Marnie being so awful), and seeing relationships poop out, that 8 starts popping up. As far as we know, she hasn't written a page yet. She isn't making any new friends. She isn't repairing old relationships."

Annie: "I‪ bet she hasn't written anything; that's a good point.‬ ‪And it's all bubbling over‬."

Photo: Courtesy of HBO/Jessica Miglio
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Connie:  "Totally‬. And Adam — is it strange that I was proud of him for being a semi-normal guy this episode? I always figured that he was completely oblivious to the fact that he's a huge weirdo. But it seems like he's actually just insecure."

Nathan: "He still seemed weird to me. I think he was trying really hard to keep it together.‬"

Connie: "‪But he was surprised that he could interact with a girl as together and confidant as Natalia, ‬without her being turned off. He probably thought that Hannah was his best shot, and it's clear from his AA speech that he didn't really like Hannah for anything more than being physically present, keeping him warm, propping him up. She was just a surrogate, and not a real person."

Nathan: "Do you think there's going to be a moment when Shiri Appleby realizes just how totally weird Adam is? Or maybe she's spent so much time with actual aliens, it'll be normal...."

Connie: "Why did I know that you were a Roswell fan?"

Annie: "I‪t'll be after he turns Hannah away‬, and ‪he'll do something bizarre like make a woodcut piggy bank of her face‬, or like... wet the bed. And she'll be out."

Connie: "‪He's always just considered relationships based on people that could tolerate him, and who he could tolerate‬. With Natalia, his personal neurosis about not being good enough is starting to disappear, which is really interesting. I'd love to see someone on this show in a normal, functioning relationship."



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Connie: ‪"Also, welcome to the show, non-white person!‬ This episode debuted Radhika, who Shoshanna describes as 'The richest Hindi I know,' which is a ridiculous way to introduce someone in general, and especially on a show that's been working toward more inclusivity. Besides Donald Glover, I think Radhika is the only other minority character on the show with a speaking role. The way this show has been handling its opportunities to address the complaints about race and ethnicity in casting has really been bumming me out. But, going back to the plot, ‪I couldn't understand why Shoshanna was upset that Radhika thought she had disappeared that summer‬. Did she not want people to know she was in love? Was she embarrassed about it?"

Nathan: "I think it was just that s‪he just felt left out‬."

Annie: "‪Either way, cheating on your boyfriend who's waiting for you at home with your friends doorman is low‬. I don't like Ray, and I don't think he's right for Shoshanna, but it doesn't justify doing what she did."

Connie: ‪"Exactly. I never would have guessed Shoshanna would be the one to cheat‬. It's surprising how one compliment from an attractive person can make people do things they normally wouldn't. It's happened to nearly everyone on the show so far. And it feels a little disheartening."

Your turn: Did you see the cheating thing coming? And were you as disappointed with the treatment of minority characters as we were?

Photo: Courtesy of HBO/Jessica Miglio