Girls: Homeward Bound
April 12, 2016 7:41 AM - Season 5, Episode 8 - Subscribe

Hannah goes on a road trip with Fran, while Marnie is recording new music with Desi. Adam takes care of Caroline's baby and Shosh is back from Japan.
posted by aabbbiee (24 comments total)
Is it me, or is Hannah ending the season having a monumental breakdown? She was never the most put together person, but it seems since her parents impending divorce and now with the Adam and Jessa thing going on (doesn't look like it will last for long), she's about to break apart.
I mean, Fran is that kind of nice guy asshole, but that was a big trailer. She could easily go sit in the back for the whole return trip and not speak with him again. Then calling Ray and trying to blow him, just to leave with a stranger (Guillermo Diaz!), both I'm guessing because she wouldn't want to hear Ray call on her constant bullshit.
So far, she has pissed off Jessa, Adam, Fran, and Ray. Doing the same with Elijah and Marnie would take some work (although she's as dependable as an unserviced Trabant) and Shosh might not be interested at all in her bullshit.

Speaking of Marnie, she should have seen that coming a mile away. Desi would certainly pull that shit on her (it's not like she didn't do the same with her previous fiancee with her). Also, that's their music? Yike, incredibly dull county-tinged indie folk. What the hell would that Mumford need to spend a full advance on pedals for that? Just a reverb and echo to give some twang and a good vintage Fender amp.

I have the suspicion Adam will be stuck with his nephew. Caroline has left because of severe PPD and Laird might be going after her, wherever that takes him.

Shosh seems really deflated for having to come back. Also, did Ray trade his coffee shop for the van?
posted by lmfsilva at 8:46 AM on April 12, 2016

Ray didn't own the coffee shop- he was managing a second location of Colin Quinn's coffee shop (where Ray worked in the earlier seasons of the show). So Ray didn't have anything to trade to get that truck, which makes the loss of it (or at least, significant damage to it) even worse.

I was always Team Fran in that relationship, never understanding why he would date Hannah from Date #1 (when she took him to Mimi-Rose's art show and he fled into the night), let alone an entire year. But Fran looks at his relationship and thinks, "you know, what we really need is to spend an entire summer trapped together in a campervan with an onboard toilet" and I'm pretty sure that he deserved her after all, even the breakup initiated by text message.

I was a little surprised by Jessa's uselessness around the baby, since she was a nanny in the first season, but thinking of her character's arc, she seems to have gotten both more useless and more selfish and even more reckless with other people's feelings over the series.
And yet Adam, who in season 1 stole a dog and locked it in his bathroom just on impulse, has grown up so much that it doesn't seem out of character that he's stepping up for his niece [I believe Sample is a girl] and treating that situation with the gravity it warrants. Laird will need support (I doubt he's abandoned his daughter long-term), and Adam has become the kind of guy that could provide that support.
posted by aabbbiee at 10:30 AM on April 12, 2016 [1 favorite]

Oh, right. For some reason I thought he had actually bought that franchise, after breaking up with Shosh because he was a slacker.
posted by lmfsilva at 11:08 AM on April 12, 2016

Caroline also had some kind of mental illness when she first showed up, right? And Laird was some kind of drug addict? Yeah I think Adam's stuck with that kid. My crush on Adam Driver says this is fine.
posted by bleep at 11:55 AM on April 12, 2016 [2 favorites]

Also I feel really bad for Shosh.
posted by bleep at 11:56 AM on April 12, 2016

Laird has a history with drug abuse but he's clean through the time we've known him on the series (starting in season 2) and he's been one of the most grounded, most caring people we've seen on the series. It would be very out-of-character for him to just give up on his child.
Caroline has a long history with instability and creating chaos, and Adam is used to cleaning up her messes; Adam's regular check-ins are more about Laird and Sample than about Caroline.
posted by aabbbiee at 12:40 PM on April 12, 2016

I have a hard time separating Hannah from Lena; I find myself questioning whether or not Hannah's behavior in the universe of the show is as crazy as it is in the universe of my mind.

Loved Shosh's airport scream so very much.
posted by armacy at 1:17 PM on April 12, 2016

Hannah not even apologizing to Ray after crashing his truck due to a non-consensual blowjob is when she veered into full blown sociopathy to me. I just could not believe it. The character ceased to be realistic to me. Is there another season in the works? Not sure I can watch it anymore.
posted by permiechickie at 3:20 PM on April 12, 2016 [1 favorite]

Loved Fran's part about the hand written note his brother wrote him about how rude she was. If anyone else on Team Fran want to see him be treated half decently for once, Obvious Child was pretty super and about as light hearted as a movie about abortion can get.
posted by permiechickie at 3:23 PM on April 12, 2016 [1 favorite]

I have to say, next time I'm pissed off at someone, I'm going to write a letter by hand.
posted by lmfsilva at 3:03 AM on April 13, 2016 [1 favorite]

Hannah didn't crash Ray's truck on her own, though. A reasonable person in Ray's position would have pulled the car over to the side of the road to handle the situation appropriately. Especially a fancy new $50K coffee truck. Ray was at least as culpable in that situation as Hannah, even though Hannah was being particularly stupid.

But this is a trope where fictional characters who are residents of NYC often do really stupid things when driving automobiles, putting themselves in situations that are ridiculous and having dumb accidents because they're not used to driving cars regularly. I can't find this on TV Tropes, but it is a thing.
posted by aabbbiee at 7:42 AM on April 13, 2016 [1 favorite]

For serious? This is Ray's fault? He didn't want a blow-job and he wasn't even hard, apparently. This was clearly lack of affirmative consent, if not sexual assault. If the gender roles were switched and Hannah was driving as Ray stuck his fingers down her pants would you think it was her fault for crashing? I don't think the shoulder was even wide enough to pull over the truck on the tiny road they were on.
posted by permiechickie at 12:29 PM on April 13, 2016

Ray did decide to close his eyes instead of even attempting to pull over. I think that's what makes him culpable. Even if the roles were reversed- someone starts opening your pants you pull over.
posted by bleep at 1:26 PM on April 13, 2016

Wow. I can't believe the amount of victim-blaming going on in this thread. Ray didn't ask for a blowjob or insinuate in any way that he wanted one from Hannah. Nothing in his past behavior towards her suggested he had any sexual feelings. She put him in a compromising situation while he's driving, yet he's the one responsible for not knowing what to do when someone pushy is performing sexual acts on him? Dude wasn't even provocatively dressed.

I guess affirmative consent really doesn't go both ways when males are the victims.
posted by permiechickie at 1:47 PM on April 13, 2016 [1 favorite]

I don't disagree that it was a nonconsensual blowjob, but Ray had time to pull the truck over or stop in the road, and that's not victim-blaming. There was time, and he closed his eyes for several seconds.

Your gender reversal argument is fallacy of false equivalence.
posted by aabbbiee at 1:55 PM on April 13, 2016

Is a nonconsensual blowjob sexual assault? If yes, are victims of sexual assault liable for errors of judgment or coordination (either not stopping the car or driving off the road) they commit while they are in the process of being sexually assaulted?
posted by permiechickie at 2:08 PM on April 13, 2016

I guess that's true.
posted by bleep at 2:10 PM on April 13, 2016

I'm curious to see if it ends up being a one-off "something cute Hannah did cuz she's cray cray" or if it gets serious and Ray presses charges or even just talks to her about it. I hope he does.
posted by permiechickie at 2:32 PM on April 13, 2016

I think it would be really off brand for this show for Ray to press charges.
posted by zutalors! at 5:11 PM on April 13, 2016

There have been some really beautiful nature scenes this season that contrast really well with the urban landscape where most of the show takes place -- the rainstorm in the wedding episode, Marnie underwater in Panic, Hannah in the woods outside the rest stop, the overturned coffee truck, etc. I love the cinematography.
posted by Clustercuss at 10:44 AM on April 14, 2016 [3 favorites]

The blow job may have initially lacked affirmative consent, but is it reasonable to assert that is was therefore nonconsensual based on what we saw - which involved a verbal negotiation of whether Ray could use his hand on Hannah's head and Ray closing his eyes in what appeared to be a (failed) attempt to enjoy the act? Definitely not best practices here, but it is not clear to me that it is therefore ipso facto sexual assault.

I think we can all agree that Hannah is absolutely horrible this season - just beyond the pale.
posted by Falconetti at 12:55 PM on April 14, 2016 [1 favorite]

I just think that taking into account the way that Dunham has characterized her own experience of rape from lack of affirmative consent that if she's not herself calling what she did to Ray sexual assault, then she's being inconsistent that, to me, seems to stem from not affording men the same agency in deciding what sexual acts they want to participate in. I haven't read her memoir, only heard second-hand, so these quotes may not fully describe what she wrote.
Dunham was drunk and high at a college party, where she ran into a “creepy” guy named Barry who was sexually aggressive toward her. They went back to her room, and she tried to convince herself that she was really choosing to have sex with him, until she noticed that he hadn’t put on a condom and kicked him out. In the book, she describes it as “a sexual encounter that no one can classify properly.” When her roommate told her it was rape, her first reaction was to laugh. [ThinkProgress]
Dunham’s self-awareness can almost overwhelm with truthiness, as in “Barry,” her glancing, tragicomic account of being raped by a “mustachioed campus Republican” who, among other nonconsensual acts, removes his condom without her permission or knowledge. “A sexual encounter that no one can classify properly” sounds precisely like a voice of her generation, one struggling to come to terms with rape culture. (And yet, “I feel like there are fifty ways it’s my fault … But I also know that at no moment did I consent to being handled that way” sounds like a voice of every generation of women.)[Time]
posted by permiechickie at 2:19 PM on April 14, 2016

I'd read the book before talking about someone else's account of her assault. I don't mean that to be snarky, but everything about her book was taken WAY out of context.
posted by zutalors! at 2:25 PM on April 14, 2016

Hannah has gone full Don Draper. I think part of the appeal of Girls, like part of the appeal of Mad Men, is to see just how horrible a person you can make the main character while maintaining a smidge of sympathetic human empathy. For me, it's therapeutic, because I'm aware what a horrible person I can be. I don't root for their bad behavior, and I do get frustrated when they seem SO self-involved. But I always hope they can do better. I thought Mad Men had a very well-thought-out ending where nobody lived happily ever after, but people made incremental progress (or not). I'm eager to see how Dunham wraps up this show.
posted by rikschell at 8:00 AM on April 15, 2016 [3 favorites]

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