Close-Up Plot Summary:
On this week’s episode of Girls, titled ‘Close Up,’ we finally see Hannah and Adam (Lena Dunham and Adam Driver) trying to move on with their lives, Marnie and Desi (Allison Williams and Ebon Moss-Bachrach) show how narcissistic they can be, and how Shoshanna (Zosia Mamet) continues to be the world’s most annoying character.
It’s time for a close up, and Girls may not be ready for it.
While the past few weeks have been filled with genius, and a feeling of how Girls used to be during its prime not so long ago, this episode seems to be taking a step back.
Instead of building on what made last episode so great, (the realistic way it portrayed heartbreak with over-the-top, dramatic scenes) this episode focused on the drama and how everyone, it seems, on this show are truly awful.
On the upside, the acting this episode was fantastic, thanks largely in part to Driver and Dunham. Sadly this may be the only positive thing to say about Girls this week.
However, the writing in this episode was just too obvious to ignore, and in a bad way. Last week, Girls finally felt like what it used to be. The pace was perfect, the writing and directing was spot on, and the acting made it all the more realistic and heartbreaking. In this episode it was almost like the writing team decided to do the exact opposite.
For example, they seemed to write Adam as the exact opposite of what he used to be. Then they just added a dash of terrible to a relationship that seemed to be natural and had potential to be something fresh to the show.
Adam’s reaction to Mimi-Rose’s (Gillian Jacobs) pregnancy/abortion confession is true to the Adam character. It shows how amazing of an actor Driver truly is, but tends to fall into the overly dramatic category. While Mimi-Rose’s straight-faced confession adds to Adam’s frustration. He initially gives a realistic reaction to the news, but the throwing stuff off the table bonus was something the show could have done without, especially in a scene as sensitive as this.
Adam Driver is an amazing actor, someone who helps make Girls the show it is today, but they need to tone down the dramatics. Just watching Driver give his initial reaction to the news at first was outstanding, it was unnecessary to add anything beyond that for his character.
Outside of Adam, every other character story on this week’s episode just seemed to make everyone undeniably awful and just showed that Girls is trying to bite off way more than it can chew regarding story arcs.
In particular, the scene involving Marnie (Allison Williams) and Desi (Ebon Moss-Bachrach), having sex to their own music and then arguing over She and Him, just makes them the awful MVP’s this episode. Their relationship shows how unnecessary storylines are making it into the show and dragging it down.
Marnie has always been self-centered and a narcissist, but adding a male Marnie is just too much for the show. They need to tone down the self-absorbed show that is these two characters if they want to help Girls go back to what it used to be.
Marnie is quickly becoming the next Shoshanna (Zoisa Mamet), which means that any time she pops up on the screen, I’m temped to pelt the TV with food and change the channel.
Special mention to Hannah’s storyline this week for being the least awful, mostly in part to how flawless Dunham is every episode.
Give the girl her Emmy already!
All in all, the episode was a major let down from last week. It had been really doing well, and dare I say it, close to going back to its glory days — but this week’s episode was a major misstep. That is what I will call this episode, just a misstep. The show has been making such good progress that it shouldn’t be judged by one bad episode, every show has it happen at least once a season. The acting really saved the episode, in particular that of Dunham and Driver, but the writing really needs to take a lesson in keeping the dramatics down and the true to life storylines and reactions up. Girls may not be ready for its ‘Close Up’ this week, but hopefully they will be next Sunday.
Rating: 4 out of 10
Laura Dengrove is the one of youngest members of the Pop-Break staff and is a critic for television/movies of all types on Pop-Break. She’s in her first year at college where she will be studying to obtain her bachelors degree at Rutgers University for Journalism/Public Relations. She was the editor for the Arts and Entertainment section of her school newspaper, runs her own blog (Pop Culture Darling), and interns for Design New Jersey. She also has an in-depth knowledge about all things True Blood and an avid Eric and Sookie shipper.