Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Dinner is Served

The only question that really matters is ‘which dinner was more painful to watch?’ Normally, an awkward dinner with the in-laws is as bad as it gets (like I’d fucking know). That might not be the case here, though. Between butt plugs, a battle of the exes, and a boyfriend turned squatter, Hannah’s dinner party could be the runaway favorite as the more painful of the two. More on all of this in a minute.

For the second time, it seems like Elijah will be exiting Hannah’s life. But not his stuff. Hannah lays claim to every one of Elijah’s earthly possessions and since (a) George paid for it all anyway and (b) Elijah can’t afford to pay his final month of rent, he doesn’t have much of a leg to stand on. In a last ditch effort to hold on to some his belongings, Elijah tries to recoup some of his sunk costs in the form of Burrito add-ons (Guacamole, spinach, et al.) but when Hannah reminds him that he held on to their shared buttplug, the two call it even.

Since we spend the rest of the episode hopping back and forth between the uncomfortable dinners, I’m just going to take the liberty of listing out the most discomfiting highlights from each one, in bullet form.

Jessa's Dinner with the in laws:
- good first impression is squandered with a late arrival
- Jessa admits to hating the very restaurant TJ's parents selected
- it's revealed that Jessa has no job...and no real desire to pursue one
- it's revealed that Jessa's unemployment status may or may not have something to do with being a college dropout
- it's revealed that Jessa's lack of a degree may or may not have something to do with being a recovering heroin addict
-TJ's mom ain't no punk, she hollas she wants prenup, she wants prenup, YEAH
- God likely does not exist

Hannah's Dinner Party:
- Charlie, Audrey, and Marnie all realize they are co-invitees and will have to sit at a table together
- Audrey is blossoming mustard entrepreneur...Marnie has had zero success with condiments
- Shosh arrives late. Shosh lost her earring in a cab. Shosh lies to everybody. Shosh had sex.
- We never get to find out where Audrey shops for all of her headbands
- Shosh is graphically educated on the proper use of a buttplug
- the word "butthole" is repeated ad nauseam
- Audrey accuses Marnie of trying to get all up back in Charlie's butthole
- Audrey accuses Marnie of being a semi-suicidal, Stepford Psycho, stalker
- Marnie storms out. Charlie follows her out. Audrey storms out.
- Charlie tries to rekindle things with Marnie but gets shut down because now she's dating an Ewok
- Shosh realizes her boyfriend is homeless and squatting in her apartment

It’s pretty clear that Hannah’s dinner dominates on the uncomfortable-meter but that doesn’t mean Jessa is out of the woods yet. No, her evening is long from over. To nobody’s dismay and to nobody’s surprise, the Jessa and Thomas John arrangement appears to be at its end. Jessa’s free spirit nature is way more than Thomas John bargained for and TJ’s bland mediocrity is clearly a poor match for Jessa as well. All that said, I still think that the writers took a serious short cut here. As flaky as Jessa is, and as inevitable as the divorce was, up until this point there have been precisely ZERO misgivings regarding this arrangement. I mean shit, up until thirty minutes before the dinner, Jessa was whipping out her titties to get some late afternoon loving. In Episode 2, Jessa is lecturing Hannah on the depth of her love with Thomas John... so what's happened exactly? An uncomfortable dinner makes her realize that Thomas John is an uptight corporate goober? I don't buy it. Not to mention, the whole point of a trophy wife is that you're willingly giving up your money (or receiving money) as compensation for spending time with somebody you're not attracted to. That's the whole fucking point. How do you get blindsided by all of that two months into the marriage? To make up for this shoddy plot resolution, they try to distract us with a boob other than Hannah's, but I remain laser focused on the fact that this is lazy writing. All told, Jessa's negotiation skills are about on par with Dr. Evil so she walks away with a paltry $11,500. Weak.

In another relationship that makes little sense to me, Shoshanna and Ray have a heart-to-heart on the status of their arrangement. Ray is apparently broke, homeless, and thirty fucking three years old. Why he spends all his time with 25 year olds is a mystery to me, but I guess beggars can't be choosers. Shosh doesn't care though because she loves him and he loves her "so fucking much" also. But how? Normally I try not to delve too deeply into the show's plot points but I don't get this one either. Let alone how I think it's impossible for anybody to stomach the verbal onslaught that Shosh spews on a minute by minute basis, but somebody as cynical and dry witted as Ray would never (in real life) tolerate somebody so vapid. It doesn't come together or get explained what attributes Ray is attracted to in her. Oh...right.

To close out the episode, we obviously have to see Hannah's tits because a full 25 minutes has elapsed without that happening. In a quid pro quo of 'I'll show you mine if you show me yours', we do get to see Jessa's chest again so I guess it sort of cancels out the prior image. But not really. Finally fed up with her own antics and lack of life direction, Jessa breaks down. What takes place after that is something I can't say I'm very familiar with. At the end of my really shitty days, when I climb into the bathtub with my room mates, I'm met with moral support, solid advice, and a vigorous, deep scalp shampoo-ing. That's how guys do. Apparently girls are much more simple. They throw snot rockets back and forth at each other. That's enough. Nothing says "I'm here for you" like a well timed mucus fling. If I've said it once, I've said it a hundred times. Girls are waaaaaay grosser than boys.

Bonus Coverage: Lena Dunham on Howard Stern this week. 

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