News__ GIRLS: SEASON 2, EPISODE 4

February 04, 2013 | By

Lena Dunham could sell that chair on eBay, no problem

It was used or be used on this week's episode of Girls. Hannah uses Elijah's furniture, which he accumulated while using his older rich boyfriend. Charlie's using Audrey to make Marnie jealous. Ray's using Shoshanna for a place to live. Jessa's using her new husband for money and he's using her for sex. It's a dirty episode that tests our limits with these characters. Like Hannah's dinner guests, we're politely eating something distasteful.

Maybe Lena Dunham knows that we all drink kale juice now so we're ok with distasteful things as long as we know that it's good for us. We just need a little payoff and we got it in the bathtub. Jessa and Hannah splashing snot around in the bathtub is the reason why we love Girls. It was intimate, funny and reminded us why we love Hannah. She's a girl that will let you into her bathtub and only laugh when you blow your nose into it. That scene at the end was like Beyonce bringing Kelly and Michelle up onto that Super Bowl stage. Gotta give the crowd what they came for.

This episode, titled "It's a Shame About Ray," is both a reference to this song and Ray's secret homelessness. In the song, Ray died. The Lemonheads song was chosen for a reason and foreshadowing our favorite surly barista's impending death is probably not one of them. Instead, this episode marks Ray's transformation into a lover boy.

We didn't know much about Ray until he started dating Shoshanna.In just a few episodes, he's shed his cranky emotionally distant trope and become an Ally McBeal watching cuddler. When he tells Shoshanna that he loves her "so fucking much," it's the death of his former persona. He chastises her for saying, "I'm falling in love with you," but follows it up by taking it to the next level. Welcome to Shoshanna world, Ray. It might be a helluva lot better than Ray town.

If you think Ray's declaration of love was fake, I don't entirely disagree. The timing was very convenient. He wouldn't be the first person to jump into a relationship because he needs cheap rent. It sounds outrageously malicious on paper but it happens all the time. Maybe you've done it. Maybe your friend's done it. Maybe someone did it to you.

Most of the time, people are in denial about how much they're using another person. I believe Ray, though. His speech about being a loser feels too real. The allusion to the song, however, puts a damper on Ray and Shoshanna's love. Will she reject him? Will he do her dirty? At the very least, will we get more sex questions from Shoshanna?

Why doesn't every episode have more Shoshanna and Jessa? Those two killed it in "It's a Shame About Ray." They're palette cleansers for Hannah's narcissism and Marnie's case of the mopes. Every single line Jessa said during her fight with Thomas John gave an angel wings. It made me want to pick a fight with someone hoping that I could be as creatively and aggressively articulate. I'm also suddenly into crimped hair again.

The fight between Jessa and her venture capitalist husband was instigated by his mother's disapproval. Until that dinner, it didn't seem like there were any pressing marital problems. Thomas John's switch was flipped quickly and easily. It gave a lot of weight to Jessa's assessment that living with her will be the one thing "free-spirited" thing that he'll have in his life. Jessa was honest about who she was with Thomas John and continued to be honest with his parents. He was the one living a double life.

The only thing he has to combat her with is that she's a "whore with bad work ethic." The comment says more about him than her. Or does it? A part of it might be true--and I think that's the part that makes Jessa cry. I don't think she outrightly married him for money but she did a little bit. It's this "little bit" that makes the episode, and Girls as a whole, so good.

Thomas John also accuses Jessa of creating drama because she's bored. It's a harsher, yet similar, version of what her boss told her last season after the boss's husband's failed adultery attempt. It's the comment that led to Jessa's hasty marriage. When you travel, meet new people, try new things and jump into new situations but you always encounter the same problem, it's hard to ignore that the problem is probably just you.

Thankfully Hannah was in that bathtub when Jessa was crying because a second longer and I might have cried too. At that moment it was like Hannah was the audience's friend and she did a good job.

Marnie was boring in this episode and she's obviously a crazy person if she turned down Charlie's rooftop tit grab makeout for Booth Jonathan's ass-up starfish sex skills. It was nice to see Audrey be relevant for once by tearing Marnie a new asshole, sans butt plug. Pretty aggressive move for a dinner party.

I'm also kind of into her mustard business. Marnie and Hannah make fun of it, but what are those two doing that's so special? Yeah, that's right. I'm team Audrey. She should probably ditch Charlie because that guy sucks. Hannah calls him a jerk which is no big whoop because I already said that last season in this post.

Let's end things off with a poll about shame in your hygiene game. Tell me all your dirty things.

Girls are dirty.
pollcode.com free polls

Read last week’s recap of Girls here.

-Jess Bloom

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