This season has had at least one standout episode and some **fire** wardrobe moves, but overall there's just too much happening in these final weeks, and the whole thing is feeling a bit hasty. GIRLS has a habit of throwing a bunch of wild plots into the universe and wrapping them up way too quickly (remember Mimi-Rose? Adam's sister? Jessa's wedding?) It's hard to see Hannah's pregnancy as much more than a Hail Mary to end this series on a Big Note.
Luckily, this week's episode is mostly about Elijah, the best character on this show, and that part at least was lovely. Let's dig in.
In "The Bounce," Elijah gets one final big moment. With his focus set back on acting, he decides to audition for the upcoming stage adaptation of White Men Can't Jump, a musical that does not yet exist but REALLY SHOULD. His focus, however, is briefly upended by the return of Dill Harcourt, the sultry news anchor who broke Elijah's heart last season. Harcourt has been embroiled in a "white baby buying scandal," having attempted to adopt a white baby on the black market, and he shows up at Elijah's place right before the open call, throwing him off his game.
Elijah freaks out at the theater and tries to bail before trying out, but when he bumps into fellow auditionee Athena Dante, who implores him to sing from the heart. So he ditches his original song and returns to belt out something from Smash in front of MARISSA JARET WINOKUR of OG Hairspray fame. Elijah makes it through his song and the monologue and even squeaks by the preliminary dancing portion, but dancing with basketballs is not his thing (though it's hilarious for the rest of us), and it looks like his star turn is not to be. Still, Elijah is hopeful, telling Athena Dante that he's going to make it no matter what, because he's "really f****ing talented." And when he goes home, he tells Dill Harcourt, in no uncertain terms, not to mess with him... right before they have pizza and bang. And then Elijah gets a callback, and his face lights right up. It's great.
I am so happy to see GIRLS give Elijah his due. So much of his role on this show seems like a prop—he's the hot funny gay sidekick, and though they threw him a bone with the Dill storyline last season, he's been woefully underused this time around. Some of the dialogue here was weak (his big moment confronting Dill fell flat, for instance) and I didn't think the gags were consistently funny, but the takeaway is that Elijah's done being self-loathing so he's grabbing life by the balls. It seems like it'll pay off, and he (and Shosh and Ray, who were nowhere to be found this week) deserve it.
Elsewhere in the GIRLSverse, Dill Harcourt convinces Hannah to tell Paul-Louis about the coming child. Blessedly, this means we get a Riz Ahmed return AT LAST. Unfortunately, though, Paul-Louis is not super enthusiastic about his tiny growing spawn, and seems quite relieved when Hannah makes it clear she doesn't need him to do anything for her. Hannah is not relieved—even though this is what she thinks wanted, she's sad and feels dismissed, she will have to raise a child alone, she might have made a mistake. Paul-Louis tells her he doesn't believe in mistakes, so we'll see if this comes back.
Meanwhile, broke Marnie decides to pawn an allegedly gold locket that was allegedly given to her great-great grandmother by Wild Bill Hickok in the 1870s. Unfortunately, Mama Rita Wilson is a bit of a liar and the pawnshop worker reveals the locket is a cheap piece of 20-year-old crap, PLUS the "diamond" earrings Marnie's dad got her when she got into college are made of glass. Marnie overshares with the pawnshop proprietor in her usual fashion, and he points out that while she is "doing a lot of blaming... nobody walks in here to sell things off their body who has done nothing wrong." There's not enough time to press upon this, though Marnie does call Desi to sincerely wish him well. More importantly, she's moving in with Rita Wilson!!! Michaels Sisters 4ev.
All in all, there were some nice moments this week. Still, the Hannah pregnancy plotline leaves a lot to be desired, Shosh and Ray had no screen time, and neither did Jessa or Adam—with only three episodes left until the show's last hurrah, there doesn't seem to be a lot of time to wrap things up. This is often the problem with GIRLS—the ideas are good, but the plotlines fizzle out before the writers get a real chance to sink their teeth into them. But I guess we'll see.
- I had to Google whether or not they really turned White Men Can't Jump into a musical. Never say never.
- Marnie's exercise addiction is giving me anxiety.
- "Men are only on this earth to buy us jeans." Indeed.
- Is it really that easy to audition for an open-call? My sister waited on line for three days to audition for the Harry Potter play, and in the end they didn't even let her in. TOO BAD FOR THEM because her British accent is...something.
- MARISSA JARET WINOKUR.
- "I have 14 Emmys, I know when someone's keeping a secret from me."
- TBH I could not care less about Dill Harcourt, but Corey Stoll is a treasure. Also Hannah's apartment is way too nice to be described as a "squat house."
- Grover. Bless your heart, Paul-Louis.
- Andrew Rannells would be the perfect star for White Men Can't Jump.
- According to this week's "Inside the Episode" recap, the GIRLS writing team took some inspiration from Rannells' own experience auditioning for Broadway shows.
Next week on GIRLS: Adam...goes back to Hannah? Honestly, who can keep up anymore.