Girls S4E4 “Cubbies” Review

Tonight’s episode of the HBO series GIRLS really hit home. For the first time in a long time after following the show since S1E1, I could relate. Take for example, Hannah’s confusion and apprehension concerning the idea of moving to Iowa for the Writer’s Workshop and her experience thereafter. Anxious about the future (or lack thereof) regarding her relationship with Adam, originally due to the impending doom of what they once had (mostly to do with his lack of phone etiquette) despite the modern technologies e.g. Skype that Hannah and Adam discussed in the first episode of Season 4 before she left Brooklyn for Iowa.

While I can’t relate to Hannah’s self-sabotaging experience at Iowa, I understand the complexity of long-distance relationships. I also understand the difficulty of following a significant other to a place you don’t necessarily want to live in (but move to anyway, to support them). If the character of Adam is anything like me, he would’ve succumbed to his demons. If life permitted do-overs, I’d have gone the same route as Adam—minus the ‘finding a new girlfriend’ aspect.

Jessa, the show’s token free-spirit and tragically-beautiful ex-junkie, is shown hanging out with Marnie at a bar. While Marnie orders a beer and Jessa orders a glass of what seasoned viewers would assume to be seltzer due to the previous episode’s depiction of her accompanying Adam to AA meetings, Shoshanna appears. Marnie, feeling insecure about her recent track with the questionably-moral Desi and even more so after the blunt critique she’d only minutes before received from Jessa, hands her iPhone to Shosh and demands feedback. Shoshanna’s blunt response prompts Jessa to agree and the two continue to critique Marni’s audio track in a way so perfectly-scripted and acted that only viewers familiar with each of the characters’ personalities would understand.

Jessa feels lonely and seems pent-up with existential angst and therefore waltzes into scenarios with a blasé approach—as per usual for her, but a bit more so in this episode. Shosh is pissed off with the lack of positive responses in job interviews, shocked and livid, naive and subsequently (for once) at a loss for words.

Shoshanna and her ex Ray reconnect in the middle of a busy street in bumper-to-bumper traffic. She helps him revamp his wardrobe, yet later they agree they both hate the $70 shirt she convinced him to buy. Hannah and Elijah sit across from each other at the table in the kitchen of the home Hannah rented for $800 a month (for reasons no other than her realization at the the time of rental agreement signage that the cost of living in Iowa City differs greatly from her neighborhood in NYC, and her seeming inclination to “make it rain”).

The episode ends with Hannah’s impulsive return to Iowa. Upon skipping up the steps of the apartment building she formerly shared with Adam, she happens upon the dire realization that Adam has truly moved on.