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‘Girls’ comes back with less than a bang

January 31, 2013

“Girls” is an HBO comedy-drama set in New York City starring Lena Dunham as Hannah Horvath. The series originally premiered in April 2012 and has recently been renewed for a third season which will consist of 12 episodes. – HBO Entertainment

 

PATRICK BOYD
Contributing Editor

 

Lately, my favorite television shows have started to resemble my favorite junk foods and desserts.

 

“Downton Abbey” is like a nice slab of Tiramisu (when I can afford it), “The Wire,” a German chocolate cake (radiates intelligence and complexity), and “Homeland” is like a large cup of frozen yogurt with 30 toppings (so many different flavors mixed up, you don’t know what is going on and love it).

 

HBO’s “Girls,” whose first season was like a ream of double stuffed Oreos, is starting to resemble an opened Luna Bar left outside on a sidewalk during a hot July day.

 

You want to eat it and love it, but realize after the fact that it really wasn’t that good at all.

 

The new season of “Girls” may not be that bad and is definitely getting better with each episode, but is light-years behind the quality and control of the first season.

 

Lena Dunham, creator, star, writer, executive producer and director, came back just a few short months later after last season’s finale with a lackluster and blustery debut, which felt premature at best.

 

When we left Hannah Horvath, played by Dunham, at the end of last season, she was fighting with her boyfriend Adam (Adam Driver) in the street, then he got hit by a car, she took the subway, woke up on Coney Island and sat on the beach eating a cupcake.

 

The thing that was so magical about the first season was how realistic it was and the fully realized, off-kilter relationships between the main characters.

 

In the second season, everything is torn apart plot-wise and stylistically.

 

Hannah has a new boyfriend and is still jobless and writing essays.

 

Hannah’s ex-boyfriend Elijah (Andrew Rannels), who is now gay, has moved in with her after a fight between Marnie (Allison Williams) and Hannah left their friendship in shambles. Marnie is fired from her job at the art gallery and starts to resemble Hannah: jobless and confused.

 

Jessa (Jemima Kirke) got married quite unexpectedly at the end of the last season and is practically non-existent until episode four where she returns to being an actual part of the show again.

 

The fast-talking Shoshanna (Zosia Mamet) is recovering from losing her virginity to Ray (Alex Karpovsky) and is still just doing a lot of really fast-talking.

 

Despite pacing issues, (especially in the first episode, which was so rampant I felt like I was watching an MTV reality show in fast-forward) and some bouts of forced and equally flat writing like, “We can sit down and talk it out over a bowl of crisps,” the new season is free-wheeling in a good way.

 

Instead of being introduced to the issues and problems that plague the super self-absorbed yet lovable characters, we are meandering with them and stumble upon certain problems as they become pertinent to the story.

 

All the awkward sex scenes, cringe-worthy interactions and witty one-liners are still present. Despite the first two disappointing episodes, everything starts to get back on track when Hannah is assigned to do cocaine for an article she is writing in episode three. The episode is not so frenetic and makes us realize why we fell in love with these super-flawed people in the first place.

 

Despite the problems of the second season, I am hooked nonetheless and can’t imagine not indulging in “Girls” every Sunday night.

 

“Girls” is nothing more than a bunch of first-world problems streamed together and I’m almost, kind of loving it.

 

“Girls” is available on HBO GO and iTunes.

 

Email comments to gpb009@latech.edu.

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