Girls Recap: Season Premiere, ‘All I Ever Wanted.’


Hannah learns all about the love vibes

The final season of Girls starts with a major Hannah victory – getting published in the New York Times. It’s an emotional seen that shows the characters we love (or tolerate) reading her work and having their own personal reactions. This leads to Hannah getting offered an assignment from a magazine to cover middle-aged women “co-opting” surfing in the Hampton’s. This first episode, titled ‘All I Ever Wanted,’ isn’t messing around.

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In fact, it stands as one of the best Girls’ premiere episodes we’ve seen.

Hannah may be on the upswing, but she’s still Hannah, and that means she is crazy awkward while researching her new piece. She gets naked in public, puts on the wrong wetsuit, and is generally out of place. This is where she meets Riz Ahmed’s character, Paul-Louis, a surfing instructor. She also falls in the sand and insists that she has not only something called “sand lice,” and that she hurt her “front arm.” But really she just doesn’t want to surf, which is some truly shocking stuff.

But there’s so much  more going on here than just Hannah’s shenanigans. Marnie doesn’t want to live with Ray anymore, and he doesn’t want to go back to Adam’s because of the vibe over there – more on that later. The conversation that Marnie and Ray have is disgusting in the best and worst ways, with passive aggression running rampant but disguised by the overuse of “baby.” It’s great.

“Elijah is a bright spot in even the worst episodes of Girls. “

Elijah and Hannah are still living together, and he wants to know if he can use her room while she’s gone for orgy purposes. She immediately agrees. Elijah is a bright spot in even the worst episodes of Girls.

So onto Adam and Jessa. The two have been enjoying themselves carnally in what appears to be caveman fashion. When Ray returns home Jessa is sitting on the couch naked, eating ice cream. Adam is walking around in his underwear. All of this is weird to Ray, and none of it is weird to the two of them. They are happy, and deeply strange. They had to move Ray’s stuff into the corner for “sex purposes.” This is how they live now.

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Back in the Hamptons, Hannah connects with Paul-Louis after he tells him that he basically sleeps with everyone. We are then treated to a fantastic dance sequence in which Hannah spills her drink all over herself but is unperturbed. They then have pretty awkward sex, because this is Girls and that is a requirement.

Marnie doesn’t want Ray to crash with Shosh, but Adam and Jessa leave him little choice. Watching the two of them at breakfast is yet another reminder that they belong together. This contrasts with seeing Marnie and Desi later on – he wears a beat-up sweater with holes in it while they divide their possessions. He wants them to channel their anger into their music, and she feels like she needs to step back. There is no other character on Girls that has believed in Marnie as much as Desi has. So, yeah, it’s then implied that they sleep together.

Hannah ends up spending the day with Paul-Louis, which ends up being rather nice. She is very much against beach life, while he is all about it. As far as Hannah flings go, this one might work out the best. The best awkwardly touching traits of Hannah are brought out by Paul-Louis, and in those moments it feels like Girls has finally found a balance between fun awkward and just painfully awkward. And no, this thing with Paul-Louis was never going to work out.

Next: The cast of Girls take the red carpet at the NYC premiere.

‘All I Ever Wanted’ is Girls at its best. It’s a powerful, fun premiere to the final season that handles the weighted emotional issues well. Or at least well enough. If this is what we can expect from Girls’ final season, consider us fully on board.