Girls Recap: The Sad Messes

For the most part, when a breakup is depicted in a movie, TV show, book or in pop music, the dumper is the "winner" while the dumpee is left defeated. But those stories or songs are typically written by dumpees who utilized their art to work through their pain. Ironically, then, the dumpees of the world are the real "winners" (Adele, anyone?). So that would make the dumpers…the losers? Yeah, kinda, as evidenced by Marnie and Hannah as we got to watch on last night's episode how differently they and their exes are coping in the aftermath of their failed relationships.

So the episode opens with Hannah going through her day, and becoming visibly agitated after getting what's probably yet another phone call from Adam. She starts performing some tell-tale signs of OCD, with her ritualistic counting. (I wonder if the writers played around with titling the ep "Crazy Eights" instead of "It's Back.") Hannah, we learn, began dealing with obsessive compulsive disorder when she was in high school, and eventually got treatment and medication to control it. But, as the title of the ep would suggest, it's back! However, Hannah doesn't want to admit it or seek therapeutic help. Her parents'—who coincidentally are in town for a visit—essentially drag her to see a therapist. (The revelation that Hannah has the kind of mental illness that makes her aware of "every pulse" of her vagina and forces her to masturbate eight or 16 times in a night explains a lot of her self-obsession.)

Meanwhile, Adam isn't doing too much better. And having his calls ignored by his ex-girlfriend probably isn't helping. Unlike Hannah, he recognizes that he's potentially spiraling and confronts his emotions by attending an AA meeting to talk about his problems. And he says the usual unintentionally brilliant Adam-type things ("It wasn't love the way I imagined it. It just felt weird when I didn't know what she was up to"), impressing a kooky lady (played by Carol Kane) who sets him up with her daughter, a gorgeous girl named Natalia who turns out to be super into Adam.

For Hannah, everything is falling apart, while for Adam, things are finally coming together. You know, it might actually be a little easier to get dumped, if only because the decision wasn't yours, so you're not tasked with second guessing it. It's something that happened to you, not something you did, and thus you have no choice but to just cycle through the Kübler-Ross model all neat and tidy-like before getting on with your life. Hannah even admitted to her therapist that she's not even sure if Adam's attempts at contacting her are unwanted, since she, "can't really decide if he's actually the greatest person in the world or the worst." She's still unsure about her decision to end things, while Adam is having one of the best first dates of his life. She is mentally ill, while he is mentally chill.

Then there's Marnie. She hears about how her ex Charlie sold an app he created for a ton of money, and suddenly has a company and employees. He's living the dream (which still has its own little annoyances, like politely smiling at the offer of a free Jack Johnson album by the suits in sales) all made possible from an invention that was inspired by his breakup with Marnie. The app, called Forbid, blocks you from calling people that you shouldn't (like Marnie!). And Marnie doesn't get it. All she sees is that Charlie is successful when he was supposed to be a "sad mess" for six years because someone so "together" had dumped him. She doesn't seem to realize that he doesn't want to talk to her because she's bad for him and he had to build a phone application contacting her as a way to protect himself. (And now Marnie is going to become a singer, because that's her dream. Honestly, if Allison Williams can make is as an actress, then I don't see why Marnie can't make it as a singer.)

Charlie's and Adam's stories are demonstrative of the old idiom: the harder you fall, the higher you bounce back. Meanwhile, Hannah and Marnie, who were never dropped, but rather, drifted away, are floating around in a cloud of uncertainty. At least, thanks to Adam, Hannah can face this murkiness with the knowledge of what block Central Park starts on and how to use soap.

But what of Jessa, the third of the Girls who is working her way through a breakup? As Ray said, "Honestly, she's probably better off than any of us. She's a fucking hustler—and not in the positive sense of that word."