SERENADES AND SEXITS
by Olivia Fleming
Like the mini Nancy Meyers movie that couldn’t, or an episode of Sex and the City that could, this episode of Girls played out like Hannah’s very own tragic romantic comedy, or empirical “Modern Love” column. Part one: Young girl, yet to find herself, finds 42-year-old handsome doctor, with the grown-up perks (and pecs) to match. Part two: With the traditional beautiful-girl/geeky-guy narrative flipped, the girl finds herself falling into that ‘first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a baby in a baby carriage’ hope chest of 14-year-old girls everywhere. “You’re beautiful,” he tells her. “You really think so?” she asks. Part three: Sucked in, to his profession, his begging her to stay, his fruit bowl and fluffy bathrobes, like a scene out of The Bold and the Beautiful, she silently stares at her dreamboat from across an outdoor table that is probably bigger than the square-footage of her own bedroom. Part four: her knight in shining armor comes to her rescue (in this instance from a pruney death by shower steam) and it’s all so simply perfect that the girl basically vomits tears. But it’s never that simple, is it?
We want to laugh at Hannah, at this episode’s ridiculousness, but we’re not really supposed to. We cringe instead because for the first time, ever, we can identify with her blabbering, her caught-in-the-moment-against-her-better-cynical-judgment tirade of vulnerability. You know, the 48-hour romance, sex-fest, whatever you want to call it, where the world stops turning and your independent-girl logic goes all Cinderella on you. And then it’s over as quickly as it started, you quietly make your sexit, and you’re like, what the fuck was that?
At 17, I met a 19-year-old boy who owned a silver BMW and smelled like the inside of an Hermes store. We got stoned, fell in love, and drove three hours to his beach house, where for 48-hours all I saw was the master bedroom. He begged me to never leave him. Until I woke up, and the car, along with the boy, were gone. Let’s just say the call to my dad that came next is one I will never live down.
At first it’s easy to be flip and all eye-rolley about Hannah’s mini-dramadey, but whether or not this episode does turn out to be some warped anti-reality dream as we all kind of predict, the basis behind it is real. When someone who represents security and safety, in the financial way or ‘white knight’ kind of way, knocks you off your feet and lets you into their world of (apparent) beautiful ‘normaldom,’ it’s easy to see that trap as something freeing. You lose any sense of yourself, your I-don’t-need-anyone-in-order-to-be-ok beliefs, and your mother’s voice of reason: “He’ll only disappoint you, darling.” Hannah’s way of dealing with Joshua’s sudden disinterest (“Are you going to kiss me!?”) is as awkward as that drive home with my dad, but sometimes, boys… men… and this weird fantasy world they can represent, gets the better of us. At least Hannah can write about it for xoJane.