Girls Recap: One More (or Less) Problem

For someone who usually has pretty good gay-dar, I did not see this coming.


In March 8’s Girls episode titled “Tad & Loreen & Avi & Shanaz,” Hannah’s father, Tad Horvath, comes out of the closet. While Tad seemed to be in a contemplative mood earlier in the season, when he was visiting Hannah in Iowa, it didn’t seem like anything in the way of suppressed homosexuality (although one wonders if Elijah attending dinner would have outed him sooner).

The episode opens with Tad and Loreen Horvath exiting their marital counseling session, with Loreen feeling pretty pleased with the progress. Until Tad opens his mouth.

“I’ve been thinking lately that I’m gay,” says Tad. “Not lately actually. For a while.”

Loreen is naturally shocked, but also thinks that he’s jealous about her getting tenure before him.

“This isn’t all about you,” says Tad to Loreen, which sounds like something he would say to his daughter.

Looks like the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

Two Best Frenulums

Meanwhile, said apple has ventured into the profession (sort of) of her tree parents. But instead of enriching young lives with an education, she’s more or less becoming besties with them, with Cleo (Maude Apatow) coming to Hannah, her substitute teacher, for Millennial boy problems (“I don’t even like him. I’m just bored.”). Cleo’s weighing her prospects and really thinks she may have a chance with Shia LaBeouf who lives in her building (who’s hot because of his light criminal activity). While Cleo dishes out her own problems, she also provides insight into Hannah’s (“Your ex seems really damaged”) and can translate Ariana Grande’s lyrics into real life. The most cringeworthy moment of the night comes when Hannah and her new gal pal rock out to “Problem” like they’re in a ‘90s romantic comedy, complete with catcalls from construction workers.

For some reason, this storyline feels like a holdover from Keira Knightley’s 2014 film Laggies, in which an adult slacker becomes friends with a teenager. However, in this case, the teenage actress is the daughter of the show’s producer, so the plot makes some sense.

Randomly, Cleo and Hannah decide to get their frenulums pierced (that hunk of skin underneath your tongue). Cleo is the first to go, in a scene reminiscent of Hannah’s painful Q-Tip incident, with blood and screaming. Like the good “teacher” she is, Hannah talks Cleo through the pain, but when Cleo’s finished and mumbles, “You’re next?”, Hannah says hell no and backs out. She’s an adult and can change her mind.

But as an adult, she still doesn’t know any better when it comes to backing down when a guy’s not interested.

In an effort to win Fran back, Hannah apologizes about their date the other night. She was having an amazing time before shit hit the fan, and she thinks he would be a good move for her because she wants to make up for her nonsense and make better choices.

Unfortunately, he can’t do that.

“You’re very smart and an unusual person,” Fran says. “And I like talking to you very much. But I’m trying not to be attracted to drama.” His ex-girlfriend stole from his bank account and put battery acid in his plants.

Hannah? DRAMA? Hannah tries to back pedal and make it out like she’s not all about the theatrics (she doesn’t even own any plants) and offers Fran one final plea.

“You think I’m a wild horse and want to tame me,” she says. “And I’m up for it!”

Unfortunately, wild horses could drag Fran away, as he slinks out of this scene shortly after Hannah’s admission.

 What’s in the Box?

 “Are you ready to be stoked right now?” says Desi, after bringing a mysterious box into Marnie’s apartment. It could be a variety of things. One would think it was a box of hammers or defunct Beanie Babies, but actually it’s the tightest German guitar pedals ever made in history! And they only cost $2,000—the whole advance he and Marnie got for their shitty music.

Marnie is pissed, but Desi couldn’t pass it up. It was such a sick deal. Marnie can’t believe he blew $2,000 on something without consulting her.

“I’m so super confused right now, babe,” says Desi. “This box makes our art stronger.”

Desi leaves in a huff. Now he’s super pissed. He can’t believe she’s being a f***ing bitch about this. She ruined his day.

I’ve never understood the draw between Marnie and Desi, since she looks like a retired Delia’s model, and he looks like the guy who used those catalogs as toilet paper.

Marnie, Marnie, Marnie

Despite her upcoming date with soup mogul Scotty, Shosh is still tying up loose ends with Ray, helping him in his run for city council. Together, they’re handing out fliers (while Shosh hands out some lies) in order to get votes. Ray tells her that’s not how he plans on doing politics, and while on the subject of truth, he sees it as a segue in asking his ex about her love life. She tells him she has a date with a man who’s very intriguing to her. How about him?

“Crickets and tumbleweeds,” he replies, even though he went on eharmony the other day. Ultimately, he can’t get over this one girl who broke him. He’s waiting for his heart to catch up to his brain.

Shosh thinks it’s her he’s having trouble getting over, but not so. It’s—you guessed it—f***ing Marnie.

Later, on her date, it would appear that Shosh still has Ray on the brain, when she and Scotty exchange their “ex” stories.  Scotty regales her with how his ex published all of his emails on Tumblr (“Bitches be cray!”). Shosh opens up to him about feeling lame for being unemployed, to which Scotty bans those words from the table. She’s not allowed to beat herself up (although the term “lame sauce” is still OK to use).

Things seem to be going well with Shosh and Scotty. Shosh wants someone to help her soar, and Scotty wants someone to watch soar, so this could be a perfect match. So, enough about the past, let’s talk about the future, says Shosh—specifically her hands around his cock. (Earlier, Jessa had handed out some dating advice to be bold. )

This causes Scotty to laugh hysterically, which was not the reaction Shosh wanted. She wanted to be hot and provocative.

“I like you and the thought of your hand on my cock,” he says, “but not when the cast of The Good Wife is at the bar.” (Complete with Josh Charles!)

Shosh still has a lot to learn when it comes to both professional and romantic encounters.

Husbands and Wives

Loreen is having a rough day. First, her husband tells her he’s gay, and then he gets two bottles of Riesling from the liquor store, which causes her to weep a little more.

When they arrive at Avi and Shanaz’s (played affably by Fred Melamed and Jackie Hoffman), the wear and tear of the day is clear on Loreen’s face, despite the visit being in honor of her tenure. Shanaz corners her and tells her to enjoy the attention—she worked for this.

In the other room, Tad and Avi chat, with Avi noticing something’s amiss.

“How late is too late to change?” says Tad. “Do you ever get that feeling?”

During dinner, Tad wants to make a toast in honor of his wife.

“I just want to say that tonight I’m so proud of my wife, my life partner. My closest friend. You’re everything to me. These years have been a gift.”

This causes Loreen to start laughing hysterically, and finally she drunkenly breaks down.

“Excuse me,” she says. “I cannot stand to listen to this bullshit for one more second.” And she gets up and leaves the table.

As Loreen comes out of the bathroom, Avi grabs her and takes her into an empty bedroom, reminding them of their affair last summer and that his love for her grows stronger every day. He knows something’s up between her and Tad. Loreen once again laughs and shrugs it off, telling Avi to take a shower or something.

“So you wanna suck dick now?”

Juxtaposed with the dissolution of a marriage is the beginning of a future divorce.

After spending a day apart, Desi finds Marnie at a coffee shop, staring blankly at her phone. He wants to talk and feels ashamed. Marnie admits she’s not a materialistic person (file not found), but that money issues tore her parents’ marriage apart, so she’s sensitive to it.

Desi has something to say.

“Today was the very last day of my life that I ever want to make a decision without you,” he says, pulling out a ring, which causes Marnie’s face to contort into a smile.

So I guess it’s OK to make a random, expensive purchase if it’s something she can show off on Facebook, Instagram, and in front of her girlfriends.

But while one relationship is getting closer, another is getting farther apart.

Tad and Loreen sit down at their kitchen table to discuss the big reveal of the day. Loreen wants to know if he’s sure. Tad says he watches a lot of gay pornography.

“So you wanna suck a dick now?” she says. “Is that what you wanna do?”

Then, the phone rings. It’s Hannah—although Loreen says it’s probably Avi because he’s in love with her.

Hannah doesn’t even let her parents say hello before she starts in on her problems, questioning whether she’s really that dramatic based on Fran’s observations. Finally, Loreen shuts her up.

“Hey, Hannah. Your father is gay.”

“Uh. . .”

What did you think of “Tad & Loreen & Avi & Shanaz”? Did you see this coming? How about Marnie’s engagement? Do you think she’ll, too, postpone it if her father gets caught in a lie?

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