Girls’ “Queen for two days” opens with Hannah and Loreen on their way to a weekend retreat. Loreen’s goal is to make up her mind as to whether she should divorce her husband or not, and while to Hannah, the answer to that question is a no brainer, she is surprisingly supportive of her mother. That said, Hannah herself, has her own doubts about her future with Fran, who, she admits, might be TOO nice of a guy.
In the meantime, Shoshanna has managed to find a new job in Japan at a cat cafe, and her relationship with Yoshi seems to be progressing nicely. For the first time in the series run, Shosh seems to have found a way not to completely freak out about a situation that would have most of the world population stressed out. I gotta give it to her, being alone in a completely different culture, after just having ended a relationship and lost her job have not brought this girl down, instead, she is seemingly growing stronger and more adaptable. The key word being SEEMINGLY.
When Abigail makes a surprise visit, Shosh acts as the best host and shows her around. The two have a great time together, at the same time, it’s easy to see, at least for those of us who have experienced living abroad and then being the honorary tour guide to our visitors, that the cracks were going to become visible. There is nothing more life-altering than the reminder that we don’t -at least originally- belong to where we are at.
Back at the remote retreat, Hannah is relieved that she is spending some time away from her boyfriend. It is evident that the young Horvath is becoming suffocated by her relationship with Fran, even though she can’t quite figure out what it is that is not fully clicking with the two of them. Loreen gives her her two cents; she believes her daughter is not apt to love someone who is actually good to her. It’s a very valid point, Hannah has always been at odds with the man she’s dated. Conflict has always been a part of her romantic equation. Given the absence of conflict, she feels there is something missing. It’s hard to break patterns, for her, which is simply, yet masterfully illustrated in the episode. Even at a retreat, Hannah has the compulsive need to generate drama by not turning off her cellphone. Habits do not come with an on/off switch.
Speaking of on, Jessa and Adam seem to have made progress in the bedroom department. What’s more, when she casually mentions that her half sister, Minerva is in town, Adam volunteers to join the two for dinner. I never thought I would be typing this, but somehow he is becoming the best boyfriend on TV.
While on their way to meet Minnie, who we already sense, is going to be a handful and a half, Jessa shares with Adam that her half sister has been intimate with every men in her life, including her father. She also claims that she understands if Adam wants to be another notch in Minerva’s bedpost. Chances are that Jessa was actually testing Adam. Obviously, every men in her life has been a total disappointment. Thankfully, Adam is far from that.
Season after season, we’ve seen Jessa become more open and vulnerable, yet she seems to shrink considerably every time anything remotely family-related comes into play. In this case, she listens to her younger sister blab about her failed marriage and refrains from judging. The Jessa we met in season one would have had a field day gutting Minnie, but season five Jessa is patient, seems to care, at least a little. Then she articulately makes a case for herself when she asks Minerva for money to pay for her education. It’s all in vain, since Minnie not only denies her a loan, she does everything she can to shame Jessa about the addiction she now has under control.
When her sister fails her, Adam raises to the occasion and not only defends her honor and words how much he thinks of her, but he also puts his money where his mouth is at and offers to use the cash he earned doing the pharma commercials he so much hated to pay for Jessa’s classes. It’s a cute scene and an honorable act. That stated, Jessa deserves a break, she deserves that someone bets on her to win. Is it me or it does look like Adam and Jessa bring out the best out each other? I might be eating my words eventually but I like where this is going.
Back at the retreat, Hannah breaks the rules and checks on her dad, who is worried that Loreen might actually dump him. It’s both heartbreaking and maddening to try to understand the situation this marriage is at. It is very easy to side with Hannah and believe that despite the history and love they share, Tad and Loreen should split, however, they both seem to want to remain an unit. Wether we understand it or not, acceptance seems to be the right path to follow.
Later on, Hannah is caught with her phone in her hand, and berated about it by one of the retreat staffers, until another member of “Team Sping Queening” defends her, only to subsequently hit on her.
That afternoon, the Horvaths enjoy dinner with a group of women who are retreat addicts. As it turns out, while the woman go on and on about everything that is wrong in their romantic lives, Loreen has an uh-huh moment, while Hannah sneaks into the kitchen to get bread. Instead of carbs, Hannah ends up heading to the sauna with the staffer who had defended her, and they hook up.
By bedtime, Loreen finally has made up her mind. She is not ending her marriage. Though she is not blind to the fact that things are less than perfect, she is willing to settle with being married to a gay man who is nice to her and “plays Scrabble really well”. Hannah flat out responds that her parents ruined her. It’s hard not to agree with her.
Back in Japan, Yoshi has joined Abigail and Shosh for dinner. When he goes to the bathroom, Shoshannah finally breaks down. She feels lonely, she is sad, she is homesick. Once again, I can personally relate, the life of an expat has very high highs, but very deep lows as well. The in-betweens are rare.
Shosh winds up walking the deserted streets of Tokyo on her own. With no clear route.
“Queen for two days” is yet another standout episode for Girls. The show keeps delivering as the characters face their turning points each time with more humility than the time before. Personally, I believe it is interesting that within the five episodes we have seen, the girls have navigated through their issues alone, while the moments they have come together have been scarce, yet beautiful.
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