ByBrooke Geller, writer at Creators.co
Movie Pilot staff writer, aspiring shieldmaiden and friend to all doggos. twitter.com/brookalus
Brooke Geller

Girls has returned to our screens in full power, and it's clear that creator Lena Dunham wants the final season to go out with a bang. The ever-unapologetic writer certainly didn't hold back in the first episode of Season 6, which featured a failed kamasutra attempt, a polyamorous surf instructor and of course, Hannah attempting to tan her lady bits.

But sunburned nether regions aside, the plethora of cringe-inducing scenes jammed into one 45 minute episode sets an odd tone for the season ahead. With what seems like both a desperate grab at the show's past success and a failure to follow on from the massive changes in Season 5, the future of is uncertain at best.

Girls [Credit: HBO]
Girls [Credit: HBO]

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What Lies Ahead?

While Girls Season 5 involved some pretty major developments for Hannah and her eccentric social circle, it also set high expectations for the next season. Judging from what we've seen so far, will Season 6 crash and burn? To figure that out, let's take a look at where each character is at:

1. Hannah Is Just As Insufferable As Ever

Girls [Credit: HBO]
Girls [Credit: HBO]

At first glance, Hannah seems to be finally getting her shit together. Having her article published in the New York Times has helped her to recognize her ability as a writer, reaffirming her decision to quit teaching and focus on her true passion.

The episode starts out with her being assigned a job that basically involves humiliating herself at a Hamptons surf camp in order to write a candid, entertaining piece about the experience. Rather than be insulted that her editor would assume a person like Hannah couldn't possibly enjoy anything that involves swimsuits and physical activity, she instead plays right into that tired cliché.

Girls [Credit: HBO]
Girls [Credit: HBO]

This could have been Hannah's chance to be something more than her usual, predictable self; however, that wasn't the case. This is a woman who wants to be a writer, but can barely manage to put her cynicism aside to actually do her job. It's understandable that she may not be a seasoned pro when it comes to immersive journalism, but she literally doesn't even try.

Unfortunately, this isn't the first time she's bailed at what could be the precipice of career success. Her tendency to self-sabotage was interesting the first few times, but the now it's just a broken record.

2. Shoshanna Has Abandoned Her Identity

Girls [Credit: HBO]
Girls [Credit: HBO]

There must have been some sort of serious mix-up with the scripts, because the words coming out of that person's mouth does not match their face. Shoshanna hasn't just changed— she's become an entirely different person. And that's not a good thing.

Her witty banter with Ray as they criticize their least-favorite columnist over a breakfast of gluten-free toast almost seems like it was written for someone else entirely. It's an obvious attempt to establish Shoshonna as an intelligent, successful career woman, a future set out for her in Season 5.

The thing is, we don't need Shoshonna to start talking like a pretentious pseudo-intellectual for us to take her seriously. More importantly, there's definitely no need for her to abandon her signature bubbly personality in order to be taken seriously. You can live your life by the wisdom of Sex and the City and be a business guru, too. Sure, people grow up, but this rebranding is just too much of a hard sell.

3. Jessa Lacks Substance

Girls [Credit: HBO]
Girls [Credit: HBO]

At this early stage, it's hard to tell where Jessa is headed. She's naked, sitting on a couch, and eating yoghurt. Her decision to team up with socially awkward boyfriend Adam to stack housemate Ray's belongings in a corner of the room and cover them with a sheet confirms she'll probably never understand how to treat others with consideration, which really doesn't match what we saw at the end of Season 5.

Jessa was previously wracked with guilt from potentially ruining her friendship with Hannah, but her sudden disregard for the consequences of her careless actions means she hasn't actually learned a thing about respecting other people. Jessa's trademark no-fucks-given mentality has always been her best quality as an entertaining character, but now it's being awkwardly dropped into various scenes just for the sake of it.

What Girls really needs is to keep exploring that raw and vulnerable side of Jessa shown in Season 5, and prove that she's more than a two-dimensional character.

4. Marnie Hasn't Changed, And Won't

Girls [Credit: HBO]
Girls [Credit: HBO]

Apparently Marnie and Ray are now a serious thing, though they're not doing a great job of selling it. Marnie's tone makes her sound less like a devoted girlfriend and more like a H&M salesgirl trying to sweet talk someone into buying a pair of jeans, and Ray is continuing to serve little other purpose than to advance other characters' narratives.

The dynamics of Marnie's relationship with Ray is a direct reflection of her struggle for independence after her separation from Desi. Watching her egotistical rockstar wannabe of an ex-husband flounder in his heartbreak is definitely satisfying— not to mention it's been a long time coming.

Girls [Credit: HBO]
Girls [Credit: HBO]

Unfortunately that's going to be pretty short-lived, as Marnie seems all too willing to pick up the tattered remains of their terrible relationship— unbeknownst to Ray, of course. Much like Hannah, it's a missed opportunity to explore a new side of her character; and in the case of Marnie, whose narrative has almost consistently been based around the pursuit of men, it's even more disappointing.

5. Elijah Is As Amazing As Ever

Girls [Credit: HBO]
Girls [Credit: HBO]

If anyone can redeem this show, it's Elijah. He's witty, he's bitchy, and he's hilarious. Elijah's response to his crushing heartbreak last season is both true to his character and thoroughly entertaining. His exchanges with Hannah bring out the best in both their characters, and the fact that they're still roomies promises some memorable moments for Season 6. But can his character carry the show?

What are your thoughts on Girls Season 6?


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