Cookie banner

This site uses cookies. Select "Block all non-essential cookies" to only allow cookies necessary to display content and enable core site features. Select "Accept all cookies" to also personalize your experience on the site with ads and partner content tailored to your interests, and to allow us to measure the effectiveness of our service.

To learn more, review our Cookie Policy, Privacy Notice and Terms of Use.

clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Girls Episode 4: Go '90s or Go Home

Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.

Last night's Girls—the fourth of season 2—was a straight up '90s tribute. The episode's title is "It's a Shame About Ray"—a reference to Ray's homelessness reveal (not his weird face); and borrowed from the seminal Lemonheads album of the same name. Midway through the episode, at Hannah's all organic pad thai dinner party, the soundtrack is Lisa Loeb's totally eternal ballad "Stay." And as the episode closes, Hannah is taking a bath and singing herself classic Oasis, "Wonderwall."

It's easy to be distracted by all that alt-pop '90s nostalgia goodness—but stuff like did actually happen: Elijah moved out (with Hannah keeping everything, in the "divorce") before that very tumultuous dinner party celebrating Hannah's new affiliation with Jazzhate. Oh, and Thomas John introduced Jessa to his parents—right before they broke up violently and for good (and revealed all those puppies were returned to the puppy shop).

Hannah calls Elijah a "fink" and declares she should never have tried "repurposing" him. His response: "Repurpose me? I'm not a vintage cardigan."

Jessa pops out a boob while Thomas John directs his parents to the restaurant. It's the good one. When he gets off the phone: "Let's have a look at the bad one."

Audrey, Charlie's girlfriend: "So! My friend Shelby and I are starting a mustard company!" She then asks Marnie what she's up to. And, no, she's not hosting a night; she's not a promoter; she's seats people: "I'm a hostess." Marnie subtley gets her revenge, though: "So, where do you get your headbands?"

Audrey really lays in on Marnie at dinner, bringing up the time Marnie just showed up at Charlie's door. "What was he going to do? Turn away a crying mess? He probably thought you'd slit your wrists." Hannah, not helping, "she's too self-involved to commit suicide." Finally, Audrey declares Marnie "a Stepford psycho."

Meanwhile, dinner with the parents is shaping up to be a complete nightmare. Jessa devalues Thomas John's previous girlfriends ("Fern? That's a ridiculous name!"); admits she went to rehab for heroin (not booze: "Come on! I've been drinking since I was a child! It's not alcohol.") which she describes as "delicious—if it didn't ruin your whole body and your whole life we'd all be on it right now."

Finally, Mamma Thomas John comes out and says it: "It must be very nice to find yourself in such a successful situation." You know, when you don't work, when you don't aspire to work, when you went to college for seven months before going to rehab for heroin addiction, and when you have been drinking since you were a child.

Regarding Marnie's artist boyfriend crush: "That little Ewok in fucking capri pants?"

"I think I just feel how everyone feels—like I have three or four really great folk albums in me."

Shosh is really not okay with Ray straight up living with her. And for a variety of reasons. One: "And I would've like to have been informed of that fact so that I could have like, you know, bought some new sheets."

Living Life Hard Pride: "I'm going to look 50 when I'm 30!"

So, it turns out Thomas John defied the recession and got really rich these last few years. And he's damn proud of it! "I'm a miracle! I'm a unicorn! And you're just some fucking dumb hipster munching my hay." Then two months of wedded bliss crumble. Apparently, Jessa has referred to the apartment as "looking like the set of gay Entourage," and tells him she is "embarrassed when [they] walk down the street because [he's] so fucking average. [She] tell [her] friends [he was] born a test tube baby just so [he has] a little edge."

This is what happens when you call Jessa "a whore with no work ethic."

And this is Hannah singing Oasis in the tub before we see her boobs (heaven forbid one week goes by without seeing Hannah's naked chest) again and before Jessa plops right in and totally breaks down.

Episode takeaway: No surprises this week; but we look forward to continued '90s delights and have resigned ourselves to all the boobs flying around. Whatever, Lisa Loeb for the win!

· All Girls coverage [Racked]