Sunday nights are pretty packed, what with Game of Thrones, Mad Men, Girls and Veep. And as Monday was a holiday here in Canada (thanks, Queen Victoria!) it took me longer than usual to get around to watching the latter two. But I do have a few thoughts on each.
Sunday night’s Girls wasn’t my favorite episode since it took Hannah back home to visit her parents and away from the other girls, but there was still a lot to like about it. Specifically, I liked how it provided more context for just how screwed up Hannah is.
Look at the moment when Hannah tells her parents that she’s bailing on their anniversary dinner. Sure, it would be weird for her to join them for an intimate celebration. But they wanted her there, and it was lame to bail in favor of a date with a pharmacist when that would obviously go nowhere. When her dad expressed disappointment, Hannah said her boyfriend treats her like crap (true) and that she needed this date to experience what it’s like to be treated correctly by a man. Really? But, like, no pressure or anything. Hannah manipulated the situation so that, basically, if her parents insisted she come to dinner they’d essentially be to blame for every abusive, crappy relationship she has from now to eternity.
I say this not because I didn’t like the scene or the storyline, but just because it’s interesting. The show continues to be unafraid to make Hannah selfish and unlikable. Yet, there are also moments where she is likable. Looking at yourself in the mirror and saying things like “You’re from New York, and that makes you interesting” or “Some of the worst things you say are better than the best things other people say” could come across as incredibly arrogant. But you can tell with Hannah that it stems from insecurity and nervousness for her date, that she’s simply boosting her own confidence in front of the mirror.
I did feel like the note of “This small town is crazy weird, and Hannah was too good for it” was hit a little hard, but hey, a lot of people who leave their small hometowns do have that experience. And the fact that Hannah found herself in a situation where she had to help her naked, injured father following a sex injury, well that was just plain hilarious.
Veep continues to be a show that I thoroughly enjoy watching, but don’t necessarily have enough opinions on to write about regularly. I like how the writers have managed to make Selina both ridiculous and sympathetic, and the idea that all these nicknames for her were floating around the blogosphere was a good way to illustrate the sympathetic aspect of her character.
I loved how this episode put Dan and Jonah together, and that played out perfectly. Jonah is not nearly as important as he lets on, and that’s probably very common in Washington.
I also liked the quandary Selina ended up in. She’d have to choose between going against POTUS and voting to support her own bill, or voting against the whittled down version of a policy she loved in order to keep the peace with POTUS. Amy, who loves the clean jobs policy, advised her to vote against it. Dan, who couldn’t give a crap about the environment, was encouraging her to vote for it – he’d even gone against Selina’s wishes in getting it there in the first place.
I thought it was a great example of how screwed up one’s moral compass can get in politics thanks to all the game playing, and it was handled with a lot of humor as well. And then, to balance out the sympathy we’d had for Selina earlier, she’s handed “obesity” as an issue and makes a few hilarious but very undiplomatic cracks about fat people. “It’s about self-control. You don’t masturbate on the subway!”