It's become something of a Girls tradition that each season will have an episode that focuses solely on Hannah. This year we add Adam to the mix.
In the first season, we spent time with Hannah at home in Michigan. In the second, Hannah spent a lost weekend with Patrick Wilson. This season has Hannah and Adam leave the city to go see her dying grandmother (played by the marvelous June Squibb).
These episodes tend to show off what Lena Dunham can really do. They often feel less like TV episodes than short films because they resist the urge to briefly touch base with a bunch of different characters. They also provide an opportunity for guest stars to do amazing work. Here we have Amy Morton and Deirdre Lovejoy as Hannah's nutty aunts—crazy clearly runs in the family. Meanwhile, Becky Ann Baker is her usual great self as Hannah's mom, and Squibb's now trademark barbed truth-telling is on full display. Sarah Steele as Hannah's intense medical student cousin only goes to show that Sarah Steele should be in more things.
This episode is more integrated into this season's storyline than its parallel episodes in other season. Hannah's mother suggests that Hannah should tell her grandmother that she and Adam are getting married. That ultimately leads less to a crisis between Adam and Hannah—these two seem to be relatively on the same page these days—than one between Hannah and her mother. Loreen, Hannah's mom, is not really enamored with the idea of Hannah being with Adam forever. "It's not easy being married to an odd man," she says. Loreen seems completely unfair to Hannah in the moment, but also somewhat justified. Is Adam really the best choice? (Of course, the reverse could be probably said of Hannah.) Hannah's family has always been an unsung part of the series. Her parents, after all, basically set the story in motion when they cut her off, and it only makes sense to hear what they think as Hannah and Adam grow closer.
Aside from where this moves the season's plot, however, what we have on our hands this week is simply a good episode of TV. "Flo" is well-constructed, well-acted, at times very funny, at times heartbreaking. More like this, please.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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