The “Girls” Emotional Age Recap: “Ladies Only” and “Truth or Dare”

The two-part premiere of Girls aired at the same time as the Golden Globes for the second year in a row, which is either an act of war against the gays or the best advertisement for HBO GO ever. If this hour of television was any indication, then grading the ladies on their ages is going to be harder than ever, because they’re apparently in some sort of contest to be the most annoying girl in the whole kindergarten. Then again, if they all got their acts together, the series would have to end.

s3e01 hannah 2

Emotional Age: 10

Hannah is really good at following instructions. She can write pages when her boss sets clear guidelines, she can mobilize a trip to pick Jessa up from rehab, she can put together a dinner party… basically, she does her chores like a good girl. At the same time, she’s completely incapable of doing any of these things independently. Adam, as her caretaker, father figure (who also has sex with her, yikes) is there to make sure to give her her medicine, drive the car upstate, count tacos, provide her with experiences to write about, and otherwise manage her entire life. It’s as though her mind is in a vegetative state and he’s the life support machine that keeps it tethered feebly to this world.


s3e01 marnie

Emotional Age: 21

Marnie’s journey so far is essentially that of a recent college graduate. She’s moving out on her own (with her mom’s help), working at a coffee shop and obsessing over the recent loss of a romance that she had convinced herself would last eternally. Her behavior also suggests that she’s not fully cognizant of others’ problems, or the fact that others even have problems. Hopefully with a little more experience, she can merge her mental age with her biological one. I always thought she had the best chance of actually entering adulthood. We’re rooting for you, Marn.


s3e01 shoshanna

Emotional Age: Eternal

My new theory is that Shosh is some sort of otherworldly force, like a tree spirit or a trickster god or something. Because on the one hand she greets every new experience with the innocence of a newborn, but on the other hand she remains one of the only people in this fictional version of Brooklyn with consistent insight into other human beings. Her woodland rundown of Adam and Hannah’s dysfunctional relationship is so devastatingly accurate that I’m surprised she didn’t cause him to spontaneously combust under the white-hot glare of her truth.


s3e01 jessa

Emotional Age: 5

This woman is a walking temper tantrum. She wants what she wants when she wants it, she takes what she takes when she can get it and she gives only when she’s sure to get something in return. Whether she’s badgering Taystee (her name’s not Laura I don’t care what they say) or turning Hannah into her personal taxi service or throwing away the dishes she doesn’t want to wash, she’s playing her own game by her own rules and making damn sure that she’s the one and only winner.