These questions regard last night’s episodes of HBO’s GIRLS. Please answer the prompts with specific examples from LAST NIGHT’S EPISODE, though supplementary material will be accepted as a secondary source. Please write legibly. No. 2 pencils only. You have an hour to finish this test. See below for questions and sample responses.
1. Last night’s episode seemed like something from the Tonight On Girls parody Twitter account: Hannah gets into Iowa! Marnie realizes her true life’s purpose as a homewrecker! Jessa assists a suicide!
Out of all the trajectories that our main characters have taken this season, whose actions this episode seemed the least likely, given what we know about their characters? Whose decisions were the most plausible?
The award for least plausible has to go to Jessa. I know we’re supposed to think that her path from rehab to addiction to misery/sobriety has changed her and started to chip away at that calcified barrier she’s built between herself and the world, etc. But I don’t buy it. Maybe if we’d seen her doing something nice for someone between rock-bottom and now, but to skip directly to helping an old lady commit suicide? It’s too extreme and so doesn’t jibe with Jessa’s personality. How many short weeks ago was it that she was trying to keep her drug buddy on drugs and away from his loving daughter? We’re supposed to just buy that sobriety bought her empathy as well? Nope. What we’re seeing isn’t so much personal growth as it is plot development.
4. This season has seen Hannah become increasingly dogmatic and rigid: She’s gone from someone who wants to be a writer to someone who is scared to write, to someone who refuses to write unless it fits her definition of “truth.” (In that way, she and Adam aren’t so different, after all.) Considering what we know about Hannah’s prose–does she even WRITE fiction? Because that’s definitely a requirement for Iowa--what would her statement letter to the MFA look like? What would she claim is her goal as an artist?