‘Girls’ Recap; Season 4 Episode 8: “Tad & Loreen & Avi & Shanaz”

Girls-Tad

A lot of things are bubbling at the surface in the latest episode of “Girls.”

If you haven’t guessed by now, you learned in last night’s episode, “Tad & Loreen & Avi & Shanaz,” that Hannah’s dad, Tad, has been struggling with his sexuality and finally decides to come out to his wife after a therapy session. Loreen, however, has a hard time dealing with it. It’s unfortunate timing. Loreen just got tenure and was hoping to celebrate the happy occasion. She tells Tad he’s not gay, he’s just unhappy and is using it as an excuse not to have sex with her. As we find out later in the episode, she has a secret of her own. “It’s not not about me, Tad,” she tells him.

Hannah is still subbing and, as we discover, befriends one of her pupils, Cleo. She has an incongruous relationship with the girl, where they swap stories about boys. Cleo tells her she likes a boy who might have HPV and Hannah tells her about her date with Fran. Speaking of, Hannah has a run-in with Fran in the hallway. It seems they haven’t spoken or seen each other since their interesting date in the previous episode. It’s no surprise why, either. Cleo convinces Hannah to ditch their late afternoon classes and be truants. As they’re walking on the street, suddenly Hannah hear’s Ariana Grande’s song “Problem” come on – a suiting song. They begin dancing, at which point a creepy old man’s attention is piqued and tells the girls he likes what he sees. “Please!” Hannah yells to him across the street. “We’re children.” Yeah, that about sums it up.

Across town, Marney and Desi get into a fight. Desi comes home and tells Marney he spent their entire advance, two grand, on German guitar pedals – “this box will make our art stronger,” he says. She’s understandably furious at him. He yells some obscenities at her and storms out of the apartment.

Jessa and Shoshanna have a heart to heart about boys. Jessa states how much she likes Ace, Mimi-Rose’s ex, and Shoshanna tells her about her date with Scott, the soup mogul. Jessa tells her in order to attract a guy, she has to give him a surprise act of love. It probably would have helped if Jessa was vocal about the specifics.

Hanna and Cleo end up in a tattoo parlor where they’re looking to get friendship piercings. Hannah suggests they get a frenulum piercing – a piercing on the thin membrane underneath the tongue that connects it to the bottom – and insists that Cleo goes first. In what could easily be a deleted scene from one of the Saw movies, Cleo cries hysterically the entire time, while a quietly gagging Hannah tells her to push through the pain. In the end, Hannah backs out of her own piercing. What a friend.

Shosh decides to help Ray run for Chairperson and passes out fliers with him on the sidewalk. They talk about dating. She mentions her date with Scott, “I happen to have a date with a man who’s very much intriguing to me.” Ray shares that he’s now on eHarmony and still in love with someone. When he sees that Shosh interprets this to be her, he hints that it’s not Shosh he’s still in love with, it’s Marney. Shosh is so happy for Ray, she hugs him and encourages him to follow his heart – yeah, right! She’s incensed and keeps a safe distant from him, as they continue to pass out fliers.

Meanwhile, Tad and Loreen get ready to go to Loreen’s tenure party at a friend’s house. While Tad is picking up wine, he comes back to see Loreen crying in the car.

Hannah finally has a one-on-one talk with Fran back at school. She apologizes for their terrible date and suggests they go out again. Fran doesn’t look too thrilled about the idea. He tells her she’s smart and unusual but, ultimately, too much drama, adding that his ex drained his bank account and poured battery acid on his plants. Hannah refuses to accept this and pursues harder. “You’re not the person that you think you are,” Fran tells her. She proves his point, by suggesting he likes that she’s unusual and wants to tame her, as some kind of misogynistic fantasy. If this sounds weird, trust me, it was weird to watch.

Shosh and Scott finally go on their date. They talk about their ex’s, their job – or in Shosh’s case, lack thereof. But he seems nice, encouraging her that she’ll find something soon. Shosh decides to take Jessa’s advice and drop that surprise bomb on him. In one of the most painfully hilarious moments this season, Shosh proceeds to engage in dirty talk – the words “pickle” and “slimy vagina” are referenced – during dinner, at a restaurant, with people around. Scott, of course, laughs – because c’mon? – and brings some levity to a rather awkward situation. “I like you,” he tells her, “and I like the idea of your hand around my cock, but not when the cast of ‘The Good Wife’ is at the bar.”

Things don’t go as well, however, at Loreen’s tenure party. The party is hosted by her friends Avi and Shanaz. Avi and Tad have a talk while the women catch up in the kitchen. Avi notices things are off with Tad and his wife. He asks if everything is okay. Tad looks uncomfortable and acknowledges as much. During dinner, Tad gives a toast to Loreen, saying generic things like she’s his life partner and closest friend. Unable to stand this, Loreen gets up to leave, while everyone else stays to enjoy the dinner. Well, almost everybody. Avi finds her upstairs and pulls her into a room. Apparently, the two had had an affair in the summer and he is now in love with her. She laughs at him and he takes umbrage. Loreen’s mirth seems to be a reaction to how crazy her love life is becoming.

Marney is still upset at Desi over their fight earlier. He finds her at a cafe, where she gives him the cold shoulder. He apologizes, saying he never wants to make another decision without talking to her first again. Then he pulls out a ring (“I’d always sworn I’d never get married until my gay cousin Destiny could”). Yup, he proposes to her, when just hours before he was mishandling their money and calling her a “fucking bitch.” She said yes.

Hannah, still stuck on her conversation with Fran earlier, decides to call home and vent about it to her mom, who picks up the phone. She’s only half listening though, trying to find the right moment to interject and tell Hannah about her dad. It takes a while – Hannah won’t shut up. But when the moment finally comes, Hannah is quiet, for once.