Girls has split opinions since the series began way back in 2012, and the Season 6 finale was no exception. It’s hard to believe the show is really over now (like, for real) — especially as so many characters were missing from the final episode. Sure, we said our goodbyes to Jessa and Shoshanna last week, but while Jessa and Hannah made amends, Shoshanna pretty much still hated everybody. I guess I was naive to hope we’d see Shosh’s wedding in the finale, or that we’d find out for certain if Adam and Jessa were still together.
The series finale of Girls firmly focused on Hannah which, in many ways, made total sense.
The episode opened with Marnie offering to raise Hannah’s baby with her — the first offer of help that Hannah actually accepted. It then flashed forward to five months later, and baby Grover had arrived — but he had stopped breastfeeding, despite Hannah’s best efforts. With an episode title like “Latching,” it seemed pretty clear that we’d learn all about Hannah’s relationship with breastfeeding, but I’m torn over how the show dealt with such a major issue for women.
As viewers might expect, Hannah had trouble trouble breastfeeding her baby. As the episode started, I was very excited to see how this would be handled, as Dunham loves destroying taboos on television. By the end, Grover has been switched to formula, and Hannah’s mom explained that she had trouble breastfeeding, too. Even Marnie’s judgmental attitude towards formula milk waned, and it seemed as though, finally, the extremely personal breastfeeding choices of women everywhere might finally be vindicated.
But to show Hannah’s evolution from one of the most self-centered people on the planet to a caregiver, Grover finally latched.
Was it great to see Hannah finally dedicate herself to something other than herself? Sure. But I think it would have been especially powerful to see Hannah find peace with the fact that breastfeeding is only one of many options women can choose from.
The finale also focused on Marnie, who was helping Hannah raise the baby. Clearly, Marnie and Hannah’s friendship was still going strong, and will be, long after the final episode. Away from the husband and boyfriend trauma, Marnie was a natural with Hannah’s baby. But away from Manhattan, she seemed pretty bored. Her best moment involved a tryst via FaceTime with a personal trainer she met online, which definitely hinted that Marnie would eventually move on, and rediscover her own life. Spin-off, anyone?
Hannah’s mom was also a huge part of the finale, which I loved.
Hearing Adam’s name was like a cheese grater to my heart, especially as he couldn’t make his relationship with Hannah work. But Loreen was right. She helped Hannah accept her new reality, and understand the massive responsibilities that go along with raising a child.
It’s unusual for a finale to focus so closely on two of its main characters. We’d seen a lot of Jemima Kirke throughout the final season, but Zosia Mamet has had so little screen time in Season 6, it’s tough not to feel a little cheated. Shoshanna was always the light relief in Girls, fun and bubbly while the other characters were abrasive. I’m definitely sad she wasn’t around for the end.