Review: ‘Girls’ Season 5 Episode 3, ‘Japan’: Land of the Rising Sun

Review: 'Girls' Season 5 Episode 3, 'Japan': Land of the Rising Sun

LAST WEEK’S REVIEW: ‘Girls’ Season 5 Episode 2, ‘Good Man’: A Bit of a Gay-mergency

Love Her or Hate Her

In Japan it was nothing but love for Shoshanna, who took center stage in the majority of a Japanese-themed episode that even included a special show title card. From the opening moments with an amazing alarm clock, it was clear that Shosh was fitting in swimmingly, from her pink tresses and exotic style of dress to her newfound friends and love interest Yoshi. Between her colorful abode and thriving work situation, it was clear that Shosh had finally found her calling – even if her friends did accuse her of talking too fast ("I’ve literally never heard that"). So it was natural to feel incredible sympathy for the character after it was all ripped away with one little old Skype session with guest star Aidy Bryant, as Shosh was informed she was being managed out of the company but that they’d provide a business class ticket home.

Something to Cringe About

Hannah may have been upset about Fran masturbating to naked photos of his ex-girlfriends over porn, but her subsequent photo shoot with Ray and Elijah was awkward at best. Hannah being Hannah, she had to go all out with the lighting, the pose and two different male opinions, all while dreaming that a big slice of cake was coming merely so that she would appear a little less constipated. By the end, when she deleted every single one of Fran’s other pictures on his phone so that he would only jerk off to her naked picture, you had a sense that something bad was coming for this couple. There’s anger, and then there’s anger in action. Hannah may come to regret that snooping.

A Growth Spurt

Jason Ritter is the quintessential romantic lead, so it was difficult to watch him being passed over for Shoshanna’s extended stay in Japan. But given the sense of purpose the character found in a new country, it’s not surprising she decided to stay and try to tough it out a little while longer. How she’ll manage to extend her visa or find employment when she doesn’t speak the language are clearly issues she’s not concerned about at present, but at this point it’s big of the character to put it all on the line and take a chance, rather than coming home and wondering "what if."

How Many Shots to Forget About…

That little "Hello Nurse" scene with the spanking and whips? "F—, f—, Konichiwa" indeed. 

An Acting Debut

If we had forgotten about Adam’s aspiring acting career it came back in full force Sunday night, when he landed a part as a homeless guy on a fictional TV police procedural that’s been running for at least 12 years. Thanks to a fun cameo from Lucy Liu, we were able to watch the debut in a meta way from the couch alongside Jessa and Ray, whose reactions were infinitely better than any Adam could have gotten from watching such a premiere with the always-critical Hannah. Jessa’s positive reaction, in particular, wasn’t lost on Adam, as he put the moves on her yet again. Surprisingly, she refused to partake in it at all, maintaining that the two are just friends and nothing more. Unsurprisingly, Adam still didn’t buy it. Neither do we.


Marnie Does South America

If you were irritated by the way Marnie pronounced "Ecuador," we believe you were meant to. The character continues to have no sense of the real world as she’s off honeymooning with Desi and pretending their marriage will be fine when they return. In the meantime, let’s just wait for the Ecuadorian track they’ll undoubtedly release from their spiritual awakening in a foreign country, as two privileged people pretending to be struggling artists so often do.

A Dose of Her Own Medicine

For someone who is constantly subjecting others to her nudity on the show, Hannah seemed uncomfortably aware of Desi being naked on that Skype call. On the other hand, being hypocritical has always been one of Hannah’s stronger suits.

Guy of the Week

Let’s give this one to Fran, shall we? Although none of the guys were showcased in particular this episode, his specific take on the porn industry as disgusting and full of drugs and sexual abuse took a stance, so we’ll commend him for that.

This Week in Friendship

We wonder if Marnie would have reacted the same way had she found naked pictures of Desi’s ex on her phone. Probably not, proving that she and Hannah have the strangest friendship of them all – one that seems shrouded in obligations and nostalgia rather than actual enjoyment or need.

Grade: A-

"Girls" airs Sundays at 10pm on HBO. Next week: Marnie returns to the city to face real married life and Jessa pushes Hannah away.  

READ MORE: Zosia Mamet on Digging Deep for ‘Bleeding Heart’ and Why ‘Girls’ Freaks Her Out

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