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'Girls' Ends Its Season More Brilliant Than Ever

Photo of Caryn James By Caryn James | James on Screens June 17, 2012 at 9:05AM

There has been so much ink, web time, energy and hot air devoted to Lena Dunham’s Girls that there can’t possibly be any synonyms for zeitgeist left unused. Is her HBO series inbred in its casting and elitist in its characters, as charged? Sure it is, but so what? The actors are terrific; the elitism is part of its young-educated-ambitious-kids scenario. And the show, which started off savagely smart, funny and honest, has only gotten better through the season.
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Girls Season Finale

There has been so much ink, web time, energy and hot air devoted to Lena Dunham’s Girls that there can’t possibly be any synonyms for zeitgeist left unused. Is her HBO series inbred in its casting and elitist in its characters, as charged? Sure it is, but so what? The actors are terrific; the elitism is part of its young-educated-ambitious-kids scenario. And the show, which started off savagely smart, funny and honest, has only gotten better through the season.

Allison Williams, whose beautiful and needy Marnie is a type we all know, has made her character more than a type. Jemima Kirke has made self-consciously eccentric Jessa likable, against all the odds. And as if writing and directing weren’t enough, Dunham has made Hannah an increasingly complex young woman, struggling to keep her own self-destructive tendencies in check.

Tonight’s season finale includes a shocker of a plot twist, and we even see a new side to Hannah’s boyfriend from hell, Adam (Adam Driver) who may not be so hellish after all.

Listen to Hannah wail at him, “I am thirteen pounds overweight and it has been awful for me my whole life!” and you’ll instantly see how Dunham finds the perfect, funny-painful  detail that exposes a character’s soul. (And take a look at any of Dunham’s post-show commentaries to see how she is, in fact, not Hannah, whatever qualities they may share.) 

Take a look at in this preview from the finale. (For a glimpse at tonight's other dazzling season finale, click here to watch a preview of The Borgias.)

This article is related to: Lena Dunham, Girls, Allison Williams, Television, Television, Jemima Kirke, Adam Driver, HBO

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