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The penultimate season of HBO’s Girls ended this weekend and before we slip into our post-season slump, we’re looking back at the best life lessons from the past 10 episodes. Season five packed new characters, new careers, old loves, juicy drama, and a lot of naked Lena Dunham into just 10 episodes. With the last season being one of the show’s best, we’re reflecting on the most important life lessons we learned from the messy gang of 20-somethings from Girls.
Spoilers ahead, obviously.
One of the most harrowing plots of this season was Jessa hooking up with Hannah’s ex-boyfriend Adam. Despite Hannah rejecting him last season, her new boyfriend Fran, and their tumultuous relationship in seasons’ past, the notion of Jessa and Adam together was still upsetting. But as the season went along, we started to root for the couple, realizing that maybe Adam and Hannah weren’t the best for each other and that perhaps Jessa is only one crazy enough to handle Adam’s antics.
The return of Marnie’s CEO-turned-crook boyfriend Charlie was one of the high points of the season. In episode six, she’s reunited for one night with the boyfriend who left her two seasons ago, claiming that he never loved her before disappearing. They spend a magical, dream-like evening together, and almost as if no time passed, they find themselves planning to run away to be together again. The bubble bursts when Charlie’s drug use is revealed and Marnie is left barefoot and disappointed.
Shoshanna’s adventures in Japan were definitely one of the most exciting aspects of this season. When she decided to Lean In in the season four finale, we were so happy that Shosh, who worked tirelessly in college, was getting a job she loved. In Japan, she came alive. We loved the daring, unaplogetic Shosh that Japan brought out. And even when she reluctantly returned to America, she came back reinvigorated and inspired and ready to take on new challenges, including rescuing Ray’s struggling coffee shop.
This season there was a lot of attention on Hannah’s parents Tad and Loreen. Following Tad’s coming out in season four, the couple had an interesting plot line to follow this time around. Together, they faced new challenges in their relationship that mimicked the messy, erratic nature of all of the romances of the core four. From Tad’s first booty call, to Loreen’s revelations at her women’s retreat, to her and Elijah’s adorable moment on the street corner in the finale, these middle-aged characters proved that you don’t need to have it all figured out at age 22. Even older people don’t even know what they’re doing.
This one is a recurring theme in the series. Whether it’s a writing fellowship in Iowa, a nice boyfriend like Fran or Scott, a marriage to a hipster, or a divorce from a gay man, Girls has time and time again proven that what you want isn’t always what you need.