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the ultimate girls recap

we’re dubbing this episode “dying and lying.”

We love Girls! You love Girls! So for the entire third season we'll be doing weekly recaps on Monday. Check back in to get our editors' takes on what went down, plus an exclusive illustration from

Girls Illustrated

artist Nina Cosford

. (And, of course, spoiler alert! Catch up on last week's episodes here.

After last night's episode of

Girls

, we're dubbing this the How Stella Got Her Groove Back season. Because doesn't it feel like we're back where the series began in season one, where narcissism and selfishness were used to make a broader point about humans without ever seeming to take itself

too

seriously? In other words, the past two episodes have been pretty awesome and make me feel a little more excited to be spending my Sunday nights in front of the TV rather than, you know, living life. (Or, in the words of Hannah Horvath, "It's Sunday night, baby, and I'm alive!")

And while we're renaming things, episode four should really be called "Dying and Lying," because it masterfully brought together both themes in a way that was simultaneously outrageous and relatable. Hannah's editor dies and all she can think about is what's to become of her book, while Jessa learns that her BFF didn't actually die but needed to cut her out of her life. Marnie fights mortality by getting healthy and refusing to degrade herself (or, you know, work at Cafe Grumpy, whatever--although you could argue that her whole "people want me" line was just her lying to herself) while Hannah's downstairs neighbor Laird is mourning the death of his turtle. OK, kinda morbid and yet completely entertaining and had me being like, "OMG replay!" the moment this episode ended.

I'd be remiss to not mention Adam and his evolution in just the first few episodes of season three; is it just me or does he seem like a different person? (Or, more likely, the show is just capturing the sad truth about dudes, which is that most are kind of jerks until their late-20s and then they suddenly grow up a bit and decide they want a girlfriend and be emotionally available and stuff.) It's a testament to Adam Driver's acting abilities that he can go from being an easy-to-hate pretentious hipster to someone who oozes empathy. You can just kinda tell by the way that he looks at Hannah that he truly, madly, deeply likes her. Meanwhile, we'll wait to see if the realization that she's such a hedonistic enabler that even her BFF wanted to push her out of her life will help ground Jessa a little bit more...although, because this is

Girls

, I'm guessing it will take many more painful incidents for that change to finally come.

While we wait to see the fallout that comes from Hannah's lie about having a cousin who died of muscular dystrophy--because you

know

that it's impossible for her to do something that sociopathic and not get caught eventually--I just hope that we see a lot more of Gaby Hoffmann because she is just pure gold. Oh,and a lot less of Ray's goatee. That thing's just gross.

Check out the superlatives from this episode in the gallery, and then let us know on Twitter and Facebook what you thought of the episode!

illustration by nina cosford

Girls Season 3 Episode 4 Superlatives

Best Outfit: Gaby Hoffmann wearing a varsity jacket, oversized Mickey Mouse T-shirt, bloomers, hiking boots, and a top-knot might be our favorite look of the entire series' run.

Best Cameo: Melonie Diaz, who cements her status as indie darling thanks to her small role as Jessa's dead-but-not BFF (and, of course, her turn in Fruitvale Station).

Favorite Quote: "Hannah, it's something that happens. It's like jury duty or floods, they happen" --Jessa talking to Hannah about death.

Best Song: Jake Bugg - "There's a Beast and We All Feed It" soundtraking the trio's run through a cemetary.

WTF Moment: Hannah taking the lie that Adam's sister told her about a dead cousin with muscular dystrophy (to prove that she's kinda a sociopath) and using it with Adam to help prove that she's not a sociopath (and in the process, kind of confirms it).

Life Lesson: "You think my life is so funny! Let's make fun of the girl who took a risk and put herself out there creatively, which by the way is not something either of you need to worry about because no one wants to see you and you can't do anything." --Marnie telling off her Cafe Grumpy bosses. (And you know what? She kind of has a point. Why do we hate on her for taking a creative risk, even if said creative risk is mortifyingly bad?)