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The Best Episodes of Girls: Season 1

Updated on November 1, 2015

HBO's comedy series, Girls, has been on air since 2012. The show, which is written, directed, and produced by its star, Lena Dunham, has gained quite a lot of attention (and two Golden Globes) since its premiere. Though the reaction to the show is pretty polarizing (you either love or hate it), I've been a fan since day one.

To celebrate the upcoming season four premiere, I thought it would be great to take a look back at all the best episodes from the previous seasons.

Here are the best episodes of Girls, season one.

This article contains major spoilers about season one of Girls. There is also NSFW content in the videos (though I have edited the language out of the quotes). Please don't read/watch unless you're caught up with the show, and don't mind adult language.

"All Adventurous Women Do"


The third episode is a big one. The main plot line revolves around Hannah realizing she has HPV and that she may have contracted it from her ex-boyfriend, Elijah, so she meets up with him to ask if he's the one who gave the disease to her. Meanwhile, Marnie meets with a pretentious artist, Booth Jonathan, at an art gallery and begins to fall for him, despite still being with Charlie.

In this episode, we also learn that Elijah is gay, and that Shoshanna is still a virgin. Jessa begins a babysitting job/flirtation with her boss/the children's father, Jeff.

I binge-watched the first season of Girls with my cousin. When we started watching the first episodes, we weren't really that into it. I liked the first two episodes, sure, but I wasn't really hooked on it. We were hovering towards the remote, debating changing the channel- until we got to episode three.

This is the episode that hooked me. This is the one that made me laugh uncontrollably, and want to watch the rest of the season (and we did, in one sitting). The episode is great, because it has the perfect blend of comedic and heartfelt moments. Hannah's HPV diagnosis is handled in a humorous way, without making a complete joke of it, while Elijah's coming out scene is probably the funniest scene of the season.

This is the episode that really made me like characters like Marnie and Hannah, and the ending- with Hannah and Marnie dancing along to Robyn- is still one of the most brilliant moments on the show.

Best Quotes:

  • "Jessa has HPV, like a couple of different strains of it. She says that all adventurous women do."- Shoshanna
  • "You know what I'm going to do from now on? Ask people if they're gay before I have sex with them." - Hannah
  • "But I want you to know the first time I f--k you, I might scare you a little, because I'm a man, and I know how to do things. See you later." - Booth Jonathan
  • "It was nice to see you. Your dad is gay." - Elijah
  • "My medium baggage is that I just bought four cupcakes and ate one in your bathroom."- Hannah

"Welcome to Bushwick a.k.a. The Crackcident"

In episode seven, Hannah, Marnie, Jessa and Shosh go to a warehouse party in Brooklyn (specifically the suburb of Bushwick). Hannah runs into Adam, who's she's literally never seen outside of his or her home, and discovers that he's in Alcoholic's Anonymous. Marnie runs into Charlie, and finds out that he's already gotten a new girlfriend (a Marnie look-alike named Audrey), only two weeks after their breakup. Jessa randomly invites Jeff to the party, ends up getting him involved (and subsequently beat up) in a fight, and then brushes off his advances while they wait at the hospital together.

Oh, and Shoshanna smokes crack.

This episode is another one which expertly mixes comedy and more serious issues. Of course, the comedic scenes come with Shosh's crack-smoking accident, and even with Marnie realizing that Charlie has moved on (and honestly, didn't she deserve the way he treated her at this point?). But the moment between Adam and Hannah, where Adam calls out Hannah for not being clear about what she wants out of their relationship, is surprisingly heartfelt (and this episode is the one where they finally get into a legitimate relationship). Though slightly awkward, the scenes with Jessa and Jeff are really telling of Jessa's immaturity, and gives us a better look at her character development.

Best Quotes:

  • "Look kid, I don't know what you want from me. Do you want me to be your boyfriend? Is that it? Do you want me to be your f--king boyfriend?"- Adam

"She Did"

The season finale is another one which manages to pack a whole lot of plot into such a small 30-minute time frame. The big plot is Jessa's surprise wedding to Thomas-John (whom she and Marnie met only two episodes before). The wedding brings everyone together, including Marnie and Charlie, whom are still broken up. Marnie ends up making out with Thomas-John's best man.

Meanwhile, Charlie's best friend, Ray, admits to Shoshonna that he can't stop thinking about her (since the Crackcident). They go home together and Shosh finally loses her virginity. Hannah and Adam have a big blow-out, as Hannah feels like Adam is moving too fast, and Adam accuses Hannah of being unclear about her intentions.

One of my favourite scenes in this episode is Hannah and Adam's fight. It's a startling change to see Adam call Hannah out for being selfish for once, considering he kinda starts the season out as the bad guy; only wants to hook up, never returns her texts, doesn't want to settle into a serious relationship. This is actually the first time on the show that we realize that both Adam and Hannah are flawed and it's both of their flaws which make their relationship so difficult.

It was actually good to see Adam rightfully tell Hannah that she's the one making their relationship complicated, and that final scene of Hannah eating the cake alone on the beach (oh, and that sublime score by Michael Penn should also be noted) is a perfect end to the season.

Best Quotes:

  • "I wore white. To her wedding. I wore white. Because how could I have known? Because nobody told me." - Shoshanna
  • "Is this the game? You chase me like I'm in the f--king Beatles for six months, and then when I finally get comfortable with things you wanna shrug?" - Adam
  • "Don’t waste time on guilt, Hannah. Holding on to toxic relationships is what keeps us from growing.”- Adam
  • "Don’t just think. That’s an extremely unattractive feature of your generation." - Ray

Honourable Mention: "The Return"

Episode six deals with Hannah going back home to Michigan to visit her parents. While she's there, she runs into some old friends and generally realizes that while she's struggling in New York, it's still better than living back in her small town. She also receives a late night phone call from Adam, whom admits to missing her.

This episode gets an honourable mention, because while it's not the best episode of Girls, it's still an entertaining one. It's funny to watch Hannah meet her old high school friends again and I especially like the scenes where she's mentally preparing for the benefit party. The phone call with Adam was also sweet, and set up their future plot line nicely.

Haven't seen all the episodes from season 1? Buy it on DVD!

Season 1 (All Episodes):

Episode Number
Air Date
April 15, 2012
"Vagina Panic"
April 22, 2012
"All Adventurous Women Do"
April 29, 2012
"Hannah's Diary"
May 6, 2012
"Hard Being Easy"
May 13, 2012
"The Return"
May 20, 2012
"Welcome to Bushwick a.k.a. The Crackcident"
May 27, 2012
"Weirdos Need Girlfriends Too"
June 3, 2012
"Leave Me Alone"
June 10, 2012
"She Did"
June 17, 2012

Season 4 of Girls premieres Sunday, January 11th on HBO!

Do you have a favourite episode or moment from season one? Let me know in the comments section!


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    • Camille Harris profile image

      Camille Harris 2 years ago from SF Bay Area

      I LOVE this show! Excited for the latest season. I think Season 1 was one of the strongest - if not the strongest - seasons. I hope Season 5 comes with "IT"...not that I'm going to stop watching it - even if it has "jumped the shark".

    • brittpinkie profile image

      Brittany Brown-Doherty 3 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Thank you! And yes, I have a very love/hate relationship with many of the characters, especially as the seasons go on. And Hannah in particular, haha.

    • DreamingBoomer profile image

      Karen Kay 3 years ago from Jackson, MS

      We've been hooked from the beginning... It's a great show. You really feel like you're in the scene. I both love and don't love most of the characters. Well written hub. Voted up.