Like any other good show, “Girls” has plenty of memorable quotes that have stayed with us over the years. From epic fights between Hannah (Lena Dunham) and her parents, to the wacky sayings of Shosh (Zosia Mamet) and the mental gymnastics of Jessa (Jemima Kirke), the characters in this popular HBO series certainly had a lot to say. Relive some of the best moments in the show’s history by checking out the most memorable quotes from “Girls” below.
‘I don’t want to freak you out, but I think I might be the voice of my generation. Or, at least, a voice of a generation.’ — Hannah Horvath (S1, E1)
Spoken by Hannah early in the series, these lines are a perfect introduction to a show high on millennial narcissism and fraught ambitions. The show features Hannah and her friend group of 20-somethings trying to make it in the Big City, chronicling their triumphs, sorrows, and everything in between.
In what would be a surprise to her parents and even herself, by the end of the series Hannah does become at least some kind of generational voice. “Girls” is both a commercial and critical success about what it’s like to grow up while still struggling to find a sense of direction. Also, the quote is just funny, which is part of why the show is such a hit, and I enjoy it. “Girls” does humor very well.
‘When you just send me a text that’s all emojis, it’s very easy to dismiss you. A panda, next to a gun, next to a wrapped-up gift? It makes no sense!’ — Ray Ploshansky (S2, E1)
Ray (Alex Karpovsky) and Shoshanna are the cutest couple, not just on “Girls” but on recent TV in general. True to each of their quirky personalities, their fights are comical and even nonsensical, as seen in the quote above. Ray and Shosh also provide much-needed comic relief to counter some of the group's heavier, more difficult relationships.
Petty and absurd as their fights might be, Ray and Shosh have as complex and layered relationship as any. But that’s not to say they have a surface-level or shallow relationship. That’s one of the strengths of “Girls” — it showcases a wide range of life experiences in their full forms.
‘I hate when people are early. It’s so vile.’ — Jessa Johansson (S2, E4)
One of the defining features of “Girls” is that many of its characters aren’t afraid to constantly speak their minds, no matter how unconventional or unpopular their thoughts may be. For example, Jessa is an unfiltered Boheme who marries on a whim as quickly as she divorces. Perpetually late to every event (including her own wedding), she doesn't like it when people are early and, under the right circumstances, we’re inclined to agree with her.
“Girls” as a show caused its share of controversy. From racy storylines to hot take after hot take, the series didn’t shy away from the spotlight. Part of its enduring legacy is its trailblazing artistic vision. For me, quotes such as this one give form to a candidness and honesty that makes the show such a refreshing watch.
‘If you died, the world would blur.’ — Adam Sackler (S3, E4)
The jury isn’t quite out yet on Adam (Adam Driver) and Hannah dating, or at least not for me. They were perfect for each other, and they were toxic together. This might be a case of two things being true at once. Regardless of what we think about their relationship, there’s no denying that they had something intense and genuine, at least for a while (no spoilers!).
While Adam and Hannah made plenty of mistakes, they also had many charming moments that melted the reservations away. In this quote, for example, Adam communicates his feelings in his typical brute but moving fashion.
‘I thought this would just be a nice opportunity for us to have fun together and prove to everyone via Instagram that we could still have fun as a group.’ — Marnie Michaels (S3, E7)
Marnie (Allison Williams) is the mom of the friend group, and this quote shows it. She’s constantly getting the gang together and trying to do something nice — and failing along the way more often than not (although it’s usually out of her control). This quote also illustrates a very specific experience that occurs within friendships: the moment when the friendship seems to unravel. Few shows reflect human relations as compellingly as “Girls.”
I also believe “Girls” was one of the first TV shows to use social media as a plot device in a way that felt genuine and organic. The whole series is a refreshing portrayal of how young adults live in the real world, from the ins and outs of friendship to the myriad ways we use our cellphones.
‘People always talk about how love is the strongest emotion. But I was scared, and sometimes that’s even stronger.’ - Shoshanna Shapiro (S4, E4)
Talk about a mic drop. Shosh was a constant reminder not to judge a book by its cover. Her over-the-top, eccentric personality sometimes made her a target of ridicule and dismissal, yet she was the wisest out of the friend group. Her character came to life thanks to a terrific performance by Mamet in the company of many other talented actors.
Shosh was no stranger to heartbreak, nor were any of her girlfriends. In fact, “Girls” thoroughly explores the dating scene in great and succinct detail, which is probably part of what makes the show so fascinating to watch. For me, few things are more entertaining than matters of the heart.