Warning: This article contains spoilers for the final episode of Girls’ Season Six.
HBO’s Girls has concluded its six season series with one of the most dividing episodes ever screened.
The finale offered fans no romantic hope and little sense of what the future would hold for its characters. What it did offer was a tired look at the breast milk vs. formula debate.
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The episode begins five months after the birth of Hannah Horvath’s (Lena Dunham) child, Grover. Hannah and Grover are living together in upstate New York. They are soon joined by Marnie Michaels (Allison Williams) and later, Hannah’s mother Loreen (Becky Ann Baker).
Marnie spends the majority of the episode schooling Hannah in what's best for her new son. She instructs her on how she should position her nipple when breastfeeding, she micro-manages her swaddling and she repeatedly lists why she believes breast milk is "liquid gold".
Formula is largely portrayed as a kind of maternal failure. A last resort. Marnie looks disdainfully at babies in a doctor's waiting room before deciding they look "formula-fed."
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Even Hannah referring to her nipples as feeling like "iguana skin" is drowned out by Marnie's monologue of 'breast is best'. Hannah struggles. Grover refuses. Marnie moans.
It is one of the most brutally realistic depictions of motherhood to be placed on television this year and yet fans have little good to say about it.
Fans have been flooding social media channels since the finale aired with the sentiment it was a true disappointment.