"Elijah gets to have a serious relationship," the Girls actor told PEOPLE

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Girls fans know all about the bumbling romantic lives of Hannah, Marnie, Shoshanna and Jessa, but we haven’t gotten very much insight into the love escapades of Elijah, Hannah’s former closeted boyfriend-turned-BFF. Now, star Andrew Rannells says Elijah is finally in for an in-depth romantic storyline.

“Elijah gets to be a little bit serious this season, and he gets to have a serious relationship. I’m very excited about it,” Rannells told PEOPLE about Girls‘ upcoming fifth season at the Olevolos Project brunch.

Like most characters on the HBO show, Elijah must contend with a learning curve when it comes to matters of the heart.

“We haven’t seen it before so it’s not like something he is good at. You’re going to see him sort of flail around a lot,” Rannells teased.

More romance for Elijah means less clothing for the 36-year-old actor, who says his scenes involve “a lot of underwear this year.”

Rannells, whose Broadway résumé includes The Book of Mormon and Hedwig and the Angry Inch, admitted he gets “completely nervous” when it comes to stripping down to his undies onscreen.

“The night before, I always wish that I looked like [True Blood star] Ryan Kwanten. But I just know that that’s not going to happen overnight, and I’m clearly not really able to put in the work or, more specifically, willing to put in the work. So it is what it is,” said Rannells.

As for what’s next for lead girl Hannah, played by Lena Dunham, Rannells promised we will see a lot of her new love Fran (Obvious Child‘s Jake Lacy). Hannah was shown walking arm-in-arm with the drama-averse teacher in the final scene of season 4.

“Fran is with us, we’re doing it and I’m happy that Hannah gets to at least pretend to be a little bit of a grown up for a while,” said Rannells.

The girls might also venture out of their favored borough of Brooklyn in the next season: “So far for me we’re shooting a lot in Manhattan, which is such a rarity,” Rannells revealed.

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The show, which Rannells called “the best possible set to be on,” has been filming since April. Season 5 is slated to premiere in January.