I was home sick on Monday, so my list is a bit longer than usual this week – extra time for Netflix!
Can we all agree that Walt is pretty much just evil at this point? Between that fatherly talk with Jesse about “honesty”, the way he greeted Brock like he HADN’T just nearly killed the kid, and using Skyler’s affair as an excuse for her breakdown with Marie, Walt was in rare form this week. I will admit, though, that the new plan for cooking was pretty genius. No one will look twice at a house being tented, and since the Vamanos Pest (which, by the way, amazing name for bug guys) employees are all criminals anyway, in theory they’ll look the other way and not give them any trouble. So much fun to see Jesse Plemons pop up on the show, and I’m looking forward to seeing what role he ends up playing in things inevitably going horribly wrong.
Anna Gunn was heartbreaking to watch in the breakdown scene. She hasn’t been on screen much yet this season, but even just the look on her face when she is has said it all.
We finally got a chance to see Bud Hammond look like a human being and not just a doofy asshole this week, which was (to me, anyway) a welcome change. He obviously cares a lot about Elaine, and took the bullet for the event that turned the primaries away from her at the last election. The family doesn’t want his help this time around either, but he’s still doing some dirty work for her, and it clearly kills him to not be able to help. I’m sure that will end up being A Thing before the series ends.
Susan Berg was a major player in this episode plot-wise, as she helped Elaine out by giving her a heads up that Garcetti was trying to appoint her to the Supreme Court. She also has Doug in a tough spot – now that he’s realized his mother has a legitimate shot at winning if she runs, he doesn’t want Berg to run an article and spoil the plan. That’s bound to blow up soon. I’m not entirely sure what Elaine is playing at by getting all buddy-buddy with the reporter (inviting her to go on a jog and what not), but I feel like there must be a plan there.
I was genuinely surprised at how quickly Steve was brought back. I had a feeling given how determined Claudia was that it was going to happen eventually, but I figured it would both take her few episodes, and that she would not have the assistance of a regent to aid the process. As it turns out Pete’s mom was the only regent that was okay with it – clearly feeling guilty over the circumstances surrounding his death in the first place – but it was still a surprise. I’m quite certain there are going to be huge, nasty consequences to him being brought back – possibly tied to Artie’s time reversal voodoo. Speaking of Artie, nervous!Artie is super stressful to watch. I loved seeing Brent Spiner back again, but oh boy, Artie’s stuck in a tough spot right now. Reverse the artifact, the warehouse is gone (and HG, Mrs. Fredericks, Steve, and now presumably Pete go back to being dead). Don’t reverse the artifact and apparently some crazy evil is going to kill everyone anyway. Yikes.
I realized after the episode ended this week that there are only 3 episodes left in what could very well be the only season of this show, and absolutely nothing has happened. There’s no real plot to speak of besides “Michelle moves to Paradise, fights with Fanny a lot, bonds with teens”. It’s such an oddly charming show, though, so the lack of story really hasn’t bothered me.
Lots of comedy to be found with the flood in the studio, not the least of which was Michelle faking a conversation with Fanny on Fanny’s voicemail. I also got a kick out of Michelle and the girls using hair dryers to dry the carpet. Absurd, but a good sight gag. We got another cameo from a former Stars Hollow resident when Todd Lowe showed up as the one-eyed plumber (who apparently is only good at “keeping an eye on things”). Michelle also had to actually discipline the girls (or at least Sasha) for the first time when Sasha not only stole her shirt, but then showed up late to class and didn’t seem to particularly give a crap. She clearly hated it and the girls didn’t seem particular fond of Michelle-as-real-adult, either.
We also got our first mention of Hubbell in several weeks. Not from either Michelle or Fanny, of course, but from Truly. That’s been the one weird thing to me about this show – I get keeping it light, but their husband and son just DIED, and Michelle and Fanny seem to just forget he ever existed.
I enjoyed this episode much more than the last few. I think the series suffers when the main cast isn’t all together and when they attempt to leave the Hamptons, and there’s been a lot of both of those things so far this season. This was also a fairly light episode compared to the last two.
I’m pretty sure we’re supposed to think Dr. VanDyke is a jerk, but I sort of wish he were around more. He made this episode a lot more fun, he’s got a lot of charm (sometimes too much charm), and he’s very funny. The whole thing with his bunny was hilarious. We also got to see Hank back at his usual medical trickery this week – both using an ice cream truck to give a stroke patient some more time to get to a hospital, and using a dog that could sense high blood pressure to help Boris’ cranky diabetic friend/business partner/whatever. I couldn’t figure out why the show was really beating us over the head about the patient-of-the-week’s divorce and marital issues and how much he should let them go – it seemed really over the top. I also don’t particularly like the translator, mostly because I just assume it’s going to end badly, as things that involve Boris in any way have a tendency to do. I think I liked Boris better when he only popped up 2 or 3 times a season and wasn’t a regular being shoehorned into every story.
Random Netflix Viewing
- Sports Night, end of season 2 – As I got close to the end of the series I started getting really nervous about the way things were going to wrap up – it looks really bleak for a while there – but I really enjoyed the ending.
- Friday Night Lights, end of season 5 – I was so sad to see the end of this series, but man, what a show. It made me SO happy to see Matt Saracen and Tim Riggins back for the end. Especially Matt. I love him and Julie together. I couldn’t figure out why Billy wouldn’t have brought Becky for Tim’s parole hearing, but I guess it ultimately didn’t matter. It was also great to see Tyra again over the last few episodes, although I never really liked her and Tim together, so that seemed a little off to me. I don’t remember if I mentioned this already, but Vince’s dad is a HUGE JERK, although he redeemed himself a very, very small amount by coming to the championship game in the finale. Coach and Mrs. Taylor are probably the best couple I’ve ever seen on TV – they face real conflict, but come out the other side okay. So amazing. I wish more TV were this good.
- Parks and Recreation, season 1 – My next series project. It’s very obvious they were trying to duplicate various aspects of The Office in season 1, and not all of it works. Amy Poelher is great though, and so is Nick Offerman. I’ve always heard the show gets much better after the first season, so I’m excited to see more of the show.
What have you been watching lately?