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Get Out (4 nods each), Lady Bird, Call Me By Your Name, Florida Project (3 nods each)

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« Transparent S4 E1-3: Off to Israel | Main | Four Better Ways to Spend Avatar's Billion Dollar Budget »
Saturday
Sep302017

Difficult People S3 E7-8: Sitcoms, Sleepovers, & "Yes And"

In Episode Seven, “Fuzz Buddies”, Julie lies her way into a Nick Jr. writer’s room, Billy gets a decades late response to fanmail from Monkee Micky Dolenz, and Marilyn finally celebrates her Bat Mitzvah.

CHRIS: So the theme of this episode was delayed adolescence. Billy got a childhood fan letter to Micky Dolenz returned and ends up getting roped into helping him with a one-person show.

SPENCER: What does it say about me that I don’t know who this person is?

C: I can’t imagine you’re the only viewer thinking that. Even by Difficult People standards, this guest appearance is specific and completely bizarrely random. But fitting for the theme to have an old school teen idol.

S: Teen idol? I’m listening (while also googling Micky Dolenz)...

C: Marilyn's Bat Mitzvah felt really underserved in this episode. You would think that a monumental and hilariously overdue day would merit more of a to-do from the character, but it felt like... brunch.

S: Agreed. Marilyn should never feel like an afterthought. Although this whole episode felt weirdly subdued. I need more Marilyn calling preteen girls “you little bitch.”

C: Most of the crazy was saved for Julie’s storyline: she got hired onto the writing staff for some bonkers Nick Jr. show called Fuzz Buddies.

S: Already waiting on the Fuzz Buddies spin-off series.

C: Meaning a misogyny riddled, dictatorial, all-male writers room. But it's almost more funny to me that Julie is stuck on a kid's show than surrounded by awful, humorless men.

S: And Julie really was right that it was a cocktail party with all of the ugly people.

C: Episode two got a lot of love online for how it went in on Woody Allen, but this episode goes even harder on male-driven sitcoms and comedy culture in general. All of these punchlines were on point, but I thought one of the smarter observations was that most of these men didn't even speak and just followed their monstrous boss's lead.

S: Difficult People is always so great at offering commentary, but I feel like this episode could have taken it one step further. Little do our readers know that our write-ups about Difficult People resemble Julie’s storyboard about Fuzz Buddies.

C: Twas us that patented the story helix!

In Episode Seven, “Criminal Minds”, Julie realizes she needs more "yes and" in her life and reunites with her old improv group, Billy struggles to sleep over at Todd's, and Marilyn uses Matthew for "inspiration" for her memoir.

C: Julie starts the episode trapped on a depression cycle and zones out to a Criminal Minds marathon. Chicken or egg?

S: Do you have a show like that?

C: Fuller House. But she tries to bounce back in improv spirit with more "yes and." However reuniting with her old improv team to find it sounds more like a "no thanks" to me.

S: I am not entirely sure why they were not that invested in her after she had initiated the get-together in the first place.

C: And in true Difficult People fashion, "yes and" quickly becomes "lying" and in 2-3 miscalculations, Julie becomes a murder suspect. As one does.

S: So long, Chuck. We barely knew ya. But hey, at least we got to meet Mrs. Chuck (Jessica Walter).

C: The biggest devastation is that Marilyn almost loses her book deal thanks to her boring life. So she decides to plagiarize Matthew's wild tales from childhood, turning this episode into another mini-showcase for Cole Escola.

S: Martin and Escola’s chemistry is on fire in this episode. Something I never thought would happen, but am so happy that it did.

C: I'd actually be curious how much of Matthew's swamp stories came from Escola in the moment. Those details just kept building into such crystalline absurdity.

S: I love the idea of him standing on the side of the swamp wearing a ball gown. And it is only his second worst Christmas. I am ready to hear his worst. Or am I?

C: And that miming session gave us more fun Martin/Escola chemistry. I would be fully down for a drag queen modeled after Andrea Martin, performed by Escola or otherwise.

S: Honestly, I’m surprised there isn’t an Andrea Martin drag queen to begin with.

C: We got more relationship growth for Billy. I think something like a new couple unable to fall asleep in the same bed would seem overly cliched on a show that wasn't so otherwise acerbic. Here it feels comparatively sweet.

S: Totally. I love the Like Crazy montage in the sleepover scene. This storyline between the two of them is adorable.

C: It seemed like Billy and Todd (yay, more John Cho!) would be outside of the improv narrative of the episode, but the tourist couple they latched onto turned out to be a hooker and a john making it up as they went along.

S: And who says Difficult People doesn’t supply us with some pretty good twists. But hat ending was pretty cute — and one of the only ones where the last scene isn’t of Julie and Billy together!

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