So first thing’s first, and just because it’s the first thing you see when you open up one of these reviews, the header image is very clearly of subpar quality. The best I could find as far as promos was this one video on YouTube which, as you can see, isn’t great. I’ll try to to step it up moving forward but I can only really work with what’s available.
Given that this week’s episode actually fell on my birthday I wasn’t sure how to feel about it. Were my expectations made that much lower due to my having to watch and review it when I could be doing almost anything else? Or were they perhaps on the higher end due to last week’s surprisingly decent installment? Regardless of where my expectations actually ended up falling, 2 Broke Girls served up a decent enough episode that more importantly continues to keep things fresh.
The highlight of “And the Rom-Commie” was the decision to pair Oleg and Han together, a coupling that ended up paying off surprising comedic dividends. While I don’t think that Matthew Moy deserves all the credit for how enjoyable the show has been lately, his performance opposite Kat Dennings is what I want to shine a spotlight on this time around. While his cherubic looks and high-pitched voice have more often than not been openly mocked, which in turn helps perpetuate the stereotype of the effete, sexless Asian man, they also end up adding a genuinely funny mischievous quality to his performance in “And the Sophie Doll”.
I’ve often made note of whenever Han dishes back what the rest of the staff at the Williamsburg Diner are sending his way, but the key difference here is that the battleground has changed. When he spills a hot beverage on Max’s notebook he immediately starts crying out, “It’s okay, it’s okay!” which leads to the following exchange:
“You spilled all over the book how is that okay?
“Because- that was your cocoa. [sips deeply from his own mug] Mmm! How d’ya like your girl Swiss Miss now?”
There’s a number of reasons it lands so well, with one being Moy’s gleefully impish delivery contrasting so well with Dennings’ deadpan snark. Another is that it takes place in the girls’ apartment, meaning that the traditional relationship, as overturned as it normally is, between employer and employee is absent. Both are fine examples of how the show’s reticence to focus on pairs that were not the titular duo has left the writers’ room with a wealth of potential character combinations to play around with, all of which offer a lot of promise. I’m personally looking forward to Caroline and Sophie holding down their own plotline, which is a sentence I never thought I’d find myself writing.
As for what actually happens, as it turns out it never occurred to the Wharton-educated Ms. Channing that when becoming the owner of a drinking establishment it might be a good idea to hire a bartender. Or, at the very least, know how to make cocktails yourself if there’s no budget for additional staff. This leads to her and Max taking a bartending class, which I think is cool because as a now-26-year-old I still have a less than ideal relationship with alcohol. This results in a humorous but expected situation where Max excels and Caroline does not. Also Han gets chicken pox and there’s something about Sophie having a doll with her face on it.
The episode concludes with neither of them passing, due to various shenanigans, but Max becoming a competent enough bartender to handle making more than just Jolly Rancher shots. It’s a definite positive in regards to the overall success of their Dessert Bar, which the premise of the show is based on right now, which is good. That said, even if the focus wasn’t on the overarching narrative I wouldn’t even complain. 2 Broke Girls is probably never going to be a joke that makes me laugh our loud, but these past few weeks it’s been making me smile which is a step in the right direction.
Current Total: $3,710.65
New Total: $3,340.35. It looks like the bartending course for the both of them cost exactly $370.30.
The Title Refers To: Sophie’s creepy-ass doll which I didn’t dedicate almost any of this review to. It’s supposed to be for surveillance, the parenting variety specifically, though it’s used for other purposes throughout. This also the least clever episode title in a very, very long time.
- It feels like ages since the last time the cold open featured Max snarking at a customer.
- Han, or “Law & Order: SAD”, scrutinizes a hair found in a diner patron’s food and notes:
“It’s brown, somewhere between coffee and burnt sienna. Cleaned hastily with a combination shampoo/bodywash. This hair belongs to a single White man, alone, and not by choice but so set in his ways.”
- Beth Behrs confirms with this line that she is still an absolute delight: “We’re going to bartending school so we can- and don’t kick me– be the best- no pinching, not my nose!– business we can be!”
- “Welcome to the Dinersburg Williams! Who said that?”
- Their bartending teacher, Gil Bronski, is played by French Stewart which I did not find out on IMDb. Big ups to 2paragraphs for the info.
- He’s also a “former child actor briefly sidelined by a 30 year drug addiction.”
- “I’m gonna nail this test like it’s some guy I met at the grocery store.” Max, do you mean like in Season 4 Episode 2 “And the DJ Face”?
- “You like that, is it hard enough, am I hurting you?” Han’s such a considerate
- What goes in a White lady? “A bottle of Chardonnay and a fat guy that makes her laugh,” apparently.
- Poland has eight days in their week, the last of which is used “for dredging the lakes.”
- In the final scene a customer orders a mojito and Max already has mint leaves in the bottom of a glass ready to be mulled. That’s either a lot of foresight or laziness on the part of the props dept.
Time in comic books tends to be a very elastic thing, which makes sense given that most titles only release 13 [an appropriate number of monthly issues as well as an annual] issues per year. When it comes to TV shows, however, it can normally be assumed that a season takes place within a calendar year, an assumption that is typically backed up by special holiday episodes.
In this latest feature, which I hope to add to week after week, we’ll be taking a close look at how 2 Broke Girls views its own timeline up to this current season. We’re calling it-
The Life and Time[line]s of Max and Caroline
S6E1: “And the Two Openings: Part One”
- As noted in that review, Caroline sees J. Petto, who first appeared in S2E17 “And the Broken Hip”. She describes that as being “two years and three businesses ago”.
S6E4: “And the Stepmama Drama”
- Caroline tells her best friend: “Max I’ve been waiting six years to hear you say that [she likes her jug].”
S6E6: “And the Rom-Commie”
- Yet another mention of six years with Max saying: “You thought when I first said ‘hi’ to you it meant I wanted you to move in with me for six years.”
S6E7: “And the Sophie Doll”
- Caroline directly states that her phone hasn’t rang in six years, which can’t possibly be true because she’s dated guys in that time. Remember Candy Andy?