Tag Archives: Andy

2 Broke Girls, S2E21 “And the Worst Selfie Ever”: A TV Review

CBS putting their sitcoms on hiatus is both a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because last week was my first full week of work, and I’m trying to get back into a schedule; it’s a curse because I am super rusty, and two weeks off feels like an eternity.

We start things off with Max and Caroline coming back from the “Under a Dollar,” where the former bought steak and a steak-eatin’-chair and the latter bought sheets. There’s some really great stuff here when Caroline tears her new purchase, and reads the bag it came in: “Thread count: Yes. Washing instructions: Do not wash.” Continue reading

TV Characters We Hate To Love To Hate, Or Something

Having just finished an episode of The Big Bang Theory is as good a time as any to write this post, which elaborates on an article I found on Macleans.ca titled “How obnoxious is too obnoxious for a TV character?” In it TV writer Jaime Weinman primarily writes about TBBT and its most popular character, Sheldon Cooper.

Weinman points out that the 12th episode of this season, “The Egg Salad Equivalency,” was actually the highest rated in the show’s history, an astonishing fact when you realize that a large chunk of it features Sheldon being extremely [albeit unknowingly] sexist and racist. I’ve embedded the primary scene in question below:

It’s pretty awful, but the fact of the matter is that Sheldon Cooper is far from being the only popular sitcom character you would actually hate to be around in real life. Two years before TBBT even aired the US version of The Office was around, and the original British version came out four years before that. Michael Scott was a huge draw for people who tuned in weekly to see how a particular Scranton paper company was doing [as well as being solely responsible for repopularizing the phrase “that’s what she said”], but was also one of the most blindly insensitive people on the planet.

Very old television spoilers ahead.

Steve Carrell’s departure at the end of Season 7 meant that someone else had to be the new boss, and in spite of my suggesting that Matthew Perry would fit the bill that role was given to Ed Helms’ Andy Bernard. While his character managed to be a fairly likeable manager earlier on, the current [9th] season has had him transform into what is essentially a terrible human being.


He’s this close to being a moustache-twirling symbol of outright villainy.

He leaves the office to sail a boat out to some island, comes back expecting everyone to have covered for his month-long absence, and then, upon having his girlfriend [understandably] break up with him for another coworker proceeds to make both their lives a living hell. Crazy-talented webcomic artist Anthony Clark tweeted it best when he said:

And speaking of Ed Helms, take as another example his companion in the Hangover films, Alan Garner. Essentially just Zack Galifianakis playing the role he always plays [see: Due DateDinner For Schmucks, etc.], he is, as we’ve been talking about, a person who is so obnoxious that you wonder how they continue to be alive; there are times when you want to reach through the screen and slap them in the face.

Most TV shows [that’s the end of the movie portion of this post for now] have them, too. Adventure Time has the Ice King, Community has Pierce Hawthorne,  Modern Family has Manny Delgado [which you might debate, but I stand by this], and 30 Rock had the one-two punch of Tracy Jordan and Jenna Mulroney. Not only are the prevalent in television, but they also manage to become a huge draw for viewers.

Weinman ends his article by stating that “the show knows Sheldon is a jerk, but it doesn’t seem to know just how big a jerk he is.” I think it’s a fair assessment to say that all of the shows I’ve mentioned are aware that they’ve added obnoxious jerks to their casts, but the exact purpose for this is lost on someone who only had four hours of sleep last night. Sure, they can act as semi-antagonistic friends for our hero, usually the straight man, but eventually as the audience we’re forced to ask ourselves how people can bear having them around.

You could even justify it as being some sort of catharsis, rooted in schadenfreude, for whenever these character get their comeuppance, but it never happens. Sheldon will continue to be unaware of how his actions affect others, Pierce will continue to be extremely racist but get away with it due to his age, and we will continue watching them, amused, annoyed, or somewhere in between.

2 Broke Girls, S2E17 “And the Broken Hip”: A TV Review


I finished writing my last review with sort of a bad taste in my mouth, so I decided to try approaching this episode with the same curious naivete with which I viewed Season 1.  

It’s a tried and true television trope to have the characters of your sitcom blackmailed, and in this case that takes the form of an actual lawsuit. Caroline and Max have recently started making big bucks with their cupcake shop [more on that later] when street performer/puppeteer J. Petto [played by Andy Dick] starts scaring off their customers by setting up out front. After they’ve told him to get out he storms into the storm, only to have him slip on a doughnut and fall and break a hip.

The hip, of course, belongs to his puppet, Charming Pierre. The two girls are sued, but agree to pay him $1000 to avoid going to court [they obviously have no insurance on their cupcake shop]. After they’ve paid the man he demands more, which leads to Max kidnapping Pierre. When Petto shows up he’s forced to watch his beloved marionette forced into compromising situations involving two naked Barbie dolls [one male, one female], and promises to call off the lawsuit. That just about sums up the entire episode.

At this point in time, the primary cast of 2 Broke Girls can arguably be boiled down to just Max and Caroline. Sure, the gang back at the diner are close second-stringers [Han, Oleg, Earl, and Sophie], but there’s no way they’re ever going to dominate an episode. The camera will never pan back and forth between Max and Caroline running the shop while Oleg and Earl figure play pranks on Han; this is a one-plot show. And that singular plot had better be amusing, because we’re not allowed the distraction of another to take us away from it. With a title like 2 Broke Girls it’s unlikely that the format will change, but it’s sincerely got me wondering how much depth breaking away from that would give the show, and how much more characterization we’d be able to get out of the rest of the cast.

This episode is also a reminder of how dated the references on the show can be. Once again hipsters are a topic, since they are the ones flocking to the shop due to its new 90s celebrity menu [cupcakes refer to Beavis and Butthead, Dennis Rodman, and David Hasselhoff]. While this is nothing new, it got me thinking about what demographic the show is trying to target. I was born in 1990, and there’s some pretty explicit reference to pro figure skater Nancy Kerrigan and her being attacked in 1994. With that in mind, most people in their early to mid twenties are not going to get these jokes, so is it the thirty-somethings they’re going for?

At the end of the day, this episode was just another 2 Broke Girls Episode. It relied too heavily on put-down humour [this guy is too into puppets let’s mock him mercilessly] and too-easy jokes [“. . . I’m pretty sure you’d go from J. Petto to J. Pedophile], and was ultimately only sort of funny. That seems to be what audiences are eating up, though, so you almost can’t blame them for sticking with what works.

As a final note, their “Current Total” of $4800 drops down to the “New Total” of $3800, due to them crumbling to J. Petto’s demands. It’s still not really explained what the point of the total is, but I suppose through this episode it can be viewed as emergency bail-out money. Expect someone [Caroline, in all likelihood] to get thrown in jail at some point this season.

Stray Observations:

  • It’s nice to note that this show has some form of continuity- Candy Andy’s storefront is currently for lease.
  • Not really any quotes or exchanges that stood out to me this episode. Just a pretty meh episode, though definitely not as offensive as last week’s.
  • I will admit that Max straight-facedly ramming a naked Barbie onto a puppet was very funny. I expect to see gifs of it on tumblr by the end of the week.
  • 2 Broke Girls Cheesecake Menu: Even Sophie’s cleavage was generally kept tightly under wraps this week. Not much to report here.

2 Broke Girls, S2E16 “And Just Plane Magic”: A TV Review


Now I normally don’t grade my reviews, but after watching this episode I wish I had started back with Episode 13. Without ratings there’s no way of indicating how huge the drop of quality is which occurred between last week and this week. What I am saying is that this was not a good 21 minutes of television. With that being said, this review will take place in the form of a bullet pointed list.

  • Caroline and Max are in the diner and Max snarks at Han.
  • Depressed by the fact that they’re spending their Friday night replacing ketchup bottles, they decide to go to a Ravonettes’ show.
  • [They don’t have tickets, but they feel like breasts should suffice]
  • They get in because Max jokes with a British guy about how a trash can is her boyfriend.
  • After sleeping with him she manages to snag a fancy high-class plane trip to the Grammys for both Caroline and herself.
  • On that plane is Grammy-nominated rapper 2 Chainz [as seen in the picture above].
  • Something about the plane they’re on being the Channings’ [Caroline’s family] old private jet. Also: Max has never been on a plane before.
  • Max somehow breaks the plane when visiting the cockpit and after a quick cut from the two strapping in their seatbelts we see them in a cheap motel.
  • They watch the Grammys while wearing pretty dresses though, so it’s okay. Also they’re taking an economy class flight back to NYC the next day.

And that’s it. That’s what happens. I mean, sure I could mention the fact that the captain of the plane [an old friend of Caroline’s] asks her out on a date which she accepts [at 2 Chainz’s insistence] to ensure their safety in the air. I could also mention that Caroline loves 2 Chainz’s track “Birthday Song” so much that she raps the chorus at least twice in this episode. That ultimately wouldn’t help, though.

I can’t tell, for the life of me, what this episode was supposed to be doing. Caroline mentions that she recently broke up with Andy [see previous reviews] and that Max is easy, so why not spend a night out on the town, and that makes perfect sense. At the end of the episode, however, we’re led to believe that Max’s boyfriend is the British guy [are we really supposed to believe she’s tying herself down?] and that Caroline’s is “Captain Facelift” [he got plastic surgery, ha ha ha]. Are we expected to take that seriously, or not?

Celebrity cameos aren’t a big deal [as it turns out, this week’s HIMYM also featured one by another famous African-American {hello, Black History Month}]; they can be pivotal to the plot of an episode or simply just there for audiences to get a kick out of. In this instance, I feel like CBS asked 2 Chainz if he wanted to be on their show and didn’t know what to do with him when he accepted. Apparently [and “Birthday Song” attests to this] he likes “big booty hos” and sleeping while flying, and that’s about all he really contributes.

Probably the biggest problem I had with this episode [and I echo the sentiments of past 2 Broke Girls reviewer Todd Van Der Werff] is that there was so much potential. Growing up as a poor girl Max never had the opportunity to even sit in a plane, and it’s an understandably foreign experience. Instead of feeling the discomfort of squeezing past your seatmate to visit the bathroom [which has a line outside] or choking down gross airplane food like the rest of us mere mortals she’s instead given hot towels by a French stewardess and eats prosciutto off of a reasonably sized refreshment table. This isn’t something that the show’s audience as a whole can relate with.

What I want now, more than ever, is for Max and Caroline to return to their wacky hijinks of finding ways to make/save money. I miss their adventures of signing up for drug trials and “extreme couponing” and donating their eggs. Most people don’t have great jobs or that much money, and while not [ever] being a great show it was at least relatable on some level. Now we have the two girls travelling on a private jet to the Grammys. 

Maybe this is just an indicator that an EVAN YEONG MADNESS WATCH would have been a good thing to institute after all. I’ve been willing to acknowledge this show’s failing from the start, but this week managed to find even my low expectations disappointed. From what I can tell next week Max and Caroline will break a street performer’s hip. I’m not sure what to expect, but I think doing worse would be a challenge; this was like the Aliens: Colonial Marines of 2 Broke Girls  episodes.

Stray Observations:

  • Outside the Ravonettes’ concert a scalper in a cow costume offers them free tickets if “the blonde one milks [him].” He was waiting all night to say that to someone.
  • On a positive note, Han keeps up the recent trend of having other characters snark back at Max. He nails the delivery, too.

Max: “But be careful, Han female-to-male [sex changes] can be tricky.”
Han: “Welllllllll. You would know.”

  • This was 2 Chainz’s acting debut, poor guy.
  • Caroline’s French accent is atrocious.
  • Much to my disdain, the whoops at Sophie’s entrance are back in full force. Guess CBS noticed how lacklustre they’ve been lately.
  • 2 Broke Girls Cheesecake Menu: While posing next to a sleeping 2 Chainz for a picture Max cups her breasts and pulls out a duckface. Later Caroline poses with her booty next to his head, but the two instances really aren’t comparable.

2 Broke Girls, S2E15 “And the Psychic Shakedown”: A TV Review


Turns out 2 Broke Girls [and the other, better CBS sitcom] took some time off for some reason or another, so last week was a nice break for me. And now we’re back.

SURPRISE: Max and Caroline are in the diner! The latter complains about only getting $2 for her last tip, because it means that they don’t have enough money to buy supplies for their store. Before we move on, I’d like to point out that tips  and surviving on them to bolster a waiter’s/waitress’ meagre salary is great material for an entire episode [see the Ryan Reynolds film Waiting…]; it’s bizarre that this hasn’t come up sooner. Anyway, the girls steal their ingredients from the diner.

There’s also an exchange that occurs between the two that prompts a particular response from me [see gif on the right]:

Caroline: And we have to sneak all this stuff out. Han’s staying late to do inventory.

Max: Dammit, why does he always have to be so Asian?

Cue laugh track. Cue me wishing everyone involved in this show’s writing would die a slow, painful death. Then everyone conspires to help the girls steal from their employer and that’s the cold open for you.

Back in the shop Caroline has found a site where the two can apply for a small business grant. Why they need the money, I don’t know; the last episode ended with them at $4900. Since they’re technically minorities [“according to the last presidential election”] all they need is a letter of recommendation from another start-up business.  Enter Candy Andy, Caroline’s dreaded ex.

Exit Candy Andy, Caroline’s dreaded ex. Apparently he just up and left, unbeknownst to either of the girls. Middle Eastern guy Amir [played by Amir Talai] braves Max’s onslaught of racism to tell them that he helped Andy move out in the middle of the night. He also dishes out just about as much as he takes, which is nice but still not ideal.

Seven minutes in and the premise of our episode shows up in the form of a pushy psychic who talks Caroline into spending $50 on a reading [that she will die alone] and crystal “you can’t snort.” One midnight talk between the girls later and they’ve come to get their money back. Max’s snark causes the psychic to point a fork at them and say “psst”; this means they are now cursed.

As sitcom law would dictate, Max doesn’t believe in the curse while Caroline insists they pay the woman another $50 to nix their bad juju. Then a man jumps out of a window and smacks the pavement near where they’re standing.

Earlier on in the episode Han refuses to sign Caroline’s pre-written note of recommendation due to having morals, a decision Earl negates by just forging his signature as part of a vast conspiracy by all to work for the man but not respect him in the least. Han writes his own letter since he is a decent guy, which reads as saying that Caroline will die alone because she loves business.

After Jennifer Coolidge [Sophie] hams it up like crazy after hearing they’re cursed and Max breaks the glass shelf with all the booze, the girls are back at the psychic’s place. Two “pssts” and the curse is lifted. She does decide to give Max a free reading, though, and it is as follows: a happy life, over $10,000 in her near future [the grant!], and great love and children. Caroline will still die alone, but “with nothing but her great success.”

She’s pretty thrilled about this until they see a mailbox being unbolted from the sidewalk. The mailbox in which Caroline put their grant application. Oh well. It snows like the psychic predicted, though, so Caroline isn’t sure what’s up. The two agree that their readings are two parts of a whole [success + love] and that maybe things aren’t so bad after all. The end.

Since this is supposed to be a review and not just a play-by-play of the episode, let share a few thoughts. Thought #1: this episode was horrible. I do believe that much of the blame for this lies on the writing credit given to co-creator Michael Patrick King. This is probably also the reason for the excessive amount of racist and rape-related jokes this episode. Please remember that this is a man who is sort of a horrible person. For him edginess equates comedy, and it explains a lot of the terrible dialogue that was present.

Lastly, I mentioned in my last review that I’m not sure what the final tally is supposed to indicate anymore. Wikipedia dubs it “Final tally for cupcake business venture,” but shouldn’t it now read “Final tally from cupcake business venture”? The episode ends with them having been shysted out of $100 by the psychic, leaving them at $4800.

Stray Observations:

  • I would actually like to see a lot more of Amir in the future. He had great chemistry with both of the girls, and it takes a talented actor to rise above the material given [and targeted at] him.
  • The audience members cheering at Sophie’s entrance were barely audible, it’s like their hearts just aren’t into it anymore.
  • Max’s essentials: food and the penguin statue at the dollar store that says “Chill Out!”
  • 2 Broke Girls Cheesecake Menu: Pretty weak this time around. Caroline stuffs eggs into the front of her shirt. Sophie is dressed pretty provocatively as usual, but I feel that shouldn’t count anymore.

2 Broke Girls, S2E14 “And Too Little Sleep”: A TV Review


This episode begins with Caroline reminding Max [and the rest of us] that “this isn’t the diner where everything comes with attitude and E. coli.” The fact that the cold open takes place in the cupcake shop doesn’t stop her from snarking at a drumming customer in overalls, though. Insert comment from me about how the show’s centre seems to be moving further away from the diner.

Soon enough Andy shows up, forcing Caroline into hiding [they broke up, remember?]. It also kicks off a fairly decent running joke about how Max doesn’t recall having slept with the guy at the record store. Kat Denning’s delivery of the following line actually made me chuckle out loud:

Andy:  Oh, by the way, the guy at the record store says hi.

Max: Well, you tell him I said . . Who are you?

This conversation also reveals one of the big concepts in the episode: your friends keeping in contact with your ex. Max and Andy have bonded over texting each other pictures of unlikely animal couples, and you can rest assured that it’s going to cause some sort of trouble later on in the episode.

Ah, sorry, I forgot to mention that in this episode Max and Caroline are tired. Tired enough for Max to pull down her pants in the middle of the cupcake shop and for Caroline to doze off while taking orders. This creates complications, of course, when her sleep deprivation causes Caroline to remember that they have an order for 1000 cupcakes due the next day at 10 a.m.

So the girls race out, leaving Han hanging, only for Caroline to kick the shim out from under their oven, rendering it unusable. Fun fact: a shim is “a thin and often tapered or wedged piece of material,” and not a pronoun for transexuals like Caroline posits. Seconds later and the girls race back to the diner they abandoned to use the oven/kitchen there. Instead of being understandably upset, Han and the others are actually really cool about it, offering to stay up late and help finish their order. They’ve really tried to push the idea of them being a more-or-less happy, dysfunctional family, and this approach is more heavy-handed than most.

Also allow me to say that Matthew Moy, who plays Han, kills it this week with the material given to him. Max reaches around his body to show him how to properly ice cupcakes only to have him squirt the sugary glaze all over the place [haha, premature ejaculation joke, we get it]. Moy’s distressed cries of “Oh, oh, I’m humiliated!” really lands here. Check the “Stray Observations” below to check out the other one.

The girls are alone, and just about done with the order when it turns out that Max has lost an earring, presumably in the batter. This forces the two to start destroying the cupcakes to find them, and soon, with bits of baked goods underneath every fingernail, the two are throwing down over Max still talking to Andy and “girl code.”

The scene really stands out due to their argument, which holds a lot more emotional sincerity than most of the feel-good moments on the show. There’s screaming and cupcake throwing and on some level, in spite of the audience laughing and cheering, it feels strangely real, like the two actresses are actually upset at one another.

Anyway, Andy shows up to help and defuses the situation. Him and Caroline end up in the kitchen and talk about how they “glove” each other [why can’t we all use kitchen safety to properly express our feelings?] and while they don’t get back together they ultimately end up in a pretty good place. Another breakup takes place when Max and Andy talk, realizing that they should probably stop texting for Caroline’s sake.

Back at the apartment the girls realize that they had switched aprons, and that Max’s earring was in her apron [on Caroline] the entire time. This is really weird, because this discovery is caused by Max finding Caroline’s phone, which doesn’t jive with her texting with her own phone earlier. Anyway, it’s not really worth picking apart, just generally kind of clumsy on the writers’ parts.

The show ends with the usual ka-ching of the money counter, which I suppose now tallies up the profits from the cupcake shop, shooting up from $900 to $4900 due to their huge order. I’m not sure what they’re aiming for, or what their overheads are, but right now it doesn’t seem all that important to the show as a whole.

As a parting note, did anyone else feel like this episode had a lot of dated references? Sure, hipsters were also a topic sort of addressed in CBS’s other Monday sitcom, How I Met Your Mother, but Max also references James Cameron’s Avatar and the 2010 TLC series Sister Wives.

Tune in next week to read my reviews of a show The A.V. Club gave up on a long time ago!

Stray Observations:

  • Apparently Earl quit doing cocaine last year, at 75. Guy looks pretty good, all things considering.
  • Han’s response to Max telling him he’s 90% head: “It’s not a laughing matter, Max, I broke my mother’s pelvis coming out!”
  • The “whoos” at Sophie’s entrance were extremely subdued this week. (•‿•)
  • Unlikely animal couples mentioned: monkey tickling a parrot, a black dog spooning a brown dog, deer nursing a turtle, labradoodle high-fiving a koi fish, cat and dolphin kissing, Max and Caroline [awwww].
  • 2 Broke Girls Cheesecake Menu: Sophie’s boobs straining to break free from her dress. Oh, and Max pantsing herself in the cold open.