Tag Archives: blackmail

2 Broke Girls, S4E15 “And the Fat Cat”: A TV Review

fatcatwhatever

There were a lot of great things in this episode. First and foremost, the A-plot, which involved Max and Caroline trying to blackmail venture capitalist Owen Charles Boyd after his cat impregnates theirs. The fact that I could wrap it up in a single sentence underscores its simplicity. Once you’ve established the premise you’re free to concentrate on jokes and the absurdity that spins out of it, and the former has some wins [the latter I’ll get to].

While we’re staying positive, it was nice to see them back up the fact that the two girls live in a bad neighbourhood. They’re always going on about how horrible their life is in their enormous apartment, so having honest to goodness evidence that what lies outside of it is women screaming [which, let’s face it, is pretty uncomfortable] and men running away [presumably from some recently committed crime] and garbage literally everywhere is nice. It’s the closest the 2 Broke Girls has come to “showing vs. telling” in a long time, even if it is undercut by the fact that they still reference stuff off-screen. I guess that’s my cue to get into a little bit of criticism.

chestnut

Those legs. Yikes.

Remember Chestnut? He’s been around since the first season but didn’t make an appearance until he absolutely needed to, for the Victoria’s Secret models to fawn over when they visited [S4E6]. On a similar note, we haven’t seen Nancy, their cat, since early last season, in “And the It Hole” [S3E8]. I totally understand that it’s hard to have live animals on set, but if it’s that difficult why bother “casting” them at all? To have a pet not appear for 30 episodes, or more than an entire season of the show, feels especially strange when one of the minor conflicts between Max and Caroline is how the latter is not a fan of said pet, while the former is.

To restate the first paragraph, I really do like the premise of the episode. I do. My problem is that someone in the writers’ room came up with it and they then had to sort of create a status quo out of thin air to support the narrative. Up to this point most of us had honestly forgotten that Nancy even existed. Except for me, of course, because- Continue reading

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Shame Day: Internet Bullying Harassment

We have all heard the stories. Here in B.C. one of the most publicized internet harassment cases was regarding Amanda Todd, a 15-year-old who commited suicide not long after posting this video.

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

brokenhidphgas

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.