February 22, 2012

Quick Thoughts: HAPPY ENDINGS, "The Butterfly Effect Effect"

Happy Endings was able to rebound from last week's cringe-inducing episode with a less uncomfortable and funnier "The Butterfly Effect Effect."

Now, I will admit that while "Butterfly" had more laughs built in and less awkward moments, it still had its share of problems. I get that Penny's one of the breakout characters, but her routine was a little too much during this one, and I think it would all work better if Casey Wilson dialed it back every once in a while. Truthfully, the same could be said about Adam Pally, but his Bear Max bit was brilliant and it didn't require him to be as "on," and maybe Penny needs something similar in future episodes.

That's not to say that I disliked everything Penny did in this one. I've always seen that tiny spark between her and Dave, which was why I wasn't shocked that the writers toyed with pairing them up earlier this season, so I enjoyed watching the two of the scheme. There's also a sense of vulnerability that Wilson brings to the role, and the scene where she felt left out while Alex and Jane did their sister thing was a nice character moment for her.

Like always, Eliza Coupe and Damon Wayans, Jr. were amazing together, and their fake fight outside of the bar was golden. It was obvious that they were going to end up having a real fight because this is television at the end of the day, but I still think they were able to make the predictable beats work. I'm also not going to complain about a plot that requires Coupe to strip down to her skivies because hot damn.

Finally, there was Alex. I know I've said this multiple times, but Elisha Cuthebert's complete turn around has been one of the main reason why this show's been so good this season. Once again, she had the lion's share of killer one-liners, and she played the observer role amazingly well (she's up there with Wayans in this regard). Sure, the dimness that her character's been saddled with can be problematic sometimes, but Cuthbert really committed to the bit this week and the show was better because of her.

Lines of the Night:
  • "Whatever dawgs, I'm playing hurt."
  • "It's called a bro-zillian."
  • "Next thing you're going to tell me is there's no such things as a scro-tee."
  • "This is all about douche week, and I love it."
  • "In his defense, he does eat honey like year-round, but still."
  • "You don't know what I don't wanna know!"
  • "Oh, you think it's only a little nudge, but watch out because it could be just like The Butterfly Effect. That one little movie led to Ashton Kutcher doing a lot of bad movies."
  • "I am angry! I'm angry that you're not naked right now! I want to see them thaaangs!"
  • "Whatever happened to Hardy Copy! I liked that show! It was a viable alternative to A Current Affair!"
  • "Yes, a slumber party! We'll order pizza, have strawberry milk. We'll play m.a.s.h. I get to be Hawkeye."
  • "Let's just rage-chill instead. Rage-get caught up on Downton Abbey."
  • Dave: "If we don't go out, we'll never get Max out of bear mode."
    Brad: "Why would you want him to? You get to live with a bear that sounds like Tim Allen."
    Max: *Tim Allen grunt*
  • "You don't poke the bear. That's illegal."
  • "HAHAHA! Burn! Freezer burn! Yes, suck it."
  • "Suck a million."
  • "It's been no pic-a-nic at my place either."
  • "She really marches to the beat of her own very slow drummer."
  • Dave: "By the way, congrats on those. You got them thaaangs."
    Penny: "Aww."
  • Brad: "We're like Don King, except instead of Thrilla in Manila, it's Thrilla in Vanilla."
    Jane: "I'm Vanilla."
    Brad: "Yeah you are."
  • "Well sorry that like Robin Williams my enthusiasm is infectious."
  • "What? Leaving the door open is worse than secretly coresponding with your ex-girlfriend who's a yoga pants model, and who lists her favorite hobbies as breathing through her nose and competitive swallowing?"
  • "And Pooh Bear transition complete."
  • "Now be careful. He's very protective over his cubs. They're both signed by Mandy Patinkin..."
  • "Guys, I don't wanna pay for all of us!"
  • "What an ordeal. That is the last time I administer an at-home bro-zillian. Speaking of which Dave, we need more duct tape."
While "The Butterfly Effect Effect" still had some of the things that annoy me about this show, the gang being mean people, it was able to bring the funny via Alex's jokes and sight gags like Bear Max. Maybe I just felt bad for Grant last week, and that's why I didn't care for the episode. Regardless, if the pattern holds, we're in for another blah installment next week. Let's hope I'm wrong.


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