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Friday Afternoon Confessional: Thursday Spoilers Lie Within

I confess today’s Friday Confessional is going to borrow heavily from the Spoiler Alert Thursday genre because I don’t have much in the way of confessions or even silly fake confessions. Therefore, my focus this week will be on this week’s episode of Louie. There truly are spoiler alerts, which I’ll put below the break.

I confess I’m a little obsessed with Louis CK the comedian as well as his show. I’ve spent so much time thinking about what it is he does that I like, I’ve started doing research for an essay about why it might have so much appeal to so many people. I confess a big part of the reason I’ve decided to do this research is it requires re-watching all the episodes and digging up clips from YouTube. Oh, and dropping $90 for two tickets to his show in Detroit in October.

I confess I enjoyed last night’s episode immensely. It might have been my favorite episode of the series, and I thought Parker Posey was amazing. I admit it it’s a little strange that I think that, though, because I barely chuckled. I confess when I realized that, it dawned on me that I’m not even all that sure Louie is a comedy series anymore.

I confess when the episode started with Louie waiting for *first spoiler* Liz (Parker Posey) to get off work, I was both surprised and relieved to see it picked up where the previous episode left off (when Louie asked her out). Continuity on Louie? Okay, I guess we can do that.

After a more traditional first date idea – Liz taking Louie to a bar she likes – fails for revealing and sad reasons, she leads Louie on a breezy and uncomfortable trip through the city. As she does this, she asks that they be honest with each other and as they walk tells him she reveals too much too fast about herself. This confession is adjacent to a prolonged story about how she nearly died of cancer as a teen. Concurrent with all this revelation and honesty (“You’re fat and I have no tits”), she’s dishonest about why she wanted to leave the bar and doesn’t reveal that she’s probably an alcoholic and maybe suffering from depression.

As the date goes on, she convinces Louie to try on a dress – a shiny gold cocktail dress if you’re wondering – at a thrift store, eat at a fantastic deli, save a homeless guy and climb the stairs of a very tall building to enjoy the view that awaits. Liz is really the focus of the episode. Louie just serves as a good dance partner, keeping the attention on her and doing just enough to keep the night going.

My initial reaction to her behavior was to be reminded of the scene in Good Will Hunting when Robin Williams tells Matt Damon that a soul mate is somebody who challenges you. That seemed a little optimistic for Louie, though, so I wondered if she was just testing to see what she could get him to do for her own enjoyment.

I decided to settle on a midpoint of those two extremes. She seems like she’s going to be emotionally trying, but she’s also vulnerable. Maybe she was just testing to see if Louie could enjoy the things she does and if he’d take care of her when she needed him.

The end of the episode is simultaneously fantastic, uncomfortable, poignant and quintessential Louie (the show, not its star). I would like to discuss this scene, with the two of them atop the tall building whose stairs they climbed in some depth, but even in a spoiler alert piece you should only spoil so much. I will say that there is no other show on television where I would have been so concerned that Liz was going to just fling herself off the building. There also may be no other show on television that would follow perhaps the series’ emotional high point (“I’m having too good a time”) with such a harbinger of doom. Of course, this is Louie so Parker Posey may never appear on the show again.

I confess that throughout the episode, despite how good it was, I was thinking “This woman was in Blade 3.”

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July 27, 2012 - Posted by | Friday Afternoon Confessional, Spoiler Alert Thursdays |

8 Comments

  1. I confess that I seem to have bitten off a wee bit more than I can chew. When I finished a draft of a feature in May, I had a two weeks of paid work in June and then didn’t know what I was doing on any front, so I signed up for everything. I am now practicing once a week with each of two improv groups (one musical); writing a new feature with a friend; writing a play in a weekly workshop; reading 2666; writing Monday Movies; working on an essay about summer camp for a friend’s blog; reading a manuscript for a friend; reading pilot scripts and brainstorming my next TV pilot; doing some light edits to the last feature so I can send it out in a couple of weeks; collecting endorsements for a friend who’s running for office; and working on some policy pieces for that same campaign.

    This seems all doable, especially since most of it doesn’t have strict deadlines. But in the aggregate it’s hard to settle into a natural workflow. (Also note that none of it is paid work.)

    I think the main problem might be that two weeks ago I programmed everything into Astrid.com with a deadline of one week and then let my cellphone buzz at me constantly because I hadn’t finished anything.

    Comment by Josh K-sky | July 27, 2012

  2. That’s funny, this was really the first episode of Louie I didn’t care for this season. I love Parker Posey, but the whole thing was much too Manic Pixie Dream Grown-up for me.

    Comment by Josh Malbin | July 28, 2012

  3. I confess I hate having a jet lag. I confess I only realize now it is only a jet lag and not a jet lead. I don’t dare to calculate whether this is indeed in line with the fact that traveling East is the real drag.

    I confess I am eager to come back and that I am sorry to have missed most of Bolaño.

    Comment by Guido Nius | July 30, 2012

  4. I further confess I saw the Rangers beat the Red Sox with 5-3 (well, to be honest I saw them ahead with 4-3 as I had to follow my colleagues out after the 7th innings). One innings was pretty OK and I apparently saw a funk and two fumbles which was according to my US colleagues not too bad. That said, no!, I confess this is not my sport, the people who are not playing are too static and the fans are too much into everything but base ball (& I sure hope that the down time entertainment never hits soccer!). I understand that the reason why some like it is the same reason why many tag along to have a chat and do mass karaoke sing-alongs.

    Comment by Guido Nius | July 30, 2012

  5. Josh K – That list of things gave me a panic attack.

    Josh M. – I see what you mean about that episode, and as soon as I read your comment it occurred to me that’s two episodes where Louie has been whisked around town by a near stranger.

    Guido – Sorry you didn’t enjoy the game. A lot of the non-baseball things that go on during the game have filtered upward from minor league baseball and are attempts to make the game family friendly and keep the casual fans entertained. I wish they would use that time to drag people who try to start “the wave” out on the field to be tasered.

    Comment by mattintoledo | July 31, 2012

  6. Matt, that is strangely validating.

    Comment by Josh K-sky | July 31, 2012

  7. I confess that oh my god will this book never end.

    Comment by jms | July 31, 2012

  8. jms, it ends and you might as well skip ahead to Part V, after all not even the author intended you to read all in sequence.

    Comment by Guido Nius | August 1, 2012


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