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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