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Louie “Elevator Part 2″/ “Elevator Part 3” Review (4×05/4×06)

20 May

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The interesting thing about the character of Louie is that, for all his troubles with women, he’s constantly talking to them, constantly living in a world surrounded by them. Whether we’re talking about his daughters or his mini flings or his blasts from the past, we see a man who essentially constructs a barrier of his own doing, one between him and the very women he interacts with.

In fact, with Amia, there’s a literal barrier separating her from Louie: language. She’s Hungarian, and he’s American, so she has to resort to playing charades in the middle of the supermarket in order to get her point across. Still, she’s able to do so, and Louie ends up having the easiest relationship with her than he does with any of the other characters he talks to. For example, even though Russ & Daughters was the highlight of his date with Liz back in “Daddy’s Girlfriend”, it’s far from it here with Amia; yet, the date goes extremely well.

It’s a fun and flirty relationship that also reveals a bit about Louie’s capacity for destruction atop ignorance, as we see when Louie takes a bat to his piano during “Elevator Part 3”. This comes at the moment in which he feels as if he’s lost everything, lost the one woman he’s able to enjoy being with without having to truly listen to her; for him, actions speak louder than words, because he can’t succinctly put into words everything he’s feeling unless he’s under the comedic lights.

Now, contrast his relationship with Amia with his relationship with Pamela, who returns and seems even more manipulative than usual. She treats Louie like trash, like a safety net, seeming less like a friend and more like a condescending asshole. This is the biggest catalyst for the piano-smashing incident, and it’s a clear example of Louie having to listen to himself being dragged down into the mud. Like it or not, Pamela understands him, and the fact that he turns her down is a sign of maturity on his part.

Louie may be living a life of confusion and disappointment, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have moments of success or happiness, an idea that pops up constantly in his relationship with his daughters. Raising kids is not without its difficulties, as we saw last week with the subway incident and this week with the school rant–which is very similar in tone to Louie’s later speech about private vs. public schools, and brilliantly played by both actors–but it’s at heart a very genuine and sweet relationship. Look no further than the scene in which Louie tells Jane his three favorite things outside of being with her.

Of course, the true centerpiece of these two episodes is that violin scene. It’s a spontaneous, yet gorgeous, moment that brings together the two women in Louie’s life over a moving piece, one that nearly brings Louie to tears because it’s so perfect. It may seem like a fantasy, but it’s also a very genuine moment of connection.

If only Louie could heed Dr. Bigelow’s advice. First of all, the doctor’s advice is fairly difficult to comprehend at first, but also, Louie just can’t see the bright side of things. He’s the three-legged dog in this scenario, and he looks at himself and immediately thinks “three legs”.

However, what he should be saying is “that’s plenty”.

GRADES: Elevator Part 2 (B+ ), Elevator Part 3 (A- )

OTHER THOUGHTS:

-Ursula Parker, the actress who plays Jane, is quite possibly the best young actress working today (yes, she’s even up there with Maisie Williams). Her scene in the park feels so real, exactly what a kid would say and exactly how she would say it. That’s the key to her performance: her delivery. It’s a bit rushed and jumbled, but the essence shines through.

-Ellen Burstyn is doing some great work as Evanka, and it’s telling how once she tells Louie that Amia isn’t there, he seems to lose interest. Sure, he’ll stay and listen to her play, but when he pays attention to Amia, he ignores others.

– “Christopher Columbus was a murderer, and they want me to draw a picture of him smiling.”

– “Why is God not in the news?”

-Louie’s “J” and “L” keys aren’t working. They mention “July” in the show, but in reality, it’s probably a reference to his inability to communicate about Jane and Lily. Oh, sly show, you.

-HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA *End scene*

Photo credit: Louie, FX

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