Halfway through season two, Louie gave his daughter an excellent speech about boredom, asserting that she “doesn’t get to be bored”. It was certainly a great point to make, but what this show also understands is the fact that life is oftentimes mundane; life oftentimes kicks you several times while you’re down, then drags you along on a road trip to boredom. Louie is a character right in the midst of a period of mundanity, and we see that throughout the season five premiere.
His therapist falls asleep while listening to him, Marina doesn’t hide her annoyance when he’s around, and he feels like an outsider whether he’s going to the right potluck or not. When he’s at the wrong gathering, CK makes use of his excellent “I have no idea what the hell I’m doing” acting, and it’s a hilarious sequence made even funnier by the group breaking into a chant of sorts. In the end, Louie’s closest friend is his fried chicken, and he even leaves that on the wrong floor.
With Louie being an outsider here, there’s some conflict that springs up throughout the episode. He sticks it to a parent when he states that his daughter is better–due to her violin lessons at Juilliard–and he interrupts Marina’s conversation. Yet, it’s not that he’s purposefully acting malicious or anything; Louie’s just being a bit of a dick in a really endearing fashion (not that the other people aren’t partly to blame). I don’t really blame him, as he’s at the point in his life where he simply just doesn’t want to do anything anymore. This idea ties into his opening stand-up bit, which is all about the fact that trying to find aliens may not be such a good idea; we just shouldn’t try, he says, and that plays out through the rest of the premiere.
He eventually ends up making a connection with Julianne, the surrogate, and like so many encounters before this, it all blows up in his face. As Marina tells him to go cut off his dick and eat it, we see a Louie who simply doesn’t care about what she’s saying, who is just going through the motions at this point. At least he’ll hopefully have a plate of fried chicken waiting for him at home.
-The opening credits song is back! Yes!
-Louie cooking is the best.
-I wonder how long the “Louie is miserable” storyline can run. At some point, things are probably going to have to change to keep the show compelling.
-It’s already evident that this season is a bit different in style from season five. It’s a “back-to-the-basics” kind of episode, and while last season featured some truly brilliant long-form storytelling, it’s nice to see episodes like this once in a while (even if it’s not the show’s strongest).
-Ursula Parker is actually at Juilliard.
– “I didn’t cum.”
-I’m very happy to be covering this season, which is going to be a short one. 8 weeks, folks.
Photo credit: FX, Louie