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Louie “The Road: Part 2” Review (5×08)

29 May

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“It’s comedy. It’s fun.”

“The Road: Part 2” is centered around several contrasting character interactions, each one highlighting a different aspect of Louie’s personality and of others’ perceptions of that personality. The first one involves Louie dressing up as a general and subsequently dancing up a storm, and it’s a prime example of his ability to interact with others, of his willingness to be open to new experiences. The women do nothing less than fawn over him, and he certainly comes away from it feeling happy about what he just did.

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Louie “The Road: Part 1” Review (5×07)

21 May

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The monotony of a Louie trip is summed up by the opening of the episode: him tossing a bunch of clothes into his suitcase and droning “Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, sweat”. Like he tells his driver–Mike, played wonderfully by Devin Ratray–this trip is pretty much “like going to the toilet, something I have to do”. The season’s not just looking at Louie within the context of his kids or his relationships; rather, it’s also looking at what it means to him to be a comedian, what it really means to “take a trip”.

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Louie “Sleepover” Review (5×06)

15 May

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This is just a really fun episode. Last week’s was certainly very experimental, but this one gets back to the basics, delivering a consistently funny storyline with tons of little jokes thrown in and several fantastic performances to anchor. It’s as entertaining as television gets these days, and it utilizes a great set up to both bring the laughs and to explore the Louie character in depth.

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Louie “Untitled” Review (5×05)

8 May

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It’s difficult to write about an episode like this. I’m tempted to just write “Their smiling faces give me diarrhea” and be done with it, but alas, there’s stuff to unpack in “Untitled”. I don’t think I’ll ever really tackle the essence of the episode, but that’s okay; what definitely needs to be acknowledged is the fact that this is a great, surrealistic half-hour that has its foundation in both horror and comedy. I guess something like that is to be expected when you title an episode “Untitled”.

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Louie “Bobby’s House” Review (5×04)

30 Apr

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“Bobby’s House” tackles the questions about the Louie-Pamela relationship brought up at the end of “A La Carte”, and it’s a gloriously uncomfortable episode that further beats Louie down. That happens both physically and emotionally, as Louie not only gets into a confrontation with a woman and gets beaten up, but also is flat-out rejected later on by Pamela. The latter is especially a gut-punch for him because it follows a role-playing sequence in which he pretends to be a woman named Jornetha; brilliant name aside, it’s also a clear reversal of gender roles, and the cringe level is ratcheted up to 110% throughout. That’s Louie for ya, folks.

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Louie “Cop Story” Review (5×03)

23 Apr

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“So, if you feel stupid around young people, then things are going good.”

That grammar bothers me. Of course, it’s also a pretty nice representation of a younger culture, of a state of language that isn’t quite so concerned with the proper, more “adult” grammar. It’s a theme that plays out throughout “Cop Story”, a brilliant episode that emphasizes the slow fading that arrives with increasing age, that tackles the perceived irrelevance of the old guard in society.

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Louie “A La Carte” Review (5×02)

16 Apr

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“There’s more than one way to be together. Do all roads have to lead to ruin?”

Louie’s been in a rut for a while now, unsure of where exactly he wants his life to go and what he’d like to do outside of comedy. At certain points, he’s simply giving up, unable to push himself to move forward and unable to be “fun”. It’s a theme that’s been emphasized over and over again during the show’s run, and “A La Carte” tackles it nicely throughout its three vignettes. This is a half hour that brings up memories of the early episodes of the series, and it’s one of the most purely hilarious episodes we’ve seen in a while.

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Louie “Potluck” Review (5×01)

9 Apr

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“Boring asshole.”

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.

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Louie “Pamela Part 2″/ “Pamela Part 3” Review (4×13/4×14)

17 Jun

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“Can this just be okay?”

Season 4 of Louie has made it abundantly clear that our titular character has women and relationship problems: he’s slept with a model, he’s learned something from the woman he spent time with in “So Did the Fat Lady”, and he’s had a connection with Amia, but at the end of it all, he’s left with very little. So, as we saw in “Pamela Part 1”, he attempted to force Pamela to have sex with him, to rekindle a flame that he desperately hoped was still there.

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Louie “In the Woods Part 1″/ “In the Woods Part 2” Review (4×11/4×12)

10 Jun

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Oftentimes, Louie takes you on an emotional journey, sliding you headfirst into some of the richest storytelling and acting on television. This is truly a show that makes full use of the artistic potential of the medium, and “In the Woods” is a beautiful and moving exploration of Louie’s past.

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