Friday, August 10, 2012
Louie - "IKEA/Piano Lesson"
Well, here we have it folks, halfway through the new season of Louie and the first episode I'm ambivalent about. That's a pretty good track record if you ask me: it's not until the midpoint that we got to a so-so episode. Each season has had one or two episodes I wasn't thrilled about, so, hopefully last night's Louie was, similarly, just a minor bump in the road. Don't get me wrong here, there's plenty to love about "IKEA/Piano Lesson;" I just don't know if it offsets the not-so good. But let's start with the good.
Holy shit, my comedy obsessions collide: Marc Maron visits Louie. So much to talk about here. As any listener of Marc Maron's wonderful podcast WTF knows, Louis and Marc used to be best friends. About a decade ago they had a falling out and stopped speaking to each other. It wasn't until Marc had Louis on for two episodes of WTF that they were able to hash it out and make amends.
And so it was great to see Louie and Marc sit down and discuss their beef. It started off as a great recreation of these two WTF episodes. And, of course, this being Louie, it turns out Louie was the bad guy in this situation. Which is funny because, as any faithful listener of WTF knows, it is generally Marc who has to apologize for past dickish behavior. Which makes me wonder if Louie was almost acting the Marc part in this Louie episode. If I remember correctly—and I could be remembering very incorrectly, so my apologies if I'm wrong here—on those two WTF episodes, Marc and Louis apologized to each other; and then Louis asked why Marc couldn't just meet him for coffee or something so they could talk about their differences. Why did they have to did it in front of everybody just so Marc could get some great podcasts out of it?
Similarly, as we see in the "Piano Lesson" segment, Louie sets up these apology sessions with Marc every five years, just to make himself feel better, to make himself feel like a good guy for being so noble and admitting his mistakes. I like the idea that Louie almost gets off on being apologetic. Again, I could be way off on my reading here—and, again, I'm a huge fan of Marc and Louis, so I don't mean to disparage either—but if I'm not wrong, I think it was an interesting way to deal with their situation.
Actually, given that Louie was the bad guy here, being confronted by someone with a previous beef, this segment could almost be seen as a callback to the wonderful Dane Cook episode from last season. And therein lies one of my issues with "IKEA/Piano Lesson": too many callbacks—something which Louie generally avoids. Yes, "Piano Lesson" tweaked it enough for this segment to stand on its own, but the other segment, "IKEA," was basically just a recreation of last season's wonderful "Blueberries" segment.
Every issue here was so thoroughly covered the last time Dolores was on, I really don't why Louis made this segment. With their argument at IKEA and then her sobbing and curling up on a children's bed while Louie comforts her, we witnessed Dolores' need to turn Louis into both a husband and a daddy; but we already saw all of those issues acted out in Dolores' last appearance. No, the segment, wasn't bad; it's just that we've already covered this territory. Maybe Louis loved her performance so much he wanted to bring her back. And she does give a terrific performance. She's one of the best actresses to appear on the show. So why didn't Louis just write a new part for her? In the first season, after all, the same woman played both Louie's date and his mother.
I hate to say it, but "IKEA/Piano Lesson" felt too much like a typical sitcom. "Hey, folks, remember when this happened? Let's remember and revisit that." Of course, this isn't the first time this season we've had callbacks: the recurring motorcycle, for instance, keeps showing up. The difference is that this is the first time the callbacks felt like a crutch. Again, I didn't hate this episode; I just hope we don't have any more recurring bits.
I love Louie's "oh OK" response when Dolores tells him that she's been talking about their sex a lot in therapy.
I love Maria Bamford.
Louie's eyesight is so bad, he has to take a picture of his dick to see if he has crabs.
That was the creepiest pharmacist I've ever seen.
Was that Greg Proops hosting the 80s comedy showcase?
I love Marc's dickish uh huh and yeah responses. And his moving his hand to speed up Louie's talking.
I know one of the points of showing the 80s clips was that, as opposed to Marc and Sarah, Louie looks worse now than he did back then; but I actually prefer old to young Louie. Something about seeing him with hair really bothers me.
"If you go to IKEA with me, I promise to give you a blowjob."
"I'm not asking for charity from you; I don't need your help. I'm just saying, if you offer it, I'll suck your dick."
"It's fine; it's a rug. That's the level of passion a rug warrants."
"Let's not let that happen to us."
"Yeah—crabs. So fuck you, or sorry. I don't know which one."
"It's not a prescription; but if we kept it out there, nobody would ever pay for it."
"You know what, I think I look better now."
"You wanna sit down? There's fine."
"Are we good then?"
"It felt good being sad for somebody. Who else died?"