Tag Archives: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (TV series)

Lessons from Crazy-Ex-Girlfriend

Episodes 4 and 5 of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend have a bunch of tidbits of wisdom, points for reflection, and lessons to be learned.

  • Bonkerballs isn’t actually in the DSM-5 yet, no matter how much we may all agree that it should be a legitimate diagnosis.
  • Tinder is exclusively for hookups (to be fair, a number of shows have informed me of this). Meeting someone through it can lead to a hookup, or to having your kidney harvested.
  • The power of a twirley skirt should not be underestimated.
  • Pay attention to commercials, maybe they will provide you with good advice… Or, you know… not.
  • If you decide to start making healthy choices, perhaps starting that with staying up all night is not the correct way to go about that. Also, there is something beautifully resonating in the statement, “I got this treadmill desk, and then realized I can’t do work on it, and I hate walking.”  Sure, maybe we haven’t all made a $2,000 mistake like that but… I am sure many of us have made a lesser cost mistake of a similar type.
  • You may not ever actually feel like an adult. And trying to be an adult often ends up in strange conversations. At least, for some of us….
  • Being intelligent doesn’t mean you know anything about life.
  • There is always something powerful about someone you admire saying that they think you’re cool.
  • It’s just as hard to ignore when someone you care about says something negative about you.
  • Talking (and especially singing) about a Father’s love for their daughter can be very challenging.
  • Good deeds, done for bragging rights, may merit some deeper investigation – are you really doing something good?
  • You can say a lot without saying a thing.
  • Knowing the things that are broken about ourselves, and honestly acknowledging them can help to make a small step in the direction of repairing it.

Though the tone of the show doesn’t change much at all in these episodes, slowly there are more and more insightful things shinning through.  Perhaps it’s because the writers, and actors, are all getting a feel for the characters and so are able to really explore with them, or maybe it’s a planned arc with Rebecca’s changing mental state….

 

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend: A Little Advice

After Episode 1, I’m going to skim over Episode 2 – there’s some good stuff in there, more delving into Rebecca’s issues and developing some of the supporting characters a little more.  We get set up for what comes in Episode 3.

This is the episode that I felt a real moment of connection to Rebecca’s social awkwardness – Rebecca throws a party.

Rebecca can no longer see Josh one on one, but Paula makes an important point:

“There’s a solution, a loophole, it’s in every teen movie ever made….”

“Carwash?”

“Throw a big party.”

Because, clearly, drawing from movies is the way to find solutions to all life problems, right?

Rebecca has trauma around parties, but Paula meets this with yet more movie-advice:  Face Your Fears.

This song… oh this song.  Facing your fears is classic advice, but it’s not always good advice. And this song plays with that in a ridiculously good way.

If a bear runs at you in the woods, don’t run away…

Look it deep in the eyes, put your hand on its chest and say “Bear, I’m not afraid!”

‘Cause you can fly
Yes, you can fly
Fly out a window

Fly off a building
Just believe in yourself
Face your fears.

The party that Rebecca throws… oh man.  Following another great song, I Have Friend (I have friends, I definitely have friends. Objectively, I can say that I have all the friends),  and some other important pieces of the plot (such as further development of Paula’s character and her family), we reach the tragedy-of-a-party that it has to be.

Nearly no-one shows up. It’s a pretty lame party, at least, as far as Rebecca is concerned. Very few people show up, but when Josh makes it he teaches her an important lesson (which doesn’t help her obsession with him in the slightest). He’s thoroughly supportive of her, kind and helpful.

Of course you just moved into town – of course you don’t have a million friends. It’d be weird if you did…. You’ve got a lot of cool stuff going on in your life – great job, sweet apartment, plus you’re a kick-ass career girl…. You’re crushing it. Look at you, just moved into town and threw a big party – you’re fearless.

He then goes on to show her how to get people to show up – smoke and mirrors – a well framed picture sent out to the social media world… the party turns big fast.

Success and Happiness: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Episode 1

I really had fun with this show — but there are certain things in them that really caught my attention. Instead of doing summaries I want to just look at some of the sections that particularly called to me, things that made me smile and made me think.

Season 1, Episode 1: Josh Just Happens to Live Here!

When Rebecca Bunch is told she’s getting the promotion to partner she knows this should be good news but, there is clearly a disconnect.  She is deadpan, blank faced, “This is objectively happy….”  She tries to convince herself, even that “this is what happy feels like.”

Something suddenly snaps for her. Clearly she’s been plugging along in this law firm, living in New York, doing her job and taking a mess of pills to get by.  The news that she’s making partner seems to be the breaking point – a blind panic sets in as she rushes from the building, trying to take some more medicine, in the middle of a breakdown.

It’s then that two things happen – she sees Josh, and she starts to hear a song in the sky.

The basic premise of the show encapsulated in a moment.

Her first song and dance number is a pretty classic number, a somewhat Disney-esque feel to it, We see a changed Rebecca at that point, she’s lighter. It reminds me of the glow of vacation – that moment where you step out of the hamster-wheel of life and all problems just fade away.  We all know that they don’t actually go away, they just appear to fade a little bit, but they’ll still be there.

But, that’s not the concern just now.  Rebecca is redefining herself, and some of it comes in redefining her definition of success.  Stepping away from the life where her entire being is about work to a focus on something else.  She wants to actually be happy – not “objectively happy” but really happy.

While the first song of the episode shows a transformation in Rebecca, it’s the next song that really has something to say.  Many of the songs in Crazy Ex Girlfriend are saying something and the “Sexy Getting Ready Song,” is the first real introduction to this piece of the show. I was a bit concerned, I mean, the entire premise of this show is, on the surface, about a woman chasing an ex- boyfriend across the country. Throwing away a “successful” life for a guy…. but this song shows is one example of how it digs deeper.  Check out the song, seriously do yourself a favor. Brutally honest.

 

 

Episode one started to win me over, and it made me reflect on the meanings of “success” and it’s relationship to happiness.
Truly, Josh is an excuse. Rebecca may not realize it, but it seems to that what she is chasing is happiness. Josh is what symbolizes that at this point, but it’s clearly about far more than him.

So, this Crazy Ex-Girlfriend show…

This show had been floating on the edge of my radar for a while. Hulu kept suggesting it based on the other shows I was watching but I wasn’t really feeling drawn to it. The title alone, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend didn’t call to me at all.  I kept blowing past it until my sister suggested, out of the blue, that I might like it. She also mentioned that it had musical numbers (usually a pretty good sign that I’ll like something… I’ll admit).  So I tossed it back onto my list of shows that I would eventually look into.

I was browsing through Netflix recently and stumbled across it, deciding I might as well give it a go. And, in far shorter time than I care to admit, I binged through all 18 episodes of the first season.

I
Was
Working hard at a New York job
Making dough but it made me blue

One day I was crying a lot
And so I decided to move to
West Covina, California!

Brand-new pals and new career
It happens to be where Josh lives
But that’s not why I’m here!

Rebecca Bunch follows an impulsive decision to leave behind her life, and career at a prestigious New York law firm, to move to California after meeting her one-time, summer-camp boyfriend.

With that summary it could easily be a pretty terrible show – a woman throwing away her life to follow a guy… a guy she barely even knows! But, while that is, technically, what it’s about it is so much more than that.

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It’s smart and funny, making me laugh and reflect at the same time — and I know that I’ll get more out of each episode when I watch it again.  Because I will be watching them all again – and soon! This is the first in a series of posts that will be appearing here on Comparative Geeks exploring the show in more depth.  There probably won’t be a post-per-episode, but there is a fair amount that I want to write about, and want to know your thoughts on.

Since this is my first real go at writing about a TV show the posts will have some fun playing with different formats too — you’ll have to check them out to see what I mean by that!

 

Since the new season doesn’t premier until the end of October I’ve got plenty of time to get through these episodes again and then, hopefully, I’ll continue with a regular, weekly, update following Rebecca and the awesome other characters of the show on their ongoing journey.

Anyone else here fans of the show?  I’m looking forward to exploring the episodes more with you!