Louie: “Sleepover” Season 5 Episode 6 Review

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“Sleepover” felt like a grab bag of everything that season five has been about thus far. There was Louie’s brother Bobby integrating more into Louie’s life, Louie dealing with his breakup with Pamela, signs of Lilly and Jane growing older, and, of course, an exploration of how we interpret art.

All this crammed into 21 minutes did give the episode a bit of a disjointed feel, but they were each individually handled so well that it barely mattered. The episode was mostly centered around Jane’s sleepover at her father’s apartment with eight other girls, but it was the opening scene with Lilly that featured some of the deep reflection Louie excels at.

Louie takes Lilly to see a play that’s meant to be artful and beautiful, but her face remains stagnant throughout the entire thing. Eventually, Louie looks over to see the glow of her phone in her lap. Upon leaving, Louie berates her for texting, but it turns out she was researching the play because she really enjoyed it. Lilly claims she can enjoy the play on two levels and still fully grasp it. In part, she’s right, but I wish some of the way these scenes were structured was different. Lilly is missing something by looking down at her phone during the show’s climax, but Louie seems to be rewarding her for viewing something differently. It seems like Louis CK wants other parents to understand that because their kids are attached to their phones doesn’t mean they can’t appreciate the then and now. But the climax of a story can’t feel as heightened if you’re reading about the storyteller while it’s happening.

The rest of the episode was pretty light-hearted, mostly revolving around Louie dealing with a bunch of ten-year-olds. It’s Louis CK’s mannerisms that make these scenes sing, as the humor in a father dealing with a bunch of pre-teen girls isn’t all that inventive.

More interesting was Louie’s brief phone conversation with Pamela, who apparently misses her latest ex to some degree. We see Louie heartbreakingly fight for a relationship that we now know could never really work. Pamela seems indecisive whether she’s going to fight or run, but eventually calls it quits just before its revealed that she’s at a new romantic interest’s home. It’s a bit of a gut-punch when you hear the male voice calling her, but it is definitely a true representation of how we feel and the things we do after a breakup.

Shifting back to the titular sleepover, Louie gets a call from his brother, who needs to get bailed out of prison. Bobby’s presence this season has actually been pretty wonderful. He’s been there, in his own way, when Pamela hasn’t, and hearing Jane talk to him so freely like he’s a member of the family was sort of rewarding.

Of course, the two comedic highlights of the episode came around here. The first was how Louie used a bunch of manic pre-teen girls to speed along the bail process at the police station. The second was Bobby’s heroic story of saving an old woman and a goat that landed him in jail.

But with all this going on, “Sleepover” felt a little messy. The scenes with Pamela and Bobby were all great, but didn’t match each others’ tone all that well. It seems like Louis CK was trying to advance everything he wanted to for the season just in time for the last two episodes. Luckily,most of it worked incredibly well on an individual basis. Grade: B+

 

Some Other Notes:

– Man, Glenn Close can act.

– The reason Bobby actually ended up in jail, going to a massage parlor for a happy ending only for the place to get raided. Lovely.

– I hope we get more scenes in the future of Louie and Lilly discussing art. The way the show is developing his role as a father to his maturing daughters is very interesting.

– Did you know that yogurt actually comes from a cow’s pussy?

 

By Matt Dougherty

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