The Comeback: “Valerie Gets What She Really Wants” Season 2 Finale Review

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At this point, the future of The Comeback is uncertain. But after this finale, the stories being built this season come to an appropriate and rewarding close. It acts as a series finale, and a pretty damn good one at that.

Valerie Gets What She Really Wants lives up to its title in just about every way possible. I should have known early on when Malin Akerman and Kellan Lutz both returned as their characters from Season 1 to show Valerie things about herself she had yet to learn. Akerman slipped right back into Juna, with their conversation showing that Juna is one of the few people who actually gets Valerie. Juna sees that Val doesn’t quite see what’s happening in her life, but she promises to be there as long as she can (which is three days; as is show business).

Meanwhile, Lutz’s return as Chris was little more unexpected. Their friendly catching up slowly gets more intimate and he eventually makes an advance on her after he walks her to her door. It was a nice break to have a scene where Valerie wasn’t the most pathetic character on screen. Chris throws everything at Val to get her to sleep with him, but she stands strong in her fight to keep her marriage.

There are a few hiccups while Valerie is getting ready for the Emmys. First, Mickey’s new medication seems to have given him a nose bleed. Things don’t look good when he decides to sit out the Emmys. Then, the plumbing at Valerie’s house goes awry and fecal matter comes flooding out of the garage. It’s hilarious for all the reasons smart television typically isn’t.

Finally at the Emmys, Valerie’s old co-star tells her what’s really important and that if she wins she should hold onto her Emmy and everything else. Sage advice coming from an outside source is of course welcome, given that Valerie tends to be surrounding by selfish people.

She gets a text from Mark as the show starts saying that Mickey collapsed and is being rushed to the hospital. In a brilliant move, The Comeback‘s last shot of Valerie from an in-script camera is over her walking out on the Emmys. In the lobby, the show is filmed like any other series. We’re finally seeing the real Valerie.

I honestly held back tears as she ran out into the rain clutching her red umbrella waiting for an Uber. At the hospital, she’s told Mickey will be fine, just when Mark walks in. Seeing his wife be real again for the first time in who knows how long, Mark seems to be ready to give their marriage another shot. So Valerie, Mark, and Mickey watch Val win her first Emmy from the hospital. Was it perhaps too nice of an ending to have Mickey be fine, Val and Mark get back together, and Val win an Emmy? Perhaps, but a lot of it felt earned thanks to the tremendous groundwork this season laid for its finale.

This was a rewarding way for The Comeback to close out. If this is indeed the end of the series, what an end it was. Grade: A-

By Matt Dougherty

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