You’re the Worst: “Talking to Me, Talking to Me” Season 3 Episode 10 Review

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A seemingly typical You’re the Worst reveals its darker nature with a surprise ending.

After last week’s surprisingly smart bottle episode, You’re the Worst has pulled the wool over our eyes once again, but it’s hard to realize until it’s too late. “Talking to Me, Talking to Me” appears to be your garden variety episode, but it’s only until the conclusion that we realize smooth sailing is not around the corner.

This season has done a decent job of giving each of the characters their due—though Lindsay really deserves her own half-hour to figure her shit out—which is great, but I’ve often times felt like all the progress made with Gretchen and Jimmy last season has been thrown to the wayside. Yes, Gretchen finally had a breakthrough therapy session, but this was after several weeks of not seeing her in therapy at all. Also, the death of Jimmy’s father, while being a constant plot thread, hasn’t led to any sort of development—positive or negative—in their relationship.

That is, until now. The last time we checked in with Jimmy and Gretchen, they both had major revelations. Here, they try to live their best lives as more enlightened people. Gretchen attempts to practice mindfulness and living in the moment. Jimmy, on the other hand, attempts to distance himself from writing and his late father’s negligence by building a treehouse. Both, of course, go wrong.

Gretchen’s narrative proves to be the most interesting in that it also involves Lindsay getting an abortion, or “abobo,” as they say in the episode. Gretchen’s attempts to be present don’t go as well as planned because she still has a bit of her mother’s competitive streak in her. Yet, Lindsay proves to be somewhat of a guru for her. Her simpleminded nature allows her to only focus on what’s right in front of her…so much so that she almost doesn’t get the abortion after receiving some cute texts from Paul.

You’re the Worst’s take on the often-controversial subject is, of course, whipsmart, with Lindsay running into a pro-life protester on the way in. It’s touching when Gretchen tells her that she knows how scary it will be for her to give up her life with Paul, but she’ll have her back. It’s then hilarious when the protester admits that whatever Lindsay has going on in her life is one of her extenuating circumstances for getting an abortion. Yes, Lindsay is making a huge decision without Paul’s knowledge, but it’s her decision nonetheless, and I’m glad that their doomed relationship is progressing somewhere.

Jimmy’s narrative, on the other hand, is very basic up until the end, which is entirely the point. The dramatic change is sudden both for him and for the viewers. Unfortunately, this means that we get stuck with a very mediocre Edgar subplot to fill the time. This is especially frustrating since this season has been so great in terms of fully fleshing out his character.

Edgar follows Dorothy to an audition and somehow ends up booking his own show on Waze (yes, the GPS app). Collette Wolfe is especially good this week as Dorothy pretends to be happy for his success and then breaks down as soon as he leaves the room. The problem is, we haven’t seen enough of her this season to fully feel the weight of this conflict. Her role in “Twenty-Two” is important, but it’s fairly minor, and then she disappears for several episodes after that. Dorothy is a likable character, but it’s hard to feel invested in her ups and downs with Edgar when most of it occurs offscreen.

Things get more engrossing towards the end, though, when Jimmy and Gretchen’s separate journeys of self-improvement collide. Jimmy, now free from the shackles of trying to impress his dad, experiences and existentialist crisis while stuck in his unfinished treehouse. Looking down at the world around him, he seems delighted, until he spots Gretchen in the window. He immediately comes in and tells her he doesn’t know if any of the choices he’s made have been right. Gretchen quickly discerns that this includes choosing to be with her.

In one of the season’s bleakest moments, Gretchen moves over on the couch to allow Jimmy to sit down, but instead he sits by himself on the stairs. He then solves the Wheel of Fortune puzzle on TV, which, ironically was the only way Gretchen was able to feel zen all day.

Both of them sit in stunned silence, unsure of what will happen next. I’m unsure as well, since, up until now, everything seemed to be going fine between them. Still, curveballs are what You’re the Worst does best. I don’t know where this is headed, but I can’t wait to find out. Grade: B+

 

By Mike Papirmeister

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