Monday, October 8, 2018

REVIEW: 'Happy Together' - Jake and Claire Go Through Their Belongings to Determine What They Still Need in 'Scrubbing'

CBS' Happy Together - Episode 1.02 "Scrubbing"

Jake and Claire attempt to follow Cooper's minimalist lifestyle by "scrubbing" their home of all their old and forgotten belongings. However, they find that letting go of the past is harder than it seems.

In 2018, it has become very difficult to keep up with every television show out there. It's even more difficult to provide adequate coverage on this site about the episodes that air every week. Not every show can get full coverage because of my busy and hectic viewing schedule. As such, some reviews will now be condensed to give only some summary thoughts. But it also affords a space for me to jot down my thoughts on the various episodes. And so, here are my thoughts on this week's episode of CBS' Happy Together.

"Scrubbing" was written by Rebecca Kohler & Darrin Rose and directed by Andy Ackerman

Well, Happy Together already seems to be relaxing comfortably into a fun, hangout sitcom in its second episode. Sure, there are still some oddities playing out in the story. I still have absolutely no idea how old Claire's parents are suppose to be as played by Victor Williams and Stephnie Weir. But it's fun to see them being so in sync with one another and happy that way. It's a consistent character trait with them that also makes it seem like an early warning sign of growing too old and comfortable in life. That's a stage that Jake and Claire aren't ready to be in just yet. Of course, the story still predominately revolves around the two of them trying to prove to their new guest that they are just as young and fun as he is. They continue to see Cooper James as this famous celebrity who already knows more about life despite his young age. He seems so wise in being a minimalist. He doesn't hold onto material things in this life because he views it as remaining stuck in the past. He is always looking ahead to the future and the best possible version of himself. Sure, the show also seems to be suggesting that Cooper isn't all that creative as a performer. He basically fits into the overall pop star trend of just telling people to shake their booties even in very inappropriate songs that suddenly become extremely sexualized. There is only one line in his new single that can apply to the new situation for Jake and Claire. That's enough though. They still feel inspired especially because they no longer need to have all of these valuables. In fact, it could be a death trap for Cooper. It's dark humor to see the many ways that Jake's stuff could kill Cooper in his new bedroom. That proves that a change needs to be made. But the pivot back around to this having a personal impact on that core marriage is much more meaningful. Again, the comedic highlight of the episode comes from what Damon Wayans Jr. and Amber Stevens West are asked to do as performers. There are still plenty of moments where they are trying to prove to each other that they are still cool and hip. But it's much funnier when they keep saying the exact same things. Nothing can get them to stop this new pattern. They see it as them suddenly becoming joined at the hip and no longer carrying a sense of personal identity. That's a dangerous thought for the two of them because they still see so much in their lives that they want to do. But none of that really can be associated with the items that were given away to Good Will. So, it's still fundamentally important for the two of them to get rid of this stuff. It's also just as sweet that Cooper goes to get it back and that he is able to do so because of his celebrity. He doesn't have all of the answers in life. No one does. But everyone has nothing but love and appreciation for one another throughout this ensemble. That is already a pleasant and compelling quality on display here - even if this story is all building to the punchline that Claire's creepy doll that she has always hanged onto doesn't want to burn in the fire.