Sunday, August 11, 2019

REVIEW: 'GLOW' - All of the Wrestlers Embrace a New Concept to Liven Up the Show Once More in 'Freaky Tuesday'

Netflix's GLOW - Episode 3.05 "Freaky Tuesday"

Tammé's back problems lead to a major shake-up in the ring. An offer to extend the show divides the producers. Justine asks Sam to read her screenplay. 

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Netflix's GLOW.

"Freaky Tuesday" was written by Marquita J. Robinson and directed by Mark A. Burley

Bash doesn't see any reason why the GLOW should turn down Sandy's offer to extend the run of their show. He doesn't understand that the wrestlers have been counting down the days until this Las Vegas residency was finished. They are tired and burnt out. Bash still has so much enthusiasm for this project. He is eager to make it work no matter what. He still sees ideas brimming with possibility. He is intrigued by what performers are capable of doing. He just hasn't set up a system that actually takes care of the people he employs. He demands so much from the crew. He just expects everyone to be happy and satisfied because they are being paid well and treated fairly. That's not the case though. This is a physically demanding job with no game plan should the unfortunate happen. This episode starts by showing how Tammé's back problems grow over time. She has a routine in order to deal with it. She plans on seeing a doctor at the end of the show. She doesn't want to leave because she fears that she'll easily be replaced. This has been a solid job. It's just one where she believes she has to keep this serious problem to herself instead of speaking up. She doesn't have the trust of any of the producers who will look at what she's going through with compassion. Debbie has that response when she finally becomes aware of what's going on. That just happens to be in the middle of a performance. She sees that Tammé is in pain and can no longer perform. The rest of the team improvises and everything works out in the end. But Debbie struggles as a producer and member of this team because she is often so caught up in her own world. She too has something that she needs to get back to in Los Angeles. She wants to be a part of her son's childhood. She feels like she is missing too much because she is working in Las Vegas. That stems from the fact that she is only given one day off during the week. That's barely enough time to return to Los Angeles and bond with her child. She quickly has to turn around and go through the entire routine once more. No systems are in place where the wrestlers can voice their concerns and trust that they will be taken seriously and with compassion. Bash hasn't made himself available to them. He just sees this project as having his name on it. That means all the pressure is on him to succeed. He sees the value in running for as long as possible because that shows that there is still value in what he has to offer the world. That's not true in the slightest. That's just the way his tortured mind sees things. That's the way that he has been raised. He views everyone as replaceable. He believes that he's the boss of this production. If someone doesn't like the decisions he makes, then they will be fired. It shouldn't be that easy though. Bash believes that the rest of the team has been living it up in Las Vegas not having to do as much work as he has done. He's the one forming connections all around the city. But the stagnancy of the show has really gotten to the women. It suddenly makes it an exciting idea when the suggestion comes up to play each other's characters for one night. Sure, that highlights just how offensive and inappropriate large portions of the show actually are. It's problematic that so many characters are built around racial stereotypes. It's nice to see Debbie as Zoya and Ruth as Liberty Belle. That proves that things are capable of being interchangeable from time to time. The story of the show may actually be strong. The pressure doesn't have to be on these individual performers to do it every single night. In fact, the most inspired moment comes completely out of the blue when Sheila arrives dressed as Liza Minnelli. That's an empowering moment that shows just how gratifying self-acceptance and strength can truly be. Everyone will need a little bit of that if they are going to address these concerns with Bash over extending the show. They have strength in numbers. Bash can't make this decision unilaterally. But it should also force some important conversations about just how long these people want to continue with this show. None of them were really planning on anything after these few months were up. And now, they are faced with a significant choice that could change everything and make clearly dividing lines amongst each other over what to do next.