Saturday, October 26, 2019

REVIEW: 'BoJack Horseman' - A Party for Mr. Peanutbutter and Pickles Quickly Goes Awry in 'Surprise!'

Netflix's BoJack Horseman - Episode 6.04 "Surprise!"

Todd organizes a surprise wedding for Pickles and Mr. Peanutbutter, but the party quickly goes off the rails when Mr. Peanutbutter makes a confession. 

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 BoJack Horseman.

"Surprise!" was written by Peter A. Knight and directed by Adam Parton

No one understands a relationship better than the people in it. It's ultimately up to Mr. Peanutbutter to decide whether or not to tell Pickles about cheating with Diane. It's also on her to decide how to react to such news. Sure, certain people can aide them along the way. However, they can't make those final decisions for them. It's ultimately up to them to figure out if this is a potential marriage still worth fighting for. It's absolutely miraculous that all of their friends and family give them that privacy to experience all of the emotions that come from this revelation. A surprise wedding is a very Todd idea. It may even be something that Mr. Peanutbutter and Pickles would support and enjoy. However, they aren't ready to make that commitment just yet. They may eventually be curious about the room full of balloons set up for a wedding ceremony. However, their house is so full of technology that they may be willing to believe that it anticipates their needs before they themselves are even aware of them. That too is miraculous. It's such an important conversation that the two of them have here. And yet, it's also outrageous to watch as all the other main characters navigate around this environment to avoid detection. Mr. Peanutbutter and Pickles have complaints about each other's families and friends. Those opinions could easily rile up those individuals who happen to overhear everything being said. In fact, Pickles' father is revealed to have major anger issues. Mr. Peanutbutter even believes her mother actual provokes him into such outbursts as well. In that moment though, the parents are trying their best to avoid being seen and responding to these criticisms. It takes a huge amount of self-control. And yet, the majority of the guests make it out of the house without being seen. Only a few are left behind to navigate as Mr. Peanutbutter and Pickles go back-and-forth on what they want out of this relationship moving forward. Pickles is someone who puts her entire life online. The episode starts by highlighting her social media channel and the loyal group of followers she has. She sees them as her army who will protect her no matter what. It can certainly be comforting as well. She seeks their guidance when she doesn't know what to do. Of course, it's also a system open to manipulation. All BoJack and Todd have to do is comment in order to convince Pickles to move around. Some of those actions are pretty hilarious as well. Todd convinces her to take a bath even though that's his hiding spot. Similarly, Pickles is told she should leave but that means packing a suitcase just as everyone is hiding in the closets. Again, it's such a fun and creative use of the space. It never loses the heart or sincerity of the core action either. Mr. Peanutbutter may forever be confused about what Pickles wants. He is desperate to always be seen as a good person. This action runs the risk of forever damaging his public image. And yet, he mostly wants to reassure her that he can still be trusted. He can't force her into accepting that though. Diane understands better than anyone that he has a tendency to simplify issues and ease over any tension with a meaningless suggestion. He actively has to listen and follow through on what Pickles wants of him. Diane gives him that advice. Sure, it comes when she and BoJack are pretending to be pieces of technology that can't normally talk. But they are sincerely helping their friend even though they are precariously standing on a ledge unable to escape. The same is true of Todd and Princess Carolyn who chase Ruthie around with the understanding of how she thinks but the inability to control everything she is exposed to and experiences. That certainly makes it clear that Todd is the best possible nanny Princess Carolyn could hire. He has so much love for Ruthie. Plus, he has scared away all the other prospects for the job. Meanwhile, Diane feels the freedom to leave for Chicago because she gets the clarity that BoJack will be okay. He doesn't drink even though he's out in the real world again. He has a sober companion but it's still ultimately his own responsibility. He may not like Diane's news but he doesn't want to be the force holding her back. He has to rely on his friendships remaining strong even if they aren't constantly in each other's lives. BoJack has so much more work he still needs to put into himself. Diane feels the same way. Their journeys parallel each other. But it's ultimately about their own determination to improve and embrace what happiness they can find in this world. Everyone seems to be on that path at the moment even if it may not work out for many of them.