Saturday, February 1, 2020

REVIEW: 'BoJack Horseman' - BoJack Fears Honesty But May Have to Accept It to Atone for His Past in 'Sunk Cost and All That'

Netflix's BoJack Horseman - Episode 6.11 "Sunk Cost and All That"

While Paige and Max question Mr. Peanutbutter at his restaurant, a panicked BoJack tries to piece together what's happening.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides 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.

"Sunk Cost and All That" was written by Jonny Sun and directed by Amy Winfrey

BoJack found peace and purpose at Wesleyan University. And now, he's angry that the world won't allow him to have a fresh start. This isn't his first opportunity to embrace something new. In fact, he has continually been given numerous chances to improve his life. It's taken him awhile to actually make some meaningful progress though. That's what makes it tragic when the Sarah Lynn story is coming out when he truly does happen to be in a good place. He is terrified. He falls back into old patterns as well. That terrifies his friends. They know what it's like to be around BoJack when he is self-destructive like that. They can add to the list of all the terrible things he has done in his life. BoJack knows that this introspection to figure out why reporters are looking into his past will take all night. He understands that he has done awful things that have traumatized so many people. But he's also grateful to have friends surrounding him who continue to support him no matter what. Princess Carolyn, Diane and Todd certainly challenge him as well. They just don't have any judgment for the bad things he has done. They know that this is their friend who they need to help right now because he needs it. Their help can only go so far. BoJack has to be the one to embrace honesty and accept what he did. In fact, everyone understands that what happened with Sarah Lynn is much worse than his time in New Mexico. That too is tragic because Charlotte and Penny's lives have forever been shaped by those encounters with BoJack. But there is a way to tell this story in which they feel vindicated without having to enter the public spotlight to add to the pressure. BoJack fails to step up and own his past right away. When Paige Sinclair calls for comment, he denies everything she has accurately reported. BoJack wasn't expecting all of this to happen right away. And yet, it is. There is a fast approaching deadline where he may not be able to contain the story or how people react to it. His friends have a certain understanding because they know him and see how good he is as a college professor. It's meaningful to see Diane and Princess Carolyn's reactions when he delivers superlatives to his class at the after party. That may just be a performance from BoJack in that moment. But it's also him reflecting on the best opportunity he had knowing that it is tragically fleeting. He won't have this same luck again any time soon. There is still so much he has to atone for from his past. He can't move past it as quickly or easily as he would like. Honesty may be the best solution. It's just difficult for him to do so because he has spent a lifetime of deflecting and refusing to address these hard emotions. He struggles actually putting into words what happened in these tragic encounters. Others don't have that problem though. They have the necessary perspective to understand just how destructive all of this was. In the end, it will always be hard to be friends with BoJack. His friends do have genuine love for him. However, the best thing may be for them to let him go knowing that it may forever be toxic no matter how much he improves. That is tragic in its own ways. Princess Carolyn can outline the great love story and commitment she has to her first client. That may come at a cost to her life and the example she wants to set for her own daughter. BoJack recognizes that. He has made progress. It just comes in a time when he is forced to face up to his past in a public setting. He is willing to do that though. That is remarkable. It's also just so engaging to watch the show take ridiculous characters and make the audience invested in their genuine emotions. Pickles and Joey Pogo hate each other but also project a sense of opportunity and stability onto each other as well. Paige and Max are pursuing the truth but have sexual tension that can easily distract them. It's tragic when Mr. Peanutbutter is left all alone having to be the one who gives up everything. He truly is a sad dog in that moment. But again, that's how bittersweet life can be. At the end of the day, Mr. Peanutbutter and Pickles may simply be in two different places in their lives even though they want to remain committed to each other and their wedding.