Crazy Ex-Girlfriend: I'm Making Up For Lost Time
November 2, 2018 7:35 PM - Season 4, Episode 4 - Subscribe

Rebecca reunites under unusual circumstances with her half brother Tucker and discovers they have many things in common; in an effort to connect with her kids, Paula plans an activity that requires they all work together.
posted by JimBennett (12 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I gave up on this show near the end of last season, but now I’m picking up again. It seems aimless- can’t fogure out what they’re working towards. Rachel gave Nathaniel a strong no, so what now? We’ve seen the “Paula doesn’t know her kids” storyline before. And although Tucker was cute, I don’t need a whole episode on a new character this late in the game. I also wasn’t crazy about the child star song- great performance, of course, but child stars actually seem miserable which i don’t find funny.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 6:15 AM on November 3, 2018 [2 favorites]

And although Tucker was cute, I don’t need a whole episode on a new character this late in the game.

My spouse was really worried this was a Cousin Oliver situation, especially as the episode went on and they didn't lampshade it.

As for the rest... yeah, this season has seemed kinda aimless. Everyone's just off doing their own thing, and we've built up such a huge and excellent ensemble that having an episode that focuses so intently on Rebecca and Nathaniel (with a time-filling Paula C-plot) only makes me think, Okay, but what's Josh up to? And all of Josh's friends? And Heather? And Darryl and everyone else at the office?
posted by Etrigan at 7:13 AM on November 3, 2018

I have enjoyed this season the least so far and am glad this season is the last one.

Its going to be 18 episodes long - so plenty of room for turnaround but so far I've found each episode largely dissapointing.
posted by Faintdreams at 9:22 AM on November 3, 2018 [1 favorite]

rachel bloom said in an interview that the first half of this season is more episodic, with rebecca dealing with different problems one by one on her path to be a better person, and the second half is more serialized, so i think that may be why it feels aimless to some? i think there's a pretty clear and meaningful through line of rebecca finally owning her behavior and growing up. her realization post-prison that punishment isn't just enough and that she needs to actually atone led to her realizing much of her life is built on lies, so she quits her job and cuts ties with her ex to work on herself. seems pretty clear to me. they even lampshaded this episode what else rebecca will need to reckon with before the end of the season (her mother, her father, the professor whose house she burned down, and greg). there's some other stuff going on with ghosts and little brothers, but in classic sitcom style all of that is there to help rebecca come to realizations about herself.

meanwhile everyone else is following rebecca's lead and improving themselves. josh is basically on the same path as rebecca, paula is realizing how empty her relationship with her family has become, darryl is trying to be a better parent than he was the first time around, heather is becoming a real live adult, and hopefully this episode will give nathaniel the kick in the pants he needs.

i wasn't crazy about this episode in particular but i LOVED last week and don't think they're floundering. the second half of season 3 was the show at its weakest so far, and i thought everything this year has been a nice bounce back from that. i don't necessarily think the show can operate on the same level it did for the first two and a half seasons because now it's telling a much more conventional story (for television). that's just a consequence of the natural arc of this series. i think if they had gone full out breaking bad misanthropic with rebecca it might make for some thrilling television, but it would also be a huge bummer, and i'm happy to watch this show and think about how far everyone has come from where they started.
posted by JimBennett at 1:26 PM on November 3, 2018 [2 favorites]

also i have no evidence of this but i think the show has been hampered by severe budget cuts basically every season that have definitely hurt it. i'm pretty sure the reason we don't see all our beloved side characters as much as we used to is because they just can't afford to have everyone in every episode. it's a bummer for sure but that's the price of being an underwatched critical darling on the fifth most popular basic cable network.
posted by JimBennett at 1:28 PM on November 3, 2018 [1 favorite]

Hm, I actually quite enjoyed it. Go figure. I liked how Paula's kids weren't lumps and actually had interest in Renaissance faires, because it was always sad that they just sat around staring at their phones and pouting. And much as I might not normally go for a Cousin Oliver stalker with a diary, that kid worked it.

That child star song, holy fuuuuuuuuuck. I'm surprised there were no Bieber references in that. But that's how you start your audition?!?

Weird to be reminded that Rebecca can't actually sing IRL, the poor girl. I know the pain of wanting to be a star and not having the fucking talent.

Good point that all Nathaniel and Rebecca do together is sex and evil.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:40 PM on November 3, 2018 [1 favorite]

I really liked this episode after being a bit more "meh" on the first few episodes this season. It was a pretty limited story, but I liked that - it kept things tightly focused. I actually found the stuff with Paula's sons really funny and kinda touching - they go to Renn Faire together! But wow, Paula really is a crappy mom! I had friends with parents like that - once they got to the teenage years, the parents were basically like "ok, you're raised!" (is her younger son even a teenager yet?) and it was shitty for them.

I also agree that, due to the arc of the story, this season kind of has to be different from the others. The first three seasons were about Rebecca ramping up her "crazy" to the point where she literally winds up in jail, having almost killed her stalker ex. This season is about her growing up, which is just not going to have the same madcap feeling.

also i have no evidence of this but i think the show has been hampered by severe budget cuts basically every season that have definitely hurt it.

Ahhh, that would explain why there are so many fewer songs this season.
posted by lunasol at 11:18 AM on November 4, 2018 [1 favorite]

Did anybody else think Nathaniel looked like he had a black eye that was (only partially) covered by make-up? I know this is a stupid, silly point to fixate on, but kept jumping out at me, and I'd find myself paying more attention to that question than what was going on in the scene.
posted by sardonyx at 12:50 PM on November 4, 2018

Maybe that was leftover from his death-wish camping experience? It seems like his face took some damage in that episode, and it looks to me like they've been slowly letting it heal over the past couple eps.
posted by under_petticoat_rule at 12:56 PM on November 4, 2018 [2 favorites]

Ahhh, that would explain why there are so many fewer songs this season.

yep, also probably why white josh went from series regular to guest star and why they almost never shoot scenes outdoors anymore.
posted by JimBennett at 2:30 PM on November 4, 2018 [1 favorite]

The line where they listed all the sets (I only ever seem to go to Paula’s kitchen) gave me a big laugh.
posted by rikschell at 5:03 AM on November 7, 2018 [4 favorites]

I got very excited about Tan France's cameo.

I liked Paula realizing that her sons might be interesting people worth getting to know.

And I guess I liked Rebecca being wooed by the kind of manipulation she used to employ (hesitant about that "used to" since I don't think she's dated in a while and she did try to manipulate the Peter Pan director - so not sure how she acts in relationships has changed). But I got the sense that she was recognizing "Oh wait, I don't want to be in that kind of relationship again. And I can say no even to someone like Nathaniel."

I liked that she was able to recognize her brother's issues and help him, even as a proxy for her child-self.

BUT .. I'm less excited about the show this season and after reading the speculation about budge cuts, that does make sense.
posted by bunderful at 9:33 AM on December 17, 2018

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