Better Things: Season 4 (Full Season)
May 4, 2020 10:40 AM - Season 4 (Full Season) - Subscribe

Better Things Season 4 Is a Rare and Precious Gift
Season four of Pamela Adlon’s FX series Better Things, created, directed by, and starring Adlon as an actress and a single mom raising three eccentric, steel-willed girls, boasts four episodes that are stone-cold classics, endlessly rewatchable and rewarding. The rest of the season is pretty good too — so nervy yet exact that it makes almost every other American TV show, even excellent ones, seem formulaic and timid in comparison.

'Better Things’ Finale: Season 4 Ends with a Seismic Shift for Pamela Adlon’s Outstanding FX Series
But what about life after [the] girls? Each of her three children has been growing up, and fast: Max (Mikey Madison) is working full-time. Frankie (Hannah Alligood) celebrated her birthday with a Batceñera (a combination of quinceañera and bat mitzvah, the Jewish coming-of-age ceremony for girls). Duke threw a miniature fit when asked to say goodbye to their guests, leading Sam to mourn the loss of her “last fun child.” A season that started with Sam declaring her own mid-life crisis ends with a seismic shift to her reality: She can’t accept that a woman’s life is over after ushering her kids to adulthood, after a failed marriage, after anything — nor should she. But for as easy as it is for Sam to encourage her friends to recommit, reengage, and keep looking for happiness, it took until this finale for her to follow the same advice.
Bonus Content!
posted by Frayed Knot (2 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Thanks for doing this, Frayed Knot. I wanted to get posts going for this season, but there was so much in the episodes that I found it really hard to unpack it all in a way that made sense. This was an exceptionally good season, and a very, very complex season. I think it’s also Adlon’s most personal season, if that’s even possible. Man, this is such a good show.

Do they post the soundtrack list anywhere? This show always has the best music.
posted by Thorzdad at 1:26 PM on May 4, 2020 [1 favorite]

I absolutely love this show. Nothing on TV can make me cry and then laugh (or laugh and then cry) quite like Better Things. I'm blown away by the acting -- particularly the daughters. I dunno how Adlon knew 5 years ago that all three would grow up to be this good, but here we are. And big props to Matthew Glave. Not every actor is willing to play unlikable, and Xander is SO FUCKING awful. Glave really sells it.

And this season was exceptional. The Father's Day ritual, the entire New Orleans trip, the Batceañera (oh my god the Batceañera!), all the way to that closing shot at the beach, it was all so lovely, so moving.

And agreed on the music, Thorzdad. Found some unofficial lists while Googling (, but I don't think there is an official one. Adlon is VERY engaged on Twitter and Instrgram. If you ask, there's a decent chance she'll answer you.
posted by Frayed Knot at 5:11 PM on May 4, 2020 [1 favorite]

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