The Afterparty: Travis
July 21, 2023 9:45 AM - Season 2, Episode 3 - Subscribe

Grace's former boyfriend (?) tells his story in film noir style. He suspected that Edgar was up to no good and was determined to protect his ex.

It's becoming somewhat clear that this season is going to be more high style than the last one. I am definitely here for PWH's "Reddit guy" acting and seeing him in all those great tailored outfits was neat. He has a real understanding for his own physicality that is terrific to watch. What have we learned in this episode?
posted by jessamyn (6 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Paul Walter Hauser is such a gem. He's so good at finding a blend of delusion and pathos that manages to make the terrible men he loves playing come across as harmless and self-absorbed (and just a little lonely) without the genuine menace and rage that I'd see in this kind of guy otherwise. Although, of course, this time that might all be a ruse.

Learning that Edgar might have been poisoned by a flower in his (adopted!) sister's garden obviously makes the sister seem like less of a suspect to me, but it raises the question of how premeditated this poisoning was. (I'm wondering, idly: was Edgar the target, or was it somebody's goal to frame Grace, with Edgar as an acceptable loss?) Either way, we'll probably learn just why Hannah was looking to stop the wedding next week.

The new big reveal, background-wise, is that Edgar was launching his own cryptocurrency, and that he (read: Sebastian, presumably) was inflating its value artificially. I'm not sure how seriously The Afterparty wants us to take the prospect that crypto could ever be worth anything, and am hoping that this is a Glass Onion-esque reveal that the emperor has new clothes, but now there are two layers of motive: someone could have wanted to rob Edgar of his wealth, or they might have wanted to cover up (and/or take revenge for) the fraud.

Freeze-framing the various newspaper articles as they popped up, one recurring detail in them was that Edgar's father died in a plane crash, killing a dozen other people alongside himself (and he was likely drunk when he did so). So there's a fun detail that may or may not ever pop up again.

I'm having so much fun seeing John Cho prance in on his horse every episode. I'm happy that we'll get a bunch more of that.
posted by Tom Hanks Cannot Be Trusted at 12:35 PM on July 21, 2023 [2 favorites]

It took until this episode for me to be pretty sure that the horse was real. It fit too well with the first two episodes' themes. Ken Jeong doesn't like it!

In this one, the invitations at least say the correct name. Did they only say Gail in Grace's story?
posted by Acari at 7:10 AM on July 22, 2023

I think it was the napkins that said Gail in that episode.
posted by soelo at 6:24 AM on July 24, 2023 [2 favorites]

I'm still on the fence about this season - it's leaning a lot harder into being storytelling than being a whodunnit. But the storytelling is fun.

The wedding invitations have a link at the bottom to Edgar and Grace's Wedding site - it looks like there's a game on the Registry page.
posted by Mchelly at 8:27 AM on July 27, 2023

I think I’m fully back on board now. We may not be hitting the heights of the first season but the style gags worked really well—and the gags where Hauser went way over the hard boiled line (or said very non-tough things in a very hard boiled way) worked well too.

I doubt SEC4 has anything to do with the SEC—but if it does, Form 4 is what insiders have to file to cover any change in the shares that they control of their company.

And I don’t think we’re supposed to take the value of the cryptocurrency seriously. If anything we should be very skeptical of the way it’s presented: glowing crystals in a safe? Really? Danner’s comment of “you know how this works so I don’t have to” is, I think, very much a tell.
posted by thecaddy at 3:50 PM on July 27, 2023

Well, Travis seems quite convinced/deluded, but he seems like a Puzzle Guy, for sure.

I hate crypto-crap in plots, though.
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:53 PM on August 20, 2023

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