Just Thoughts On: The Last Man on Earth – “Dunk the Skunk” and “Some Friggin’ Fat Guy”
I’d like to preface this by saying it was written over the course of about two weeks because I just could not be bothered to concentrate on it. I made a promise to myself to finish writing about this series but I’ve stopped watching altogether and will need to concentrate to power through it. I hope Season 2 picks things up. Parks and Rec has taught me that a bad Season 1 isn’t the the death of a series. But as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has also taught me, I won’t wade through 14 episodes of garbage and then come back.
Dunk the Skunk-This episode is basically a perfect example of the promise and frustrations this show has gifted me since I started watching it. There’s some good comedic moments in this one. Most notably, the multiple pratfalls in the dunking tank really worked for me. This was accentuated and quickly followed up with Phil expressing some real frustration afterwards. Another few seconds and he likely would have been straight bawling. As awful as he can be sometimes, he really made me feel sorry for him. He was really trying here in his own way and like all those times before, the show stopped right when it was crossing a line. Phil ends up getting what he wants but of course he can’t be gracious about it. He just makes it awful as always.
It was thoroughly telegraphed that a mysterious 2nd man would show up to thwart Phil’s victory. It’s a weird way to put it but it seems the most apt given the way the show puts so much focus on Phil and the terrible way that he goes about doing things. I kept expecting it to be a misdirect, that this stranger wouldn’t quite get there in time. Like it would be more of a joke on Melissa that some other guy was just that close and she had to be Phil instead. At least that would have been some kind of subversion instead of everything just playing out as expected. The fireworks bring Todd to Melissa and Phil and Phil’s plan goes up in smoke. The funniest part of this scene was Phil’s recording. Between this and the wedding maybe the show should just be footage of recordings. This transitions us into “Some Friggin’ Fat Guy”
Some Friggin’ Fat Guy-The introduction of the second man is sort of annoying to me. The show is called Last Man on Earth and it is quickly abandoning that premise. The pilot’s goodwill has begun to run so thin that I’ve fallen behind in keeping up with this show. It helps that they brought on Mel Roderigruez who was on the extremely fun Enlisted show that quickly died last year. He plays a legitimately nice guy whose only fault seems to be that he is overweight. Immediately he has more chemistry with Melissa than Phil ever will. It’s great to see Phil failing here and yet nothing is really all that appealing to watch. Phil’s confession to Melissa at the end of the episode is a good moment that is undercut by everything we have actually seen before.