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This episode of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend featured two incredible songs and some emotionally complicated character beats. Let’s take a look:
A beautiful sh*tshow | After rushing to the airport to confront Greg (played by Santino Fontana who, sadly, has left the show indefinitely) about leaving West Covina, Rebecca (Rachel Bloom) hears some hard truths: yes, Greg does love her and, no, that doesn’t mean that he should stay. He’s leaving for Atlanta to attend his dream school, Emory (“the Harvard of the South”), and he thought if he tried to say goodbye, he wouldn’t be able to leave. The song she imagines him singing, It Was A Sh*tshow, was moving and honest and so, so sad. But, in true Crazy Ex-Girlfriend fashion, it also made us laugh, because the writers know that there’s a humor and sweetness to even the most difficult moments. Love isn’t always enough to make a relationship work, and this season of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend has gone to great lengths to drive that home.
One thing I want to interject here is that it’s important to remember that, if Rebecca is in a scene, the song is always from her perspective. So even though she didn’t want to hear what Greg was telling her, we know she understood what he was saying. The most heartbreaking part is that the song followed the same rhythm and emotional beats as the anthem/torch she imagined the season before, You Stupid B*tch, in which she expressed her brutal self-hatred . It’s actually the only song in the whole series I would argue has no humor to it at all. Greg’s goodbye was the perfect endcap to the story arc started at that point, because afterward they fought and he tried to away from her and the effects she was having on him, but didn’t manage to stay away. This time they didn’t fight, but he did finally walk away, and it looks like he’ll be able to stay away this time. But without regrets.
We know that both Greg and Rebecca hate themselves, but Greg is ready to work on that. Rebecca, however, is so disgusted with herself that when she asks Paula (Donna Lynn Champlin) who she is without Greg and Josh (Vincent Rodriguez III) and Paula tells her to be herself, Rebecca actually spazzes and says “eww” and that “no one wants to be that”. Rachel Bloom’s delivery is hilarious, but it’s still heartbreaking– Rebecca Bunch honestly believes that she only has worth within the context of other people and their approval.
Like a house on fire | Who would’ve thought that the flyer for Rebecca’s housewarming party in Season 1 (thrown with the intention of spending time with Josh and ending with Greg drunk and last to leave) would foreshadow an actual catastrophe in Season 2?
In her sadness, Rebecca is visited by the “Memory Spirits” (alternatively, “Polter-guys”) of Greg and Josh. They perform a Singing In The Rain style song and dance called We Tapped That A** All Over This House. It reminds Rebecca that her life has been so consumed by the guys (with a brief cameo of the Taco Festival Guy she hooked up with in Season 1) that there isn’t a single place in her apartment where she doesn’t have some memory of at least one of them.
Her very reasonable response is to stuff her “Ex-boyfriend paraphernalia” into the garbage disposal, douse them with whiskey, and burn it all. This leads to a humiliating 911 call. One of the dispatchers releases the audio, it’s posted on YouTube with her picture (courtesy of one of her neighbors), and Rebecca is even more crushed.
The only nice thing to come from it is that Rebecca crashes with Heather (Vella Lovell) and Heather’s parents, both of whom are extremely supportive.
It’s a meeek-ooover | Rebecca returns to work hoping that it’ll distract her. Funnily enough, it does, but not in a way you’d expect. Whitefeather & Associates is hired to manage real estate contracts for a “feminine hygiene” company, Ms. Douche. They’re attempting to rebrand, updating everything from their headquarters to their product’s packaging. It’ll no longer feature a cartoon lady, but a “flesh and blood” woman who embodies the carefree image they want (though the CEO realizes they might not want to use the word “blood” in the advertising). They’re holding a contest on Instagram and a pageant to choose.
Rebecca recuses herself from the case, gets a post-breakup makeover (blonde hair, extensions, and a bohemian 70’s look to match the Ms. Douche vibe), and enters the contest. She wants everyone to know she’s okay. Apparently this involves douche (constantly under attack by the researchers for “Big Vagina”). To get into the finals, Rebecca pays $5k for bots to like her picture.
Funny costume | Rebecca runs into Josh. At first he doesn’t recognize her, but once he does he’s confused by her “new look”. She mentions that she’s entered a contest, and he assumes that she’s in costume. She’s crushed and tries to skip out on the pageant, but Heather cracks the whip, pointing out that Rebecca started this ridiculous quest and has to follow through.
When Heather’s parents say that Rebecca shouldn’t have to do anything that she doesn’t want to do, Heather realizes why she never finishes anything: her parents reward failure. Ultimately, Rebecca agrees to finish what she started, only to realize on stage she has no idea who she is and that that’s bad, so she runs offstage after pointing out Heather in the audience, saying that her friend is the kind of person they should be looking for.
Heather wins the contest (without having had to enter), plus $10k and a lifetime supply of walnut bark douches. She then tells her parents she’s moving out, and Rebecca that the two of them are going to live together. Rebecca needs someone to motivate her, Heather needs someone to cosign a lease. It’s win-win.
Rebecca returns to her apartment to say goodbye to the Memory Spirit of Greg. Someday she’ll be happy for him but, for now, he needs to go.
Serious stuff | The B-plot in this episode surrounded Paula’s struggle with how to handle her pregnancy and law school. Her husband, Scott, attempts to prove they can manage having an infant on top of everything else, but with one son getting suspended, Scott’s inability to cook or remember to pick up their younger son from school, and the sheer cost of another kid, Paula decides they can’t have both. She’s going to give up her dream, even if that means that she’s miserable and they never make a better life for their family.
But, after putting together an outstanding legal brief and pleading their new client’s case and winning, Paula realizes that she can’t live with giving up law school, so she makes the difficult decision to terminate her pregnancy. We watch her struggle and the show doesn’t pull punches.
Housing doughnuts | The episode concludes with Rebecca and Heather running into Valencia (Gabrielle Ruiz) at a food stand. In the wake of her breakup with Josh, it looks like Valencia has gained some weight and no longer protests to eating junk food. When she sees Rebecca she looks pretty angry.
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend airs Fridays at 9 pm on The CW