Monday, April 22, 2019

Crazy Ex Girlfriend Series Finale Makes (almost) Everyone Happy

Love these Valentine's Day inspired outfits

Crazy Ex Girlfriend, my favorite show, recently aired its SERIES FINALE. In my opinion, the finale was designed in a way to appeal to (almost) every fan. Let me explain. I believe there were four types of fans who went into the finale.

  1. People who wanted Rebecca to end up alone, healthy, and happy with herself.
  2. People who wanted Rebecca to end up with Greg.
  3. People who wanted Rebecca to end up with Nathaniel.
  4. People who wanted Rebecca to end up with Josh.

Now, of course, fans of #1, should be the happiest. Rebecca really didn't choose a man. The finale focused on her finding her passion and her own happiness. However, I believe fans #2 and #3 can also be happy with the finale. 

The only type of fan that should be unhappy are #4, the Josh-endgame fans. The writers gave Josh a serious girlfriend for the finale. Even though the camera panned on all three of our men when Rebecca said her romantic partner could possibly be in this room, it is very small chance that it will be Josh. I haven't kept up with the fandom, but I think by the time season four aired, there were very few Rebecca/Josh shippers. I'm sure there still are some, but I think they are a minority which goes back to my claim that the finale made almost everyone happy.

Now fans of #2 should be the second-happiest. As explained in episode 16's review, Greg is singled out as the winner from the three men. They have the most romantic and healthiest moments. In the series finale, Future-Rebecca from the Rebecca/Greg scenario is the one who tells Real-Rebecca that she won't be happy until she she finds out who she is. Greg is the last one to get broken up with in the finale, and he is the one that receives the most information. (I THINK I saw Rachel Bloom or someone on Twitter say that she would have told all three guys some version of the same thing...but I think the fact we see her telling Greg means something). 

In my opinion, Greg is the the writers choice of who Rebecca ends up with. Greg tells Rebecca that he will not wait for her as she tries to take a break from dating and focus on her passion - which is the healthy thing to do! But then, a year later, it is remarked upon that he is, in fact, single. The writers purposely let us know of this face, because off camera, when Rebecca is finally ready to date, she will end up with Greg.

I believe the writers did the smart thing by not cementing Rebecca/Greg in stone. You can still challenge my interpretation and you would be not wrong. Fans of #3, the Nathaniel-endgame can choose to believe that Rebecca ends up with Nathaniel. It is up to the viewer to choose what will happen in the future with Rebecca's love life - and that's fun! That's an exciting way of viewing the finale! I personally believe Rebecca/Nathaniel won't happen because let's not forget - season four contained an entire episode showing Nathaniel coming to terms with letting Rebecca go and accepting that she is with Greg.

I am sad that my favorite show is over BUT look at how much fanfiction potential there is! Write about Rebecca/Greg endgame, Rebecca/Nathaniel endgame, Rebecca/Josh endgame - or even how famous Rebecca becomes with her song writing career! At the end of the day, Crazy Ex Girlfriend ended with hope and possibility.

Let me know in the common if you agree or disagree!

I'm in Love: Crazy Ex Girlfriend S4E17 SERIES FINALE Review

My favorite show aired its SERIES FINALE and that's heartbreaking to me. Crazy Ex Girlfriend is a show that was MADE for me. I love theater, I'm depressed, I seek external validation, I'm a feminist, and I love comedy. Sad to see a show that is so uniquely me go. It taught me a lot of good like lessons, and I'm sure I'll re-watch the entire series many times in the future.

The show started with a Dream Ghost sequence! I feel like we haven't seen Rebecca dreaming like this since season one - and that season one Dream Ghost episode is one of the greatest so its nice to see that it received such a major call-back in the finale.

Rebecca is on the toilet again (just like in the season three theme song), and trying to figure out which of her three men to choose. I, the viewer, obviously think she is going to pick Greg. Her Dream Ghost sequence tells her she won't be happy until she knows who she is. This is the first sign that Rebecca isn't going to choose someone during the finale.

Eleven O'Clock: What a beautiful summary song. We not only get to explore what is going on with Rebecca's mind (she is confused because she thinks she should be able to choose a guy by now), we also get to revisit some of the themes and classics from the series. We see Rebecca singing the theme songs of the first three seasons.

As an aside, I wanted to say how much I LOVED the season three theme song. I love it so much I wrote an article about it. I realized it gets a lot of hate from the fandom which I think is very undeserved. The theme song is funny in how Rebecca can't choose if she should or should not be crazy. Plus, it plays on some prevalent pop culture themes! (Maybe the hate is based on how it follows the Season Two Theme Song which is just so good! It's a hard act to follow!).

The three theme songs she sings remind us about all the themes and identities that she has explored. We see her sing, "I'm a good person, yes it's true. I'm a good person, but better than who?" which is an interesting question. Who is Rebecca Bunch trying to be better than? Everyone is flawed. We also see Rebecca say, "Like doesn't make narrative sense" which was a hallmark theme from, "End of the Movie." Also, as an aside, "End of The Movie," is my number one favorite song from the series!

Lastly, we get a final reprise of the fan favorite, "You Stupid Bitch." This song is important because it gets to the core of Rebecca Bunch's self-hatred. She is finally able to get rid of that self-hatred by the end of the series.

It is at this moment when we get the hilarious scene of Paula wondering why Rebecca is just starting off into space for a moment. When Rebecca finally confesses that she thinks of musical numbers in her head, Paula finally gives her the idea that she should start writing these musical numbers in her head! It is a gorgeous end to the show. Rebecca finally figures out her passion.

We see Rebecca take piano lessons. We see Rebecca get some vocal training. We see her put in the effort to work on her craft which is awesome!

One critique I have on the show is: The CW gave Crazy Ex Girlfriend 18 episodes for its finale season. Instead of having the one year time jump during the finale, they could have shown Rebecca getting this song-writing revelation earlier and seeing her improve and get better in her craft through out the season. I understand why they didn't do this - maybe it just wouldn't have been fun. Maybe they couldn't come up with any good stories revolving around that. I really do love the I'm Finding My Bliss episode, where Rebecca tries out theater so we do get a glimpse of it!

West Covina (Final Reprise): Rebecca and Paula hold hands and sing the final song of the series. It was a great call back to the first episode which also ended with a reprise of West Covina. This time, however, the song is about something healthy - Rebecca finding her true passion.

It was nice to see how everyone in our cast of characters ends up. Josh gets a new girlfriend! Nathaniel works at the zoo! Greg has a successful restaurant! Paula help women in need! Valencia and Beth get married (with Valencia doing the proposing!)! Heather and Hector get a hot tub? Darryl gets married AND has another kid on the way! That's a lot of kids!! White Josh has the worst ending. His childhood and current home burned down? That's horrible. I feel bad for him.

There is a hilarious moment when Rebecca says something alone the lines of, "Who knows? Maybe the person I end up with is in this room," and it pans to a bunch of people and lands on Father Brah and AJ! They looked so worried that it landed on them! It was a funny film gag. Of course, Rebecca won't end up with them.

I believe that throughout the season, the writers have been hinting that Rebecca/Greg are endgame. My personal head-cannon is that they will get together, but the beauty of this finale is that anything it possible! I wrote more about this in my next post, Crazy Ex Girlfriend Series Finale Makes (almost) Everyone Happy.

The final words of our favorite show, Crazy Ex Girlfriend, is "This is a song I wrote." Rebecca says this a little nervous -but excited. And awww...that's beautiful. We don't get to hear the song but that is okay! It allows Crazy Ex Girlfriend to exist outside of our eyes. We can imagine how it goes. We can imagine who Rebecca ends up falling in love with. We can imagine how Rebecca's new career goes. It's a series finale of possibilities.

EDIT: I really loved the concert episode as well! It was fun! It made me forget the sadness of my favorite show ending.

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Friday, April 5, 2019

I Have a Date Tonight: Crazy Ex Girlfriend S4E16 Episode Review

Ahhhhh! Can you believe the penultimate episode of Crazy Ex Girlfriend has arrived. I am writing this on the day of the finale and it's just hitting me that my favorite show is almost over! I have had such a nice time blogging about this series over the last 2 years.

This episode was beautiful!! The three dates were gorgeous. I felt like the Crazy Ex Girlfriend writers were trying to write a love letter to all three of our leading men. They aren't trying to vilify any man. In less evolved shows, there is the jerk and the guy our lead ends up with. Here, we have seen all three men grow. We have fallen in love with all three, and now we get to see each one shine one last time.

Josh/Rebecca: I almost cried during their date. This show - the show that I love, Crazy Ex Girlfriend, started because of this ship. Josh recreated them being at summer camp. Throughout season one, summer camp was Rebecca's symbol of bliss. It's nice to see her live it one last time.

Nathaniel/Rebecca: I had high expectations for this date because I did become a Nathaniel/Rebecca shipper during season three. Nathaniel did meet those expectations because the scenery of the picnic was beautiful. The fact that he found a concert that she would love AND find a place where she could hear it for free showed that he did a lot of research. Also, their dancing was so cute! It was a freeing kind of dance. Nathaniel was very tightly wound in season 2, and Rebecca also takes her love like very seriously. Those two dancing felt airy, nice, and free.

Greg/Rebecca: When Greg bought the air balloon ride, I was fuming because I didn't want to see Greg do something so against his character. Both Josh and Nathaniel kept pieces of who they were during their dates. I wanted Greg to do the same. I'm glad Greg's car died before he could get to the hot air balloon ride. This gave Greg and Rebecca a chance to be real with each other. There was no gimmicky date between them. It was just two people talking and laughing and eating and doing errands together. It was so cute!!

We ended this episode widening out from a shot of Rebecca and Greg laughing and talking to each other. Then Greg says, abruptly, "You are the love of my life." Amazing. That really got me. One thing to keep in mind is that Nathaniel and Josh said some version of, "We belong together," or "We are meant to be." Nathaniel and Josh are still forcing their feelings on Rebecca. They are still relying on fantasy and fate. Greg, on the other had, is just stating his feelings. He doesn't need Rebecca or the universe to be on board. He know that he loves her. This is why Greg is end game.

Love's Not A Game: White Josh gets to embody one of the most beloved theater characters of our time - Enjolras from Les Miserables! I don't know THAT much about musicals so Enjolras is the first thing that came to mind when I saw this song. "How dare you play with love? Have you no decency?" The dramatics of this monologue reminded me of "Red and Black" from Les Miserables.

"Love's Not A Game" is a hilarious, group number. I loved it when White Josh calls Paula, "lady sir," and she responds with, "I think the work is 'ma'am'." There was a call-back to "Pre-school? No, Priest school," which I loved!

Listen to Valencia folks! It's Greg
I thought Valencia looking into the camera and saying, "It's Greg," was a little too on the nose. LMAO. It was subtle, but I caught it.

Love's Not A Game (Reprise): A touching and reflective moment.

Other Favorite Details:

Rebecca: "I retired from stalking, but you never loose the skills." The opening of this episode was hilarious. You see Dr. Akopian order coffee and all of a sudden, Rebecca's head pops out! HILARIOUS!

The Other Rebecca moment was one of my favorites this time!! Rebecca popping in to say, "Perfection is an illusion!"

The show ends on Valentine's Day. "It's apt. Very apt." LOVE THIS SHOW.

Valencia: "Greg's a different actor now and by actor, I mean in the political legal sense."

Greg's Advantage: Little remarks and comments.

A wonderful show! I am sad to see it go. Can't wait for the season finale which I get to watch in 1.5 hours from now!

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Thursday, April 4, 2019

I Need to Find My Frenemy: Crazy Ex Girlfriend S4E15 Episode Review

The beautiful, touching #GirlGroup4eva episode that these final episodes needed!

Darryl's method of "Columns," is not unique but it is simple. The episode starts off with Rebecca making a hilarious list of the positive attributes of her three choices. Hilariously all three got, "Amazing in the sack."

The Math of Love Quadrangles: Another reprise of a great song! Greg, Josh, and Nathaniel looked so handsome in their nerdy glasses and suits! I like how it is quadrangles because there are four people this time!

Rebecca can't make a decision between her three guys so when Audra Levine's husband calls her and tells her that Audra has abandoned her family, Rebecca welcomes the distraction. Rachel Bloom's acting is hilarious here! Rebecca smiles so devilishly. Rebecca's joy at seeing her arch nemesis's downfall is so great! She doesn't even hide it. "I can see you smiling," says Audra's husband.

Our ladies all decide to take a trip to Las Vegas because they are running away from their problems. Valencia wants to avoid her pain at Beth not proposing to her. Heather wants to avoid her childish husband. Paula realizes that the Fett Regoso suits for her new office are ridiculously expensive. Rebecca, of course, doesn't want to think about choosing between her three men.

Slow Motion: I thought our four ladies looked so cool and sexy during this number! Perfect for a girls trip! I liked how the show explored the cinematography of slow motion and showed the funny aspects to it.

There were a lot of call-backs during this episode - especially to the season one song, "Women Gotta Stick Together." Some examples: "Females helping females," and "Denise Martinez - that bitch I cannot stand." Denise helps Valencia learns that it's a bad look to bully your lover into proposing. One interesting call back was to The CW. "We're heroes - Dare to Defy!" That's one of The CW's slogans! Audra Levine says, "You can't call me crazy, because when you call me "crazy," you're just calling me in love!" That's a call back to the Season 2 theme song!

Audra's boyfriend is VERY gross. It's amazing how everyone can see it and calls him out.

Paula is so confident and fierce in this episode! She saves Audra's boyfriend from a beating and wins herself A LOT of money through the poker game! I love how much she is flexing on everyone by being that good at poker. During the, "Slow Motion," poker game song, the lyrics, "I don't understand poker," really got to me. I also do not understand even a little bit of poker!

JAP Battle (Reprise): JAP Battle, the original, is in my top five favorite Crazy Ex Girlfriend songs!! This nice reprise had a lot of witty lyricism as well. I loved the love both women had for each other. I thought the ending where Audra says, "Wanna make out?" was also hilarious! 

"I care about you in my own way. You're like an annoying family member," says Rebecca to Audra showing them mending their relationship. It was a really sweet episode!

I liked how Paula stood up for herself and said she isn't going to wear those expensive suits all the time. I was relieved when her employer agreed with her. It was great when Valencia said, "wait, I can propose?" in surprise! She now has power to make her marriage dreams happen! Maybe she will propose to Beth in the series finale? Heather goes back to Hector and said, "You are not my daddy, and I am not your mommy, I learned that in Vegas," which was a funny and unexpected call-back to Audra's gross boyfriend.

RIP Darryl/White Josh: Wild. Absolutely wild. THE GROUP MIND HAS DECIDED THAT YOU ARE IN LOVE. This episode completely destroyed the Darryl/White Josh ship! I guess I should have known the second Darryl had his baby that they were lost forever. White Josh doesn't want a child so it is truly over for them. It's cool that Darryl is ending up with a woman, because it gives good representation to bisexuality!

STAND DOWN: Josh telling everyone to "stand down," was a highlight! It is very Rebecca of him to pretend he is in an old-timey movie telling his competitors to "stand down!" He also used a lot of funny, formal language like, "shant."

At the end of the day, all three men are a little hurt by the whiteboard. However, they all agree to offer Rebecca, "three dates with three guys." "So nine dates?" says Rebecca. I loved that little bit.

I was really excited by the end of this episode! I was so excited to see the three dates in action! It is just like The Bachelor (which is where White Josh got the idea....). Excited to see the creative and romantic dates Rebecca goes on in the next episode!

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I'm Finding My Bliss: Crazy Ex Girlfriend S4E14 Episode Review

I have been behind on my Crazy Ex Girlfriend episodes and yesterday I watched episodes 14, 15, 16 right after each other and let me just say - what a beautiful group of episodes. They all put a huge smile on my face and increased my serotonin levels teen-fold.

But I digress. Let's talk about "I'm Finding My Bliss."

I loved how this episode began with a recap that showed all the times Rebecca's passion was hinted throughout the series. I have actually forgotten how many hints there were that alluded to Rebecca starting a career in theater. There is a great call back to season one when Dr. Akopian helps Rebecca realize theater was her passion during the "Dream Ghost" episode. THIS WAS IN SEASON ONE! We always knew that Rebecca would have to come back to theater! 

I love musical theater just like Rebecca so this episode was so fun for me! We had a Pitch Perfect style of audition where everyone sang, "Let Me Be In Your Show," at the same time with different, and sometimes bad, voices. I loved how Rachel Bloom and Gabrielle Ruiz both succeeded in making their gorgeous voices sound much worse than they are. "Singing: Zero. Commitment: A Million," is correct! Cheri Oteri was amazing in her role! I loved how dramatic and enthusiastic she was! (until...of course...she yelled at Rebecca).

Josh joins the production as a tech crew member so that he can get close to her. Nathaniel gets cast as the prince solely on his looks which was hilarious. Can you believe Nathaniel has been in musicals before? (mostly...because of his looks). That's another point for Rebecca/Nathaniel shippers! They have something huge in common!

Valencia Wants A Proposal: Valencia joins the theater company because she wants to avoid her feelings about not getting a proposal from Beth. WHICH REMINDS ME!! They made a shutout to Jersey City!!! Ahhh, I live near there and I love that my West Covina friends mentioned Jersey City!!! Anyway, Valencia acts like true season one Valencia in this episode which is nice!! I like seeing the un-evolved Valencia make a small appearance before she learns from her mistakes. By the end of the episode, Valencia makes an ultimatum to Beth. She won't return to New York unless Beth proposes. Ultimatums are pretty manipulative and Valencia does have some growing to do!

Greg Opens Up A Restaurant: It's nice to see Greg follow his passion for business and open up a restaurant! We get to see Chris one more time before the series ends! Weird choice to have Heather and Greg bonding during this episode, but I'll allow it. The, "What'll It Be?" (reprise) was a great call-back. Greg is accepting West Covina and has found his path in life. It was also cool seeing SkylarAstin!Greg reprising this song because it gives it a nice, new flavor. Greg says, "I see that the problem was me." It wasn't West Covina holding him back - it was himself.

Darryl and Paula & Job Offers: You can tell from the very beginning of this sub-plot that Paula knows she is worth way more than what Darryl could possibly pay her. The Darryl-Paula moment at the end of the episode where "You're My Best Friend (And I Know I'm Not Yours)," played in the background was touching. I wish there was a sweet reprise of this song sung by Paula!

Etta Mae's Lament: Hilarious song!! "Can you lasso me a husband?" is just such a funny lyric. Rachel Bloom's acting is perfect as she cringes to some of the more harmful lines in the song.  This song is pretty incredible in it's sexism. It manages to drop different forms of sexism with every line. It even manages to subtly imply that women belong in the kitchen!

I'm the Bride of the Pirate King: Wow this song was more offensive than, "Etta Mae's Lament," in my humble opinion. Maybe because Valencia sang it straight. The pirate is abusive and there was a lot of...I want to say scary...language used in the song. This song isn't just about harmful stereotypes/opinions of women like Etta Mae's Lament. This song is about a woman in an abusive relationship which hits harder.

The Tick Tock Clock and Apple Man: Whoever this fictional Elliot Ellison is - he is not a good song writer! I loved all of Paula's negative reactions to "Apple Man," because we know she does not like theater and she can TELL that this song is the worst of the worst.

The episode ends with Nathaniel doing such a sweet thing for Rebecca! He sings her words. Because Nathaniel is a man, and those harmful stereotypes are not associated with men, his rendition is much less problematic.

“I’m not a writer-performer! I’m not Ike Barinholtz!” says Rebecca. This is funny because this is such niche reference. Only few people would get it and I'm one of those people! I've followed Ike on Twitter since my Mindy Project days. Hilarious for him to get such a random shout out! (Someone on the writing staff MUST be a Mindy Project stan. It was referenced earlier in the season when Hector said he stans Mindy Kaling!).

In last episode's review, I mentioned my worries of Rebecca getting into theater when she is unable to sing well. This episode took care of those worries for me! I think Rebecca's passion is going to be a song-writer or composer for musicals! I can't believe I didn't think of this before. Rebecca makes up beautiful musical numbers in her head all the time!

And of course, this episode ends with Nathaniel and Rebecca kissing. I believe Nathaniel is in second place with this scene. I think the writers know that the viewers got attached to Nathaniel when Greg left. They know that people still ship them so they gave us this sweet moment. However, Greg is still end game.