Money money money, mon-ey. Mon-ey! That was the topic of this week’s Bunheads, as the reality of losing breadwinner Hubbell set in for Fanny and Michelle. Turns out most of Fanny’s students don’t pay for their dance classes (except the Woo twins!), so she has no real income. To make matters worse, Fanny only pays her bills twice a year with an impractical system, so Michelle convinces her to get a real accountant to sort through the finances. While the women agree they need to make more money, they differ on how to go about it. Michelle’s plan is to play Bad-Cop (like Chiklis), in order to get the students to start paying, but her attempt fails spectacularly. Fanny’s solution is for Michelle to start teaching classes, but Michelle is extremely resistant to the idea.
The Flowers women aren’t the only ones trying to make money either, as Boo gets a job waitressing at The Oyster Bar. The poor girl not only has to wear pleated mom jeans for a uniform, but ends up smelling worse than the dumpster she’s tricked into jumping in. It’s not all bad though, since she befriends her cute, coconut-snickerdoodle-smelling coworker, Godot. Boo’s friends take advantage of her new job as well, by getting free food and front row seats to drool over the bartender (who is supposed to be Mitchum & Janice-the Muppet’s son). Basically, the girls spend the whole episode like this:
Their attempts to get his attention are futile, so they can’t help but be jealous when they notice Boo getting chummy with the guy. I’m not quite sure how to feel about this surfer dude just yet, but it was nice of him to save Boo from her unnecessary dumpster duties. And he literally gave her the shirt off his back, so she no longer had to smell “like Hoarders.” Plus, I love that he called her by her real name, which was revealed to be Bettina. Hmm, as in Bettina the Ballerina perhaps? I loved that book as a kid!
So one thing I really liked about this episode was how they handled the Fanny/Michelle relationship. It would have been easy enough to pit them against each other over the money issues, but instead they came across more like a supportive team. Fanny didn’t resent Michelle for trying to help, even after she screwed up royally, and Michelle is starting to respect the method to Fanny’s madness. In addition, I was thrilled that Fanny was actually the one to suggest that Michelle should start teaching. It shows she now accepts her daughter-in-law in her life, and no longer feels threatened by her the way she did in the beginning. Progress, people!
And Michelle’s resistance to teaching was an interesting way to reintroduce her issues with commitment and the disappointing status of her career. In her mind, agreeing to teach means a permanent change and facing the fact that her career hasn’t turned out the way she wanted. But as Fanny pointed out, “You know, just because you teach doesn’t mean it’s over.” I don’t think it’ll be long before Michelle comes around.
I also find it interesting that they keep paralleling Fanny/Boo and Michelle/Sasha. In the pilot, Michelle mentioned that Sasha reminded her of her younger self. And this is the second episode in a row in which Fanny and Boo have dealt with similar money issues. I’m not sure exactly where they’re going with this connection, but I’m certainly intrigued by it.
Another great thing about this episode is that we actually saw some dancing! It would be nice to see them rehearsing as well, but what we did get was quirky and fun. The dancers performed an environmentally-themed piece at the “Paradise Spring Flower Festival,” that revolved around one of life’s toughest questions: Paper or Plastic? As ridiculous as the story and costumes were (the plastic bag shorts were my favorite), the number was enjoyable nonetheless. Boo’s “evil” supermarket cashier and Ginny’s bee were the dancing standouts out for me.
Speaking of Ginny, we got to learn a little bit more about her in this episode. She has been with her boyfriend Josh since 2nd grade, but he can only touch 20% of her, (any guesses as to what makes up the 20%?). According to Sasha, Ginny’s an old lady, but I found her to be pretty endearing. And saying “For Christmas’s sake” was just plain cute.
Now there were things I disliked about this episode too. The tush guy’s bit was a little grating (and creepy!); the word “tush” was definitely this week’s PRIVATE ROAD! Plus, with all that tush talk it was a missed opportunity to use the words “buns.” Michelle’s bad cop routine to be über-cringeworthy as well, similar to her flirting attempts last week. I get that the whole point of those scenes is to be as awkward as possible, but it makes it really hard to like Michelle in those moments.
I also have mixed feelings about the cold open. I instantly thought of Hart of Dixie, since the possum (technically oppossum) in the bed was like a mashup of Zoe’s interactions with the frog and the possum. You know, I wonder if both shows used the same possum actor. There can’t be too many in show business, can there? Anyway, because of that, it didn’t come across as very original or realistic. And yet…
A similar thing has happened TWICE in my house! My first night back home after college, my dad and I were watching tv in the living room when a baby possum ran in from the den (my dad had accidentally left the back-door open). We managed to get it to run back into the den, but then we had to make a bunch of barriers to get it to run back outside. The problem was that it got scared and climbed up the back of our old computer’s hard drive in order to hide. It took us awhile to even find it, but when we did the poor thing was hanging on to the cords for dear life. Luckily, we got it to go back outside.
The other time happened a few years before that, when a full grown possum came into the den from the backyard and hid under my brother’s bed. It hissed at my brother when he discovered it and tried to get it out. The door to the living room was closed though, so I had no idea until I heard a loud thump coming from the room. I checked to see what happened, only to find my brother standing on a chair with a broom! He made me leave the room and shut the door to keep it from getting further into the house. So I heard all sorts of crashing sounds from the other side of the door, but I could only imagine what was going on. He eventually got it out, but it was definitely scary for awhile! I know that’s probably way more than you ever wanted to know about my experiences with possums, but it’s not often I get to tell those stories. Thanks for bearing with me! Now, back to Bunheads…
The Obligatory Gilmore Girls Comparison:
- Boo’s OCD “Senior Manager” wants to go to Harvard. He’s basically the male Paris.
- I believe Sal the “tush” guy made Lorelai’s giant birthday pizza, and was in Kirk’s short film.
Favorite Quotes and Moments:
- (In a horror movie whisper): “There’s something in my bed!”
- “I’m paralyzed with rat-fear!”
- “Michelle has a visitor in her bed.” (Truly gasps) “Already?!”
- Michelle has a multi-tush.
- “A tush is a terrible thing to waste.”
- “Alyssa Milano cries when she sees us.” — I’ve seen her UNICEF commercial way too many times, so this line really cracked me up.
- “NINE! NINE! NINE!…”
- “You sound like a German.”
- Michelle and Sasha bickering over their exact age gap. “Let’s say 17 and split the difference.”
- “Why are you guys all dressed for a quinceañera?”
- “Oh, so you’re Waiting For Godot?”
- “I’ll have a…Temple Grandin.”
- “And the pussy willow’s mom is a snot!”
- “Who’s Bettina?!” “How is Boo short for Bettina?!”
- “What supermarket do you shop in?”
- “The hero enters–” “The Canvas Tote!”
- “Screw Martha Graham! Screw her.” “Honey, go get a pretzel.”
Now that we’ve made it halfway thru Bunheads, how are y’all feeling? Will you stick it out for the next batch of eps? Were you as infatuated with Godot as the girls were? And most importantly, paper or plastic?