Let’s Talk About This Week’s Episodes Of ‘Happy Endings’: “Kickball” And “The Ex Factor”

Before we delve into the two episodes of Happy Endings that aired this week, I think it’s best if we clear up a few preliminary matters first:

– Most importantly, ABC has decided to end the twice-weekly Sunday-Tuesday Happy Endings double-dip, and will go back to airing the show only in its regular Tuesday night timeslot. Apparently ABC was hoping the second airing would help increase word of mouth and get more eyes on a show they claim to love (despite not really promoting it or giving it much of a shot on Sunday), but the ratings were awwwwwful, so they scrapped the idea after two weeks. This is okay with me because I am very lazy and certainly will not mind going back to one recap a week instead of these jam-packed two-fers, but I’m not sure it’s great for the long-term success of the show. It also means there will be more episodes leftover when they take their Dancing With the Stars-imposed break in March.

– If you haven’t read our Q&A with Eliza Coupe, please do so now. She is a treasure.

– If you are a casual fan of the show and this week’s episodes seemed disjointed and ill-fitting, there’s a reason for that. Sunday’s episode, which featured the gang playing kickball, was originally supposed to air last season but was scrunched out due to scheduling issues. When ABC asked the producers to do the Sunday episodes, they decided to plop it in because it would give them a little leeway with the ramped-up production. That’s why Dave and Alex weren’t together, and why Penny was HECKA man crazy.

– Sometimes I feel like this show is in my head: NBA references, turkey dancing, an episode titled “Boyz II Menorah,” and now one featuring Mark-Paul “Zack Morris/Peter Bash” Gosselaar? I … I don’t even know what else to ask for. If Penny goes on a date with Squints from The Sandlot I may sue them for intercepting my brainwaves.

And now, on the following pages, the highlights:

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