‘Louie’ – ‘Bummer/Blueberries’: Two girls and a guy

Senior Television Writer
06.30.11 36 Comments

A review of tonight’s “Louie” coming up just as soon as I go down the road of buying your Vagitine…

“Do you want to have intercourse now? Are you ready?” -Dolores

I don’t know if it says more about “Louie,” or about me, that I found this episode – half of which is spent on Louie going into a deep depression after seeing a homeless man get decapitated by a garbage truck – to be the most overtly comic of the four FX sent out for review.

But I think it probably says more about “Louie” – about the dark places Louis C.K.’s mind goes, but also to the way he’s somehow able to find laughter in the middle of that darkness. Last week, it was Louie flipping off his daughter behind her back after she coldly compared his parenting to her mom’s. Here, it’s both in the way his pseudo-date Janice becomes interested in Louie because he’s being so unlike himself(*), and then the inevitable punchline where, just as he succeeds in unintentionally seducing her, the story of how he came to this introspective, alluring new persona completely grosses her out.

(*) In that way, it was reminiscent of two different “Seinfeld” episodes: “The Opposite,” where George finally found professional and romantic success by going against his every instinct; and “The Visa,” where George tells Jerry not to be funny in front of George’s new girlfriend Cheryl, forcing him to adopt a dark, serious persona that only attracts Cheryl more. Again, going back to that discussion from “Talking Funny” about how different a C.K. joke sounds coming out of Seinfeld’s mouth, I’m trying to imagine “Louie” eventually trying to filter every single “Seinfeld” storyline through C.K.’s mind. What would a “Louie” version of “The Outing” look like, for instance? Or maybe someone just needs to set up a companion Twitter feed to @SeinfeldStories?

The big, even more disturbing yuks, though, come in the episode’s second story, as Louie gets a little luckier – only not really – with a mom from his daughter Jane’s class. That story was a case study not only in how bad sex can exist, but how there comes a point where bad sex is much, much, much worse than no sex at all. So uncomfortable. So funny. And, as usual, Louie’s resigned reaction to everything – the way every pore of his body just shrugs and says “This is my miserable lot in life, and there’s really nothing to be done about it” – only made it funnier.

What did everybody else think?

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