Netflix has dropped the first half of the fourth and final season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (although there may be a movie), and the titular heroine and pals couldn’t be more welcome in this current cultural climate. During these six episodes, the sunny and gloriously silly show sticks with a consistent vibe, so as not to disappoint any relief-seeking binge watchers. However, there’s a surprising amount of nuance in this season, and a few characters see unprecedented (and downright shocking) growth.
Essentially, the show has functioned as a delayed coming-of-age tale for some of these players. Even though Kimmy is the character who was trapped in a bunker for 15 years, so she’s the one expected to make significant strides (and she does), they’ve all been fairly sheltered and, therefore, stunted, until now. Let’s rank how well they embraced change this season.
5. Richard Wayne Gary Wayne
Let’s get real, the reverend who imprisoned Kimmy and three other women will never express remorse — he’s the textbook definition of a lost cause. Yet this entry exists not only to highlight that fact but also to drop praise upon Jon Hamm’s charismatic performance. His Richard Wayne Gary Wayne is such a fan favorite that they gave him his own mockumentary-style episode called “Party Monster: Scratching The Surface,” which expertly parodies Netflix’s own Making A Murderer.
In the documentary (which is viewed by an aghast Kimmy, who has finally discovered binge-watching after three seasons), aspiring DJ Fingablast attempts to paint the reverend as a misunderstood figure, who once reigned as DJ Slizzard. Naturally, Wayne cannot help but operate as the manipulator that he’ll always be, and he’s eventually exposed as such. Although he’ll remain in prison for some time to come, it’s oddly comforting to see the show check in with Wayne in a different (and delightfully rendered) setting.
4. Lillian Kaushtupper
Landlord Lillian is given more to do during this season — which brings mixed results because a little Lillian goes a long way — than fret over gentrification of the neighborhood and how Titus is late on payments. She’s still eccentric as heck and embodied to perfect quirky effect by Carol Kane, even if she’s simply a codependent comedic figure with no real persona of her own. Lillian’s the endless tag-along pal, the strategic puller of fire alarms, and the one who spouts conspiracy theories while the other characters patiently endure.
In short, Lillian is unrepentant as hell and blissfully resistant to change, though she’s never nefarious while wreaking havoc. She harmlessly tells someone that she authored the Jack Reacher books, and yes, she forgets to tell the family of her last boyfriend that he died, but no real damage comes from any of her antics. However, Lillian becomes the trustee for the inheritance of Busy Phillips’ spoiled Sheba character, which could provide a nice set-up for future episodes, as the pair displays sweet antagonistic chemistry.