Oh my sweet baby Jeebus, I love this show. Welcome back, Louie.
The Power of Louie
Even if I didn't think that Louis C.K. is a genius, head and shoulders above every other standup comic out there (I want to say "...except Sarah Silverman," you know, in case she's reading this, but it weakens my argument. I'm trying to make a point), this series, which he writes, directs, mostly edits, and stars in, would still be an amazing accomplishment. I mean, you look what's happened with Community, where the driving creative force behind a great series gets shoved out the door because he's "difficult", or whatever, and you have to recognize how unique this kind of singular, unfiltered vision is on television.
Louie is a Terrible Boyfriend
Okay, let's get this out of the way: What is the young, gorgeous former child star Gaby Hoffmann (playing a character named April) doing dating Louie? Not real life successful comic genius C.K., but the apparently newly successful, schlubby dude he plays on his sitcom. I feel compelled to mention it, because unlike everything else on Louie, it fits a little too neatly into the sitcom norm. In any case, April is very perceptive, and hilariously susses out that Louie wants to break up with her, but is too craven to speak the words. Classic comedy of embarrassment right there.
Louie hears about all the dangers of riding a bike in the city from the salesman, but he still goes ahead and buys one, because, you know, they're cheap, easy to park, and get great gas mileage. After a few carefree idyllic moments riding around NYC, he's beset by "real" bikers and wakes up in the hospital. I liked the fleeting scenes of bliss. The subsequent crash was kind of predictable, and reminded me too much of what happened to Dean on Weeds, but the scene in the hospital hallway (been there) with the pitiless young doctor (Peter Y. Kim) was very funny.
April, Come She Will
Aside from the parking misadventures (I don't own a car, but I've seen others struggle mightily with the confusing surfeit of parking signs on the streets of our fair metropolis), that was pretty much it. This show is always about character, and failings thereof, more than it's about story. The episode wraps perfectly, with another visit from April, who plays nursemaid to the post-accident Louie, and sees through his suggestion that they get back together, recognizing it for exactly what it is. She's not just beautiful, she's an emotional genius, and Louie doesn't deserve her.
Interesting the way they quietly introduced a new ex-wife Janet (Susan Kelechi Watson) for this season. I expect we'll be seeing more of her soon enough.
"This is amazing. You're gonna make me break up with myself!"
-April responds to Louie's refusal to come out and say he wants to break up.
"You should just say the words, and we'll move on. Please don't eat that ice cream now."
-April implores Louie to break up with her, and not to get distracted.
"Had a guy in here a week ago in four pieces. His legs were both cut off, torso. His helmet was in a bag with just his head in it. Cut off at the neck. You know what his mom said to me? 'Is he gonna be alright?'"
-A doctor tells Louie about the stupidity of riding a motorcycle.
"Well, I got hit by a truck."
-Louie lies to April about his accident.
"'Parking of vehicles only authorized.' So you can't park a dog, or a carrot?"
-Louie tries to make sense of one of the parking signs.