Josh: Louie’s honest insight into the parent-child relationship—and, more specifically the single father-and-daughter relationship—was one of my favorite parts of the first season. And the first episode did not disappoint in that regard: the opening (and best, in my opinion) scene of the episode is Louie’s daughter telling Louie matter-of-factly that she likes her mother more. This incident reminded me of when I (at four-years old) informed my grandmother’s friend that she was fat: what I thought was a harmless descriptive comment caused chaos. What this scene in Louie highlights is how powerful young children’s naïve statements can be due to their sincerity. The stand-up in the first episode similarly excelled: Louie’s defense of divorce, his bit on his five year old being wholly untalented (and, accordingly, bringing down the whole family), and, best of all, the ambivalence a parent has about their children (“I love that kid; I love that kid to pieces, but I wish she was never born.”). In a time, when websites like PostSecret encourage that such sentiments be expressed anonymously, it’s refreshing to see Louie take them head on, even if they are partly in jest. Louie is off to a great, honest, and somewhat surreal start.
Louie Louie Louie: Pregnant
John S: I too thought the first scene was the best. What makes a scene like that so funny is how seriously C.K. is willing to play it. The whole show, really, is daringly serious. This episode featured whole scenes with no real jokes, like Louie’s talk with his pregnant sister and his thanking of his neighbor. Scenes like that are so realistic and depressing that they underscore the honesty of Louie’s daughter telling him she doesn’t love him as much as she loves her mom, or the frustration he showed when she complained that something “wasn’t fair.” Of course, this realism also helped set up the elaborate joke in which Louie’s sister gets rushed to the hospital for a loud fart. And while I didn’t really like that punchline very much, I appreciated the “Aristocrats”-esque set up for it. Finally, this episode also made me really respect C.K. as a director. Both the second scene with his daughter and especially the trip to the hospital scene captured a very complex chain of events is a very realistic way.