Louie Louie Louie: Halloween/Ellie

As Season Two of Louie continues on FX, John S and Josh will be offering NPI readers their reactions to each episode. At the end of the season, they will rank the episodes. Get excited.

Josh: It’s odd to have a Halloween episode in the middle of summer, but, actually, kind of a refreshing change of pace from “timely” holiday episodes, like Modern Family’s disappointing Valentine’s Day episode this past season. C.K. once again applies the theme of confronting bullies as an adult, a theme that I’m sure resonates with many people: there are situations you get in as an adult that remind you of your vulnerability, and bring back feelings you haven’t felt since childhood. C.K. captures those feelings masterfully, capping off with excellent acting from Lily, telling the dressed up bullies to stop intimidating her father. Some of the best parts of Louie are seeing the dynamic of Louie interacting with other comedians, and the script revision scene did not disappoint. Ellie, the VP of Paramount pictures, was impressed by Louie and is a great character, so smug and condescending, with lines like “This is your future, honey.” Having her “temporarily” leave with her purse was a humorous move by C.K. I don’t particularly like Louie’s (or anyone’s) toilet humor so the standup at the end was a bit of a disappointment, but such humor comes with the package.

John S: I don’t want to knock this episode, since it certainly had its share of great moments, like the Frederick Douglass costume or Ellie’s inability to conceal her disdain for Louie’s pitch, but “Halloween/Ellie” seemed to be below the very high bar set by Louie‘s second season. Both halves seemed like well-worn territory for the show. As Josh points out, the Halloween bit directly echoed the “Bully” episode from last season. That was one of my favorite episodes of the first season, largely because we got to see the bully and his family as fully-imagined characters. Here, they were more like stand-ins for the general sense of terror that Halloween can bring out. And while seeing how his kids reacted — and how Louie reacted in front of his kids — was certainly an interesting side of it, it still felt a little melodramatic. And while the woman who played Ellie was very good at telegraphing Ellie’s sense of importance (“I have a discretionary budget and I can green-light… Do you know what that means?!”), that story was another example of C.K.’s comic sensibilities being far too dark for a mainstream audience, which we saw just two weeks ago in “Oh Louie.” And while the specifics of Louie’s pitch were great, you could sense as soon as they sat down that Louie was going to alienate Ellie with a horrifically depressing movie idea. Not a bad episode by any means, but not as stellar as the last few weeks of the show have been…

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2 responses to this post.

  1. I think this season is more ambitious, more artful. The first one was about simpler and lighter themes (dentist, the gym, etc.) and more focused on the comedy aspect.

    I love the show, one of the best on TV right now.

    Reply

  2. […] 11. Pregnant /  Joan / Halloween/Ellie […]

    Reply

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