Luke Graham reviews the final episode of Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23’s first series…
The season finale to Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23, entitled Shitagi Nashi after a fictional Asian manga that features in the plot, was a compelling affair. Between holidays, graduation and searching for work, it has taken me far longer than acceptable to watch the episode and write this review, but I was satisfied with how it rounded out the first season of this strange comedy.
The plotting and direction of this episode was the best thing about the finale. It brought back story elements from across the series, and provided some closure to these characters. And, as usual, it was damn funny.
The main plot for the episode dealt with June and Chloe’s (Dreama Walker and Krysten Ritter) friendship. They have grown close and Chloe keeps taking June out to party across New York… which has left June with liver poisoning. After getting her stomach pumped, she finds that Chloe does not want to hang out with her now that she can’t keep up with her alcohol intake. As June tries to maintain their friendship, they discover along the way that there is a popular Japanese comic book based on the life of Chloe. Over the course of the episode, June learns why Chloe acts like a bitch (and, for a change, Chloe’s behaviour IS bitch-like, which is great) and why she pursues a hectic party lifestyle. By the end of the episode, they have grown closer. This plotline has some great moments, and the comic book motif allows the episode to include some amazing animated sequences. It’s bizarre, funny and inventive.
Similarly, the relationship between Luther (Ray Ford) and James Van Der Beek (Dawson off Dawson’s Creek) evolves following a mix-up at Dancing with the Stars. It turns out that Dean Cain (from The New Adventures of Superman, who cameos as himself in the episode) has a slightly bigger dressing room. Luther has made his first mistake as James’ assistant, and James goes through a crisis of conscience over whether he can keep employing him. The satire on display is brilliant as usual, lampooning the pettiness and jealousy of celebrities. There are also a few nice character moments, as James has to forgive Luther, and they become closer by the end of the episode. Over the course of the series, Luther began simply as James’ tailor, and is now his close personal assistant. It’s a great arc for the character of Luther, and it’s a nice lead in for actor Ray Ford, who has been upgraded to a series regular for the second season.
All the other characters from the series make an appearance, including Pastor Jin, Mark, Robin and Eli, and all deliver humour. Mark has one of the best lines, pointing out how June was meant to be trying to get a Wall Street job, and hasn’t done anything about this since the first episode.
It’s a fun, happy and inventive finale to what has been a fun, engaging and inventive show. A successful fusion of The Odd Couple style sitcom with celebrity and pop culture satire, it’s a great show and I can’t wait for the second season starting in October.