Jackson Ball reviews the fourth episode of Netflix’s BoJack Horseman season 2…
Relationships of all shapes and varieties are put under the microscope in this episode. BoJack (Will Arnett) struggles to adjust to his blossoming romance with Wanda (Lisa Kudrow), while married life isn’t all it cracked up to be for Diane (Alison Brie) and Mr. Peanutbutter (Paul F Tompkins).
Spoiler Ahead – You Have Been Warned!
‘After the Party’ is an early indication of how the dynamic between the show’s core characters has changed since Season 1. Three different couples are put in the spotlight here, all of whom suffer through a heated argument before the credits roll.
It all kicks off at Diane’s surprise birthday party, arranged by her husband Mr. Peanutbutter. The married couple explodes into a huge screaming match over the seemingly mundane subject of whether or not the actor Tony Curtis was still alive (Spoilers: he isn’t). The resulting awkwardness is enough to make many of the party’s guests opt for a hasty exit, including BoJack and Wanda.
The original argument has a ripple effect on BoJack, who begins to question the legitimacy and future of his and Wanda’s own relationship. This results in an argument between them on the way home. The motives for BoJack’s contemplation are unclear at this point; perhaps seeing the issues between Diane and Mr. Peanutbutter have stirred his former feelings for the her, or perhaps it is simply the latest manifestation of his fear of intimacy and self-destructive nature.
Elsewhere, we see the previously underused partnership of Princess Carolyn (Amy Sedaris) and Todd (Aaron Paul), who have used each other as an excuse to escape the awkwardness of the party. It’s interesting to see these two characters get some alone time together, as it is a rarity for the show. However, their partnership is cut short by a dramatic revelation when they spot a child who looks the double of her boyfriend, Vincent Adultman.
It’s a genuinely gasp-inducing moment, as Vincent’s true identity (the fact he is clearly three children stacked up in a trench coat) has remained unnoticed by everyone but BoJack and the audience themselves. Despite the initial shock though, it does appear that his secret is going to remain safe, as Princess Carolyn wrongly deduces that this child must be Vincent’s son. This false assumption in turn leads to an argument between her and Vincent (or Kevin, as we learn the child’s name).
This may not have been the funniest episode of the season, but it does show the impressive amount of character development put in by the show’s creators. After all, many other shows can match this one for hilarity and laughs-per-minute, but it’s the depth of story and the humanity in the characters that has truly separated BoJack Horseman from the pack.
Best ‘Animal-Based Gag’ of the Episode: Diane declares her love for Mr. Peanutbutter: ‘ I love you, and I do think you’re a good dog, yes you are, yes you are…’
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