Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Round Two: Grace and Frankie

Grace and Frankie: Season 1, Episode 2 “The Credit Cards” (B)

Most of this episode is a whole lot like the first one, meaning that Grace is angry and vindictive and Frankie is doing her very best to stay sane despite feeling betrayed. The dynamic hasn’t changed much, but it’s clear that Grace can’t truly disconnect herself from caring about a woman who she spent most of her life hating since she actually does care a little bit. Frankie continues to emphasize meditation and drugs as the answer, which hasn’t gotten tiresome yet but surely will eventually. What I like most about the show is that it’s not confined just to its two main characters and their soon-to-be-ex-husbands, who thought it wise to cut off their credit cards without talking to them first because it’s what they’d do first if it was anyone else’s divorce case. The adult children of both couples are quite fascinating and add some different drama to the mix in the way they interact. I best recognize Ethan Embry, who used to be so terrific on “Brotherhood,” as Coyote, who appears to have had an epic drug-related meltdown and is now seen as a screwup everyone expects to slip. Baron Vaughn, who was on “Fairly Legal,” is his far more responsible brother Nwabudike. Brooklyn Decker, former star of “Friends with Better Lives,” is Grace’s daughter Mallory who feels eternally indebted to her mother, while June Diane Raphael, who recurred on “New Girl,” plays her less committal sister Brianna. Also in the ensemble for this episode were Geoff Stults from “The Finder” as Mallory’s hapless husband, Joe Morton from “Scandal” as Jason, and Mary Kay Place from “Big Love” as Amanda. What a cast, and what an interesting expanded universe this show lives in.

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