Wednesday, September 21, 2016

What I’m Watching: Vice Principals (Season Finale)

Vice Principals: Season 1, Episode 9 “End of the Line” (B+)

I wasn’t sure how this finale would play out since the last episode changed everything since it finally gave Lee the smoking gun they needed while Neal seemed like he was less and less excited about bringing down the increasingly sympathetic Belinda Brown. Since getting rid of her was always their aim, that’s what they decided to do, though Lee was far more into it and went way too far, as evidenced by her reaction to the news that they had burned down her house. Blackmailing her with the video footage would have been enough, but now they’ve created a formidable enemy who seemed to go away quietly but clearly has done exactly the opposite (we’ll get back to that shortly). Lee and Neal being appointed interim co-principals with the ability to tell their families that they’re the principal was a perfect development, one that allows them full run of the school without a sense of permanence that they can truly be dictators. Lee trying to put all the blame for Belinda’s downfall on Neal was disconcerting, and it seems that Neal is practically getting much more down than his bowtie-wearing colleague. He’s maturing in many ways, getting his daughter a bike that he knows will push her closer to Ray and apologizing to Amanda in fantastic form. Seeing his car and Lee’s on fire changed the tone considerably, though not nearly as much as a masked person shooting Neal twice, leaving him to bleed out in the parking lot. That’s a serious shift I wasn’t ready for, but he didn’t get hit anywhere fatal, so I’m sure that will just have him and Lee walking on eggshells and looking over their shoulders when this show returns whenever it’s supposed to for the back nine episodes of its two-season order. I’ve really enjoyed this show and think that it shows enormous potential - I look forward to more soon.

Season grade: A-
Season MVP: Danny McBride as Neal

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