Sunday, August 13, 2017

What I’m Watching: Casual

Casual: Season 3, Episode 12 “99” (B+)

I really didn’t expect a flashback episode, though I’m used to seeing Michaela Watkins in costume thanks to her frequent appearances in episodes of “Transparent” set in the past. Tommy Dewey and Watkins actually did a pretty good job of playing their younger selves, and I like that they cast a different actor to play a much thinner Drew. This was very heavy on the 1999 references, with Alex being particularly excited about the trailer for “The Phantom Menace” before being devastated by its quality upon seeing it the night that Laura was born. I, for one, saw the film when I was only eleven years old, and therefore remember it much more fondly than most. This was informative in explaining how Alex’s life became so intertwined with Val’s, with his purchase of a waffle maker a meaningful metaphor for growing up. Drew’s sudden return right before she was born was a harsh blow to their relationship, and the transition to Laura getting changed in a gas station bathroom on the way to Sacramento was extremely effective. Casey’s surprised reaction hit Laura the wrong way, though I can’t imagine what she was expecting. Val seems to want to be punished, upset at Jack for wanting to forgive her for cheating on her. Alex, on the other hand, is still stuck in the past in some ways, taking Judy to the same Mexican place he went to years ago in the flashback, and he doesn’t seem to understand that he can’t be present in Clark’s life – or Judy’s – in the full way that he wants to be.