Wednesday, March 6, 2019

What I’m Watching: Better Things (Season Premiere)

Better Things: Season 3, Episode 1 “Chicago” (B)

This show is extremely beloved by critics, and while I do appreciate it, I don’t always find it to be quite as mesmerizing as everyone else does. This opener was an emotional goodbye for Sam as Max started college, considerably dramatized as she had to literally run to get a good room and then punctuated by Sam having to ask for the goodbye hug that she really wanted. The montage of black-and-white photographs help to set the tone for an episode that was mostly focused on Sam coming to terms with her age and her daughter taking the next big step in life. I liked their conversation about wanting the best bed in the worst space, and Max proudly showing Sam the fake ID that she’d been using for years demonstrated the unusual nature of their relationship. Her mostly-gay male roommate didn’t win Sam over, but she doesn’t really have any control over what her daughter does now. Getting searched while wearing absorbent underwear at TSA was a low point, while she had a temporary high when she got carded at the bar before realizing that the bartender was carding everyone. The fire in the cockpit on the plane felt sort of random, and arriving home to find her mother blaming the daughter she just dropped off at college for a car accident was the right introduction to a house full of people she didn’t know and a reunion with another daughter who has no interest in talking to her.

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