Sunday, April 10, 2022

What I’m Watching: Better Things

Better Things: Season 5, Episode 7 “Family Meeting” (B+)

I very much enjoyed Sam’s stern attempt to get her children to take a week off from phones only to be immediately distracted by texts coming in on her own phone and unable to resist checking them. She had some trouble anyway given that Duke was insistent that she was going to have to do homework on her phone and was then dying to get ahold of hers so that she could write down just one word (robot) for a poem she wanted to write later. She had to bribe Max with an absurd amount of money that she was evidently never going to pay her in order to get her to stay and participate, and Frankie knew just how to set her off by calling her a boomer, something that she said wasn’t true but didn’t help the situation at all. I also liked that Sam said she was going to buy a loom, dreaming of simpler times when it might be possible to fill the quiet moments with a hobby like that rather than incessant scrolling of social media and other majestic time-wasters. This episode was also a great showcase of the relationship between Sam and Rich, which involved Sam briefly posing as Rich’s longtime girlfriend in a situation that was quite similar to what Frankie’s friend was doing, which Sam wholeheartedly and warmly supported. Rich telling Sam what he had been hiding from her for a while now was relatively honest and direct, even if he skirted around it briefly at the start, and that made for an emotional and poignant finish with Max and Sam.

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