Saturday, August 27, 2022

Emmy Catch-Up: Abbott Elementary

Abbott Elementary: Season 1, Episode 3 “Wishlist” (B+)

It’s fun to explore the interpersonal dynamics among the teachers at the school, and how, though Barbara is seen as a mentor by most of them, she’s still going to act a certain way and choose to suffer rather than lower herself to some standard that feels beneath her. The wish list was the perfect opportunity for Janine to get typically too excited and go to Ava for help, something that ended up working well when she created her a legitimately strong viral video. Never one to stop at the right point, she then had to try to help both Gregory and Barbara spruce up their classrooms as well, and having Ava make a video for Barbara turned out to be an unfortunate mistake. The “oldest teacher at the poorest school” might have been great for publicity, but it absolutely was not the message Barbara wanted to broadcast about herself. It took Gregory some time to figure it out, but replacing blank walls and office posters with the drawings the kids made of him was a brilliant idea, and it was fun to have Ava decipher what he was doing in each of them since he definitely didn’t know. Jacob tried valiantly to turn the trash into something useful, but sometimes trash really just is trash. Mr. Johnson was not amused by the time he took to do it and then, when he did finally throw it out, it came with a lot of water from his last ditch-attempt to find a new function for it. Ava was right to laugh at Janine’s threat to quit, something that she’d never do because she just cares too much.

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