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S01.E03: Zoey's Extraordinary Boss

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Zoey must decide whether or not to get involved in her boss's Joan's troubled marriage after she hears Joan sing a "heart song." Zoey creates a new program for the family to communicate with Mitch, but when his first word is not what they expected, Maggie reaches a breaking point.

Airing Sunday, February 23, 2020.

 

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I knew it was just a matter of time before they gave Lauren Graham a main storyline! Although I'm glad she finally dumped her gaslighting dickhead of a husband, I thought if she's put up with his horrible behavior for THIS long, she couldn't have waited 20 minutes? I know it was an empowering moment for her to do the demo, but if the watch project doesn't do well, they could blame her and/or fire her.

But overall, it was a good message this week to speak up for what you want. Maggie, Joan, and even Susan needed to stop deferring to their husbands and tell people what they wanted. The sad thing is that many people stay in relationships because it's the devil they know. As Joan said, apologizing when it isn't your fault and continuing to try to fix things can less scary than making a big change like standing up for yourself and kicking your jackass husband to the curb.

Maggie's situation is a little bit different but she still needed to learn not to always put her husband first. It's okay to need help and to take a break from being a caregiver. That's a really time consuming and stressful role.

I totally get her disappointment though. After not being able to communicate for so long, she was hoping for her husband to say something sweet and loving (or something besides requesting lemonade and no more Real Housewives).

I liked that Zoey was getting the Wonderfalls/Joan of Arcadia message from the universe (refusing to help someone is not an option) but it was also very nice to see that even after she stopped hearing Satisfaction, she still wanted to help Joan. Growth!

Heh, and that was the smallest marching band I've ever seen. 13 people? I love that Mo was a drum major.

One small nitpick - CBD oil doesn't get you high. It's THC that gets you high so Autumn's hair oil wouldn't make Max high. I know he was joking but dude, come on. You live in SF. There's a dispensary within walking distance of wherever you are. You must know this. I've never smoked and even I know that.

And OF COURSE Zoey doesn't know what Louboutins are. This is a girl who wears a long sleeved sweater over a collared shirt to go to a club.

 

Songs available on itunes/amazon:

  • (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction - Lauren Graham
  • Superstar - Michael Thomas Grant
  • How Can You Mend a Broken Heart - Mary Steenburgen
Edited by ElectricBoogaloo
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2 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

I knew it was just a matter of time before they gave Lauren Graham a main storyline! Although I'm glad she finally dumped her gaslighting dickhead of a husband, I thought if she's put up with his horrible behavior for THIS long, she couldn't have waited 20 minutes? I know it was an empowering moment for her to do the demo, but if the watch project doesn't do well, they could blame her and/or fire her.

Can she be fired? I’ve been assuming that Joan owned the company. I liked the story on an emotional level but from a practical standpoint was annoyed. The Shigeru Miyamoto thing in particular was really stupid. 

 

2 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

One small nitpick - CBD oil doesn't get you high. It's THC that gets you high so Autumn's hair oil wouldn't make Max high. I know he was joking but dude, come on. You live in SF. There's a dispensary within walking distance of wherever you are. You must know this. I've never smoked and even I know that.

I thought that was the point of the joke. 
 

 

2 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

And OF COURSE Zoey doesn't know what Louboutins are. This is a girl who wears a long sleeved sweater over a collared shirt to go to a club.

And she forgot them at the BART station. 

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looks like there are going to be 12 episodes. with a relatively short season, i think peter gallagher should be required to sing in each and every episode. 

Edited by wonderwoman
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I loved the launch into Jesus Christ Superstar!  That was probably the best song placement so far, and was even more fitting as we found out more about Joan's husband through the episode.  And, I have to say, the supporting cast are all really good dancers.  In fact, I was surprised at how good a dancer Jane Levy was with last week's opening number.  (Speaking of, I guess my hope of big musical numbers starting off every episode has been dashed.) 

Again, I'm not a fan of Mary S's songs.  I don't know if it's the arrangements they're giving her, or if she really doesn't have a strong voice, but I don't enjoy her numbers. 

Was anyone else thinking "lemonade" was going to mean something different?  bigger meaning?  That was just weird.  But it did lead nicely into MS losing it in the grocery store. 

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5 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

I totally get her disappointment though. After not being able to communicate for so long, she was hoping for her husband to say something sweet and loving (or something besides requesting lemonade and no more Real Housewives).

It reminds you of that famous joke who's punchline is "up until now, everything has been satisfactory".

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This show is so cute! I don't feel like it will last a super long time, but I'm enjoying every actor and all the singing (maybe not MS's songs, which are a combination of songs I'm not interested in and her tuneless singing, but I appreciate that she's trying) and the sweet/sincere plots.

I'm glad Joan didn't get angry at Zoey when Charlie left lunch after Joan pushed her into speaking up (I feel like some shows would definitely turn it that way) and that they ended up supporting each other in the workplace.

I do feel a little weird that the show (by way of the characters) are trying to convince me that Simon is a viable love interest option. Like...he has a fiance. Yeah he and Zoey have had a connection, but I don't feel I've seen him giving her more-than-friendly vibes. Sure, be friends, but should I actively be wanting Zoey to break up an almost-marriage? Do I want her to be with someone who would emotionally cheat on his fiance and jump right into another relationship right away? Meh.

Max is at least only casually dating someone and has already expressed interest in her (via song). I would guess he's the ultimate ending point for Zoey (if she needs to be with anyone by the time the show is over) but I'd rather Simon be "unavailable" in another way if we're going to continue some sort of love triangle.

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52 minutes ago, Steph01924 said:

This show is so cute!

Yes, and I hope it gets a decent run. It's the type of quirky show that critics tend to like (because it's good), is filled with talented people, and has some good writing, but sadly does not always finds its audience.

I think we've now heard each of the major characters sing (except the Zoey's brother). I'm curious how he does with a song. Mary, not so good, Lauren, OK I guess (even with gobs of autotune) but both are still fine actresses and more than enough for this show. And as someone upthread mentioned, they can certainly all dance surprisingly well.

They've given some amusingly sharky lines to Alex Newell, who apparently will get a big song and plot arc next week according to the promos.

 

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3 hours ago, chaifan said:

Was anyone else thinking "lemonade" was going to mean something different?  bigger meaning?  That was just weird.  But it did lead nicely into MS losing it in the grocery store. 

I was on her side. "We're still talking about this?" is rude as fuck. Get her, Maggie!

7 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

Maggie's situation is a little bit different but she still needed to learn not to always put her husband first. It's okay to need help and to take a break from being a caregiver. That's a really time consuming and stressful role.

I used to have a boss who had an elderly widowed mother. He had three or four siblings and they all lived within two hours of their mom. Once I was in his office and he had a spreadsheet open that was called "Mom," and it was a schedule of all his siblings splitting caring for their mom. (She didn't need round the clock care like Peter Gallagher does - she had all her faculties. She was just elderly.) That family needs that at the very least, and I think Maggie needs a caregiver support group.

"You know I got my fighting nails on. I'm like Wolverine, but daintier" was the line of the episode.

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I was surprised by the brother's wife. I was like who the hell is that and why is she eating a whole loaf of white bread.

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I was confused by the masculine pronoun for Mo. Is No a male or female? Is Mo supposed to be trans

 

Eta: answer in next week's description.

Edited by Goldmoon · Reason: New info

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1 hour ago, Goldmoon said:

I was confused by the masculine pronoun for Mo. Is No a male or female? Is Mo supposed to be trans

 

Eta: answer in next week's description.

The actor, Alex Newell, is a gender non-conforming gay man. He played a trans girl on Glee. I thought Mo was supposed to be nonbinary- I was surprised by the masculine pronouns too, I was expecting they/them. I'm really looking forward to hearing him sing though. 

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6 hours ago, Steph01924 said:

This show is so cute! I don't feel like it will last a super long time, but I'm enjoying every actor and all the singing (maybe not MS's songs, which are a combination of songs I'm not interested in and her tuneless singing, but I appreciate that she's trying) and the sweet/sincere plots.

I'm glad Joan didn't get angry at Zoey when Charlie left lunch after Joan pushed her into speaking up (I feel like some shows would definitely turn it that way) and that they ended up supporting each other in the workplace.

I do feel a little weird that the show (by way of the characters) are trying to convince me that Simon is a viable love interest option. Like...he has a fiance. Yeah he and Zoey have had a connection, but I don't feel I've seen him giving her more-than-friendly vibes. Sure, be friends, but should I actively be wanting Zoey to break up an almost-marriage? Do I want her to be with someone who would emotionally cheat on his fiance and jump right into another relationship right away? Meh.

Max is at least only casually dating someone and has already expressed interest in her (via song). I would guess he's the ultimate ending point for Zoey (if she needs to be with anyone by the time the show is over) but I'd rather Simon be "unavailable" in another way if we're going to continue some sort of love triangle.

Yeah not feeling the love triangle because they have already handicapped Simon. He basically has both hands tied behind his back. Only thing that can make this more viable is if the fiance breaks his heart and he turns to Zoey.

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9 hours ago, chaifan said:

Was anyone else thinking "lemonade" was going to mean something different?  bigger meaning?  That was just weird.  But it did lead nicely into MS losing it in the grocery store. 

Yes, I really thought it was going to have a different meaning too.  It just seemed so strange that would be the first thing he writers, but I guess he'd really been craving it.

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The big launch of Jesus Christ Superstar by the tech guys about Joan's tech guru husband was my favorite use of music so far, that was hysterical! And from what we saw of him, sure on point according to his massive freaking ego. 

I kept waiting for there to be some other meaning behind the lemonade, but I guess Zoeys dad was just really thirsty for some tasty lemony goodness. Glad that Zoey and her brother are going to try and help more, and that Maggie finally admitted that all of this is getting to her and accepted their help. Even parents to adult kids still sometimes struggle to admit they need their kids help, or admitting to having problems and not covering things up with a smile, so glad to see some good movement on that front. 

I really like Max and Simon, but Simon having a fiance really puts a block on the whole love triangle. Yeah they can break up, but getting with someone after ending a serious relationship is really tricky, plus Simon is still dealing with his dads death, so if he was dealing with that and a broken engagement, would he really be in the right head space for romance. Max seems like the more viable option (we know he is interested, is only casually dating someone for a short amount of time) but Zoey seems a bit more conflicted about liking him romantically, and he has not even said anything to her about his feelings for her in the "real" world yet so...all up in the air for now I guess. 

Still really loving the show! I am really impressed at how good the cast is at not just singing, but dancing!

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4 hours ago, tennisgurl said:

The big launch of Jesus Christ Superstar by the tech guys about Joan's tech guru husband was my favorite use of music so far, that was hysterical! And from what we saw of him, sure on point according to his massive freaking ego. 

16 hours ago, chaifan said:

I loved the launch into Jesus Christ Superstar!  That was probably the best song placement so far,

Yes, Jesus Christ Superstar was the best fit so far! So funny! I’m still smiling thinking about it. And yes, @tennisgurl, it fit his “massive freaking ego” which seems to be unearned, unlike typical literary types of Christ, which I guess makes this possibly one of the best parodies ever. BTW, was it a staircase or an escalator? Just asking.


 

4 hours ago, tennisgurl said:

I kept waiting for there to be some other meaning behind the lemonade, but I guess

16 hours ago, chaifan said:

Was anyone else thinking "lemonade" was going to mean something different?  bigger meaning?  That was just weird.  But it did lead nicely into MS losing it in the grocery store

I was so frustrated waiting for it to be revealed that he was referencing making lemonade (something sweet) out of lemons (something sour and also cars that break down from the time they are driven off the lot) but they didn’t go there. 

 

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The "Jesus Christ, Superstar" moment was awesome. I totally agree with everyone here about the use of that number, just because it perfectly introduced a character we had never met before. In one number, it explained everything about Joan's husband that we needed to know. 

I was kind of waiting for the explanation to Lemonade as well, but they never got there. What a shame; maybe he just really DID want lemonade. Or maybe he wanted to listen to Beyonce.

As for Zoey's love triangle, I like Simon and Max in various ways, but I like the idea of Zoey/Max staying best friends, and Simon being engaged does hinder the relationship. Because now, there's fewer ways where Simon/Zoey could get together that would work. That's either through Simon's fiancee breaking things off, or if Simon ends things himself because he has feelings for Zoey. There's also a third, less ideal, option of Simon cheating with Zoey, so I hope they don't go there. 

A little bit more interactions with Zoey's family, which is great. I was happy to see a little bit more David and Maggie (I had to look up the names for Zoey's brother and mother). The family scenes still work fairly well for me.

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18 minutes ago, Lady Calypso said:

(I had to look up the names for Zoey's brother and mother).

Tall Andrew Leeds and tiny Jane Levy as brother and sister seems to declare that Broadway experience trumped everything in casting. 

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28 minutes ago, shapeshifter said:

Tall Andrew Leeds and tiny Jane Levy as brother and sister seems to declare that Broadway experience trumped everything in casting. 

That happens in real life all the time. 

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7 hours ago, shapeshifter said:

Tall Andrew Leeds and tiny Jane Levy as brother and sister seems to declare that Broadway experience trumped everything in casting. 

I'm 5'1, my 'little' brothers are 6'2 and 6'3.

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7 minutes ago, Notwisconsin said:

the series is feeling a bit to 'woke' for it's own good.

How? Have they addressed any social injustice issue at all?

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5’2 natural red head here. Bro is 6’2 with dark brown hair.  Both parents have dark brown/black hair. Genetics are fun. 

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2 minutes ago, Aliconehead said:

5’2 natural red head here. Bro is 6’2 with dark brown hair.  Both parents have dark brown/black hair. Genetics are fun. 

I had at least one teacher in high school say to me "Is [brother's name] your brother? You don't look anything alike." (He's two years older.) 

On the other hand, my mom stopped into my old job one day and a coworker saw her talking to me at the customer service desk and said "This must be your mom."

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12 hours ago, Lady Calypso said:

I was kind of waiting for the explanation to Lemonade as well, but they never got there. What a shame; maybe he just really DID want lemonade. Or maybe he wanted to listen to Beyonce.

I stopped waiting for an explanation from the father's point of view once it turned out to be a story contrivance for the sorority sisters to have the Beyonce angle without any musical relevance.

12 hours ago, Lady Calypso said:

As for Zoey's love triangle, I like Simon and Max in various ways, but I like the idea of Zoey/Max staying best friends, and Simon being engaged does hinder the relationship.

I am grateful to Mo for keeping it light by constantly switching between team Max and team Simon. And I sort of like the setup of having two possible love interests instead of one obvious pushmepullyu UST game . . . if they can keep that ball in the air for any length of time. Zoey's crush on Simon led to her getting to be friends with him and finding out about his fiancee set a boundary for her. I'll probably keep my head in the sand until they force some romantic/jealous angle I can't ignore.

On 2/24/2020 at 10:53 AM, chaifan said:

Again, I'm not a fan of Mary S's songs.  I don't know if it's the arrangements they're giving her, or if she really doesn't have a strong voice, but I don't enjoy her numbers. 

I think we ought to make a distinction between last week's Moondance which was real (not Zoey's power) and this week's How Can You Mend A Broken Heart which was Zoey's power. Moondance was so bad (a little bit off in both rhythm and pitch) I assumed it must be exaggerated to underline the fact that Zoey's power gives people the appearance of professional singing skills they don't have. HCYMABH was passable.

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1 hour ago, Aliconehead said:

Genetics are fun. 

As noted sage Cosmo Kramer once remarked, "Mother Nature is a mad scientist, Jerry!"

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I liked the Jesus Christ Superstar bit the most, mostly because just a week or so ago, I randomly started singing that out loud at work (quietly), and a couple of my fellow Broadway nerd colleagues started singing along (a normal occurrence at my workplace... the pay could be better, but at least no one shoots anyone weird looks for singing out loud... maybe it's an SF thing? 😆) I don't even like that musical, but that song tends to get stuck in my head frequently.

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I went to high school from 68-72, the time of the original Superstar.  Some student took to singing the song under their breath about various teachers, a la:

(Three syllable teacher name); Superstar; Who in the hell do you think you are?

A distant memory...

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10 hours ago, SomeTameGazelle said:

I stopped waiting for an explanation from the father's point of view once it turned out to be a story contrivance for the sorority sisters to have the Beyonce angle without any musical relevance.

There couldn't be a musical number because Zoey wasn't there. I was a little worried that they wouldn't show any scenes that didn't have Zoey in them, good to see that they will. 

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21 hours ago, Dani said:

How? Have they addressed any social injustice issue at all?

No, they just have the standard "wokeness" stereotypes on full display. All the guys seem to be dicks except the father, who's disabled and the sassy neighbor of color, who's nonbinary.

Edited by Notwisconsin
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26 minutes ago, Notwisconsin said:

No, they just have the standard "wokeness" stereotypes on full display. All the guys seem to be dicks except the father, who's disabled and the sassy neighbor of color, who's nonbinary.

Both Simon and Max appear to be kind and decent. And Zoey's brother can be a bit provoking but he showed himself to be supportive with Maggie's issues here.

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4 hours ago, Notwisconsin said:

No, they just have the standard "wokeness" stereotypes on full display. All the guys seem to be dicks except the father, who's disabled and the sassy neighbor of color, who's nonbinary.

In addition to what the Tame Gazelle pointed out, most of the office guys (the coding bro's) have been pretty cool.  There was the one who, in the first episode, wanted the manager job.  But he's been decent to her face.  And there's one other who was saying stereotypically "bro" stuff the first episode.  But the others have been fine.

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I was waiting to see if they would have Mary S. sing.  If you are familiar with "Elf" she sings a Christmas song at the end along with everyone else, and she is ear-splittingly BAD. (She and Pierce Brosnan should do a duet - not!) I expect that's why they are picking less challenging songs for her.  It's kind of funny that her singing voice is so unremarkable since she has that medical history of hearing everything in song, and actually composing some songs. Of course, I love music and love to sing at the top of my lungs, but my voice is totally cringe-worthy, so there you have it!

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You know who would slay the boss role? Laura Benanti.  She looks like Graham and can sing.  

I"m still really enjoying this.  

On 2/26/2020 at 2:36 PM, Notwisconsin said:

No, they just have the standard "wokeness" stereotypes on full display.

Isn't it supposed to take place in San Francisco?

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13 hours ago, VartanFan said:

You know who would slay the boss role? Laura Benanti.  She looks like Graham and can sing.  

Carmen Cusack played the boss character in the original pilot. I would have loved seeing her in that role, but I would happily take Laura Benanti instead of Lauren Graham.

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Another huge thumbs up to the idea of having Laura Berlanti.  She must have been booked.

Lauren Graham sang "I Will Always Love You" on Gilmore Girls, and did a really decent job. She was OK with "Roar", but it would be nice to have everyone be really strong singers.

I like how the boss isn't totally evil, like in The Devil Wears Prada. TV and movies need to show that not all bosses, and not all women bosses, are complete jerks, and that women can support each other at work. (A lot are, but not all.)

How cute did Zoey look at the party. Loved the sparkly top, a little more makeup, hair slightly more fancy. So cute. She looks great all the time, and I like her printed shirts and sweaters. Dancing with Simon looked like fun.

 

 

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9 minutes ago, MoreCoffeePlease said:

Dancing with Simon looked like fun.

I liked how dorky everyone was and no one cared. They were all gettin' funky!

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On 2/24/2020 at 11:12 AM, Dani said:

Can she be fired? I’ve been assuming that Joan owned the company.

Joan is clearly important enough to make company announcements, admittedly, but really I haven't seen much, in any episode, that came even close to suggesting that Joan owned the company, I don't see any indication that she runs the whole company, just that division.

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I am like the one person in the world who can't stand Lauren Graham's acting so I wasn't thrilled that she had such a big storyline this week. Her voice was grating as well. Hoping she goes back to the background in future episodes. 

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21 hours ago, MoreCoffeePlease said:

She looks great all the time, and I like her printed shirts and sweaters.

I was admiring Zoey's green sweater with the printed blouse very strongly and I have to say I took it very personally when everyone started criticizing her for looking so unfashionable. She looked fine dressed up but she's also cute in her work style Joan disparaged. (Joan as a name feels a little wrong to me for the boss character. Is Joan supposed to be older than Lauren Graham is?)

Did we ever see these alleged Louboutins?

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On 2/29/2020 at 8:39 AM, SomeTameGazelle said:

I was admiring Zoey's green sweater with the printed blouse very strongly and I have to say I took it very personally when everyone started criticizing her for looking so unfashionable. She looked fine dressed up but she's also cute in her work style Joan disparaged. 

I love Zoey's outfits. 

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18 minutes ago, ams1001 said:

I love Zoey's outfits. 

She has that Kimmy Schmidt kind of look.  I love it when people are not afraid of color.  I tend to be a rainbow myself in regards to what I wear and I've had a few people comment that they like the fact that I don't stick to basic colors.  I want everything in Mo's closet too!

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Catching up on the show (I haven't been watching TV much in the last few months.)  Sitting here in  Day-6 of my NorCal isolation, I sort of freaked out watching Loren Graham touching all the surfaces in the bathroom and flicking water off of her briefly (way under 20secs) washed hands.

Then I remembers that this 1) aired before people were dealing with this in the States, and 2) is fictional.

Otherwise, I enjoyed this episode.  And I thought LG sounded way better in the full numbers than the brief clip repeatedly show in the promos. 

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6 hours ago, RachelKM said:

Sitting here in  Day-6 of my NorCal isolation, I sort of freaked out watching Loren Graham touching all the surfaces in the bathroom and flicking water off of her briefly (way under 20secs) washed hands.

I am watching all shows now the same way I used to look for the Twin Towers in NYC-set shows.
Since by the time they get back to being able to film stuff again the virus conditions will be all over, likely in the future they will just make passing comments about hand washing being a good thing in general and such.

P.S. I adore your Alice in Wonderland avatar, @RachelKM, but she is touching her face! 🤣 --but not her eyes or nose or mouth. 😐

Edited by shapeshifter
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