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S01.E12: Zoey’s Extraordinary Dad

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11 hours ago, CapnDonkey said:

As soon as the piano rang out the first chords, I audibly yelled "Nooooooo".  Almost 3 years ago, I sang "Lullabye" to my daughter in a dark, almost empty room in the NICU at 2am.  My wife was recovering from the emergency c section and couldn't even hold our first child.  I was relaying updates as best I could, not knowing who to spend my time with, and going crazy running around the hospital.  (We're all happy and healthy now, fwiw)  I was exhausted, scared, and pacing the floor when the lone nurse said "Sing to her.  She knows your voice".  So I sang this song.   I am a half decent singer and even though I wasn't at my best, I think it calmed daddy and baby down, but left the nurse in tears.  She apologized, saying she lost her dad the previous year and he sang it to her all the time.  

I used a lot of words here to say that I cried a lot watching them do this song. 

I must be the only one who never heard that song, but it didn't take more than a couple lines to choke me up.

52 minutes ago, LisaM said:

One other point after watching American Pie a few times: Howie sitting with his little duffel bag getting ready to leave the house -- and taking one last look at the room where Mitch's hospital bed had been - gutted me. Such a strange role for the hospice nurse - he becomes a critical part of the family unit during the worst and most emotional time and then leaves.

Me too. I loved Howie, and it was just so sad that it was time for him to leave as well.

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If they get another season, I hope they have Howie's daughter end up interning at SPRQ Point, then we could have an excuse to see Howie again, such a good character.

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9 hours ago, bros402 said:

If they get another season, I hope they have Howie's daughter end up interning at SPRQ Point, then we could have an excuse to see Howie again, such a good character.

Yeah, I'm sad for the family at the loss of Mitch. But, I'm sad for me personally as a viewer at the loss of Howie. I want to learn more about him!

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On 5/7/2020 at 9:27 AM, ElectricBoogaloo said:

Zoey and Max Hook Up

Okay, I know I'm old, but the term "Hook Up" gets thrown around a lot these days. I thought it meant either 1) have sex or maybe 2) become a couple. Zoey and Max did neither. So does it also mean "make out"? If so, why doesn't anyone say "make out" anymore? I liked that term. 

On 5/7/2020 at 8:04 AM, LisaM said:

Also - Zoey greets an Asian man by the buffet after she and Simon embrace. It took me a few views to remember that this is Mitch's doctor who delivered the bad news. 

Good catch--I hadn't noticed that. The doctor must have felt a special connection to the family. It's not especially common for a physician to go to a patient's funeral or repass. But how would he know Simon? 

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7 minutes ago, topanga said:

Okay, I know I'm old, but the term "Hook Up" gets thrown around a lot these days. I thought it meant either 1) have sex or maybe 2) become a couple. Zoey and Max did neither. So does it also mean "make out"? If so, why doesn't anyone say "make out" anymore? I liked that term. 

Hook up has a lot of different meanings. It can mean anything from making out (which itself covers a range of activities) to having sex. I don't know if it's a generational thing or what, but because there's such a range in what it means to people, I always ask for clarification whenever people use this phrase in real life. Like I don't need to know the exact details but I just want to make sure I'm not assuming you drunkenly made out for a few minutes when you really meant you had sex!

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1 hour ago, topanga said:

 

Good catch--I hadn't noticed that. The doctor must have felt a special connection to the family. It's not especially common for a physician to go to a patient's funeral or repass. But how would he know Simon? 

Zoey embraced Simon and then moved into the dining room where she encountered the doctor. She introduced him to Max, who shook hands with him. 

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4 hours ago, topanga said:

Good catch--I hadn't noticed that. The doctor must have felt a special connection to the family. It's not especially common for a physician to go to a patient's funeral or repass. But how would he know Simon? 

I don't know about doctors, but I expect you're right. My mother's doctor's nurse did come to her funeral, which was very sweet. Then again, most people who met Mom loved her.

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Just rewatched the final scene. I'm probably going to be doing this fairly regularly for awhile, because it's a fascinating watch, as well as incredibly cleansing. Man, I hope this show gets renewed!

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On 5/3/2020 at 10:17 PM, Autumn said:

I also hate American Pie (it is one of those songs that was played to death when I was younger).  I feel it was chosen because it is long enough so everyone got a featured line or two that were randomly distributed.  I will miss Mitch.  Other than the song I thought the actual death and funeral was nicely handled.

I'm reasonably sure it was used because I think next season will start with Zoey no longer hearing the singing.  The music died.

As for missing Mitch?  I'm thinking there's a chance, although I couldn't put a percentage to it, that his ghost could appear.  Or not.  This is a story half appearing in Zoey's mind, so a version of him there would certainly fit there, but it all depends on if there's really a rule that what she hears is 1.) real in the sense that it;s coming out of living brains 2.) stuff her subconscious somehow deduces and then builds a scenario around... or if it's 3.) Supernatural in some way.  In the last scenario, he's most likely to appear.  In the second, he might.  In the first, he wouldn't.

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I'll admit it. Tobin's omelette bar/high cholesterol jokes did make me chuckle.

I'm so confused why Leif is back on the 4th floor and Max is fired. The work storylines are a mess.

If we're supposed to be Team Simon, giving him that whiny Nick Jonas song was the wrong choice. It also sits way too high in his range. Also, Skylar should really handle all these songs. Boy bands, Shawn Mendez, Charlie Puth, anyone who used to be in One Direction... those songs are all his. 

I get that a heart song was happening but this is not helping the whole Zoey is kind of selfish and doesn't care about other people as much as they care about her angle. 

It feels like incredibly messy writing for Zoey to assure Simon that he shouldn't be jealous and then spontaneously kiss Max. Also, it feels weird for her to finally be initiating something (not in a forced heart song) right after we've had all these episodes of Max being kind of terrible. WHAT IS THIS WRITING?

Damn it. Skylar is so perfect for this show. The heart songs interrupting their hook up were hilarious.

Every Peter Gallagher song is a blessing but still that was a weird af song choice. Lullabye (Goodnight, My Angel)???

Dream a Little Dream was probably Mary's best vocal performance.

GOD DAMN IT. I didn't think I was going to cry but the father/daughter dance got me. What is this show going to be (if it gets renewed) without Peter Gallagher? It's criminal if he doesn't get awards recognition for this role. 

I wish they'd gone with a more meaningful and less cliched choice than American Pie. The lyrics barely fit. What I appreciated about that sequence was that they didn't skimp on bringing characters back (Mitch's doctor, Howie, the friend who came to take care of him briefly, etc.) and that we saw everyone grieving and remembering and being supportive of the family in their own ways instead of everyone looking somber in the same way.

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OMG, in all the sad moments from this episode - Howie sitting on the bench with his duffel bag about broke me. Caregivers spend so much time with families and become de facto members of the family, and then say goodbye. It was great to see him acknowledged in the farewells. I loved Zak Orth in this role, and I hope that 'when' season 2 happens, they figure out some way to get him back, even if it's just one episode. I'd also like to see Bernadette Peters back in an extended arc.

I mean, they definitely left the door open by introducing his daughter. She could always return from Kenya and apply for that internship. But that might be too much follow through for this show.

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Sounds like the creator is ALL in on making this love triangle play out for quite a while, which is...annoying, to say the least. 

UUUGGGHHHH...

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And I realized that I want Simon and Max to be friends. Both could use some more friends in general.

Many shows have this problem but they're not doing a good job of implying that people have relationships outside the main cast. You don't have to hire more actors. You can indicate it with dialogue. Like, even though we saw Mo at choir practice, he always seems to be available for Zoey. Plenty of people were at that engagement party but Simon only talks to Zoey. I know Max is her best friend (though they've only known each other for 5 years). Does Max have no other friends??? It's weird. 

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When it comes to this love triangle it's just another situation of the black guy getting the short end of the stick. They made Zoey and Simon messy out of the gate while trying to portray Max's love as pure. I don't know why they made it a triangle , based on how it was set up it was unnecessary to begin with.  Another poster said Simon doesn't stand a chance but lets be real he never did.

It's like Josh Chan on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. I appreciate the attempt to have a non-white viable love interest but as you said, it was messy out of the gate. Zoey and Simon should not end up together. Even with Jessica out of the picture, their relationship is forked because all their chemistry comes from Zoey being able to know his innermost thoughts/feelings... and she still hasn't told him about it. 

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While I really loved the show, I think that it shouldn't have a second season. The arc played itself out perfectly, and when something ends, it should end.

My issue is that Mitch's arc and how everyone was dealing with his decline and letting go was really grounding the season. If the show gets a second season they really need to work out the tonal problems. The humor needs to hit as humor and not be played so straight. They need to figure out how to film the musical numbers better and quit the over-reliance on SYTTCD choreo when it doesn't fit. They need to figure out the point of Zoey's powers. And they need to stop spinning their wheels with the love triangle because it's making all the characters involved look bad. 

I'm conflicted on whether I want to see Mitch in season 2. On one hand, more Peter Gallagher always. But if they mishandle it, it could feel cheap. They definitely left the door open with the way they worded what he said to her during the dance. It was something like... she would always hear him in some way. 

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Okay, I know I'm old, but the term "Hook Up" gets thrown around a lot these days. I thought it meant either 1) have sex or maybe 2) become a couple. Zoey and Max did neither. So does it also mean "make out"? If so, why doesn't anyone say "make out" anymore? I liked that term. 

I would say it's definitely more likely to be used to imply sex. But you could also use it for any number of bases along the way to that. To me, it implies casual fooling around more than anything else. Like, I'd find it strange if someone in a committed relationship said "last night I hooked up with my boyfriend."

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13 hours ago, aradia22 said:

I'm so confused why Leif is back on the 4th floor and Max is fired. The work storylines are a mess.

Because Joan protected Leif out of guilt so Ava turned Max into the scapegoat instead. Which reminds me that Joan’s flippant reaction to Max being fired was annoying. She created the entire situation with her bad choices and writes of the consequences as though it had nothing to do with her. Sprq Point is a horrible place to work. 

13 hours ago, aradia22 said:

It feels like incredibly messy writing for Zoey to assure Simon that he shouldn't be jealous and then spontaneously kiss Max. Also, it feels weird for her to finally be initiating something (not in a forced heart song) right after we've had all these episodes of Max being kind of terrible. WHAT IS THIS WRITING?

 

I agree. The only way it works is if they do go the direction of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and the whole show is about Zoey’s realizing her flaws and growing as a person. Unfortunately I don’t think that’s the plan and instead they are sacrificing the other characters to Zoey’s drama. 

 

11 hours ago, aradia22 said:

Many shows have this problem but they're not doing a good job of implying that people have relationships outside the main cast. You don't have to hire more actors. You can indicate it with dialogue. Like, even though we saw Mo at choir practice, he always seems to be available for Zoey. Plenty of people were at that engagement party but Simon only talks to Zoey. I know Max is her best friend (though they've only known each other for 5 years). Does Max have no other friends??? It's weird. 

Exactly. The show wasted on opportunity by not developing Max more when he was distant from Zoey. Instead of having him be an ass they should have just shown he pulling away to be with his other friends. They also should have continued to give indicators that he was close to Zoey’s family. They’ve been a little better in that area with Simon. 

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Because Joan protected Leif out of guilt so Ava turned Max into the scapegoat instead. Which reminds me that Joan’s flippant reaction to Max being fired was annoying. She created the entire situation with her bad choices and writes of the consequences as though it had nothing to do with her. Sprq Point is a horrible place to work. 

Right, but why would Joan hire Leif back and not Max? And what was the point of all of that if Leif is still working for the woman he's in love with? Unless they replace Joan because of Lauren Graham's other commitments, I feel like the 6th floor nonsense got us nowhere.

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31 minutes ago, aradia22 said:

Right, but why would Joan hire Leif back and not Max? And what was the point of all of that if Leif is still working for the woman he's in love with? Unless they replace Joan because of Lauren Graham's other commitments, I feel like the 6th floor nonsense got us nowhere.

Because the only one of Joan’s employees that she cares about is Zoey. She saved Lief out of guilt and possibly fear that he would jeopardize her career. Max is expendable to her. Story wise the whole thing was filler to create Max and Zoey drama. 

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21 hours ago, aradia22 said:

I wish they'd gone with a more meaningful and less cliched choice than American Pie. The lyrics barely fit. What I appreciated about that sequence was that they didn't skimp on bringing characters back (Mitch's doctor, Howie, the friend who came to take care of him briefly, etc.) and that we saw everyone grieving and remembering and being supportive of the family in their own ways instead of everyone looking somber in the same way.

American Pie was used because it was one of the the favorite songs of the showrunner's father, who died of the same disease that Mitch died from.

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American Pie was used because it was one of the the favorite songs of the showrunner's father, who died of the same disease that Mitch died from.

Yeah, I read through the thread afterwards. While I appreciate that it was meaningful for the showrunner, I still think it was a poor choice. 

What if his dad's favorite song had been Cat's in the Cradle or Wind Beneath My Wings or Landslide by Fleetwood Mac or Changes by David Bowie or Candle in the Wind by Elton John? You know what I mean? I think there are any number of overplayed songs where you could give verses to different characters and force it to be meaningful. Simon's verse kind of worked but Joan's, Howie's, and Max's verses were pretty tortured fits. 

Not that it would have been much better but more abstract cliched songs that would have fit are... It's One Sweet Day by Mariah Carey &  Boyz II Men, So Hard to Say Goodbye by Boyz II Men, or I Will Remember You by Sarah McLachlan. 

Of course, ideally they would have chosen a less cliched song, if not something obscure then something that magically fit the different characters well because they had hunted for the perfect song instead of picking a song they liked and letting the audience rationalize the choice.

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23 hours ago, aradia22 said:

Yeah, I read through the thread afterwards. While I appreciate that it was meaningful for the showrunner, I still think it was a poor choice. 

What if his dad's favorite song had been Cat's in the Cradle or Wind Beneath My Wings or Landslide by Fleetwood Mac or Changes by David Bowie or Candle in the Wind by Elton John? You know what I mean? I think there are any number of overplayed songs where you could give verses to different characters and force it to be meaningful. Simon's verse kind of worked but Joan's, Howie's, and Max's verses were pretty tortured fits. 

Not that it would have been much better but more abstract cliched songs that would have fit are... It's One Sweet Day by Mariah Carey &  Boyz II Men, So Hard to Say Goodbye by Boyz II Men, or I Will Remember You by Sarah McLachlan. 

Of course, ideally they would have chosen a less cliched song, if not something obscure then something that magically fit the different characters well because they had hunted for the perfect song instead of picking a song they liked and letting the audience rationalize the choice.

I liked the choice - and that single shot was just impressive.

I imagine they wanted to stick to known songs that are in the Universal catalog to cut down on cost. Or maybe they blew their music budget on the Beatles song in the pilot.

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On 5/15/2020 at 10:55 PM, aradia22 said:

What if his dad's favorite song had been Cat's in the Cradle or Wind Beneath My Wings or Landslide by Fleetwood Mac or Changes by David Bowie or Candle in the Wind by Elton John? You know what I mean? I think there are any number of overplayed songs where you could give verses to different characters and force it to be meaningful. Simon's verse kind of worked but Joan's, Howie's, and Max's verses were pretty tortured fits. 

Not that it would have been much better but more abstract cliched songs that would have fit are... It's One Sweet Day by Mariah Carey &  Boyz II Men, So Hard to Say Goodbye by Boyz II Men, or I Will Remember You by Sarah McLachlan. 

Of course, ideally they would have chosen a less cliched song, if not something obscure then something that magically fit the different characters well because they had hunted for the perfect song instead of picking a song they liked and letting the audience rationalize the choice.

According to the interviews it really wasn’t as simple as picking his dad’s favorite song. The primary requirement was being long enough to fill the entire act and not being too sad. He names Hotel California and some Pink Floyd as other choices considered. 

Personally I liked it as a bookend to I Got The Music in Me. Zoey fully accepts her powers and then the music in her dies with her father. I’m glad they didn’t go with a song that was more directly about grief. I’m not sure I could have handled another moment like Lullaby. Plus American Pie matched what I was feeling after the dad’s funeral. 

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The song is a celebration as well as a mourning. I thought it was actually pretty good thematically.

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(This show should have a quotes thread!) [ETA: and now I see there is one....]

So where can one get Mo's "No 1 cares" sweatshirt?

I like that they put the singer and title of the songs in the closed captions, so now I know it's Nick Jonas singing that song I don't like.

LOL at Zoey tricking Mo with a 90% off sale! And right before Mo mentioned the ponytail, I said to myself,  wow, that's a ponytail!

Danny Michael is kinda hilarious. An omlette with no eggs?

Simon is handsome and charming, and I'm glad he's growing as a character. I also really liked that Max called Simon because he knew he is also part of Zoey's support system.

So - even though Zoey and Max made out in this finale, and I'm sure they're 'endgame', Simon still seems very much still in play as a love interest. So the triangle is still there, and I'm a bit surprised at that. I like Zoey with either guy, but I don't know if they should stretch this triangle out for another season - if there is one.

And the rest:

I can't help comparing: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend dealt with some heavy topics, but I don't think they directly dealt with death; and it was much more comedic than this series.

So the second half of this was the saddest half hour of TV I've seen in a while. 😭 It was nice that each family member got to have a final song with Dad. The final number was beautifully sung and shot, but - and this may be a generational thing - I’m not so impressed/moved by “American Pie”.  It was nice seeing a few other recurring characters at the funeral.

This was good as a finale, however, I still felt that there could have been one more post-funeral episode.

On 5/4/2020 at 9:28 AM, Steph01924 said:

I read a good interview with the creator and it seems like they haven't officially renewed it yet. The article does answer some questions we have about Lauren Graham's role and why it may be reduced and why Max/Zoey kissed this episode (essentially, to make it fair because Simon got some lip action in other episodes). Sounds like the creator is ALL in on making this love triangle play out for quite a while, which is...annoying, to say the least. 

 

Okay, well, that's confirmed.

On 5/4/2020 at 1:50 PM, Empress1 said:

Mo's "so what did I do? I put on this ponytail ..." had me rolling. ...

It was hilarious!

On 5/4/2020 at 10:42 PM, Dani said:

This week in the love triangle Zoey didn’t look good. She’s goes out of her way to tell Simon he has no reason to be jealous which is clearly a lie. It also bothers me that Zoey is still hiding how she knows what Simon is feeling. He’s talking about honesty and she’s keeping something very big from him. 

I feel like they will need to have Zoey tell Simon about her powers if they go deeper with Zoey/Simon. ... Then $5 says that ends up being the reason why they don't work out, and she ends up with Max.

On 5/15/2020 at 3:27 AM, aradia22 said:

I'm so confused why Leif is back on the 4th floor and Max is fired. The work storylines are a mess.

Seriously. But they're not as important (to me), so I let a lot slide.

On 5/15/2020 at 3:27 AM, aradia22 said:

It's like Josh Chan on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. I appreciate the attempt to have a non-white viable love interest but as you said, it was messy out of the gate. Zoey and Simon should not end up together. ...

I hadn't even made that particular connection, but yeah, the similarities are there. (One difference is that Josh was the primary love interest, but here it's Max.) I still think that Zoey could be with Simon, though. But yes, they've made things messier on his side.

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10 hours ago, Trini said:

I feel like they will need to have Zoey tell Simon about her powers if they go deeper with Zoey/Simon. ... Then $5 says that ends up being the reason why they don't work out, and she ends up with Max.

So Max would be her consolation prize? That's why I continue to find it weird that Zoey kissed Max. I know she sang a love song to him in another episode, but IMO the writing never made it clear to me that Zoe was pining over both Max and Simon. It seemed that she was attracted to Simon but knew it was wrong (when he was engaged and then when he was recently un-unengaged). And she liked Max as a best friend but didn't like him, like him. Which made her feel guilty because his singing repeatedly revealed that he loved her.

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56 minutes ago, topanga said:

So Max would be her consolation prize?

No, I don't see it that way because I think both guys are good options. But since it seems the writers really want to play out the triangle, she's probably going to be with one first, then the other. And IMO, it looks like Max is in a better position to be the long-term love interest.

1 hour ago, topanga said:

but IMO the writing never made it clear to me that Zoe was pining over both Max and Simon.

It definitely hasn't been perfect, and I wouldn't use "pining" to describe her feelings for Max, but I think they have shown her starting to think about him in romantic way.

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I think Max's decision to not go back to Sprq Plug (yeah, I know, don't @ me!) was a sort of reveal to Zoey - I think if he was a subordinate, she felt they shouldn't pursue a relationship, but when he decided not to take her up on her job offer, it cleared the decks. I know that's a really simplistic explanation, but I'm okay with it. I like Max, and I like Simon. And damn, I'm going to go watch American Pie again, and I'm gonna have to deal with all the dust, and GODDAMN you guys, I really need this show to come back so I can continue to crush on John Clarence Stewart and Skylar Astin for awhile longer...

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So Max would be her consolation prize? That's why I continue to find it weird that Zoey kissed Max. I know she sang a love song to him in another episode, but IMO the writing never made it clear to me that Zoe was pining over both Max and Simon. It seemed that she was attracted to Simon but knew it was wrong (when he was engaged and then when he was recently un-unengaged). And she liked Max as a best friend but didn't like him, like him. Which made her feel guilty because his singing repeatedly revealed that he loved her.

I think the love triangle is the problem. Without the love triangle, we wouldn't see the contrast between how Zoey acts with Simon and with Max. From episode 1, Zoey has had a crush on Simon and been attracted to him. Even though she tells Max that she didn't want to be dating anyone because of her dad, for plot reasons she had to keep pursuing Simon. Which makes it seem like she just didn't want to be with Max. BUT, on the other hand, I think we are supposed to think that Zoey does have feelings for Max. The strongest evidence would be the 500 Miles episode and the I'm Yours number. But she doesn't want to ruin the friendship or engage in something serious right now. However, again, because they're making her do the triangle, Zoey can't oversell her feelings for Max. 

If they're really going to go ahead with Zoey and Max going forward, they need to show us some scenes where they can just be normal with each other as a romantic couple (as opposed to as friends or coworkers, which we've already seen) before they throw in any turmoil (as I'm sure they will do because TV loves unhappy people). 

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Late to this party, but I love the show and I'm thrilled it's renewed!

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