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S01.E05: Rule #21: Leave Childishness to Children

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Abby dates the young man who's trying to woo her. Elsewhere, Lyla's mother (Bernadette Peters) arrives in Los Angeles to impress a caseworker, and Phoebe informs her friends that she's in a polyamorous relationship.

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I have been lurking here for a while and have enjoyed reading the posts. I couldn't believe that nobody had posted about the last episode as of this morning, so I registered for an account! I started out hating this show, but it has actually grown on me. I do feel it is missing something, though and it is not nearly as funny or engaging as it should be and as the previews built it up to be. It is trying too hard to be Sex In the City. Abby is supposed to be Carrie and Phoebe is Samantha. I guess Janine's character is Miranda?' No Charlotte. Maybe the new character will be Charlotte. I like Abby and Lyla (sorry to see her go), but can't stand Phoebe. Hate her character and hate the actress. Find her very annoying and her smug sexuality is just way over the top. The actor that plays Jake is very good but the whole situation with his young girlfriend bugs me. He is just so average looking. There is no way a successful young TV actress would go for him! Average looking and wildly successful, maybe, or really good looking but a loser perhaps, but not an average looking loser! Maybe the character was supposed to be really good-looking but the producers were wowed by his audition and cast him despite his looks. In any event, it is bad casting. The younger boyfriend is also terrible casting since he and Abby look about the same age. I found it a little hard to suspend my disbelief when Jake was making fun of how young he was! The part should have been cast with a CW type young hot actor! Speaking of (formerly) hot young actors! I totally cringed at the whole C Thomas Howell storyline, right down to the green polka dot socks during sex! I can't believe that this was the same hot young actor from "The Outsiders" Wow, has he aged. Sorry to get off track, I realize that episode was last week. Anyway, in response to the last poster, they didn't say what the caseworker decided, but the implication was that it was not good. I read that Janine Garofolo had stayed on after deciding to quit so that they could wrap up her character. I have a feeling that with the forced leave of absence from her job and potentially losing her kids, she will end up either leaving town or going off the deep end.

Edited by Momof2boyz
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Hey, awesome post!  OK, so I said I was gonna stop watching, but I heard Bernadette Peters was gonna be on & I adore her, so I watched this ep.  Oy, where do I start?  First off, I agree with everything you've stated.  A big prob with this show is casting.  Hopefully this was Warren Christie's last ep cuz he was painfully miscast as THE oldest looking 28 year old to have ever existed -- cuz he's nearly 40 & looks ten years older.  He looks older than Lisa Edelstein.  So any of the characters' comments about how young he is make absolutely no sense.  Also, agewise, the casting of Bernadette Peters as Janeane's mom didn't make much sense either.  Bernadette is mid 60's while Janeane is 50.  But soaps do this kinda thing all the time & it didn't bother me too much.

 

Do I think the show is getting better?  Maybe a bit.  But I can't stand Phoebe either -- or the actress playing her.  So will Janeane being gone mean more Phoebe?  Cuz if that's the case . . . ugh.  Anyhoo, ratings have improved, with 868 thou viewers for this ep.  Maybe Janeane shoulda stuck around.

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Been lurking on this thread for a little while. I don't understand the casting at all. The younger man thing with Abby is baffling me. I think they're just casting friends or something. It's like the elephant in the room. Count me in the can't stand Phoebe camp too. Beau whatever her name is can't act, and they're trying too hard to make her Samantha from SATC. To be honest, trying too hard is a good description of this show overall.

Ratings were a little better this week, but there was nothing else on. I was kinda shocked to read that it's not doing that well with women who are Bravo's target audience. Why do we think that is? Unlikeability of the characters? I think Cougar Town is up against it next week. Same target audience, so is that the final nail in the coffin?

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Yeah, I was puzzled why ratings seemed surprisingly good, but I think you nailed it.  Cuz this was a first-run show in a sea of reruns & crap, so there was pretty much no competition.  I'm a bit curious where this show is gonna go after Janeane is gone.  The Phoebe character is an airhead.  The poly-whatever thing just seemed like a gimmick for this ep.  I was bored with it.  If the writers were going for shock, they missed.

 

My opinion on this show hasn't much changed.  There's some potential, but there's still a lot missing.  They can focus on Abby & Jake -- and Abby dealing with her kids & her flailing career & the divorce & relationships -- and that could be interesting.  But she needs to also have some interesting friends.  And with Janeane gone, she's gonna leave a great big huge hole.  Can they overcome it?

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I was kinda shocked to read that it's not doing that well with women who are Bravo's target audience. Why do we think that is? Unlikeability of the characters?

 

 

It's big part of it.  Janeane's character in particular has acted really horribly.  In this ep we see her behavior finally has consequences -- she's being forced outta her job & she could lose custody of her kids.  The first several eps featured characters who were overwhelmingly angry, bitter & just generally unpleasant.  Doesn't exactly make for fun viewing.  

 

Also, the first several eps were produced poorly & felt disjointed.  They were hard to follow.  Honestly, it annoyed the fuck outta me.  That & the fact that I had to blast the volume on my TV cuz every fuckin' character on the show was mumbling & I couldn't hear or understand what anyone was saying.  This ep OTOH flowed better.  I was surprised that I could easily follow it.  And I actually could hear & understand what everyone was saying without blasting my TV.

 

So does it mean I'm now in luv with this show?  Not by a long shot.  I think it went from shitty as hell to being mildly OK.  With Janeane gone I might lose interest very quickly.

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I'm not sure it can, but I'm starting to think that she knew what she was doing by leaving. Do we know why she really left?

I really feel this could have been a good show with some different actors, better writing and maybe with it being set somewhere else. They're playing to all the stereotypes of LA being filled with rich, vapid, out of touch airheads that it's becoming a cliche rather than the extra character NY was in SATC.

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I guess I am one of the few people who like this show and I did enjoy this episode. I don't compare it to SATC at all and find the characters to be pretty realistic. As a twentysomething, I found the casting of Warren Christie as a twenty-eight year old utterly laughable as he looks atleast 10 years older than that. I also don't mind Phoebe but I find Janeane's character to be incredibly unlikeable, I think the show will get better once her character is wrapped up and hopefully replaced with someone more pleasant. 

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What I don't get about Abby is she gets all dressed up to drop her children off at school and then get coffee. She should have 7 hours to herself while the kids are in school so why is she acting like the only time she gets to herself is when their dad takes them? I would be checking to see the if the 28 year old was available for hookups during the day...

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By the way, weren't the Poly-Euro couple fellow parents at the school? Where were their kids when all this hot poly sex was going on at their house with Phoebe?

Edited by Momof2boyz
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Nothing about this show makes sense. Abby was supposed to be worried about money and yet, hello, huge house, expensive clothes. I think that's what galls me the most about it. They keep on trying to push it as a realistic representation of people's' divorces, but really it's only represents what divorce for people with pools and kitchens the size of my first apartment are like. Even then I'm inclined to think most of the material has come from people on the show who've never had to hold down a non-showbiz job. I know it's on Bravo but c'mon!

The kids were writing the next episode.

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Yeah, way too much doesn't make sense.  But I'm not bothered by the house porn.  When an ep has bored me tears or I got tired of blasting my TV & just muted it, I gazed in wonderment at Abby's place or Janeane's place or even her office.  Wowza!

 

I guess I am one of the few people who like this show and I did enjoy this episode. I don't compare it to SATC at all and find the characters to be pretty realistic. As a twentysomething, I found the casting of Warren Christie as a twenty-eight year old utterly laughable as he looks atleast 10 years older than that. I also don't mind Phoebe but I find Janeane's character to be incredibly unlikeable, I think the show will get better once her character is wrapped up and hopefully replaced with someone more pleasant.

 

 

The ratings are decent so you're far from the only one who likes this show.  I think it's too bad about Janeane cuz she's a good actress.  She's compelling, interesting, intelligent & funny.  I'm sad not to see her more often.  Maybe she knew this character was getting too intense, too angry & too unlikeable & unpleasant to watch & wanted to make changes.  Well, it's possible cuz she left over "creative differences" with producers.

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The Phoebe character is an airhead.  The poly-whatever thing just seemed like a gimmick for this ep.  I was bored with it.  If the writers were going for shock, they missed.

 

Phoebe is the worst. There is no way that a middle-aged mother (I don't recall ever seeing her kids but I'm assuming since the moms know each other from school she has some) would have anything to gain from being the third in a threesome. I also thought it was stupid that she just blew off the couple when they asked her to move in. I'm sure if she just said no they would have been ok with it.

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Phoebe is the worst. There is no way that a middle-aged mother (I don't recall ever seeing her kids but I'm assuming since the moms know each other from school she has some) would have anything to gain from being the third in a threesome. I also thought it was stupid that she just blew off the couple when they asked her to move in.

Great example of how the tail is wagging the dog with this show. I read that they asked everyone working on it to compile their experiences with divorce/relationships when they started writing it and that's exactly how it plays out to me; a collection of anecdotes that tries to shock but doesn't.

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Phoebe is the worst. There is no way that a middle-aged mother (I don't recall ever seeing her kids but I'm assuming since the moms know each other from school she has some) would have anything to gain from being the third in a threesome.

 

 

Well, Beau Garrett is only 32, so clearly she's not middle-aged.  But I'm wondering if her character was intended to be someone middle-aged, and once again the producers fucked up with casting.  Are we supposed to believe intelligent women like Abby & Lyla are such close friends with this airhead/dimwit, who's 15 years younger than them?

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Phoebe is the worst. There is no way that a middle-aged mother (I don't recall ever seeing her kids but I'm assuming since the moms know each other from school she has some) would have anything to gain from being the third in a threesome. I also thought it was stupid that she just blew off the couple when they asked her to move in. I'm sure if she just said no they would have been ok with it.

They showed her kids in the first episode I think.  A boy and a girl.  She was bringing them into school and she lost them because she wasn't paying attention and the security guard tracked them down.  

Well, Beau Garrett is only 32, so clearly she's not middle-aged.  But I'm wondering if her character was intended to be someone middle-aged, and once again the producers fucked up with casting.  Are we supposed to believe intelligent women like Abby & Lyla are such close friends with this airhead/dimwit, who's 15 years younger than them?

 

I'll bet you the character was written to be in her forties but once again they were so wowed by the audition (or so pressured by her agent) that they cast someone in the wrong age range.

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Yeah, that's what I think too.  Miscasting, yet again.  Hey, I don't think there's anything wrong at all to see tight friends of various ages.  It's cool actually, but here it seems off.

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I wouldn't be surprised if Janeane bailed.  She used to say in her stand up act that she regretted doing The Truth About Cats & Dogs because of some of the things that her character had to do - IIRC her example was a dog pulling her down the street on roller skates - so maybe she acted on the courage of her convictions this time.  Or she made such a stink about the writing for her character that she got fired.  Either way, I think she's better off.

 

The daughter bugged me to no end this ep. I don't like shows where the kids are brats or manipulate the parents.  And I missed why Abby felt that she had to apologize/explain herself to her.   

 

And WTF was up with the Ferris Bueller pillow-under-the-blanket-with-a-snoring-noise-machine?  It's bad enough that TPTB are ripping off Sex and The City; do they really think that no one's going notice that big ol' juicy bite out of one of the classic movies of the '90's?

 

Serious question:  Is it standard procedure for a social worker to have dinner with a family?  I can understand the need for observation, but it seems to me that observation during dinner would be too much pressure to result in anything meaningful.  Related: I can't believe that Lyla's mother would have really done a theme night dinner under those circumstances, especially one that was based one the case worker's ethnicity.  And how would she have known the case worker's race, anyway?  Was that supposed to be a coincidence?

Edited by Lone Wolf

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Serious question:  Is it standard procedure for a social worker to have dinner with a family?  I can understand the need for observation, but it seems to me that observation during dinner would be too much pressure to result in anything meaningful.  Related: I can't believe that Lyla's mother would have really done a theme night dinner under those circumstances, especially one that was based one the case worker's ethnicity.  And how would she have known the case worker's race, anyway?  Was that supposed to be a coincidence?

 

The dinner seemed weird.  Even if she came during dinner, she would not eat with the family (not that I know from experience, I just assume).  They could have known she was Japanese from her name.

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