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S02.E02: Midway to Midtown

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Midge and Susie continue building Midge's standup career despite Midge's reluctance to tell her family and friends. Abe and Rose enjoy a new lifestyle. Joel offers some business advice to his parents and makes an effort to do right by Midge.

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i so enjoyed the rose and abe scenes, and i like that so much of it involved showing rather than telling, to use that creative writing workshop formulation.  i'm glad i've never seen an episode of monk, so i'm just able to enjoy tony shaloub in this role without other points of comparison.  and i've been a big fan of marin hinkle's ever since her turn as sela ward's sister on once and again, so it's nice to see her getting more substance in her role this year.  i recall a poster here commenting on a last-season episode that it's from her mother that midge gets her comedy and timing, and i agree.  and perhaps even moreso than with midge, with rose, there has always been that layer of sadness underneath -- nice to see that brought to the surface for the start of this season.  i smiled to see abe's shift back in manhattan, so it's not just a reset to the stereotypical roles from before - would enjoy seeing some of the audited art classes, too, though not sure they are going to continue the deep dive into midge's parents' storylines.

 

i do have to say, that i cannot wait for them to find out what midge has been up to.  you could see she almost told them in the kitchen, but thought better of doing in during her father's "5-8 minutes" before he rushed off to columbia.  

 

the opening montage of susie at the weissmans' apartment was just gold.  my favorite cut was from susie laughing at the raunchy redd foxx comedy album then crying while reading charlotte's web.  and susie playing the piano so well -- who knew?  and the little touch of her tuning the off-note... just loved all of susie in the apartment.

oh and also the little detail of ethan taking a swig of that beer in front of the tv with susie, loved that, too.

 

and all the susie-midge scenes have been just as wonderful as last season.  i find myself grinning from ear to ear whenever they're on screen together.  (well-deserved emmys, that's for sure)

 

regarding midge performing at the new club - i know some folks will probably say that her feminist sensibilities as expressed in her set are anachronistic.  i don't carry if they are - if was so satisfying not only to see those guys get their come-uppance, but to see just how she would do it.  that kind of smarminess still gets thrown around by guys like that in certain settings, so i was anticipating a vicarious enjoyment of their take-down and it did not disappoint.

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9 hours ago, veronicalodge44 said:

rose and abe scenes

Now that's ♥love♥!
Or, since we were in Paris, I should say: C'est l'amour♥!

 

9 hours ago, veronicalodge44 said:

susie playing the piano so well -- who knew?  and the little touch of her tuning the off-note...

Susie also has comedy gold sharp quips flying out of her mouth non-stop--is Susie supposed to be that good, or is it just ASP's Gilmore Girls banter writing?
Regardless, I wonder if eventually Susie will realize she can make it on her own, which will test the limits of her relationship with Midge.

 

9 hours ago, veronicalodge44 said:

and all the susie-midge scenes have been just as wonderful as last season. 

Better than last season, IMO.

And a few less verbal anachronisms too.

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On 12/6/2018 at 6:08 AM, veronicalodge44 said:

i've been a big fan of marin hinkle's ever since her turn as sela ward's sister on once and again

I've always liked Marin in Once and Again, but getting used to her role in that and then see her play the mother of 20-somethings just makes me feel old.

It's always good a see Michael Torpey pop up in things after being a fan of his fairly obscure web series a few years back, but of course he plays one of the jerk comics (especially given how everyone hated him on OITNB).

I'm finding myself liking Joel a bit more this season.

Edited by quangtran
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Awwww Abe and Rose in Paris was so sweet! Loved watching Abe fully embrace his inner Parisian, and the spark that they seemed to find in their marriage. I almost hoped they would just stay there, even if I knew they would have to get back to New York eventually. And then Abe got Rose a little bit of Paris for them in New York! Oh Abe, you old softie you! 

Loved the Susie and Midge banter, and Midge totally killed it on stage! Screw what those guys said, Midge was awesome, and they all knew it. With stains and all. 

Seeing Susie in the apartment was fun, especially going from cracking up over a comedy album, to crying over Charlotte's web. I hope she eventually gets to meet her family, because I feel like Abe and Susie sharing a scene would be a freaking riot!

I am a bit more interested in Joel this season, weirdly enough. 

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Susie measuring her thighs a la Rose had me dying.

That second apartment in Paris - mon dieu!  That was gorgeous.  I knew they wouldn't stay but kinda wanted them to.  Abe was much more fun in Paris. 

Edited by TexasGal
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1. I want a swing coat, even if it makes me look like I'm wearing a parachute.

2. I want to live in Paris with Rose and Abe.

3. I think this season gets better with every episode.

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I thought, for a while, that the Paris scenes were Abe or Rose's fantasies - and not happening in real life. I loved that they were real, and that Abe came out of it a much more attentive and considerate husband, and that their whole relationship to each other (and possibly Midge) is reset into something less constrained by convention. Though I did keep saying at the end of the Paris scenes - it's not like there isn't art in New York. (that being said, taking my husband to Paris was always one of my dreams - having been there for a brief period - but it is now a pipe dream for many reasons - mostly financial - so I was a bit sniffly watching them stroll through places I've been and pictured myself and the mister doing the same)

I did think Midge's rant was a little anachronistic - BUT - since I know many things I said/did/experienced are considered anachronistic by younger forum posters, I'll give it a pass. It doesn't seem that unlikely that the women breaking the barriers would have those opinions.

Joel and his father were kind of fun - I thought it was peculiar his dad was letting him fire people - and loved at the end how he explained that man A was married to his best seamstress, so they needed him on board, and something similar for man B. He might not be that great at the books, but he understands relationships. But I'm very puzzled where Joel thinks the money for an apartment and/or buying the business' building is going to come from.

Edited by Clanstarling
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Susie and Ethan bonding over Andy Griffith, sandwiches and beer...awwwwwww.

The Maisel accounting system is...just wow. Even the accountant that Joel brought in thought it was a piece of shit. Good on Joel for trying to modernize things. Dammit, I don't want to be a fan of Joel, but he seems to be doing some things right. I understand elder Maisel's reasons for keeping certain people on at the factory. He does understand relationships. 

I like that Paris had some diversity.

Abe and Rose in Paris were adorable. I hope they can keep the joyful, authentic connection going. 

Rose: "You are a wonderful man."

Abe: "You are a terrible cook."

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I  enjoyed Joel taking control of the family business. He may not like it -- maybe -- but I think he's found his calling. I just hope that, with all the mob loans his father has taken out, that those men who "visited" Susie don't end up "visiting" Joel ... although that will definitely bring things full circle.

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I suppose looking at Paris through Rose-colored glasses served its purpose but I am glad it's over.   I don't buy for a second that a self-absorbed heel like Abe would suddenly become a more attentive husband after the experience -- even if he did, he would backslide within a week or two of returning home.

The Abe-Rose plotline felt like so much filler, which isn't what I would expect to dominate during the first two episodes of a new season of a show called The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.   Sure, I see the parallels between Abe and Rose and Midge and Joel, and that it demonstrated how Midge is side-stepping the same traps that have pretty much doomed Rose.   But it was too much, and too heavy on the romanticizing of Paris.   (If there are any Highlander fans out there, the dancing scene on the Seine was at the same mooring where Duncan Macleod kept his barge).

The comedy club scene was more where I prefer to be with this series.   Going forward I hope the show won't be as stingy with them as it has these past two episodes.

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1 hour ago, millennium said:

The comedy club scene was more where I prefer to be with this series.   Going forward I hope the show won't be as stingy with them as it has these past two episodes.

Not really a spoiler, but out of courtesy:

Spoiler

I found the comedy club scenes to be more enjoyable this season--not sure if there were more.

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On 12/6/2018 at 6:08 AM, veronicalodge44 said:

i so enjoyed the rose and abe scenes, and i like that so much of it involved showing rather than telling, to use that creative writing workshop formulation.  i'm glad i've never seen an episode of monk, so i'm just able to enjoy tony shaloub in this role without other points of comparison.  and i've been a big fan of marin hinkle's ever since her turn as sela ward's sister on once and again, so it's nice to see her getting more substance in her role this year.  i recall a poster here commenting on a last-season episode that it's from her mother that midge gets her comedy and timing, and i agree.  and perhaps even moreso than with midge, with rose, there has always been that layer of sadness underneath -- nice to see that brought to the surface for the start of this season.  i smiled to see abe's shift back in manhattan, so it's not just a reset to the stereotypical roles from before - would enjoy seeing some of the audited art classes, too, though not sure they are going to continue the deep dive into midge's parents' storylines.

 

i do have to say, that i cannot wait for them to find out what midge has been up to.  you could see she almost told them in the kitchen, but thought better of doing in during her father's "5-8 minutes" before he rushed off to columbia.  

 

the opening montage of susie at the weissmans' apartment was just gold.  my favorite cut was from susie laughing at the raunchy redd foxx comedy album then crying while reading charlotte's web.  and susie playing the piano so well -- who knew?  and the little touch of her tuning the off-note... just loved all of susie in the apartment.

oh and also the little detail of ethan taking a swig of that beer in front of the tv with susie, loved that, too.

 

and all the susie-midge scenes have been just as wonderful as last season.  i find myself grinning from ear to ear whenever they're on screen together.  (well-deserved emmys, that's for sure)

 

regarding midge performing at the new club - i know some folks will probably say that her feminist sensibilities as expressed in her set are anachronistic.  i don't carry if they are - if was so satisfying not only to see those guys get their come-uppance, but to see just how she would do it.  that kind of smarminess still gets thrown around by guys like that in certain settings, so i was anticipating a vicarious enjoyment of their take-down and it did not disappoint.

Alex Borstein gets better with every episode.

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I liked the Paris scenes. But then I'm not watching the show just for the comedy acts. I enjoy the look of this show. It's like they exist in a world of eye-candy. I could just sit here and stare at their costumes, sets, and location shots all day, it's that good.

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10 hours ago, TV Diva Queen said:

In two seasons I can’t be the only person that watches both this and Two and a Half Men. Rose is Judith...what’s his face’s ex wife. 

THAT's where I've seen her. Thank you!

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17 hours ago, TV Diva Queen said:

In two seasons I can’t be the only person that watches both this and Two and a Half Men. Rose is Judith...what’s his face’s ex wife. 

Puh-lease, don't remind me! Marin Hinkle is so fabulous in this role, but still, every time she appears I have to tell myself: NOT Whathisname's ex-wife from that show I will never watch again!
I was so surprised to read that she learned French for this episode. Awesome!

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38 minutes ago, shapeshifter said:

Puh-lease, don't remind me! Marin Hinkle is so fabulous in this role, but still, every time she appears I have to tell myself: NOT Whathisname's ex-wife from that show I will never watch again!
I was so surprised to read that she learned French for this episode. Awesome!

Get out!  She learned French for this episode. I don’t speak French, but to me she sounded like she did a really good job. 

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Why did Rose say she was treated as "too fragile" in NY? What did Abe lie to Rose about? I feel like I've forgotten something important.

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45 minutes ago, dleighg said:

Why did Rose say she was treated as "too fragile" in NY? What did Abe lie to Rose about? I feel like I've forgotten something important.

That Joel had come back to Midge and she had turned him down. 

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Okay, that was just adorable.  ASP is so giddy about her budget, she really went to town for the Paris scenes.  It was a little paint-by-numbers of Parisian scenes but it was meant to be so and I thought worked because of that.  Also, I really enjoyed the scene in the apartment as Abe realizes that Rose isn't just play-acting, living some role-playing fantasy.  I thought it was a good setup for a storyline in which their relationship grows.  It looks like ASP is planning on developing all the characters this season and I appreciate that.  

Weirdest detail caught my eye:  how clean the Gaslight was in closing scenes with the lights reflecting off the clean floor.  It must have been the mood I was in, but I loved that.  I love that there's always something just a tiny bit surreal about ASP's eye.   That note of artifice but in a way that's pleasing.  

Knock me over with a feather but I finally enjoyed scenes with Joel, I think because we finally left his awfully-close-to-whining discontent behind for a bit.  I did like that when he chooses an apartment for Midge, it's practically a dollhouse with pink carpeting to boot.  That was very fitting staging for this person, trying to do what he thinks is the right thing, but in doing so trying to make Midge's choices for her and again, almost placing her in the Barbie Manhatten Dream Apartment, expecting her not to work and the whole shebang.  I think that's the first time I really appreciated the actor playing Joel because whereas it's infantilizing Midge, he managed to imbue that whole scene with his primary intent being to make amends...while illustrating why he's not really a good partner for someone trying to find their own full identity, at least at this time. 

I liked the echo of Abe doing the exact same thing only in reverse: facilitating growth rather than trying to determine it.  

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On 12/19/2018 at 9:19 PM, HelenCrump said:

I loved Paris, Susie, and Midge's comedy set ... But poor Simone!   Couldn't they have taken her back to NYC?

Maybe their building doesn’t allow dogs?

I wondered about that.....if Rose wanted a dog and their building allowed them I would think she would already have one one- with her kids being adults and out of the house until Midge’s seperation. 

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On 12/8/2018 at 7:19 AM, Clanstarling said:

I thought, for a while, that the Paris scenes were Abe or Rose's fantasies - and not happening in real life. I loved that they were real, and that Abe came out of it a much more attentive and considerate husband, and that their whole relationship to each other (and possibly Midge) is reset into something less constrained by convention. Though I did keep saying at the end of the Paris scenes - it's not like there isn't art in New York. (that being said, taking my husband to Paris was always one of my dreams - having been there for a brief period - but it is now a pipe dream for many reasons - mostly financial - so I was a bit sniffly watching them stroll through places I've been and pictured myself and the mister doing the same)

I suspected fantasy at first, too! How engaged and alive Abe was with the French men, it seemed like a vision of what might be from Rose's POV. And, yeah, it must be tragic to return to New York where there is simply no opportunity for art and creativity! *eyeroll* I wanted Abe to be better at this kind of conversation (but naturally he wouldn't be)... I wanted him to stop saying "we have to go back", to tell her he has to go back and wants her to be there with him, that she can keep exploring her art and she doesn't have to live in her (self-imposed) box. Happily, he at least knew what to do. 

I'd love share Paris with my partner. (I've been, he hasn't.) One day we will but I wonder how long that it will be until we can make that happen...it also makes me sad.

On 12/5/2018 at 8:56 PM, shapeshifter said:

Susie also has comedy gold sharp quips flying out of her mouth non-stop--is Susie supposed to be that good, or is it just ASP's Gilmore Girls banter writing?
Regardless, I wonder if eventually Susie will realize she can make it on her own, which will test the limits of her relationship with Midge.

IMO it's just ASP's banter writing. She's witty, like everyone in ASP's universes, but not a competing comedian.

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54 minutes ago, snarktini said:
On 12/8/2018 at 9:19 AM, Clanstarling said:

I thought, for a while, that the Paris scenes were Abe or Rose's fantasies - and not happening in real life.

I suspected fantasy at first, too!

A lot of this series is like a fantasy made realistic, but without destroying the magic of the fantasy version.
At first this bothered me a bit, but then I decided to roll with it.

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On 12/9/2018 at 6:56 PM, millennium said:

I suppose looking at Paris through Rose-colored glasses served its purpose but I am glad it's over.   I don't buy for a second that a self-absorbed heel like Abe would suddenly become a more attentive husband after the experience -- even if he did, he would backslide within a week or two of returning home.

The Abe-Rose plotline felt like so much filler, which isn't what I would expect to dominate during the first two episodes of a new season of a show called The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.   Sure, I see the parallels between Abe and Rose and Midge and Joel, and that it demonstrated how Midge is side-stepping the same traps that have pretty much doomed Rose.   But it was too much, and too heavy on the romanticizing of Paris.   (If there are any Highlander fans out there, the dancing scene on the Seine was at the same mooring where Duncan Macleod kept his barge).

The comedy club scene was more where I prefer to be with this series.   Going forward I hope the show won't be as stingy with them as it has these past two episodes.

I wish I could like this 100 times. You said it better than I could have. The Paris scenes were just of zero interest to me and they went on forever. When Midge and Abe first got there and that woman was screaming at them in French for a very long time, why didn't they put at least some captions so we'd have an idea what she was screeching about? In any case, my enthusiasm for this show began to fall in a major way because of all this filler.  There were gem scenes: Ethan drinking beer, Susie tuning the piano and crying over Charlotte's Web but the filler stuff-- or what I see as filler-- just lost me.

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Loved this episode from start to finish. Rose’s sadness leaving Paris brought a tear to my eye; as a woman of a certain age I can relate to the regrets of lost opportunities.  Susie falling off the bar stool and shouting “I fell off the stool like Dylan Thomas!” - I laughed out loud at that. As too with the bookkeeper remaking that the books were kept in Yiddish, Hebrew, and Aramaic. So many funny little throw away lines all throughout. 

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On 12/9/2018 at 3:56 PM, millennium said:

The comedy club scene was more where I prefer to be with this series.

Hmmm - maybe I am in the minority, but the club scenes are actually my least favorite part of this series. Maybe it's because I don't actually find Midge that funny. Don't get me wrong, I loved the take down of those sexist assholes, and I did enjoy that whole scene. I really liked Midge devolving into a hot sweaty mess. I just think it works better in rationed doses in the context of the overall story.

I loved the Paris scenes and everything with Susie in the apartment. I really loved all of the stuff with Joel and his parents. The mother's accounting system made me laugh the hardest, probably because I am a Controller myself. I also laughed when Joel and his dad almost attacked each other with the bats. I didn't love Joel last season, but classic ASP, now trying to redeem a jerky guy. I just don't know if the intention is for Midge and Joel to be the end game pairing. I don't really trust ASP after what she did to Luke and Lorelei on Gilmore Girls, so we'll see how this goes...........

I really love the look and feel of this show - it's filling a Mad Men shaped hole in my heart (the clothes alone -swoon)!

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I don't get Susie completely ignoring Midge's rules. There were a lot of them, certainly, but expressly doing the opposite of what she was told just makes her seem like an asshole. What's the point of that? I did like her comparing her body to Midge's weird notebook of measurements.

Oh, good Lord. Blond friend was really given the note to talk at a fast clip, wasn't she? Her voice is pleasant but otherwise it was still a very annoying twitter. Thank goodness this show is winning awards and getting full season orders because in the regular TV landscape, I think a lot of people would have changed the channel to get away from Imogen.

I enjoyed seeing Abe so chill in the cafe debating with his new friends. I feel like we skipped a couple scenes where Abe and Rose made up but they are cute together in their new bohemian Parisian life.

Not sure what the point of Joel getting involved in the factory is but okay. I do like the bustle and energy of the room. I just don't know how it really serves the plot.

The hats this season are particularly ridiculous and amazing. Very Ninotchka.

I get Midge being mad at Joel for trying to make decisions for her. But I also don't get how quickly she got that angry. It's like we're ignoring that teary scene last episode when she wanted to get back together. 

Oh, whew. I'm glad they made up a reason why Abe could be away from his classes. That made no sense.

Rose is enjoying her freedom... but it's freedom with privilege, with the benefit of money.

AH! Christopher Fitzgerald! David Rossmer!

Cool. Two other comics for casual sexism. See, this is my problem. The show jumps between serious and comedic in a way that doesn't let me take the stakes seriously. Sometimes there's historically accurate dickishness and sometimes everything is way too clean and friendly and no one gets in the way of Midge's fantasy world. 

I liked Midge taking down those guys but I also appreciated the booker yelling at her. Like Sophie, I don't need there to be huge consequences but I don't want her skating through because then nothing has any stakes.

Abe setting up the art history classes was adorable. 

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When Midge and Abe first got there and that woman was screaming at them in French for a very long time, why didn't they put at least some captions so we'd have an idea what she was screeching about?

It's usually a device to have you identify with a specific POV. In this case, Abe and Midge are disoriented and unable to understand her so you are similarly disoriented (assuming you don't speak French). I'd have to go back but it was a lot of 'get out, get out, you have to leave.' You didn't miss much. 

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I A lot of get out of here the bags are too large I’m going to call

the police!

poor simone!! Nice as the landlady is wont she miss her mommy? Though I guess it’s only been a few weeks.

i did buy Abe’s change: I figured really for him it was also just recovering who he had been when young, the man rose fell in love with. He seemed to be truly enjoying Paris and even the fantasy of the apartment until he realized she meant it. 

And his tone when he said they had to go back was very different from last episode- he seemed a little sad. But it’s true they just would have no income if they stayed: he has two jobs. 

I LOVED that he made sure to bring some Paris back, not just art classes for her but dance classes for the two of them. And that that’s what made rose get up and want to cook. 

Edited by lucindabelle
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On January 30, 2019 at 1:20 AM, lucindabelle said:

And his tone when he said they had to go back was very different from last episode- he seemed a little sad. But it’s true they just would have no income if they stayed: he has two jobs

This is an important observation that I breezed by while bingeing, and 

Spoiler

this makes Abe's radical  end-of-season pronouncements less likely, possibly reinforcing the predictions of some of us that Abe will temper those plans (to needlessly abandon everything—why not just take the sabbatical?) by the beginning of season 3.

Edited by shapeshifter

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On ‎12‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 9:42 PM, Nidratime said:

I  enjoyed Joel taking control of the family business. He may not like it -- maybe -- but I think he's found his calling. I just hope that, with all the mob loans his father has taken out, that those men who "visited" Susie don't end up "visiting" Joel ... although that will definitely bring things full circle.

Joel always loves the beginning of things  Always has big ideas and plans. 

Its following through on them the second anything holds him back or he hits a roadblock that he struggles. 

I am enjoying this season more than last season. 

And I too prefer the stand up scenes. 

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