Casual: S1: E5: Mom
by Remoy Philip
This show has some promise. The characters are caricatures, or at best, they’re believable bloated characters who have the potential, even if just to their writers, to be endearing antiheroes. And in an ever expanding televisional universe of antiheroes-and human sludge-there is a potential for honesty and hope and, if anything, quality entertainment.
But the contrary, or a possible alternative product to quality entertainment can also materialize from this newly birthed TV equation. And this is what Casual is on the verge of uncovering. It’s this: simply put, annoying self-absorbed shitty characters can make for annoying self-absorbed shitty TV.
Simply titling this episode ‘Mom’ makes for three letter foreshadowing. A foreshadowing that terrifies us all and the characters within at least when considering the already dark and downward trajectory of this show. Frances Conroy, plays our monster of a mom who’s slow eye and slow but decisive words are the slaughter to all of our antihero character’s joy (if there is any) and their hearts (if they have any). Her dialogue is smart. And Conroy’s delivery is effective. But in the end, the question still remains:
Do we really care?
I want to pull for these characters. I want Valerie to win. I want to understand and bend for Alex’s surface-level douchery. I don’t really give two shits about Laura and her over-contrived Dawson’s Creek adultedness, but she does add depth. But the question remains, will this show have the mirth to really stick it to us and bring some deeper level of entertainment to our already rotten American lives. Or will it just serve us another pile of Casual sludge.
We’ll have to wait and see.