“I Love You”
Bamford’s getting worse. All the fun, surreal aspects of the show have taken on a new meaning. I think her mental health is deteriorating because of the pressure she puts on herself to be someone else.
In a way, this episode, “I Love You”, is a lot like the last one. It’s an addition.
Bamford wants to follow through on being herself, so she resolves to come clean to the guy she’s dating, Chad (Adam Pally). She and Chad have been dating for an undetermined amount of time, but it can’t have been more than a few weeks. He’s a sporty guy, and so she became a sporty girl. In this episode, she puts her foot down. She has to tell him she’s been putting on an act (athleticism), just like she was last week (the rich lady voice), but before she can get to it… Chad says I love you… while they’re wearing live go pros. She asks what she’s supposed to say. Chad: “‘I love you!'” Bamford: “ehuheh okay uh!”
The episode, because of this moment and others like it, veers dangerously close to a typical sitcom. A misunderstanding, or the lack of confidence to say what’s really on your mind is a classic multi-camera, 90s platform for a plot, but, of course, Bamford and series creators Hurwitz and Brady twist it into Lady Dynamite weirdness.
Chad may have an anger problem, and this worries Bamford. She cites this to her friends as a major reason she has to get out of her relationship. Each time she tells the story of the first time she noticed the anger in him, she exaggerates it further. They were at the batting cage and he missed a swing, that much is true. What she adds to that… is where things seem a little off. The first recount is full of colourful swears. In the second, Chad’s about to smash in a puppy’s face. In the third, it’s three little scientist puppies who’ve just found the cure for cancer, but they’re about to be offed by Chad who now has a gun. “Strike three, fucko’s,” he says.
To help the audience understand her fear of a relationship, Bamford references two guy failures in her past, one in “The Past,” and one in “The Duluth” (as if we need more than the last few weeks). In The Past she meets a guy who fulfills every requirement she has for a potential husband, and gets into a relationship with him. She then finds out his credit score is so low he can’t even rent anywhere, and so she, with her big, newly bought house, offers to become his landlord. In The Duluth, she’s become close friends with this guy Paul, who is the husband of her terrible friend Susan (the one who pressured her to buy the house). It’s a platonic relationship, but it’s the one good thing she’s got in this period of her life. Susan, of course, gets upset they’re spending so much time together, and tells Bamford’s parents. Her parents confront her after a night out to Cirque Du Soleil (which gets them horny?) They announce she and Paul aren’t allowed to spend anymore time together. It’s a sweet ending, however, because she gets a message from him on the back of a note explaining the sneaking around was worth it.
Back in The Present, Bamford waits in a restaurant. She’s ready to break up with Chad, she says, and admits to the waitress that she’s on a “cocktail of medicine.” …Chad never makes it. Chad’s dead. Bamford finds out when she goes to his apartment to yell at him for standing her up (even though she wanted to break up with him, but that’s besides the point) and finds his family there, mourning.
When she attends Chad’s funeral, she finds out 1) Chad has a wife, which makes no sense, and 2) Chad was an agent looking to sign her, not be with her, which causes 1 to make a lot more sense.
It’s like the veil’s been lifted, and Bamford’s the monster. (A line repeated by Bamford until she literally wears a veil to the funeral. It’s funny, but if you look at it from a more serious perspective, it’s sad if she’s referring to her sanity, and she may well not realize that she is.)
Some Bits I Liked:
- “…anything with rocks.” “I hope.”
- “You tell him you’re 90% slug?”
- *sings along to microwave beeps
- “Do you have a non alcoholic version?” “Let me–” “SANS ALCOHOL?”
- “…that was the whole point of the show.”
- “Let’s go inside other things.”