We're back with Mrs. Fletcher treading some new waters online, will that transition to real life, do you think? After the departure of her son to college, her exploring has taken two separate paths, let's see which one she trips down today! Rolling Mrs. Fletcher S1:E04 Parents' Weekend after the break.
We open with Mrs. Fletcher (Kathryn Hahn) watching amateur adult actresses introduce themselves; I assume amateur because they all have day jobs and aren't anything at all similar. We'll call Mrs. Fletcher by her first name, Eve, I bet work would like to be calling her something slightly more strident right now as they're calling over and over but she's not answering.
She's too busy watching the adult video introductions, but she's not looking as though she's enjoying anything so I am again confused. Her fixation on adult videos (mostly of two women, but also of just naked women in general getting up to shenanigans) seems compulsive instead of based in sexual enjoyment.
She answers the phone and gets the awful news that senior Roy Rafferty has died at the nursing home as one of the amateur performers disrobes blurrily in the background.
We check in on Eve's son Brendan (Jackson White) at college next, where even his college roommate Zach (Cameron Boyce who died tragically in 2019 from an epileptic seizure. He was so, so young) is tired of and bored with his shite already.
Brendan is a lot of things, including a bully, and his mom has been taking a class with one of the kids he tortured in high school. This has led to some steamy eye contact and ill-advised underaged drinking, looks like Julian (Owen Teague) is looking to prolong his contact with Eve by showing up at her place of work.
He apologizes for his behaviour the night they went out drinking with their class (he likes her boobs!) and asks about her weekend plans to be shot down by a tired Eve regretting her recent life choices.
Last week Eve found out that she would not be attending Parents' Week to visit Brendan and instead Brendan's dad Ted (Josh Hamilton) would be going in her place. Eve did not take this well, as she is extremely emotionally dependent on her son, much more than he is interested in being connected with her.
I can't figure out if this is normal or not; I assume most college-aged kids don't want to be in daily contact with their parents but Eve is devastated every time he ignores her. Eve was very angry to have this time taken from her and chose to share the details of Ted's infidelity with Brendan, involving him in something that was totally.not.his.business. So gross.
So it's Parents' Weekend and Ted is there and Brendan is ecstatic in a way he never has been around his mother. Oh but it's not just Ted visiting Brendan, he's brought his new family with him. Stepmom Bethany (Christine Evangelista) and stepbrother Jonathan (John James Cronin) are friendly but Brendan looks strained.
Jonathan is on the Autism Spectrum and can't handle restaurants, so they hunker down to drink beer and eat burritos in the largest dorm room in the world.
Eve is trying to masturbate to porn but having trouble focusing, imaging herself in one of those interviews just prior to throwing down on camera.
The two hot studs she'll be filming with are...Mr. Rafferty and Julian? Well, you can't say she has a type! She snaps the laptop closed.
Brendan and Ted stare super creepily at the half-exposed bum of the girl Brendan slept with earlier before Ted turns his attention back to his younger son and Brendan is essentially ignored again.
The funeral of Roy Rafferty is a sad affair, his son George (Domenick Lombardozzi)'s tearful eulogy makes Eve pensive. Her coworker Amanda Olney (Katie Kershaw) has to drag Eve out of a fight with George when he spots Eve trying to kiss Roy on the forehead in his coffin. Eve had previously had Roy removed from the home for some untoward behaviour (masturbating to very loud porn in the common room) and George thinks she's a hyprocrite.
Eve's in a class with Julian, taught by Margo Fairchild (Jen Richards) who has a crush on Eve's classmate Curtis (Rashad Demond Edwards). They're on a date, or are they? Is it a working session for writing or a date? Neither Margo and I know.
Brendan and his dad finally connect while mocking feminist art and throwing around the old pink "SHUT UP" horsehide, awww. Now we know why Brendan is a dick, it's genetic!
A group of students called The Little Monsters suddenly starts serenading everyone in the hallway, sending poor Jonathan into an attack related to his autism. Ted calms his son down while Brendan tries to melt into the floor and pretend he is not connected to any of the fuss.
Amanda and Eve vape weed and drink wine, I'm trying to get a sense of whether or not there's sexual tension there. They talk about Roy before heading to a neighbour's hot tub.
Brendan and his dad have dinner before Ted heads out a night early, the news of which is enough to push Brendan into confronting his dad.
It's not that Jonathan is Ted's favourite, but he has a lot of needs and Brendan doesn't.
*Erm. He could use some one-on-one instruction on how not to be a dick.
Watching Brendan absorb this while not being able to ask for what he needs almost makes me feel sympathy for him. But he's at college now, and not "super smart" there, any more than he's great at sports or making any friends. It's all different there and he doesn't know how to deal or be himself and he's scared. He doesn't say any of that, but his face does and he nods so his dad can leave and take care of the child with visible needs.
He may have stolen his autistic little brother's comfort toy, so you know: he's still a dick. Ah no, he didn't steal it, but when he finds it later in the bathroom, he throws it in the garbage so...yeah.
Curtis and Margo finish up their...meeting. Or whatever it was. Margo asks Curtis to attend an event as her date, Curtis pauses for too long and seems to be making an excuse so Margo bolts. He seems legitimately confused so maybe he doesn't understand that she likes him and that as a trans woman, she may be more sensitive than your average bear about rejection. In case you weren't aware that trans people in general are not always accepted with open arms. Later, Curtis creeps her Instagram account while she drinks tea with her cat.
Eve and Amanda talk about sex while soaking in the hot tub, woooo we're on to the threesome question! Amanda is at least bisexual, her threesome was one Eve didn't anticipate: FFF not MMF or MFF. Look, we used abbreviations, that means we're hep!
Amanda tells Eve to live out her fantasies, just do it!
That's what George called Eve earlier, just in a very different way.
They don't hump in the hot tub, but Eve drunkenly kisses Amanda while leaving. Amanda isn't non-plussed at all, neither is she interested. Once Eve figures out how doors work, she's gone and we're oot.
This episode was directed by Carrie Brownstein!! Okay, you probably know her from Sleater-Kinney but I loved her work in Transparent and that is awesome.
Other than THAT, wow, we have a lot of themes and references here. We have Eve imagining sexual congress with two very different men, the only real connection being that in both scenarios she's in charge. Then the attraction to her co-worker and reliance on girl-on-girl adult movies, where she's very much out of her depth with her clumsy pass. Where is she going? Where is she going to end up?
Is Eve a pervert? She moved Roy out of care because his overt sexuality made everyone else uncomfortable, is she less of a pervert because she does the exact same thing but at home alone? For the record A) think Eve is a pervert and B) don't think being a pervert is a bad thing anyway.
How does this tie into young Brendan and his trouble connecting with the college world? Brendan is pure caricature, as is his dad with his much younger wife and neglectfulness of his first-born son. Except for his care of his autistic son; that's unexpected given his dismissive attitude towards Eve and Brendan. But maybe people can only handle so much. Parents are never everything you need them to be because after all: they're just people too.
Until next time, everyone! I hope you had a fabulous holiday, cheers!