"Kevin Can F**K Himself" Season Two Talkback (Spoilers)

Fone Bone

Matt Zimmer
Joined
Jan 19, 2004
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33,883
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Framingham, MA
Kevin Can F**K Himself "Mrs. McRoberts Is Dead"

I am reviewing this now. Last season was pretty shocking to me. It's not an overly violent or profane show (despite the title) so it's amazing it manages to be one of the most disturbing shows on television, solely due to the subtext of the premise.

Kevin is one of those people with no redeeming qualities. However, his most visible fault, that Allison repeatedly calls him on, is the fact that he believes the entire world revolves around him. The sitcom aspect of the show makes that explicit. What I don't think Allison realizes (and Patty does) is that Allison possesses that exact same fault. Unlike Kevin, Allison is not a terrible person. Kevin has no redeeming qualities. And yet the person who hates him most in the world is unaware she is exactly like him regarding his worst quality.

Neal is a real complication for the season. Patty believes he's not a total idiot or unreachable. I think she's kidding herself. And the ending says Alison knows it too. We spent more time with Neal than we ever have previously, and the biggest impression I get of him unfiltered is he is extremely toxic. It's not just Kevin. There's a reason he's drawn to that scumbag, despite the fact that Kevin treats him like crap too. I have a lot of sympathy for Patty because Allison asks so much of her, and doesn't believe her sacrifices are a big deal. But the truth is the fact that Patty used to be on Team Kevin says my actual sympathy for her is limited. There's really no excuse for it after seeing Neal in action for the first time.

One of the most disturbing shows on television gets off on the right awkward foot. ****.

Kevin Can F**K Himself "The Way We Were"

It is very noticeable to me that Allison only approaches her friends when she needs something from them. She never just wants to hang out. Which is her entire problem.

The PI making her scrounge up an extra $350 seems like kind of jerk. Except he pointed out it's an incredibly jerkish thing for HER to piggyback on her aunt's consultation. It's Allison's selfishness in a nutshell, and the PI not standing for it was interesting.

Kevin having stolen the most valuable thing he owns is totally on brand for that sociopath.

You know, Patty, somebody asking you if you want them there is NOT actually a hard question.

Patty describes Neal being "broken". I think that description is apt. He wants to be loyal to Kevin, but what happened with Alison is making him reassess his entire relationship with the d-bag. The haircut (which looks great) is a good demonstration of that as is the fact that Kevin's first reaction is to make fun of it. He looks like a real person instead of cartoon, and Kevin gives him crap anyways. Maybe things aren't as clear-cut as he thought. He also seems to be going through some guilt for attacking Allison so savagely. He can claim it was self-defense. But we all know better.

This show continues to make me feel SO uncomfortable. It's like if the horrible sociopathic things Michael Scott did on The Office had actual consequences, which is a dire prescription for a messy as hell show. ****.

Kevin Can F**K Himself "Ghost"

This gives me a LOT more context for why Patty goes along with Allison, and maybe even why Allison believes Patty owes her. Technically, Patty ruined her life. The day of her father's funeral being the worst day of her life is understandable, until you realize that wasn't the reason it was the worst day. And near the end of the day Patty had a chance to warn Allison off, but kept quiet because she seemed to think the idea funny. Maybe the reason Patty does all of this crap for Allison is because she realizes she's the person responsible for ruining her. And that's good to know, because I was having a hard time with the way Allison seems to take her for granted. In reality, I'm thinking what Allison demands of her is the least she can do.

Make no mistake: This doesn't excuse how Allison treats other people like Sam. She is very much a user. But considering Patty is the person she uses most, it's good to realize she's not an actual bad person to make Patty take some responsibility for her trying to get her life back. Her saying Patty has a good sense of direction says she is not remembering the end of the worst day of her life correctly. Patty being disturbed by that fact says Patty does, and also suggests her keeping silent was a deliberate and malicious thing.

I love that the show does sitcom stunt casting for Allison's mother (Peri Gilpin) and the studio audience applauds when they see her. Basically Allison's life has always sucked, and she's always been the butt of the joke of a sociopath. It's outright tragic to me.

This is SUCH a freaking tough show. And I can't think of a more repulsive bad guy than Kevin. ****1/2.

Kevin Can F**K Himself "Jesus, Allison"

I admit Allison messed that up, but not only was it the first truly nice thing she's ever tried to do for Patty with no expectation of something in return, Patty hints it's the first nice thing anybody's done for her EVER. That actually matters.

My favorite part of the episode was small, and the kind of thing the show does best. But at the end as Diane is drinking alone, she mentions how hurt she was by Kevin and Pete. And Neal says they were only joking. And she says, "To who?" This show is very strange in that it suggests real-world hurt feelings occur after the bits from insult sitcom comedy. And it says it's not actually funny. Which I agree with.

Tammy setting Allison straight about not liking her shows that Allison is basically still living in a bubble. After that tough day, the sitcom ending is for the two people who don't like each other to say they like each other (even if they go back to hating each other the next week). Tammy refusing to insult her intelligence by lying about it is this sitcom wife realizing she's actually dealing with a real person for once.

I do like that Allison is a bit surprised and happy over how much Tammy dislikes Kevin. She's not actually crazy. He comes off badly to normal people. And the fact that he's always rewarded by the abnormal people on the show means her getting that specific feedback by an actual unbiased observer is valuable.

I feel like this season has lower stakes with Allison planning on faking her death. Her planning to kill Kevin last year was a better arc for her and the show. ***1/2.

Kevin Can F**K Himself "The Unreliable Narrator"

I very much do not want this show to be canceled. And there aren't a ton of shows I feel that way about. As far as most shows go, I accept them coming and going. The Orville is one of my favorite shows. But the last episode of Season 3 was strong, and it didn't end on a cliffhanger. If it ended there, I'd be fine. Conversely, I feel that a lot of shows that get canceled on cliffhangers only had those cliffhangers for the sake of a gimmick to try and get renewed. As far as most of those shows go, my response is usually "Good riddance."

This show, and this episode in particular, say this is building towards something. Whatever the series finale is in a few years, when we finally see Kevin get his comeuppance, this episode suggests not only will the pay-off be worth it, but it will be magnificent. It's not just Neal and Diane who are now disgusted with Kevin. His father, his last enabler, is getting fed up too. I want the show to last long enough for us to see Kevin lose for the first time ever.

I think the show has a bigger reason for existing than just a criticism of male-led sitcoms. I mean, when Sam tell Allison at the end that he recognized himself in some of Kevin rhetoric, it's not just an indictment of male toxicity. It's an invitation for the non-toxic males to recognize their faults and do better. There was absolutely no part of the show that needed Sam to say he recognized a lot of himself in Kevin. The fact that it did that suggests a mature level of storytelling the jokey show name sort of undermines.

I think Tammy asked Patty to move in out of desperation. I don't think she wants that. After the end of the last episode her thinking is that if Patty's away from Allison, she'll stop being mixed up in whatever she's mixed up in. For the record, Tammy's hunch there is strong. That would almost certainly be the case.

Great role for Rachel Dratch here especially her asking what the GD pigs were doing outside her house.

I don't want Allison to fake her death. It's not a just enough punishment for Kevin. Killing him seems ill-advised too, but the guy seriously needs to be put in his place by the end of the series. He is basically ruining everyone's lives and treating it like a big joke. And I like that people are starting to question it. Last season was so brutal because Allison was very much alone in this, and against the world when it came to tolerating her husband's antics. First Neal, then Diane, now Pete, this suggests the show is waiting to hand this guy a big bucket of Just Desserts when the series ends. And it will probably be a MUCH bigger punishment than Allison merely killing him. At least I hope it is. And I hope this show lasts long enough to tell that story. It's an actual ending I want to see. Not merely some nebulous promise of something cool in the future I have little-to-no context for. This show's build-up is properly exciting me for it. *****.
 

Fone Bone

Matt Zimmer
Joined
Jan 19, 2004
Messages
33,883
Location
Framingham, MA
Kevin Can F**K Himself "The Machine"

I felt bad for Diane and I'm glad her and Neal are working it out. Kevin's toxicity is really spreading.

Patty and Allison were very cute together this episode. I totally get why Tammy feels threatened.

I think Allison is wrong at the end. It's an interesting conclusion, but thinking you can control stupid people's actions is a dangerous game. Stupid people are the most dangerous, unpredictable kind of people. Allison believing she can keep on top of that is foolish.

Solid episode. I am glad Diane is in AA and that she has a reason to stay in it again. ***1/2.
 

Fone Bone

Matt Zimmer
Joined
Jan 19, 2004
Messages
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Location
Framingham, MA
Kevin Can F**K Himself "The Problem"

Allison learned a VERY bitter truth about stupid people in this episode. Specifically when she tried to aim Kevin in Tammy's direction to get her fired. When Kevin expects Allison to lie that she planted evidence, Allison understands for the first time that you cannot manipulate stupid people into doing what you want. Stupid people are the most dangerous kind of people because they can't be predicted or controlled. Allison believing she was getting the upper hand with Kevin was illusory for that reason.

Neal suggesting he's no threat to Allison sort of broke my heart. He tells her he already told Kevin and he didn't believe him. Even Allison is shocked that happened. But maybe she shouldn't be.

Speaking of heartbreaking, Diane has my sympathies too.

It's sort of brushed over, but I definitely noticed that Kevin's Dad clarified that he and his girlfriend didn't break up, she just doesn't like being at that house. Gee, I wonder why.

I hesitate bringing this next thing up because if I am wrong, I will look like the dumbass of the year. But I have been getting the sense over the past few weeks that Allison and Patty's friendship chemistry is starting to become something more. It seems to me there might be an actual reason Tammy feels threatened by Allison. But I could be way off base here. But for some reason I think Patty would be a better match for Allison than Sam is. Plus, Sam is gonna be busy Leaping so I don't see him returning next season (if there is one).

Not my favorite episode. We'll see what happens next week. **1/2.
 

Fone Bone

Matt Zimmer
Joined
Jan 19, 2004
Messages
33,883
Location
Framingham, MA
Kevin Can F**K Himself "Allison's House"

I was surprised that this was the series finale, but I was reasonably satisfied with it. I think Neal and Diane's story needed some more time and closure, but I understand why they didn't get it. When Kevin just starts laughing and refuses to stop, I get why everyone left and thinks he's a monster.

Upon Allison demanding a divorce and the studio audience applauding her, that's when they vanish, and Kevin's actual physical threat kicks in. And once the studio audience is gone, they can never come back.

What's great to me is what a huge middle finger the series finale was to Kevin James. I never saw Kevin Can Wait, but getting Erinn Hayes to play Kevin's new girlfriend that he replaced Allison with after two months was a brilliant casting coup. I think getting her to do that basically justified the entire show's existence.

I'm very happy I caught this show. It gave me a lot to think about, and I think its message was needed. And I think the show's title is now how I feel about Kevin James himself. ****1/2.
 

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Oh boy, this is going to be a rough episode... And we've barely even reached the main plot. Oof, more like a rough season. I hope I get through this pain quickly.
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