The purpose of a season premiere is similar to the purpose of a season finale. The season finale’s job is to conclude the season’s story arcs and set up potential new arcs for the next season. The season premiere’s job is to commence new story arcs for the new season, and to follow up on the potential plots set up in the previous season’s finale. I felt that this premiere barely ticked off the items on this checklist.
Usually when a season premiere kicks off, especially second and beyond, the writers make a choice for a period of time to pass in the fictional world to give themselves wriggle room to kick off new arcs. In this case six months have passed, which is an extremely long and unrealistic period of time, especially as Lily has quit her job and clearly hasn’t worked since then. Lily and Jack are living in what they think is romantic bliss but in reality is denial about the fact that they clearly aren’t working, in New Zealand.
Lily gets a phone call from her old mentor, Sasha, who has somehow become her boss as she now runs the network The Breakfast Bar is on, which also needs saving from cancellation. I wondered at the end of last year’s finale what Lily would be doing professionally since she suddenly quit her job, so for her to be offered her old job back, I think was the best choice for this situation, however it felt too convenient.
I did enjoy The Breakfast Bar subplot as it took the focus away from the Lily-Jack-Pete love triangle, and its up-and-down nature kept me in suspense. I felt that Erica being sacked due to her age and requesting equal pay was sadly realistic, but it also gave Madeleine West the opportunity for some great but over-the-top breakdown performances.
I felt Eric using Erica’s sacking as an opportunity to hire a younger woman, who he clearly hoped to eventually sleep with, was also sadly realistic, but I found Lily pointing out the reality of that situation to him hilarious. I didn’t see Eric quitting coming, but it did add a necessary but cliche obstacle into the plot. I felt that Lily once again running away from her problems via karaoke was cliche, however I loved the pay off with the running gag of her colleagues asking her if she had been drinking. The outcome of Erica both getting her revenge, and her revenge simultaneously saving the show was perfect.
I was pleased with the writers’ choice to have the Lily-Jack-Pete love triangle going on mostly in the background, especially as this subplot will clearly continue throughout the season. The fact that Lily can’t tell Jack she loves him and that Jack was slow to delete Pete’s voicemail message to Lily, provides the viewer with subtle hints that the relationship is in trouble. I’m honestly not sure who I want Lily to end up with, which I think proves the writers’ talents by not making the viewers’ investment in either character or romance too easy.
On smaller notes, Meredith and Jack have broken up but are still living together, and Simone and Vincent are flatmates but not a couple. It will be interesting to see what the writers will do with Meredith and Jack now that their romance is over but they are trying to make co-parenting work, and whether the writers will drag out Simone and Vincent’s non-romance. I also enjoyed the reveal of Anthony proposing to his girlfriend, Yvonne, which I think will provide great comedic moments throughout the season due to its awkward nature.
While there were some solid moments, especially one-liners, I felt overall that this premiere was underwhelming, to the point where I wouldn’t know it was a premiere, had it not been pointed out to me through the ads leading up to it. I’m hoping improvement will show itself throughout the season.
-Mimi casually admitting to Lily that she and Anthony had casual sex, on the same couch that Lily was currently lying on.
-This episode had a bunch of great one-liners, which included:
- “We didn’t need four weeks, we just needed you.” (Sasha to Lily on the disaster that was Eric quitting)
- “You know I haven’t asked what’s going on there, but don’t think I don’t know something’s up.” (Simone to Lily on Lily and Jack’s relationship)
- “It’s not that it didn’t mean anything, it’s that it meant too much.” (Lily to Pete on his declaration of love)
- “Eric relax your face, you look like you’re having a prostate exam.” (Sasha)
-Delta Goodrem’s, Born to Try, is apparently old enough to be a karaoke song.
-Despite his eccentricities, Jeremy seems to be in Lily’s corner, hopefully it’s not the last we see of him.