So we’ve reached the season finale, where story arcs and other loose ends are tied up and potential plots are set up for the next season. I felt that in this finale it was only partially achieved, however this is due to the fact that it has been rare that each episode is interlinked as they normally stand alone.
The beginning of the episode with Maya speeding to the school and the police recording her speeding on the radar was a nice throwback to the pilot, however Dylan running behind them with the police also recording her speed was a hilarious addition to the throwback. The scenes of Ray, JJ and Kenneth in the choir was also a nice throwback to earlier in the season.
Coming back to the present, this episode continues the JJ summer camp story arc with the family flying with JJ to drop him off. I felt that Maya’s packing of JJ’s clothes (and apparently Ray’s and Jimmy’s underwear) for the trip was hilarious and true to her character, and that for JJ’s physiotherapist of all people, to make him nervous, was realistic as outsiders would be the ones to put JJ off not the family. I felt that JJ’s reaction to his nerves by lashing out through, as Jimmy points out, a dated insult was realistic as he obvious can’t physically lash out.
Meanwhile, Ray decides to not be himself in an effort to find a girlfriend. Dylan’s suggestions to him to basically changw everything about himself was the typical younger sister reaction, and the scenes at the beginning of the episode of him officially being rejected by every girl in his year were hilarious. I felt that the ending of his subplot–Ray gaining a girlfriend via JJ’s summer camp was realistic, and I’m looking forward to seeing this played out next season.
I felt that the Jimmy and Dylan subplot was sweet but weak. Jimmy’s idea to make the flight rather than the trip fun was genius and I liked them working together as a team by deciding on the Miami layover. When the fun restaurant they wanted to go to at Miami airport was closed, it lead to a sweet reveal by Jimmy on his desire to not only have actual fun, but to have it with Dylan.
Back to the JJ story arc, I liked that Kenneth was all of people, the one to convince Maya to say goodbye to JJ like she wanted, as it showed the progression of their relationship. I felt that Maya’s arrival at the camp in a helicopter was very true to her character.
The ending of the episode was perfect as it showed the whole family letting go of JJ and letting him be independent for the first time. This shows the growth of all of the characters, not to mention provides a story arc and potential for the next season.
Overall this was a very understated but well done finale and I’m looking forward to reviewing season 2 when it eventually becomes available on iTunes as it’s sadly no longer airing in Australia, or at least not for now.
-JJ signing everyone’s yearbook by Kenneth having a stamp made for him was genius.
-Apparently Kenneth has a “summer” mode and keeps to his word of becoming more tropical as the summer progresses.
-Apparently Joyce (JJ’s physiotherapist) and Kenneth are friends.