In my previous review, I asked for improvement in the second half of the season and this episode certainly showed promise.
The episode kicks off again with a 90s-ish ad establishing the episode’s theme–hypnotism.
Susie wants Sando to have a therapy session with Nicky to get her to change, during this session Nicky tries to get Sando to open up, even trying to manipulate her, but to no avail as Sando outwits her. When she hypnotises Sando into being a selfless person, the A story is established.
Sando gives Susie her cup of tea, offers to get Kevin to stop coming around, does the grocery shopping, cooks breakfast for everyone, and motivates Kevin to become a pilot. Of course everyone in the family is surprised by her selflessness and enjoys it until she decides to have a family dinner, which includes Kevin. It is at this dinner that tensions are brought out into the open, specifically between Susie and Gary, which leads to Susie ordering Nicky to change Sando back to the way she was. She seems to do so, only for her to apparently make things worse as Sando puts the house on the market the next morning.
It is at this moment that Sando reveals she was faking being hypnotised the entire time and calls everyone out on their feelings for her brilliantly in one sentence–“you need me because I make you feel better about yourselves”. This moment shows great character development and writing as it shows Sando is aware of what everyone really thinks of her and it also displays the other main characters’ flaws.
The B story has Kevin and Gary meeting for the first time and becoming friends to Susie’s chagrin. Kevin makes an appearance seemingly trying to win Susie over with his delicious biscuits, when in reality he actually tried to win over Vic Junior’s teacher. He is also more supportive of Susie’s business ideas than Gary and displays his I.T. skills, which makes Gary feel threatened, until he sees Kevin’s sports car, which Kevin allows him to take a spin in. I at first thought that Kevin was trying to manipulate Gary to win Susie back, especially during the dinner, but in reality he cares about them deeply and probably did both of them a favour by getting their tensions out in the open. I appreciated that the writers avoid the “ex-boyfriend-trying-to-win-his-girlfriend over” cliche, and I’m looking forward to seeing where Kevin’s friendship with Gary and Susie goes.
Overall this episode was a huge improvement from the last one, with improved writing and character development and going without the outlandish jokes.
Best one liners:
- “This is the hardest session I’ve ever had to do since I had to convince Eric the tooth fairy isn’t a real girl” (Nicky to Sando on their therapy session).
- “Alright settle down Pete Evans!” (Susie to Nicky)
- “A pilot can’t risk getting accidentally hypnotised” (Eric to Rian when he puts his sunglasses on during Nicky’s second hypnotherapy session with Sando).