This episode is this season’s Thanksgiving episode.
The episode kicks off similarly to the previous Thanksgiving episodes, with Maya trying to get out of cooking and Jimmy’s brother, Billy arriving. Billy spouts off nonsense about dating a vegan and his hypocrisy about not dating someone who’s old enough to be on heart medication when he needs it himself. It’s his heart medication that causes the family’s Thanksgiving to be spent at the hospital as Kenneth accidentally gives Billy’s heart medication to JJ.
Once they get to the hospital, the A and B stories are established. The A story revolves around JJ’s hospital visit, specifically Maya trying to get the celebrity suite for JJ only to discover that Melanie is at the hospital trying to do the same thing for Logan, who is there due to complications from a tonsillectomy. While Maya and Melanie battle it out, when they discover a hypochondriac is hogging the suite, Melanie suggests that they share the suite as a truce. When the kids point out to her that Mel is possibly lying, she locks Melanie out of the room, and Melanie uses her influence in the hospital to make life in the suite hell, although she eventually admits she would have acted the same way if she had the chance. They eventually decide to have a real truce and they end up having Thanksgiving dinner in the suite, before the staff reveal they’ll be kicked out soon as James Van Der Beek sprained his toe. Overall I found this subplot to be funny but a little too insane.
The B story focuses on Billy and Kenneth bonding after Jimmy asks the latter to look after him at the hospital while they are dealing with JJ. The fact that Kenneth gets “good Billy”–nice, funny and considerate–drives Jimmy crazy, however Kenneth points out this is due to the fact that Kenneth doesn’t know Billy and that Billy and Jimmy need to connect as adults. However this suggestion backfires when Billy and Jimmy bond by making fun of Kenneth. Overall, while there were some comedic moments, I felt this subplot didn’t really add anything to the episode and felt a little silly.
Despite my saying that there A and B stories, there was also a minor C story. Ray ends up confiding in a pregnant woman in labour about his despair over Taylor having a new boyfriend, and according to her his story is boring and is also helping calm her down. Ray ends up being there for her when she gives birth and just as he says life has no meaning, he discovers meaning when he hold the baby and falls in love with it. Of course he takes things too far by going skin to skin with the baby and is thrown out. When he tells Jimmy about it all, Jimmy reassures him that the heartache over Taylor will end eventually and that he needs to hold on to his big heart. Overall, I found this subplot to be ridiculous, but the heart-to-heart between Ray and Jimmy redeemed it a little.
Overall I felt this episode, with its focus on enemies and sibling rivalries but ultimately bonding, was a bit sub-par. While there was heart beneath it all, I felt it wasn’t pulled off well and came across as mostly silly and ridiculous.
-Maya’s efforts to get out of cooking for Thanksgiving is not too dissimilar to the five stages of grief:
- Suggesting a fun alternative
- Trying to take a moral high ground
- Showing a moment of vaguely worded emotional instability
- Suggesting going to a Chinese buffet
-Billy refers to Maya as “Crabby Spice”.
-Ray thinks a chest hair is a sign of enough maturity to win Taylor back and that doing 10 push ups a day would make him a better man for her.
-Maya brings her own bell to hospitals to get the attention of hospital staff.
-Apparently the hospital security staff let Maya play with their guns.
-JJ carries around an old communications board from a few years ago known as the “Borat board”.
-Ray and Taylor dated for 10 months.
Best one liners and interactions:
- “The alley was playing all of Tom Petty’s Full Moon Fever, I was not going to miss!” (Jimmy to Maya on bowling a strike in a bowling game JJ was referencing)
- “You think that looks like a turkey?” “I think it looks like a son who’s trying his best!” (Maya-Ray on Ray’s attempt at making a turkey out of a medical glove)
- “Some rando I’m staring at because having an enemy seems like fun!” (Jimmy to a random man he’s staring at after Maya and JJ give an evil stare to their respective enemies, Melanie and Logan, when they see each other in the hospital)
- “Should we bump him off?” “Well he’s here and sick already.” “I meant off the list but that works.” (Maya-Melanie-Maya on the man currently occupying the celebrity suite)
- “Well I’ll get to him, I have this whole place wired. The nurses love me, the doctors fear me and I buttered up the weird morgue attendant because I wanted toe tags for my luggage!” (Maya to Melanie on her power at the hospital)
- “Well I’ve got all the heating and A/C guys and I’m tight with the alarm tech ’cause Logan’s a fire alarm puller.” (Melanie to Maya on her power at the hospital)