The "Suburgatory" Season 2 premiere episode, "Homecoming," began and ended on a slightly serious note with a whole lot of laugh-out-loud hilarity in between. The bookends of the episode dealt with Tessa's (Jane Levy) newfound interest in her mother, while the rest dealt with the insanity and creepiness of her new suburban home.
Tessa returns from Manhattan
At the beginning of the episode, Tessa is just returning to suburban hell after spending the summer in Manhattan with her grandmother. Her time away allows her to learn quite a bit about her mother. She returns wearing her mother's jacket, with a cassette tape of her mother singing. All the attention Tessa gives to her mother causes George (Jeremy Sisto) to feel a bit left out.
It's a smart change of pace to have the story about Tessa's interest in her mother, and George's reaction to it, be completely serious. It allows growth in the characters without taking away from the overall humor. Tessa has always been a somewhat serious character, while everyone else is insane. George provides the bridge between the two, as the character who is serious with his daughter and sometimes ridiculous when interacting with the other characters.
Carmen leaves Dallas
Carmen (Bunnie Rivera) has had it with Dallas (Cheryl Hines), especially after she catches Dallas burning gifts sent to Carmen from Noah (Alan Tudyk) in an attempt to steal her away from Dallas. Noah finally "wins" her after a game of rock paper scissors. It's probably for the best. If Carmen weren't around to raise Dalia (Carly Chaikin), she could have been even worse off, if that's possible. Without Carmen, Noah might have continued to use his child as a drink holder.
Lisa blackmails her family
The always-creepy Shay family deals a blow of hilarity beyond any other on the show so far, when Lisa (Allie Grant) uses her knowledge that Ryan (Parker Young) was adopted to get what she wants, by threatening to tell Ryan the truth. She demands to be given the solo in the family's truly uncomfortably funny rendition of the song "Stray Cat Strut" (by the Stray Cats) for the Fall Follies talent show. The performance consists of skin-tight black cat costumes, untalented dancing, and even more untalented singing.
Ryan is devastated to learn he can't have the solo, leading to hissing and hopping on furniture since he's in character when his parents deliver the news. Fred (Chris Parnell) is forced to resort to spraying him with a water bottle as a disciplinary action.
Sheila (Ana Gasteyer) later realizes that Lisa's worst fear is to be left alone with her family. Sheila warns Lisa that if she goes through with telling Ryan the truth, he may leave the family to search for his birth mother. That would leave Lisa with plenty of "quality time" alone home with her weird mother. As Lisa says, "very well played" Sheila!
Everything about these scenes was creepily magical and mesmerizing. That's not even sarcasm. It is true appreciation for bizarre comedy that you can't get anywhere else.
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