In the tenth episode of the first season of Dead Like Me, OH MY GOD, ROXY, MY HEART, MY HEART SHATTERS FOR YOUR LEG WARMERS. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Dead Like Me.
YOU CAN’T EXPECT ONE MAN TO DEAL WITH ALL THESE EMOTIONS! WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS TO ME?
- Holy shit, what a great episode on multiple fronts. More information on Roxy and Daisy, a reveal about reapers who are part of the “Plague Division,” and Rube basically being J. Walter Weatherman from Arrested Development. SERIOUSLY. I’m surprised he didn’t pull Daisy, George, and Mason out of that house and tell them, “AND THAT’S WHY YOU DON’T TEACH LESSONS.”
- This episode made me more curious than ever about how these people got chosen to be reapers. Is it always random, based on whether or not they’re the last soul reaped by a specific reaper? The reason I ask is that I’m getting the sense that being a reaper is endlessly fucked up. Ferrying the dead to their afterlife doesn’t seem so bad, but having to live in the same world you once did when you were alive, while you’re forbidden to make any significant relationships, AND YOU DON’T GET PAID OR A PLACE TO STAY… y’all, that seems so cruel! They’re cursed with human bodies, but they’re not alive, and they’re not allowed any special consideration. What the hell, are they being punished or something??? Are they working out some sin they committed?
- Given that, I understand why Daisy is so hellbent on conning Matthew Hourihan. Yes, she’s materialistic and shallow, but lord, why wouldn’t you be if you were given a second life being a gatekeeper for Death? I don’t mean to suggest that these reapers don’t have consequences to their actions. We’ve seen in every episode that this is the case. I’m talking about the fact that whoever they’re working for – Death, I assume – cares not one iota about them. There’s no support system for them, there are no means to help them do their job, and they have to rely on the sometimes fickle and undependable kindness of their fellow reapers. You better believe that I would become a master thief if I was a reaper.
- However, it’s now clear that this is Daisy’s thing, and the writers suggest that this is the reason she was transferred from New York to work under Rube. (Is Rube a huge deal in the reaper world??? I really, really want to see more of the reaper infrastructure.) She preys on the grieving, which risks exposing the reapers. Well, it’s also super rude. Rube takes the healing process seriously, at least serious enough to know when he should intervene and when he should stay out of things.
- This episode treads a fine line between being pure black comedy and touching emotional drama, and it does it super well. For the most part, Daisy’s scheme to rip off the Hourihans is deeply funny, especially once Mason starts introducing traditional Halloween sounds to her seance. THE WOLF HOWL WAS SO FUNNY. Oh my god, Mason was so proud of that lamp tipping over. He’s seriously a giant child!
- Mary Kate Hourihan reminded me of Lucille Bluth half the time. Only not quite as funny. But the writers find a way to humanize her. Granted, she’s pretty grating most of the time, though that’s the point of her character. Still, I liked the moment where she implored George to start sailing, or when she was finally proud of her son. They were nice touches.
- It’s no surprise that my favorite part about “Business Unfinished” was the chance to learn more about Roxy. Again, the writers toy with humor and heart-crushing drama. Also, THOSE HAVE TO BE REFERENCES TO FAME AND A DIFFERENT WORLD. THEY HAVE TO BE! Anyway, it was strangely comforting to know that Roxy hadn’t gotten over her own death after 21 years. This show has focused so much on George being unable to accept that her life was over, and here was another character suffering just as much as she was. I don’t mean to suggest that I feel GREAT that Roxy was hurting all these years. I guess it made me feel like it was okay to have a difficult time grieving.
- There are a lot of things in Roxy’s death that made her resent it. Her friend killed her over leg warmers, did so before she was certain to make a fortune, and she was murdered just before she broke it big. And now she’s stuck as a parking meter. How could you not resent that?
- I’m happy that she has someone like Rube in her life, then. It’s so sweet and kind of him to indulge her, to gently push her along towards happiness, to eat her bundt cake WHICH HOLY SHIT THAT LOOKED AMAZING that isn’t fair! I adore that he doesn’t rush her. He just asks her to throw one item into the fire, bringing her one step closing towards accepting what fate has given her.
- THAT DANCE SHE DOES AT THE END KILLS ME. NO, Y’ALL, THAT HAS TO BE A REFERENCE TO A DIFFERENT WORLD.
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