TV Review: Louie (5×01) “Pot Luck”

pot luck

Louie is one of the greatest success stories of television as an art form.

More than any show, it’s unbounded by the laws of what we’ve felt television should be. It hops seamlessly from comedy to drama and back. Where other shows snip out moments that aren’t crucial to laughs or the plot, Louie lets them hang out, like Louie’s belly, in all of their glorious, ugly, awkward beauty.

And with this season premiere, we get nothing extravagant beyond the recurring motif of some New Yorker playing his banjo for the world, and Louie trying to make a hormone-tormented nine-months-pregnant woman feel beautiful.

Then she asks Louie to fuck her standing and her water breaks with his dick inside her.

The host of the pot luck, the adoptive parent, is furious. She had plans for an all-natural birth, scoffing at this vaccine-addled world. Louie presents her as annoying and arrogant, but in reality this adoptive parent is a danger to the safety of her new child and the public.

Meanwhile, she’s scolding Louie – who paid more attention to the surrogate than she ever did – because her ridiculous plans weren’t perfect.

Sometimes plans don’t work out, Louie offers before getting the fuck out of there.

Louie’s plan to reconnect with his daughter’s school community sure didn’t. He entered the wrong room and accidentally donated his fried chicken to and invaded a foreign gathering.

This was all sparked on by the revelation that he’s a boring asshole now. What else do you figure when your therapist falls asleep?

Louie’s life is embarrassing and shameful taken moment by moment, as he experiences it and as we see here. But look at the whole picture and you’ll see that things aren’t so bad. He had a memorable misadventure where people offered parting wisdom: “forgive yourself.” He went out of his way to make someone feel beautiful. He became part of the story of childbirth.

Louie might feel like his success as a human being is determined by the host of the pot luck. But in the end, someone liked his fried chicken. So fuck you, lady.

He’s not such a boring asshole after all.

Score: 9/10

Joey's a 23-year-old who graduated from the University of Minnesota Morris and now lives in Minnesota's Twin Cities. He enjoys art, activism, and politics, especially when he's looking at them through a lens of popular culture. First and foremost he's obsessed with popular music, but aside from what you'd expect, he's also into comic strips, graphic novels, cartoons, and indie games made for mobile phones (his highest tile in Threes is 3,072). He'll tell you that his favorite book of all time is Goodnight Moon. He needs more people in his life who understand the joys of Achewood.