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'The Last Man on Earth' recap: 'C to the T'

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Jordin Althaus/Fox

The Last Man on Earth

type:
TV Show
Current Status:
In Season
seasons:
2
run date:
03/01/15
performer:
Will Forte
broadcaster:
Fox
genre:
Comedy

The best way to apologize for being a jerk is to apologize for being a jerk. The worst way to apologize for being a jerk is to do so while pointing a gun (loaded, unloaded, whatever) at your audience. And we all know which method Tandy chose to go with last week.

Now he’s facing the consequences of his incredibly dumb actions. Not much actually happens throughout the episode — most of it’s spent watching Tandy deal with his punishment, which is luckily amusing enough to fill up a half hour of TV. 

First he’s in the pillory, a bad place to be when Phil stops by with a loaded gun and sticks it right at Tandy’s head. Tandy tries to reason that, yeah, he directed a gun toward them, but at least that gun was unloaded. This defense doesn’t work too well with Phil, who fires the gun in the air a couple times before leaving. Tandy got to keep his life, but he did lose something in the process: “Gonna need a change of pants,” he calls after Phil. “Maybe some underwear, too. And some shoes, for sure.”

Carol, being the wonderfully wonderful wife she is, changes Phil’s pants for him and tries to convince the others to let up on the punishment. Phil suggests giving him one week of solitary confinement in the workout room, and then Tandy does another completely idiotic thing: He ups the time, suggesting they give him five weeks. It’s all part of his attempt to be super accommodating and hyper-aware of his mistakes in an attempt to get the Tucson crew to forgive him — what he doesn’t seem to realize, though, is that this is a tough crowd. Like, an unusually tough crowd.

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Carol’s finding it hard to understand why Tandy didn’t just take the shorter punishment that Phil initially suggested, something that leads Tandy to reveal he’s always taken the easier route and this time, he doesn’t want to. And this, ladies and gentlemen, is Tandy becoming a man before our very eyes.

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is Tandy reverting back to a boy: Earlier, he saw Carol noshing on some homemade cheese (courtesy of Todd), and later on, he notices some of that cheese still sitting outside. So he does what anyone in a post-apocalyptic world without much fresh dairy would do — he escapes his “cell” and scarfs down the cheese. As Carol wisely told Melissa earlier on, “Cheese will make you feel better.”

Problem is, it doesn’t really make Tandy feel better. Maybe for a second, sure, but he puts it in his mouth, chews it, then spits it out twice — twice — because he realizes what he’s doing and feels guilty. He might as well have swallowed and enjoyed the mouthful of cheese the first time though because now his punishment is about to get worse. Much, much worse.

NEXT: Tandy keeps racking up the punishments[pagebreak]

The crew puts a shock collar on Tandy so he can only roam a specific, small perimeter in the yard. He acts like he’s fine with it — “This is top-notch punishment,” he raves — but is obviously incredibly lonely. He shows this by trying to chat up whoever walks by, which results in Melissa insisting that he must be completely silent. Wishful thinking, Melissa.

Tandy gets another collar, one that sprays citronella oil in his face each time he speaks. This means he can only communicate by a) whispering, b) talking and dealing with the citronella oil, or c) playing charades. This doesn’t matter for that long, though, because Phil eventually shoves him in a tiny shed that looks about the size of a porta-potty.

Let’s just be honest here: The Tucson crew is made up of a bunch of bullies. Is Tandy annoying? Totally. Does being annoying mean you deserve to be treated like a dog — and not even a regular dog, but a dog who belongs to mean owners who don’t even like pets and shouldn’t have a dog in the first place? Not at all.

And Tandy can be a nice dog, too! He proves that at the episode’s conclusion when a fire erupts in the yard. He breaks out of his shed so he can pour buckets of pool water on the fire, saving the house and, in turn, the Tucson crew. All the while, his shock collar is going off, probably damaging his brain and definitely causing him to make a ton of highly entertaining (and somewhat pathetic) yelps. 

Like a good dog, he retreats back to his shed after playing firefighter. Everyone wakes up the next day and quickly realizes Tandy must have been the one to put out the fire, a heroic gesture that earns him early dismissal from prison — with the help of Carol, of course, who killed it as his unofficial lawyer this episode.

Letting Tandy out early doesn’t mean they like him, though. They all walk away following his release, completely apathetic about his presence. Todd, in particular, seems extra irked by Tandy. But Todd also might have a secret: The episode ends with him opening the door to a house and saying, “Daddy’s home.” There’s a possibility this isn’t actually a secret, but the way Todd sneaks away to the house in the dark of night sure makes it seem like it is — and for the show’s sake, hopefully it is: Todd keeping something from the rest of the group would certainly create some good drama, especially seeing as he was the one who in this very episode said, “Trust is the most important thing.” Is that so, Todd? 

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