Josh wants Rebecca back, and they try again. Will it work this time?

By Madeline Raynor
January 06, 2017 at 10:00 PM EST
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Michael Desmond/The CW
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  • The CW
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Crazy Ex-Girlfriend gave two back-to-back episodes this week, so there was plenty of time for relationship drama. Josh wants Rebecca back, and they try again. They hit a snag, obviously, but for a different reason than you’d think: Rebecca gets a new love interest! It’s just what Crazy Ex-Girlfriend needed.

At the top of the hour, Scott tells Paula that he slept with Tonya from work, and she kicks him out of the house. At the office, Rebecca sees that Paula needs her and they make up, although, staying true to “You Go First,” she says “You’re sorry” instead of “I’m sorry.” When Paula fills her in on Scott’s cheating, Rebecca sees how selfish she’s been. She shows up at Paula’s house to deliver a real apology and to help her out by babysitting Tommy.

While out with Tommy, they run into Josh. Rebecca tells him she wants to be friends. Josh mentions that he has a cold, so later, she sends him chicken soup with a note — her usual flowery, obsessive kind. But the note gets wet and is illegible by the time Josh receives it, so he assumes it came from Anna and posts a mushy Instagram about it. Rebecca sees the Instagram (yup, she’s still cyber-stalking him).

Instead of letting it go, she insists on telling him she sent the soup, so she follows him to Spider’s, where she then loses Tommy. While she and Heather look for him in the bathroom, Josh and Anna come in, and the ladies must hide in the stall while the lovebirds have sex. Then we discover the reason he’s dragged all his friends and girlfriend to the club: He’s in a fashion show. But not a cool fashion show. A West Covina fashion show, featuring models who were scouted from local businesses. White Josh and Hector are embarrassed, but Anna is so disgusted that she breaks up with him.

Josh is bummed, but quickly forgets about Anna when he figures out that it was Rebecca who sent the soup. And then he has an epiphany: Rebecca is the person who cares about him most, she’s amazing, and he wants her back. It’s a mirror of the epiphany Rebecca had when she saw Josh in New York and decided to move to West Covina for him, the one that started this story.

“It’s always Rebecca, isn’t it? Wherever I turn, everything points back to her,” he says. In a rom-com moment, he runs to Paula’s house to find her. You can see the fireworks in her eyes, but she delivers a line we wouldn’t expect from her: “This is amazing, and you need to go.” She tells him this isn’t a good time, and she puts Paula and their friendship first. He leaves, but not before declaring, “I’m not giving up on you.”

“So Maternal”
This song is Rachel Bloom at her best: pulling off a meticulously written and designed parody number like a whiz. Rebecca doesn’t have a ton of experience with children, but that doesn’t stop her from volunteering to babysit for Tommy. When Paula tries to tell her that being a mom is harder than it looks, she balks. She thinks she’ll be great at it. The following song is framed by Rebecca imagining herself as the smug but soft-spoken guest of honor on the aforementioned mommy podcast.

The tune itself is a take on Bruno Mars’ Uptown Funk. Rebecca’s outfit — including a boxy pink ’80s blazer — is a nod to Bruno Mars’ getup in the music video. Vocally, Bloom pulls off funk really well. Ditto for the dance style. Her whole body effortlessly channels this persona. The hook, during which she exclaims, “Damn, I’m so maternal,” with a perfectly executed vocal break, clinches it. It’s an anthem about being a fantastic mom, but of course, Rebecca isn’t.

This is the type of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend song that you want to learn all the lyrics to and sing along.

“Duh!”
This song is the musical expression of Josh’s epiphany that Rebecca is the one. It’s not an aesthetically pleasing song to listen to, but it serves the story. I mean… it has a bunch of duhs and similar exclamations in the place of actual lyrics. This one is ripped from Top 40 pop radio. And props to the writers, it sounds exactly like Top 40 pop. Justin Bieber and DJ Snake’s “Let Me Love You” comes to mind. I chuckled at “Looking back on all those times/Like that one time, and that other time.”

Episode grade: A-

NEXT: “When Do I Get To Spend Time With Josh?”

Rebecca spent the next week being Paula’s wife and helping her around the house, but she also admits to Paula that she’s avoiding Josh after his declaration. “I’m scared,” she explains. “I don’t know if I can trust him.” But, she does still love him.

When she finally talks to Josh, he says “We’ll do things the right way.” Sounds promising. He’s moved on from the “Duh!” stage, instead acknowledging that their relationship didn’t work before and telling her it’ll be different this time. They get back together and there’s a “West Covina” sequence. They’re starting over as a couple the same way she started over when she moved here. And then Josh tells her he loves her and she happily says it back.

When Rebecca finally rolls in to work late, she meets the arrogant new co-owner of the firm, Nathaniel (Scott Michael Foster), who is not impressed with her performance so far. He’s also very attractive. And try as she might, Rebecca can’t stop thinking about him. New love interest alert! He’s makes fun of Josh, calling him a “human flip-flop.”

Bad news on the work front: Nathaniel is making budget cuts, and people will be fired. The employees of Whitefeather and Associates sing a song about their suspicion toward the new boss, and their fear is justified. George gets the axe, and if you’re thinking “who?,” you’re not alone. No one in the office even knows who he is. He was an underdeveloped character, and now he’s gone. Poor George doesn’t even get the exit he wants. He sings a song demanding to be taken seriously, but gets cut off.

Meanwhile, Rebecca and Josh go to dinner with his parents. (This second go at a relationship is moving fast.) However, she screws it up when she sees Nathaniel at the restaurant.

And before we get to the songs: Patton Oswalt guest stars as a weird security guard who Paula agrees to go on a date with because he got her out of trouble. In a delightful bit of comedy, he takes her to the aquarium because he just loves the touch tank (*shudders*).

“Who’s The New Guy?”
Paula and the staff break into this ensemble number to express their fear about the new boss and what he has planned. It’s a classic musical theater number that reminds me of the appropriately corporate “I Believe in You” from How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, but just the “gotta stop that man” part. It’s no stunner musically, but the charm factor is in the sneakin’ around choreography.

But most importantly: It’s a meta-theatrical song. The new guy they refer to is their new boss Nathaniel, but also the new character on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. The audience might be skeptical of this new love interest for Rebecca they same way these office workers are afraid of change. Lines like “Do we really need a new guy this far into the season and by far into the season, I mean it’s almost fall” are delightfully tongue in cheek.

“George’s Turn”
Again with the snippets! I loved this song and wanted to hear the full number, so this was a slap in the face. Especially because George has a great voice. He sings this immediately after getting fired. The title is a reference to “Rose’s Turn,” but it’s more of a villain song than the one Mama Rose belts. There’s a scary element to it. Everything’s staccato. The song is modern musical theater: It has elements of “Epiphany” from Sweeney Todd or the Thénardiers or Javert’s parts from Les Miz (“And I’m Javert!“, etc.). This is George’s moment to stand up for himself and tell everyone he’s sick of how they treat him. He belts, “George won’t be ignored, George won’t be interrupted, becau—.” Anddddd blackout. Poor George.

Episode grade: A

Top Three Songs in Season 2 (So Far):

“So Maternal” grabs the number three spot easily. It’s such a standout number: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and Rachel Bloom are in top form.

1. “Maybe This Dream”
2. “It Was a S— Show”
3. “So Maternal”

Episode Recaps

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

2015 series
type
  • TV Show
seasons
  • 4
episodes
  • 53
rating
genre
creator
  • Rachel Bloom
  • Aline Brosh McKenna
network
  • The CW
stream service

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