Episode Grade: B
“Your kids drove an ice cream truck to a strip club, and now we’re all here together.”
In a lot of ways, tonight’s episode of Bob’s Burgers is pretty emblematic of where the show is at this point in its run. We’ve talked before about how it sometimes seems like there’s not a lot of uncharted territory for the show 10 seasons in. In a way, this is an inevitable consequence of the show’s non-serialized, stuck-in-time format: there are only so many unique stories you can tell about the same group of people at the same point in their lives. Even so, both plots tonight came across as very familiar. Fortunately, at this point Bob’s enough of a well-oiled machine that they can turn in a quality half hour of TV without having to break any new ground.
The slight feeling of ‘been there, done that’ was most evident in Jen and the kids’ plot, which was almost a beat for beat recreation of their plot in “Purple Rain-Union”. Part of the issue is that there’s not really any depth to Jen as a character and she doesn’t really have the force of will to be any match for the kids, so getting steamrolled is basically her only function. Meanwhile, Bob and Linda’s plot was less obviously recycled, but ‘Bob and Linda try to keep up with younger and/or cooler friends’ is still pretty familiar territory.
So how does this episode warrant a ‘B’? For me, it was mostly the fact that it was only after the episode was finished and I had to figure out something to write about it that I realized how closely it resembled episodes we’ve seen before. The show’s writers have a deft enough hand that “Land Of The Loft” manages to entertain while walking a path we’ve been down before.
- Storefront: Hankercheeks Machine Washable Toilet Paper. Exterminator: Gnat On My Watch Pest Control.
- Teddy’s jealousy of Becket and Maya was perfectly in character, but really I’ve been surprised at how little he’s been used this season.
- Jen’s inability to pronounce “microphone” was a nice call back to her previously revealed inability to pronounce “microwave”.
- Part of me does feel like we got to Pickles a little late in the game and could probably have had some more laughs there. Ms. Labonz looked like she was having fun.
- Apologies for the brief write up, but I was at a wedding all weekend and am honestly more booze than man. Hopefully I’ll be back on my a-game for next week’s Thanksgiving episode.