Review: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 4 Episode 17

crazy ex s4e17

I really thought I’d cry. It takes a fair bit to make tears trickle down my face too, but then Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is a show I’ve loved for what feels like a long time now, even if it is only four far too short years. Yet while the ending was fine, okay and likeable enough, it did disappoint me a little and it pains me to say such a thing. But everything felt a little obvious, a little predictable, a little convenient and a little too pat and easy.

As I’m pretty sure everyone knows, season finale’s are incredibly difficult to get right, for every Cheers, The Larry Sanders Show or Review Forrest MacNeil there’s a How I Met Your Mother, a Lost or a Dexter, a series which is either ridiculously irritating or something which leaves everything open to question in an unsatisfying manner. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend definitely doesn’t fall in to the latter category, there were lots of sweet and funny moments along the way, but it doesn’t fall in to the former section either, everyone got their happy ending (well, bar White Josh at least) but it felt all rather unadventurous, and that was one thing that this show did so extremely well most of the time.

Leading up to the finale was the big question as to who Rebecca would end up with, as Josh, Nathaniel and Greg had all declared their love for her, but also throughout this final batch of episodes there was the theme that Rebecca didn’t really know what to do with her life, and I had a strong feeling that would turn out to be more important than what happened with her love life . It’s always been a staunchly feminist show after all and Rebecca’s happiness in life shouldn’t be tied to the men in it without any doubt, but my frustration isn’t that she turned them all down, more that the way it ended was a little bland.

Giving a big speech about everyone in the show and wrapping up their various stories was pleasing to see, even if the happiness each and every one of them found was rather on the nose, and though there was a lovely little bit of cynicism when it came to White Josh’s horrendous year, and the fact that he’s still not fond of Rebecca, all of the endings were too obvious. Valencia and Beth were engaged, Heather and Hector still loved up, the same applied to Darryl and his new beau with the added bonus that he had another kid on the way, Josh was finally with a woman he loved, Greg’s still running his restaurant, and okay, maybe I didn’t guess that Nathaniel would end up in another country looking after monkeys but him quitting the law firm his father owned was always going to happen. There were no surprises, no shocks, no revelations that you couldn’t see coming from a mile away, and I’m not suggesting such things should be downbeat in any way, just not so guessable.

Towards the end of the speech Rebecca points out that romantic love should only be a part of your life, and that’s a sentiment I agree with strongly, finding your passion in existence and making a career out of it is far more important, it’s how you’re going to spend most of your waking hours after all, but her love for musical theatre was telegraphed from the very beginning of the show so it’s a shame they took so long for Rebecca to realise it herself. It was completely apt that Paula was the one who helped her to the realisation, and that was a lovely moment, as was the amusing montage of Rebecca learning how to do such a thing, but it felt like they bailed at the last moment by not showing us the product of all of her work.

Perhaps the song she was about to sing could never have lived up to expectations, but I would have liked to see them try. This is a series which has given us a ridiculous amount of incredibly fantastic songs, and giving Rebecca one final tune to belt out would have been truly satisfying. Hell, it could even have been the kind of medley that we got earlier on in the episode, it was wonderful to hear snippets of these songs once again in such a context, and set over a montage of everything she’s been through over the last four years would had left me in the emotional state that I thought I’d be in by the end of the episode. But alas it was not to be.

I hate that this review has been so negative, and there were a lot of fantastic scenes throughout the episode from the two songs that we got to Rebecca’s dream sequence at the start of the show. Nathaniel standing up to his father, Paula almost quitting her job because she wanted to do what she really believed in, White Josh confessing he still wasn’t taken with Rebecca, and parts of Rebecca’s speech all made me grin no end. And it is a series I have no doubt I’ll watch again many a time, and I don’t tend to do that with many shows simply because there’s so much amazing tv on right now that I haven’t seen in the first place. Aline Brosh McKenna and Rachel Bloom have created something truly unique, and one of the best shows of the past decade, it’s just a shame that the finale frustrated as otherwise that sentence would read “One of the best shows ever made”.

Alex Finch.

Related Links: Previous Reviews:
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 4 Episode 1
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 4 Episode 3
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 4 Episode 9
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 4 Episode 13
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 4 Episode 14

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