You’re the Worst ends a season I liked with an ending I loved

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The hour-long finale of You’re the Worst was broken up into two episodes, “Like People” and “It’s Always Been This Way”. The first half hour was about the setup of everything seemingly going down in flames, also literally in flames. And the last half hour was like a song I never heard that I instantly needed to replay.

It’s riveting and I was on board the whole way. At first the show sets up the danger. Edgar is losing Max, who blames their boss, the tyrannical Doug Benson, when it is obviously Max who doesn’t want to hang with Edgar anymore. For all his talk of thinking Max treating him like an equal, Max really treated Edgar like a pet.

The ongoing joke about Doug Benson being an international executive of mystery has always been great, and this episode just wonderfully built on that, from the references to nano communication or black ops to the final notes about him meeting with Al Franken and Raul Castro. I also found it hilarious how the episode attacked the delightful comedian Paul F. Tompkins as a monster, amusing as he is considered one of the nicest people in comedy.

Edgar got a laugh out loud moment when he spun around in his chair in full sneak mode, but he always got a surprising note of intrigue and self-confidence when he had an honest, real conversation with Jimmy, who gave him decent advice for once. “Rely on yourself, accept your new reality, and move on.” This is not the advice for everyone, but Edgar, long the doormat, needs it. And Jimmy admits, by pretending not to admit, that Edgar matters to him. It’s touching.

This all culminates so cleverly in the final half hour, where he confronts Max, who admits he’s a rich kid who doesn’t want to think about anything sad or uncomfortable. He says he’ll help Edgar get out of the difficult punishment job he’s in, and that’s good. Edgar doesn’t deserve the monster Paul F. Tompkins, like he said. When he finally leaves Jimmy to go off after he (unusually) offers a ride, it’s clear that there’s a change in the wind.

Edgar is growing as a person who respects himself. It’s just a great note for his character.

A note on those lists that the show is known for — I had to pause to see the movie marquee in the background to see three great movie titles: Heatspell, Dancing for Chocolate, and Dad on Arrival. Magnificent.

Lindsay’s storyline is equally fantastic. She starts trying to help others, seeing in Olivia the mirror image of herself. It’s legitimate empathy, and if her methods are weird, like leaping out of the trash, her motives are pure. At heart, Lindsay is realizing she likes seeing people happy and doesn’t like seeing them sad. That’s growth too, and even if Lindsay will never be smart, she can be wise.

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Her tactics sort of backfired with Boone, as he uses his worries about Jimmy to ask Gretchen to move in with him. That goes somewhere soon. But Lindsay finds her true greatness in the bonkers Vernon storyline.

Vernon’s horrible if hilarious hallucination was great, and totally expected. His breakdown made perfect sense, considering the path he’s been going. That scene of Lindsay’s revelation worked great: Paul admitted he’s not happy not being a father, while Becca yells that she wasn’t happy since she was pregnant. I have to admit I didn’t see it coming.

The idea is sound, Becca being a surrogate for Paul, so they’ll get money to help their dire straits, and Paul gets the child he’s always wanted. Maybe Paul will be a terrible father, but can he be any worse than Becca and Vernon or Becca and Lindsay’s mother? The universe rewarded Lindsay right away, with an invitation (seemingly sincere) from her work friends.

And the capper with Vernon wanting to see Paul sleep with his wife was precisely what makes sense for him to say. He’s happy in his own messed up way, seeing Paul be happy. And even if I still don’t know what a “trasherita” is.

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But Jimmy and Gretchen’s arc … wow. The opening scene where Gretchen breaks down with her fear of abandonment only served to remind me that I’m still furious this show has never won anything at the Emmys, but it tapped into that theme again of self-improvement as it connects to other people. Edgar improves himself despite others, Lindsay improves herself by helping others, but Gretchen? Different story altogether.

Again, Chris Geere as Jimmy is amazing, because the silent face acting on this show is A+ across the board, and his scene in the movie theater where he didn’t have Gretchen to bounce his angry retorts off of? Heartbreaking. So it led to such a great sequence of them driving through the city, making us believe it was really over, that Jimmy and Gretchen might never see each other again.

Until that final scene.

It was a triumph from beginning to end. Starting with Boone’s ex-wife Whitney and her nerdy husband Neil discussing his weird history with Mark Zuckerberg and bottle caps to that amazing out of nowhere punch from Jimmy, it just kept getting better and more intense. I loved how Neil got furious about Olivia calling him Fatty McFartface, and also Boone and Gretchen’s grins at that.

The reveal that Gretchen was intimate with Whitney was a reveal I was so glad to see come out, and Whitney’s final look back at Gretchen? Perfection. Jimmy fought and groveled and tried to reach out to Gretchen, but it seemed like she had had enough of him and Boone too. Her “I choose myself” was another moment of “Is this where it ends?”

And then, damn, she gets into Jimmy’s car. “You fought for me,” she says in tears. And it hit me too, because Jimmy is still terrified, but he still cares. And he knows he’ll never do better. That wonderful moment of them shouting in unison at the car behind them really is messing with me, because there is just one more season to go.

Everything could go up in flames before then, and I don’t want that. Last season played with my feelings and broke my heart. I’d rather not have that happen again. I don’t care what anyone else says about this season, I thought it was great. It had a fantastically strong opening, great and memorable moments throughout, and a home run of an ending. I can’t wait for the final season, but I can’t handle that it’s the final one. Not yet, but give me time.

You’re the Worst will return for a fifth and final season on FXX in 2018.

What did you think of the finale? Tell us in the comments below!

 

 

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