It’s Hope’s first Christmas and Jimmy wants it to be better than what he remembers from his childhood in the "Toy Story" episode of RAISING HOPE. I was lucky enough to watch it early and I’m happy to say it has all the humor and heart I look for in a Christmas episode.
While the last few episodes have highlighted Burt, Virginia and Jimmy are the heart of "Toy Story" with their desire for acceptance and respect. To quote Burt, "Virginia is so badass," and Martha Plimpton shines as she infuses Virginia’s grasping need for the spotlight with vulnerability. Lucas Neff has really grown into the role of Jimmy and he shows great emotional range in this episode as Jimmy tries to be the best father he can be and protect his daughter.
The sell the season’s hot toy for profit has been done on shows before, of course, but it works on several levels here with a brilliant opening scene, some new insight into Jimmy’s lingering childhood resentment with one of my favorite flashback scenes to date (another one that focuses on Virginia and Jimmy is also awesome), and a hilariously irreverent and sweetly touching payoff.
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