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Suburgatory 1.20 "Hear No Evil" Review

The end of the season stretch can be pretty influential on the path of a freshman show like Suburgatory. By the time you get to the final few installments of your debut season, you tend to know what works, what doesn't work, and what seeds need to be planted before next season. It's a lot of information to have to sort through, but if you fumble badly enough, it can leave a sour taste in the mouth of your audience, a taste that could take an entire summer hiatus to get over.

"Hear No Evil" wasn't exactly a fumble, stumble, or bumble, but it felt like a step back from the show's recent creative hot streak. A typical episode of Suburgatory has a whole lot going on, all bright colors and loud noises, but there was just a bit too much here, too many plots and not enough attention paid to, well, any of them. That lack of narrative focus, which can be overwhelming if you're not expecting it, made the episode feel cluttered and in need of a good edit or two. That's not to say that the plots here weren't good; there's just no way to make a determination, since everything is crammed together and painted in neon green spray paint, all flash and no breathing room. For example, the "Lisa thinks she may be adopted" plot has a hell of a lot of potential, as it'd utilize the entire Shay family and allow Allie Grant the chance to play off of Ana Gasteyer, two of the actresses that have the most innate chemistry and intriguing dynamic. There wasn't any time for it, minus a brief pocket here or there, and it could have benefited by being shifted back an episode; there's so much material to mine from this, a fairly familiar sitcom set-up, that it being smothered by all the Altman drama was a little disappointing. The only positive about the lack of time tonight is that they didn't give it a false ending, so Lisa's search for the truth (and her "real mom", Edie Brickell) will get its moment in the sun. Read More...


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