A quick review of last night's "Happy Endings" coming up just as soon as my bottom half is selling fuzzy burritos in the parking lot outside of a Widespread Panic concert...
Last week's "Happy Endings" was one of the best episodes the show has ever done. Last night's, unfortunately, was one of the weakest they've done in quite some time. They're at a point now where it's practically impossible for them to do an episode where I don't laugh — as I did at Max's weakness for bad boys, Alex turning bully again, and some of what Brad was up to — but it's the first episode they've done in a while that felt kind of hacky and like something you'd see on 17 other sitcoms.
In one case, it was, in fact, something I'd seen on another sitcom only last week, as the Jane plot was pretty much beat-for-beat from the "New Girl" story where Jess gets Schmidt to relax and everyone's life falls to hell as a result. This was a slight improvement on that, in that Brad's complaints about what his life had become (the haircut line in particular) were so absurd ("Happy Endings" uses cartoon logic far more than "New Girl," which at least attempts to take place in the real world), but it's still something I've seen done far too often, and rarely well.
And though I think the show has made some improvements in how it uses Dave this season, it's mainly been in how the rest of the group responds to him, and how he can't get them to recognize what is so obviously cool about him. Putting him in a story where he was largely interacting with guest star Bobby Moynihan took that element away and just made it a story about Dave, and Dave is... boring. Until the writers can unlock his hidden awesomeness the way they did with Alex, the goal should be to make sure any Dave story involves him dealing with at least two other main characters, if not the whole group, at all times.
What did everybody else think?