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'Mom' react: Worst vacation ever

Season 2 | Episode 2 | “Figgy Pudding and the Rapture” | Aired Nov 6, 2014

This week on Mom, there are just as many tears as there are laughs. While everyone in Christy’s life is suffering from her mistakes, she is trying her best to hold it together—and failing. Violet gets fed up with their situation when they are forced to move from the hotel to Marjorie’s. She storms out, leaving things unsettled between herself and Christy. Jill (Jaime Pressly) falls off the wagon when her husband leaves her,  and Alvin (Kevin Pollack) starts to get a sense of what her life is really like … and scolds her.

EW Community contributors Tamar Barbash, Sundi Rose Holt, and Julia Alexander will be chatting about each new episode this season (although we are missing Julia this week). Here are our thoughts about “Figgy Pudding and the Rapture.”

Sundi: Let’s dive right in. This week was emotional. I’m mean, like, brought-tears-to-my-eyes kind of stuff.

Tamar: Totally. I really loved it. What made you emotional?

Sundi: I am a sucker for any sort of tearjerker, but the scene with Violet and Christy: it’s too much. It ripped my heart out.

Tamar: It’s such an interesting concept to consider—how much more clearly we see other people’s bad choices. Christy thinks she’s doing great; Violet thinks she’s a mess.

Sundi: Christy is so disconnected from her own behavior. We get to see Christy from everyone else’s point of view. Everyone has a perspective on Christy—except for Christy.

Tamar: It also brings up such an important point about getting sober. You’re struggling so hard just to be successful with that, but that doesn’t guarantee any other success.

Sundi: I think Jaime Pressly’s character, Jill, is supposed to be the vehicle for that conversation.

Tamar: On the one hand, what Jill shows us is that Christy really is doing incredibly well. Every single day is an accomplishment.

Sundi: Right. And Christy tries to make Violet understand that in the scene where she calls her a loser. But Violet can’t understand what good AA is doing them.

Tamar: But sobriety doesn’t pay the rent on its own.

Sundi: I’ll give it to CBS and Chuck Lorre, they are committed to keeping them down and out.

Tamar: I felt the whole time I was watching that they are actually tricking everybody by calling it a comedy.

Sundi: I know, right? There are some really tense moments. She asked everyone she knew for a loan. It was hard to watch at times.

Tamar: Ugh—when the chef offered her a chance to work it off in his car? I was so glad she turned him down, because it didn’t seem out of the realm of possibility that she’d accept.

Sundi: I swear, Tamar, I thought she was going to consider it. Do you think the audience will remain sympathetic if she can’t get it together in the next couple of episodes?

Tamar: If she stays sober, yes I do. I think she’ll lose them if she relapses, which is a shame.

Sundi: I’m probably a monster, but I think I want to see her go down that rabbit hole a little. Imagine how funny a drunk Anna Faris could be!

Tamar: So besides seeing Christy potentially relapse, what else are you hoping will happen in the next few episodes?

Sundi: It’s like this show has the potential to go either way—a fun, happy show about a dysfunctional family that we love to laugh at and judge, or a terrible, bleak story about the destruction of five people’s lives.

Sundi:  I am desperately hoping for the first option—and I want that to come in the form of an Alvin-Bonnie romance. I mean, come on. Just their physical pairing is absolutely hysterical.

Tamar: It’s interesting because I’m a big fan of Showtime’s Shameless. And you could have just been describing that show. Except it’s on Showtime and it’s not a sitcom so it ends up feeling much darker, even though there’s a lot of crossover in theme.

Sundi: I’m a Shameless fan as well, and I think about what a good show Mom could be if it had the sovereignty that Shameless does. Bonnie could be CBS’ Frank Gallagher.

Tamar: Yes! Exactly. But it’s actually cool to see what can be done with this material in the CBS format. Because I feel like their lives are in such disarray that humor is necessary for survival. So it’s almost like we’re watching a drama and they let us laugh occasionally to relieve the tension, but it’s really all a con.

Sundi: I especially felt that way this week. It was one punch in the gut after another.

Tamar: And it doesn’t feel like a sitcom in that it doesn’t wrap up nicely at the end of 30 minutes. The to be continued element at the end of each episode is really brilliant.

Sundi: I’m happy it’s not content to rest on its heels and just keep us laughing at the same things over and over. 2 Broke Girls has been the same exact show since season 1 and I’m glad Mom isn’t so complacent.

Tamar: Right. And it’s also contributing to such an important conversation.I was on the fence after the premiere but this episode has really, really sold me.

Sundi: I’m glad. It needs all the eyes it can get, but I bet there will be Emmy buzz again this year if it stays this course. I know I’ll be watching every week.

Mom airs Thursdays at 8:30/7:30C on on CBS.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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