Partners, Season 1: Episode 4
The Key
I cannot put into words the feelings of devastation, shock and BETRAYAL that coursed through my bones during the first minute or two of this week's Partners. Michael Urie was back to his over-the-top antics and there was an appearance by the secretareotype (this is obviously the only way to combine secretary and stereotype, read it out loud). Then I realized"¦this episode was supposed to run before "The Jeter Exception". It's called "The Key" and centers around Ali's desire to have a key to Joe's apartment. Ali hasn't moved in yet! We haven't all played Celebrity together and become best friends. Alas, there is some good in the world, let's celebrate with wine.

Initial shock aside, I can see why Partners aired this episode out of order. It feels like more set-up in keeping with the first two episodes, whereas last week's episode felt more like a veteran comedy. Why this episode even had to exist is beyond me, the concept here does not require three episodes of introduction.

IN ADDITION, the episode has two different beginnings. I just found this out when I went to watch it again to get some of the best quotes. I'm not sure which one aired on TV and I can't find any mention of it online (I did not look that hard). This has been such an emotional roller coaster for me, I don't know if I can go on. I need more wine.

The first version of the episode opened with a scene from the Joe and Louis are kids vault. Blah blah blah they try to do a blood oath, blah blah they write it down in glitter. Kids are boring, but at least these ones are cute. The second version begins with a pretty adorable scene in the office between Joe, Ali and, eventually, Louis. The chemistry and comedic timing are really the best in this show when Ali and Louis are interacting, especially if Joe (or Wyatt) is there to play the straight man. Partners would make a joke here about how Wyatt can't be the straight man, because he is gay gay gay.

Realizing that joke is offensive because it is both stupid and stereotypical, I would just like to say that Joe is a delightful straight man because he brings an air of purposefulness to the part. Joe is not being bamboozled by his charismatic best friend or his super hot fiancé, he loves them both and appreciates their craziness and that comes through in his reaction to their jokes and in his own well-delivered zingers.

After the completely divergent beginning scenes, Louis gives Joe a cooler full of vodka and meat to store because Louis is pretending to be sober and a vegan. As someone who is currently dabbling with vegetarianism, I don't know why abstaining from meat and alcohol have to go together. It's not like gin is made from the tears of baby seals (I hope). These scenes are different in each version, but make basically the same jokes and advance the plot in the same way. Louis needs points from Wyatt because Louis is the selfish one and needs to make up for all of his selfish behaviors. BORING and obvious, way to go Partners.

After the opening credits (which I love, who doesn't love spunky clapping?), the episodes appear to be the same and I breathe a sigh of relief. Louis lets himself into Joe's apartment to get his sausage . Hahaha"¦not. Ali is there and she is shocked to find that Louis has a key to Joe's place, but she doesn't.
Thankfully, there are no errors in communication in this episode, the whole misunderstanding and scheming would have gotten old if repeated one more time. Instead, Joe finds out that Louis barged in on Ali and upset her. Joe doesn't want to give Ali a key because he doesn't want their relationship to move too quickly. He says it is because he read an op-ed piece about couples who moved in together before marriage, but it turns out it was an article by Taylor Swift. Michael Urie thinks Taylor Swift is stupid and he hates her bangs, he is my spirit animal.

Even though Ali doesn't nag Joe for a key, which is refreshing, Joe decides to give her one. Ali is overjoyed, especially since she has to look for it by playing "hot and cold." Ali loves games! I love games! She is also my spirit animal. Once Ali has a key, she changes the locks so that Louis must behave like a guest in the apartment. Louis pitches a fit. At dinner at Joe's apartment, Louis confesses that he is so upset about the key because he is afraid of change. It's all very sweet, and a little bit boring.

After everyone has made nice about the key, Wyatt reveals that he knew Louis was faking the sobriety and veganism and only kept his mouth shut to get the points. Wyatt reveals (by baby talking to their dog, Elphaba) that he is going to cash in his points by making Louis go on the Rosie cruise with their friends Lance and Fernando. Wow, that was a loaded sentence, but the points concept is interesting. I love arbitrary and very important score keeping systems among friends and lovers. I also still love Partners even though it breaks my heart and scrambles my brain.

Grade: C+.

Thought Vomit:

-It kills me to downgrade Partners this much, but I got confused and never really bounced back even though I did laugh out loud a couple of times. I hope that we are back on track next week.

-"Without change, you can't buy gumballs"-Louis

-"It may be nonsense, but at least it's stupid"-Joe

-There is a lot of hugging in this episode. I hope that is just a one off. Neither of my spirit animals should hug to comfort, nor do they require a hug to be comforted.
Tags: Partners
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