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SpoilerTV - TV Spoilers


Roadies - The Corporate Gig & The Load Out Review - "Phil"

Roadies Season 1 Episode Guide
1.01. "Life is a Carnival" - Review!
1.02. "What Would Phil Do?" - Review!
1.03. "The Bryce Newman Letter" - Review!
1.04. "The City Whose Name Must Not Be Spoken" - Review!
1.05. "Friends and Family" - Review!
1.06. "Longest Days" - Review!
1.07. "Carpet Season" - Review!
1.08. "The All Night Bus Ride" - Review!
1.09. "The Corporate Gig" - Review!
1.10. "The Load Out" - Review!

Roadies 1.09. "The Corporate Gig" - Review:
Directed by Jon Kasdan, Written by Cameron Crowe & Winnie Holzman

The Corporate Gig is the ninth episode of Roadies and by this point its viewership seems to be so low that its cancellation unfortunately seems to be an inevitability, which will mean that this show will be missed because what it's given us here were two pretty great episodes. Firstly, The Corporate Gig improved on the form of The All Night Bus Ride by seeing the Staton-House band do a gig for a billionaire's birthday party, using this as a backdrop to collide many of the ongoing storylines that the show has given us over the course of the season. It's an incredibly awesome episode that really work even if it does unfortunately say goodbye to Phil, who was one of the best characters on the show. It seems like everything is falling apart the band and things are going from bad to worse, and when Puna has bad dreams you know it's a good idea to pay attention.

Maybe Kelly-Ann should have broken that last egg after all? Either way, Puna's dream of a metal animal comes to pass when the Staton-House's band logo, which happens to be an ice sculpture of a bear, drops on the table. Of course, there's a distinct lack of subtlety in this, especially when Kelly-Ann points out shocked afterwards. To make things worse is that Christopher has decided not to turn up at the Corporate Gig, believing that it's a sellout despite texting Bill this morning saying that he'll be fine. It turns out that Christopher is with Janine, which is something that Shelli realises when Bill reads his text message, "I'm finding my way back," which turns out to be a lyric from an album.

It turns out that to no surprise, the CEO is unhappy, and trying to calm things over, Reg comes up with a speech about the key to life being the eraser and not the pencil, because the eraser gives the offer of a second chance. It's a bit cheesy, but works given in the context of the universe and is nothing different from what we haven't seen so far.

Reg and Kelly-Ann are both going through changes on their own. Reg is being reassigned by his boss Edgar who knew all along about Reg being put there to break up the band and now wants to send him to help with a soup's brand in England. To make things worse, he also now knows that the long-awaited European tour will also no longer take place, with the remaining stops on the tour being cancelled. It looks like the end for Staton-House, and Reg has done his job.

It turns out that Kelly-Ann has turned to alcohol at the same time that Reg has, and both end up sharing a kiss after spilling out more than they intended due to the fact that they are both now drunk. And things go from worse to a nightmare when Phil ends up having a heart attack nearby the pool, falling in and dying before Reg can drag him out. It's something that I didn't really expect Roadies to do, but then the killing off the mentor trope has been something that has been used over and over again it really shouldn't have come as a surprise. Either way it was a great, effective way to put the spotlight on Ron White who is one of the best actors here, and left us with an effective, emotional ending that brought devastation to the group as one of the legends of the group has died. It looks like the show knows how to do a powerful penultimate episode after all, and it really paid off here. This was a good episode for most of the cast to actually showcase their stuff even if the spotlight was of course on White, with Poots, Spall and Byers all delivering impressive performances here.

There were a few other moments in this episode that played out pretty well alongside of Phil's death, with a scene between the Dead Sex star David Spade appearing as himself in the show at the party to talk with Bill, who asks what will happen between his character and Jan. Bill is surprise when Spade reveals that his character will end up killing Jan, which later sends Spade to decide that he wants a different ending to the show shot, no matter how much it costs. It turns out that Christopher House may have also been right to avoid turning up at the Corporate Gig, because Fun Co have links with weapons in Saudi Arabia. They aren't exactly the cleanest company around, and Gwen Stefani, an earlier choice, was able to eventually back out.

So there was plenty of things happening in this episode accompanied by the usual good soundtrack. Phil's death is the biggest moment of the series so far, and set the stage pretty well going into the last episode (and potentially the series finale?) which will be reviewed below. It looks as though Roadies has finally kicked it up a gear, even if it may be at this point too little, too late.

Overall Episode Verdict: B
+The acting, particularly by Ron White
+As usual, the soundtrack.
+Bill and David Spade.

Roadies 1.10 The Load Out Review:
Directed by Cameron Crowe & Written by Cameron Crowe

Another great episode that potentially has come too late to save Roadies, "The Load Out" wrapped up things in style at a funeral for Phil as the group struggled to deal with their new circumstances and the death of a music icon. We saw the vast amount of stars at Phil's funeral allowing for some great music, including the likes of the legendary Jackson Browne, whose The Load Out provided the title for this episode. We got an excellent climax to the show that played out just like an extended movie over the course of these ten episodes, hitting the high notes that you'd expect from an episode that was both directed and written by Cameron Crowe. It's no surprise that the episodes that he handles are often the best, and it was great to see The Load Out deliver a memorable way to end the show so if it doesn't come back for a second season it will have gone out on a high.

The episode itself felt like a concert special rather than an actual episode, but wow, the concert alone was a really awesome moment as the character's struggles were paced throughout the episode pretty well. It turns out that Phil's last word of Pistachio meant his favorite racehorse, at least according to his son, and was enough to give Kelly-Ann what she'd been looking for over the entire season, a new nickname. It was a perfect way to give her what she craved, and answered a lingering thread that has been with us since the beginning.

Shelli's affair with Bill came back to haunt her at the memorial when her husband showed up for the arena, offering her the temptation of two tickets to the Maldives. Her option is either Bill or Sean, the choice of an unstable affair or a stable husband, and has a get out of jail free card from her time with the band. But she can't bring herself to let go of Bill despite his best attempts to push away, and she opts to in the end, remain with the crew. It's a good resolution that wraps up their storyline pretty well, and it's pretty awesome to see that Shelli isn't going anywhere anytime soon, because Carla Gugino is easily one of the best additions to the already strong cast.

There were no real cliffhangers which was great to hear and Reg's decision to abandon his flight and race back to join the band was an excellent way to wrap up the show. His time spent looking at the pictures on his computer proved to be too much for him and he knew he had to reunite himself with the band, and although we didn't actually get to see him come back to them unlike Kelly-Ann in the pilot, we know that they'll be there and will open that door eventually.

The death of Phil also in this episode also served as a way of getting across the death and swan song of rock and roll, its last bow, if it were, which seemed to be the point that Crowe was trying to get across. The theme has been running throughout the series including right back at the beginning when the band decided to play Janine again and things went spectacularly downhill from there, and it'll be interesting to see if the show does get renewed how Crowe will explore things going forward.

Christopher himself has decided to get married to Natalie Shin, shaving his beard. He too is going to straight, and leaving the old ways behind him. This was actually a big improvement for Natalie's character this week as she unfortunately was one of the weakest characters on the show, so it's great to see that the series is finding time to fix its flaws.

The band has broken up and the tour may be over, with the group probably going their separate ways despite the concert taking centre stage for much of this episode. It'll be most likely that even though Reg is back with them they'll still end up on different tours and begs the question what happens next? It doesn't look as though the finale was written with a second season in mind, leaving potentially with us many different storylines to follow next season, as it seems unlikely that Kely Ann, Bill, Shelli, Milo, Harvey and Donna will all remain on the same tour with Staton-House. Maybe this show would have been better off trimming a few episodes and working as an 'event' series instead? Like the most recent season of The X-Files for example, or an anthology where we focused on different characters each season, much like American Horror Story and True Detective.

Either way, it was a great send off and another excellent episode of Roadies. If the show doesn't get renewed, it left us with a hell of an episode to be remembered by.

Overall Episode Verdict: A-
+Wrapping up storylines.
+No cliffhanger.
-Where do we go from here?

About the Author - Milo MJ
Milo is an Arsenal FC supporter and loves TV shows like Battlestar Galactica, Justified, The 100, The Americans and Person of Interest. He reviews Black Sails, Murder in the First, Narcos, Preacher, Roadies, Star Trek Discovery, The Shannara Chronicles, Silicon Valley and Veep for Spoiler TV as well as books, films and games for his own blog The Fictional Hangout and contributes to comic reviews on a weekly basis for All-Comic.
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