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The Mayor - Filibuster & Buyer's Remorse - Double Review


The following is a review for episodes 1x02 & 1x03 which aired on 10/10 & 17/10 respectively.


After an overly charming pilot episode, The Mayor sought to continue it's momentum with Filibuster and Buyers Remorse.  These two episodes were all about establishing the game board and the players and as such it's probably helpful to review these two episodes in tandem. In Filibuster we see Team Courtney find their footing in their appointed positions while "Buyer's Remorse" is all about establishing the political landscape of Fort Grey. 

ABC continues to reap the rewards of having Brandon Micheal Hall as their mayor. In two episodes that lacked continuity or any profound character development, Courtney Rose managed to survive these two episodes seemingly unscathed. I prefer the Courtney we see in these two episodes over the one we saw in the pilot. The show has toned down some of Courtney's foolish and insolence we saw in the pilot, instead opting to focus on his more endearing qualities like his compassion and
charisma. 

While I wasn't a fan it the pilot, Ed Gunt grew on me in these episodes like a fine mold. Instead of a dry and boring stereotype of the "typical" politician, Ed Gunt is an effective foil to Courtney's political aims. His snark and self centered-ness plays great against Courtney's amiable and compassionate disposition, making their barbs so entertaining to watch. He's a villain you just love to hate. 

For TK and Jermaine, these two episodes were about finding their place in the new administration. In Filibuster, Courtney assigns his best friends the perfect positions. For Jermaine it was Communications Director, a role that perfectly suits his smooth talking, hustler attitude. Some of my favorite moments in Filibuster were his innovative ways of "communicating" to the public via live streams and Instagram feeds. A tactic I think could be adopted in everyday local government. Also his summary of political wheeling and dealing with a "party" metaphor is truly a life less.

TK was assigned to Director of Constituent Services, a position that really taps into his empathetic nature and predilection for helping other people. But ever humble TK doesn't see it that way, claiming that "Constituent Services" is a paper title seeing as no one has held the position since 1976. 

This spurs Dina into taking TK on a mail route of self-discovery, showing him how his new position can help the community. So far TK and Dina are my favorite duo to watch.

Buyer's Remorse saw TK and Jermaine compete for Courtney's acceptance into his "inner circle"
fearing that they'd be left behind during Courtney's time in office. I was a little confused about TK and Jermaine's fragile ego in regards to Courtney's approval. After the two clearly established their positions in the previous episode, it seemed like we were retreading old water that should have been left behind in the forever puddle.

 While I didn't enjoy the conflict in this episode, it did allow us to get another one of Dina Rose's "straight talk" speeches, which are always a welcomed.  I don't think they'll be an episode this season where I don't love at least one of Dina's talks.

Tibids

-  Does anyone else get a Parks & Rec Jeremy Jamm feel from Gunt? 

- Valentina's nerdiness was one of the highlights of both episodes. I'd love to see an episode where we get to follow her around as she wheels and deals with other departments.

- Some of my favorite moments from the show are the facial expressions and little background movements by the cast. In particular, the moment in 1x03 where Jermaine is complaining about the refreshments on "The Grey Area" while also pocketing said refreshments. A trick we then see again with Dina and the "one ketchup policy"

- Am I the only one not feeling the “romantic” vibes that many other Mayor fans are feeling toward Courtney and Valentina’s relationship? Is there a genuine connection I'm not seeing or is it the feeling of inevitability that is making people look for the signs? 

- I'm loving the strong integration of original music in the past two episodes, none more so than 1x03. This was a promise made by Daveed Diggs in the press tours and it's paying off in spades in terms of setting the tone of Fort Grey and a establishing a new playlist on my Spotify.

- Where and how did TK get those vans of kids?

- Dina didn't get much story in these episodes beyond being a voice of reason for the boys, but I particularly enjoyed getting a glimpse into just how tough it was to raise a child in Fort Grey through her "Brokenomics" speech to Courtney in Filibuster

Final Thoughts

I still feel the show continues to suffer from the same hasty pacing issues and inexplicable time gaps the pilot did. While it's not common for comedies to have too much continuity between each episode as say a drama, I find that when it comes between these amazing characters developing between each episode, the show runs the risk of these wonderful characters becoming stagnant and as a result caricature. This would be a disappointing development with a cast that is bursting with charisma and potential. 

Tonight looks to be a fun Halloween branded episode. I generally enjoy these holiday themed bottle episodes and hopefully a contained story will allow the show to get back on track. It's going to fun to see how Courtney and co celebrate Fort Grey style!

I now yield the floor, let me know in the comments how you feel about the show! Is it still a mainstay in your viewing lineup or are you feeling buyer's remorse?






 
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