One of the things LA TV Insider Examiner has always loved, respected, and admired about ABC and Emily Kapnek’s Suburgatory is that it is not “just” another sitcom. Yes, it is a half-hour (format) series heavily based in comedic elements. In that way, it is not afraid to take big, bold sweeps at broad comedy, like Dalia (Carly Chaikin) and Tessa (Jane Levy) getting into a dance-off. But underneath the jokes is a whole lot of heart and some very serious character arcs that allow for growth. To use the dance-off as a continued example, that all spurred out of Dalia not feeling like she could match up to Tessa because Tessa is better at her than everything from school to driving. Suburgatory is not afraid to move its story along—or better yet, dive deeply into a story at all—and that is the show’s attitude moving into the close of the second season. Suburgatory is about to deliver some major turning points for characters and their relationships, and true to form, it’s about to deliver a couple of surprises along the way.
- SOMEONE DIES. YES, SERIOUSLY. Series creator Kapnek called the deceased someone “insignificant” in the world of the show, though she noted that what comes out of the death is a big deal for a number of characters. Dalia gives a speech and sings an a capella number at the funeral, despite not even knowing the deceased, but more importantly, Noah (Alan Tudyk) realizes just how short life is, and he decides to go for (what he thinks is) his true love, Carmen (Bunnie Rivera).
- RYAN THINKS HE MEETS A BIRTH PARENT—BUT IT TURNS OUT TO BE A PRANK. Lisa (Allie Grant) needs help with something, and in order to get her adopted brother’s aid, she pulls a bit of a con. In all truth, Parker Young said that Ryan doesn’t go looking for his birth parents yet this season, despite having about four episodes off, in which he would like to pretend that’s what the character was doing. Young joked that Ryan must be researching possibilities—in his own way.
- THE MEN OF CHATSWIN GET COMPETIVE OVER CALENDAR PLACEMENT. That’s right, Suburgatory is doing a beefcake calendar! “What happens is, when this calendar comes up, Dallas starts to say ‘Oh, well George would never do anything this silly and fun,’ and I start to take it personally; I have fun, too! And in George fashion, he gets obsessed with getting the December fold. Noah and Fred are both in the race every year, and they’re kind of pissed that I’m there, so we’re all competing, and I get really into working out and get really vain, and it’s pretty funny. My hair gets a little bit more coiffed. I start making this face that I think is better for my cheekbones,” Jeremy Sisto said.
But additionally, Noah is in a Speedo that Tudyk said Kapnek said was not small enough, so they actually had it tailored special for the show. According to him, you will see butt-crack, but according to Kapnek, it’s quite tame. Hmm…
- DALIA DIVES INTO HER DARK SIDE. Something goes very wrong for Dahlia’s personal life. She has a surprising connection but then declares revenge of sorts on Tessa for messing things up and becomes quite sociopathic. Ryan and Lisa get caught in the crosshairs, guilty by association.
"The scene we filmed last week was a perfect example of that where after we did it, I was like, ‘I’m scared of myself.’ Because it’s kind of psychotic. But it’s great that we don’t see that off the bat because you keep getting more and more surprised, and find out more and more information. She has totally fallen apart; she’s crazy!" Chaikin said.
- DALLAS (CHERYL HINES) INSECURITES LEAD TO A SERENADE. “[Dallas] gets me this guitar, and it’s the ugliest guitar, but she says it’s just like the one from…Sum41. And she’s like ‘It’s the same one that they use!’ And I say thank you, but I end up leaving it somewhere because I really hate it. Tessa finds this old blueprint that George made of a design of a house back when [Alex] was pregnant, and it brings back memories, and Dallas starts to think ‘He’s never going to love me like he loved her,’ and to convince her [otherwise], I play her favorite, feel good song, which is “Bump N’ Grind,” Sisto said.
- THE END OF THE SEASON SEES SOME TOUGH ROMANTIC DECISIONS. George and Dallas are certainly getting to that point in their relationship where they have to decide if they want to take “the next step” or not, but Ryan and Tessa, too, will face a turning point because Ryan has to decide what to do after graduation. While Kapnek previewed him getting courted by “a number of colleges” because of his football prowess, Tessa will be a big influence on where he ends up.
Suburgatory airs on ABC on Wednesday nights at 9:30 p.m. Which of these stories has you most intrigued/excited? Let us know in the comments below!
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