by Jess Lynde
Objects: Barrel Bear, Lovesick Ass
Missions: “Girl needs a boy” and “Girl needs a donut”
With a title like ‘Lovesick Ass,’ it probably isn’t too surprising that this episode is all about romantic relationships. The main mission is to help Katya, a woman recently arrived from Russia to marry a man she met through the internet. After Katya gets stood up, Jaye and Eric help her find her love, Peter, only to discover he’s actually a 12-year-old boy. They then get caught up in the messy business of consoling the jilted Katya and fending off Peter’s interest (first in Katya, then Jaye), all of which forces them to actually address their feelings and the status of their budding relationship. The upswing is that Katya winds up with Peter’s widowed dad, and Eric finally convinces Jaye to give things a chance. Yea!
I really love this episode. The story takes the idea of the Russian mail-order bride and gives it a humorously horrifying twist. The gang’s first encounter with young Peter is just hilarious. “Oh no. I need bigger Peter!” His subsequent persistence in his romantic pursuits was also quite entertaining, especially once he switched his affections to Jaye. “I’m sure he fell in love with you the second you threw him up against that wall.” I was particularly amused by Peter’s repeated attempts to convince Jaye that Eric was some kind of depraved brute and her exasperated refusal to fall for his nonsense. The twist with Katya falling for Peter’s dad after discovering he was the original author of Peter’s love letters was a bit sappy, but I had to laugh when that thread concluded with Sharon ignoring the “don’t come a-knockin’ when the house is a rockin’” rule and awkwardly intruding on Katya and Dick’s impulsive hop into the sack. Poor Sharon. She often seems to end up as “collateral damage” when trying to help Jaye.
Of course, the best parts of the episode were the Jaye and Eric relationship beats. I really loved their moments together, from their discussion about whether Jaye had ever been in love, to their combative and thinly veiled commentary on their own relationship (or lack thereof) while giving advice to Peter, to their final heart-to-heart. Oh, and of course there was that first kiss. Yea again!
I really shared Eric’s complete frustration with Jaye’s resistance not only to him, but to the whole idea of love. “The biggest obstacle to Jaye’s heart is Jaye.” I was mentally screaming “Aargh!!!” when she went completely overboard explaining to Katya that she and Eric weren’t a couple. “No boyfriend. Not boyfriend. Just boy. Just friend. We’re not a couple. There’s no couple.” And again when she wanted Eric to explain to Peter that “getting involved in a relationship is like heaving after bad fish” and that “love is like an open wound.” (Of course, I was also laughing!) It is true that Jaye has her “animals with faces” issues and Eric isn’t really over Heidi, but, darn it, I still really want them to be a couple. I was thrilled when he finally convinced her to take the plunge in spite of their damage. And I loved the reprise of the “why would you want to get involved in something so potentially messy and complicated” line, with the change from “because she makes me sad” to “because you make me happy.” The two of them together makes me happy, too.
I really enjoyed the Eric-ogling scene in the teaser. I found myself ogling him, too.
The “lovesick ass” stuffed animal was too cute. The quiver lip after Jaye yelled at it was awesome.
Eric claims that the reason Peter’s letters made Jaye “throw up a little in her mouth” is because she’s never been in love. I completely disagree. I’m happily married and very much in love, and the snippets she read from those letters made me cringe. Gag-inducing treacle is gag-inducing treacle, whether you’ve been in love or not.
Eric’s breakdown and collapse at the Fountain of Love chapel was a hoot and a half. Great facial expressions and body language.
Peter and Dick Johnson? Seriously?
I liked Sharon’s reference to Jaye’s rap sheet when Jaye was asking if Katya could get deported for doing something illegal. Nice continuity.
Mahandra (re: Eric’s posterior): “It’s like an apple. You could bounce a quarter off that apple.”
Jaye: “Apples are good for you.”
Mahandra (making kissing noises while pushing Jaye’s animals together): “Your man sweat is like honey mustard glaze on my tongue.”
Monkey: “Inappropriate touching.”
Lion: “This isn’t fun for anybody.”
Jaye: “Smitten and eager are bad. You know what you get with smitten and eager? Romance. Relentless, treacly, manufactured romance. That kind of romance never ends well.”
Katya: ““No sex slave. I come here for love. And some sex, but no slave.”
Peter: “My darling, Katya, I would never have missed our nuptials, except I got grounded.”
Katya: “I send you most intimate photographs.”
Peter: “I know. I made them into my desktop wallpaper.”
[Cue high-pitched screaming.]
Sharon (to Jaye): “I just think it’s funny you moved in with a woman before I did.”
Eric: “Peter, for your own good, don’t go after a woman who isn’t interested. They’ll just make you crazy.”
Peter (to Jaye): “You’re not dressed for an afternoon of Tchaikovsky and heavy petting.”
Jaye (re: Eric): “He doesn’t smoke. He doesn’t hit people. He doesn’t deface synagogues. He doesn’t frequent gay bathhouses.”
Peter: “I have pictures.”
Jaye: “You have photo imaging software!”
Mahandra: “And since when do you need keys to start a car that doesn’t belong to you?”
Jaye: “Oooh. Good point.”
Eric: “Do you want me to kick your ass? Because I can. I can do that, if you’d like.”
Peter: “Um, I’d rather this not spiral into a whole physical thing. So I’ll respectfully decline your offer to kick my ass.”
Eric (to Jaye): “You’re clearly not ready for a relationship. Frankly, I think with you any sort of human interaction is pretty iffy.”
Peter: “Don’t worry about me. I’ll be fine. [Eric’s car catches fire.] Eventually. I may still have issues.”
Final Analysis: ‘Lovesick Ass’ is a fun story that brings Jaye and Eric’s relationship issues to the forefront and finally gets them together, making this episode a big winner in my book.