ANOTHER PERIOD Review: “Roosevelt”

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It’s an exciting week at Bellacourt Manor on . President Teddy Roosevelt is visiting, and the Commodore hopes he’ll make Frederick his Vice President, even though the is already filled by Taft. But there’s trouble as well—the servants have decided to strike, even an unwillingly Garfield who’s dragged away by strike leader Flobelle, who ensures Peepers that although his body may be striking, his heart will be working.

There’s a lot to like about this episode, but the best part might be June Diane Raphael as Eleanor Roosevelt, who immediately takes a liking to Beatrice. She catches her tearfully gazing at a photo of Frederick, and the two bond. After all, she knows what it’s like to be involved with a family member—she’s engaged to her cousin, Franklin, played here by Michael Welch pre-polio. Eleanor and Beatrice eventually hook up, and it’s hilarious. Because of the many layers of gowns they wear, they just look like a giant pile of clothes.

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Lillian is determined to get it on with Franklin, especially after she sees him ridicule Chair (who the Commodore is insisting they call New Mom) for being a cripple. As she gleefully exclaims in her talking head, “Not only is he a part of an American dynasty, but he’s an asshole. What’s the catch?” He even has a tattoo—a rifle around his bicep, which he calls a ‘bifle”. He also refers to the meal between dinner and breakfast, more commonly known as lunch, as “dickfast”. Lillian volunteers to go make him some dickfast, as the servants still haven’t returned from strike.

However, once in the kitchen, Taft mistakes her for a servant and tries to force himself on her, eventually passing out from too much brandy, pinning her arm underneath his fat body. She spies a knife on the floor, and the show really makes you think she’s going to cut her arm off 127 Hours-style, turning into a sort of gruesome horror movie. Luckily, she just cuts off her sleeve, but she’s still distraught. It was her favorite dress!

The campaign to make Frederick VP isn’t going well. Teddy asks him for his opinion on the booming railroad industry; he responds that he likes “choo-choos”. After a drunken Garfield stumbles into the study—Hamish was trying to make a man out of him by giving him cigarettes, whiskey (aka liquid corn), and gasoline—the Commodore decides to deal with the strike once and for all, grabbing a rifle. Teddy requests that Fredrick do the negotiating, so they all head to the courtyard.

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Frederick immediately hands the rifle over to Flobelle, who’s confused and lists her demands: new kitchen utensils, an hour of recreation once a month, daily outhouse privileges, and three hours of sleep a night, minimum. Without even thinking, Frederick readily agrees to her requests, even throwing in money and the promise of a dessert ball—a new idea he’s working on, where the servants are allowed to take the scraps of their dessert, bundle it up in a ball, and eat it once a month. Teddy is so impressed by Frederick’s dedication to the common man that he actually does make him his Vice President.

I love that Frederick always fails upward. He’s the exact opposite of his sisters, especially Lillian, who no matter how hard they scheme, can never win. He doesn’t try at all, and now he’s going to be Vice President. But Teddy reveals his real reason for the choice to the Commodore—he’s never met a stupider human being without mental problems, so with Frederick next in line, there’s no way he’ll be assassinated. American government at its finest!

TB-TV-Grade-A-
Season 2, Episode 5 (S02E05)
Another Period airs Wednesdays at 10PM on Comedy Central

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lives for two things: spreading the “Superstore” gospel and themed “Law & Order: SVU” marathons on USA.
Twitter: @jtrof

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