{TB Talks TV} The League Review: “The Heavenly Fouler”

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Tweetable Takeaway: Things go bad when Kevin and Jenny are accused of worshipping false idols by their daughter.

Airtime: Wednesday nights on FXX
By: , Contributor

Religious fervor is not something you’d usually equate with an episode of , but it pops up in the most recent offering of the show. It’s a clever premise, and one I can’t figure out how they haven’t used so far in the five seasons previous to this.

Kevin and Jenny’s daughter Ellie has been used for comic effect before, and usually it works out pretty well. It’s given us McGibblets and a poop fascination episode that made Ruxin sick to his stomach. The one thing the show has never shown us much of is religion. Ellie takes center stage when her parents decide to drop her off at Sunday school so they can watch football in peace. What her parents hadn’t figured on is the teachings taking hold.

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Ellie takes what she learns to heart, and points out that her parents worship an idol, which in this case is the Shiva trophy. The funny thing is, everyone in the show (except perhaps Taco) treat the trophy as what can only be considered “the most high” in their lives. Everything about this show revolves around either winning The Shiva or making fun of Andre. Kevin and Jenny find their daughters religious outbursts hilarious and confusing, until they become unsettling.

You can only hear someone tell you “you’re going to hell” so many times before you either want to have nothing to do with religion again, or punch the speaker in the mouth. The same goes for Kevin and Jenny. Through an odd twist of fate, the punching in the mouth takes place on the basketball court after a rough and excessively trash-talking priest gets on Kevin’s last nerve.

I’ve said before that this show works best with the full ensemble playing off of each other. Though tonight’s episode was ok, it still had an element lacking that’s been a major problem the entire season … Nick Kroll. Where is he? Why has the show spent nearly half of its episodes without him? I know he has his own successful (and far funnier) sketch show on Comedy Central, but couldn’t they work around each other’s schedules so The League doesn’t suffer from his absence as badly as it has?

For some reason the other members of the show just can’t carry the weight on their own. Couple that with the storylines that seem recycled or unoriginal, and you’ve got a show that’s struggling on its last legs. In the past I’ve suggested getting some new blood in the room, but if Ruxin is going to be gone so much, perhaps another character needs to be brought in. Introducing new characters is always troublesome (Think of Nicky and Paulo on Lost) but Raffi is easily inputted into the show as long as they use him correctly. He could stand in for Ruxin in a pinch, and since he’s Sofia’s brother, it could also allow the show to use her more often as well. For now, it’s like watching a dying animal struggle when it should just give up.

More from The League office:

– The biggest gag of the night had to do with Jenny not feeling well. Her doctor has her collect stool samples that she keeps hidden in the freezer. She hasn’t told Kevin. The frozen samples end up in several funny situations before the truth comes to light.

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For six months out of the year Jeff is holed up in his home with nothing to do but shovel snow, watch television, write, and dream of warmer climates.
Twitter: @OfSoundnVision

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