BoJack Horseman (S05E03) “Planned Obsolescence”

we’re treated to asexual hijinks, early-relationship struggles, and an all too relevant lesson about reality,  in a more standard bojack episode that still delights.

Needless to say, the past few episodes have really set the scene for the season, so Episode 3 paradoxically thrives on the fact that it is normal – it’s the standard BoJack episode, with a main narrative thread and a few side plots involving key characters, but it’s one that still balances charm, humor, and a life lesson i.e. the BoJack formula.

The crux of the episode is the introduction of Gina, BoJack’s main cast-member in the new show Philbert (who he’s also having sexual relations with), as a new pivotal character in the series. It may be too soon to say, but she might be this season’s equivalent of a Hollyhock – someone who BoJack feels obliged to help, who acts as a foil to him in some ways, and who will probably become a victim of BoJack’s flawed approach to life. Gina expresses her childhood dream – of becoming a Broadway star – to BoJack, and he attempts to land her a singing role in a Philbert scene. Ultimately, however, Gina is revealed to be rather talentless, discovered only after an embarrassing audition. This devastates BoJack, but Gina actually thanks him, mentioning that without his pressure to audition, she would have never known whether she could have made it or not – he breaks her out of limbo, but still feels useless. It’s an important lesson in many ways: we try to help people and end up helping them in ways that we didn’t expect, ultimately feeling despondent while they thank us. Life isn’t perfect, and the scenarios that we play in our heads rarely come to be; many victories are bittersweet.

Besides this, the episode showcases some relationship drama – in one corner, we have Todd and Yolanda’s asexual relationship being put to the test when confronted with Yolanda’s very sexual parents, prompting the two to break up when they realize their incompatibility. In the other, we see Mr. Peanutbutter and Pickles (his new bae; revealed at the end of Episode 2) encountering their first challenge when Pickles expresses her desire to take things slower. Aware of the fact that Mr. Peanutbutter has been divorced three times, she doesn’t want to join the ranks of the many exes left in his wake; she doesn’t want to be like the International Space Station – watch the episode to fully understand this, but it links to the title 😉

All in all, a good episode. Stay tuned.