Thursday, October 26, 2017

The Mayor 1.04: “City Hall-oween”

“Ma, I just wanted to give Fort Grey a fun Halloween like you gave me.”
- Courtney

It is Halloween in Fort Grey, folks, so get in the trick-or-treat spirit! Courtney and the boys seem to love Halloween. They had a great time as kids hanging out in the building and trick or treating. Although, they didn’t know it at the time that Dina worked her butt off to make that happen. When Courtney is out trying to hand out some candy and he runs into his little buddy Elijah (the kid he found hanging in the commons before they cleaned it up), Courtney is hurt o hear that it isn’t safe for the kids to go out on Halloween. He’s even more annoyed at the Chief of Police when she says basically don’t go out and that they are going to be increasing police presence to try and combat the crime rate.

In typical Courtney fashion, he comes up with a crazy (but lovable) idea on the spot. Instead of towing the party line, he says that he wants to give the town and the kids a fun, community-based party at the Town Hall. They’re going to deck the place out and invite everyone in for some fun. The Chief is not impressed with this and says as much in a follow-up meeting. Courtney isn’t concerned, though. He’s just excited to have some fun. Oh, and he and the boys are having a hell of a time pranking Valentina. She freaks out over their zombie masks and then when she gets her hand stuck to a draw with a live tarantula in it, she really freaks out. To be honest, I don’t blame her. I hate spiders. They freak me out so much! And she didn’t even know she was walking around with it on her back. That just gives me the creeps!

I have to admit, I really enjoyed some of the costumes. Courtney was dressed up as an iPhone with only one bar of reception which is kind of amusing in our digital age. And the other guys came as a hashtag and a fidget spinner. People were having the most fun with spinning the fidget device which was pretty fun. Dina came as Maxine Waters which is obviously a very timely costume. It was somewhat uncomfortable with Valentina trying to connect with the guys and just constantly putting her foot in her mouth. I did appreciate her comment that the government building wasn’t a place for childish pranks—it wasn’t the White House after all. This show is definitely not afraid to go there in our current climate. At least our cast of characters is more endearing than the terrible excuse for a leadership team we have running our country.

During the party, Dina and Valentina have a heart to heart where Val admits that she doesn’t want to have to parent the guys at work because she spent her childhood basically raising her three younger sisters. It’s nice to know a little bit of backstory on her for once. It makes her only marginally less irritating. Dina suggest Val just have fun with them and treat them like the siblings she never had. So, she goes all in on that and gets one of the other staffers to pretend to be a severed head to scare them. What scares Courtney is that the party didn’t have its intended goal: lowering crime. In fact, it went up. When Dina later finds him on the fire escape gorging on candy, she reminds him that things don’t change in a day and that the party certainly won’t change it. So, the next morning he decides he’s going to give the police everything they want to hopefully combat the crime rate rising. But then, a group of parents shows up and thanks Courtney for giving their kids the chance to safely have fun. They also make a point of saying that no politician in the city had ever cared what the parents and community though. So, Courtney calls a press conference to announce his new advisory council which will consist of parents, other community leaders and representatives from the police department to try and resolve all of the issues. I think it’s a good idea for sure and starts to bridge some of the gaps we see in a lot of government these days. The Chief of Police even seems impressed by this idea. I have a feeling we’ll be seeing more of her in the coming weeks.

In the closing scene as the credits roll, Courtney decides to donate their leftover candy to the troops. While donating things to the troops is an admirable notion, sending them candy is probably a really stupid idea. I mean, it will take a while to get there and clearing Customs has to be a pain. Plus, it’s just kind of sad. It is kind of funny when T.K. admits he’s got a horde of candy stashed but it’s in a floor safe that requires two other keys to open it. It was a pretty ridiculous way to end the episode but I do think the characters were a little better this week. They are still following the general formula of Courtney having an issue, trying to solve it, failing, getting advice from Dina and then making a breakthrough. Formula can be a good thing given the right type of show but I feel like this is getting too predictable—even four episodes in. Honestly, I noticed it in episode 3 as well. I think the writers need to change things up a bit, or at the very least have Courtney begin to grow more as a mayor and implement some of the things he's learned over the last few episodes to better address upcoming issues. He doesn’t always need his mother to set his head straight. He’s an intelligent guy. He should be able to resolve things on his own.

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