Resident Alien (2021) s02e03 – Girls’ Night

I kept wondering why they weren’t using any recognizable licensed music during this episode, even though it’s about (as the title suggests) a “Girls’ Night.” They’re listening to music multiple times, and then there’s a sequence with an accompanying song, but nothing big.

Then the finale uses a very famous, very recognizable theme song, and I imagine licensing it ate up the music budget for the episode. To great effect too.

The episode begins with a flashback to the nineties, with the main townie cast all kids out camping. There’s some good old sexism and toxic masculinity—intentionally—before establishing Elizabeth Bowen’s gotten the poop end of the stick since childhood. It comes up later, with the main plot involving Bowen never getting a raise as sheriff’s deputy, but the scene primarily serves as a tension break from last episode’s cliffhanger.

Bowen and boss Corey Reynolds had just discovered Alan Tudyk killed someone (not Tudyk the alien, Tudyk the human, before the alien killed him—making alien Tudyk a “murderer murderer”). There’s a fast, simple resolution to the cliffhanger—and the entire subplot—because “Resident Alien: Season Two” is also introducing new alien powers for Tudyk. Rarely used ones, like his silver Starman balls, discussed at one point to good comic effect.

So while that leftover thread from the first season is resolved, there’s still the matter of calling off the alien armada from destroying Earth; Tudyk needs more technology than his small mountain town can provide, so it’s good there’s a guest star.

Alex Borstein guests as Meredith Garretson’s cousin, who’s just hanging out. They happen to meet Tudyk, and Borstein’s quite taken with him, eventually leading to both a hilarious seduction sequence (complete with Tudyk in a cravat) and Borstein getting to do a Tudyk impression. Borstein’s fantastic.

She and Garretson go out with Sara Tomko, Alice Wetterlund, Bowen, and some other female semi-regulars for a night on the town. At the same time, Garretson’s husband, mayor Levi Fiehler, organizes a boy’s night for him, sheriff Reynolds, and Reynolds’s dad, Alvin Sanders. Since it’s a small mountain town, they all end up at the same bar.

It’s a funny episode, which eventually gets serious as the women realize Bowen’s lack of pay raise might not be exceptional for the town’s women. Also, Tomko charges Tudyk to think about things from women’s perspectives.

The last subplot is the kids’ one, with Gracelyn Awad Rinke finally figuring out what’s going on with Judah Prehn’s testosterone boost.

It’s a really good episode, with the show—script credit to Jenna Lamia, directed by Shannon Kohli—showing it’s got places to go with many of its characters, not just Tudyk. It’s still mostly Tudyk’s show, plus Tomko’s, but it’s got some well-executed and robust ensemble tendencies.

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