Wow. Talk about turning over a new leaf for the new year. Not only did this Dads episode avoid insulting jokes, it was actually both funny and touching. This week was so strong, it makes me (almost) wish Fox would reconsider putting the show on hiatus. I’d go as far to say that I was moved, especially when all the characters banded together to save Edna from being deported.
In “Mister Edna,” poor Edna gets thrown in jail for being an illegal immigrant. Eli is beyond desperate, as he can’t imagine life without Edna. When he visits her in jail, they touch their hands over the glass, parodying the classic movie trope. It’s both funny and sweet. In a surprising turn of events, David proposes to marry Edna to give her U.S. citizenship. Now all they have to do is convince the INS officer that their love is real. Warner offers his services as wedding planner, but takes the job a little too seriously, turning into a monster control freak. He even muscles past the other ladies to catch Edna’s bouquet. Wedding bells ring, and now Edna is a married woman. As the new Mrs., Edna starts acting like the matriarch of the house. Not only does she ground Eli and want him to call her mom, but worst of all, Eli comes home to find Edna and David making love. A lot. This brief season of terror ends when the INS officer returns. He’s not convinced by their shenanigans and still wants to deport Edna. Eli is desperate, and tells Edna how much he cares for her and needs her, that she’s like a mother to him. She says he’s like a son to her, and they hug. Then, the INS officer gets a call. The government has been shut down (again!), so he doesn’t have to deport Edna any more. Edna and David get a quick divorce for their quick marriage, and the universe is restored.
While the emotional storyline in “Mister Edna” follows Eli, the comic relief and star of this episode was Warner. Giovanni Ribisi really shined this week, playing a character so snappy, snarky and sassy, that he is worthy of having his own wedding show on Bravo. Between being very particular about napkins that in his eyes are not the same color, complaining that he has to do all the work yet insisting he controls everything, and crying uncontrollably at the wedding, Warner definitely earns the title “Groomzilla.” The episode ends with Warner soaking in a tub, sipping on cocktails, relaxing to Fiona Apple, cucumber on the eyes, and a towel around his stressed head.
After weeks of harsh reviews, Dads certainly earned its share of compliments this week. Some of my favorite lines:
—Crawford describing ordering his morning coffee: “They bring it to you faster if you say your name is Hitler.”
—INS officer on catching Edna: “Her only form of I.D. was a picture of a cake that said ‘Happy Birthday, Edna’.”
—David on prison: “I always thought I’d do very well in prison. It’s mostly reading and avoiding eye contact, both of which I enjoy.”
—Warner, on being called ‘groomzilla’: “What are you talking about? That was my big day. Any good wedding is about the groom.”
—Edna’s response to David’s marriage proposal: “What if you not the one?”
—Camilla, reading at David and Edna’s wedding: “Love is patient.”
David: “Hurry up.”
—INS officer’s thoughts on marriage: “Sir, at this point, my wife and I are just staying together for the dogs.”