8.5

The League Review: “Deflategate” (7.04)

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<i>The League</i> Review: &#8220;Deflategate&#8221; (7.04)

The League has become self-aware like Skynet. And the writers for the show are apparently not afraid to address it. Using the mouth of the most naive of the bunch, Taco, we are reminded that all the characters do week to week is “talk about a bodily function and then try to find a name for it. It’s getting redundant.”

Redundant, yes, but still damn funny as they struggle to come up with the right term for what’s left over following sex. Suggested names: love foam, brine, juices, and other equally nauseating possibilities. This is what the show does best, though. As I’ve talked about before, they’ve done an admirable job squeezing new phrases and words into the vernacular of the American bro. Why not highlight this skill?

A nice addition to the mix has been the show directly addressing current events in the football universe. In the first episode of the season, it was a nice little dig at the Seahawks blowing the most recent Super Bowl in the final moments. Tonight, as the title of this episode should tell you, was about the fallout from that game. So, a lot of mocking Bill Belichick, Tom Brady, the shitty courtroom sketches of the famous quarterback, and the other assorted trouble the Patriots organization has gotten itself into. It also served to throw Andre back under the bus, with his being sued by a client for messing up his girlfriend’s breast implants. Any excuse to let Paul Scheer act a fool on this show is a good one.

The funniest material came, as ever, courtesy of Ruxin who, in an attempt to avoid eating a communal meal with his co-workers (as he called it “Tetanus Tuesday”), claims he’s kosher. This leads him down a Hasidic wormhole as he’s sent to try to woo a very Jewish client, bringing Taco along with him as his Shabbos goy, or, the non-Jew who turns on the lights and handles all things that the Chosen People can’t do on the holy day.

This is, much to my surprise, a very real thing, but one that The League has fun with as Ruxin tries to make a lineup change on his phone with Taco’s help. Naturally, it backfires as Rodney gives in to his temptation and goes on an epic rant about fantasy football being his religion (“Every week I imagine take my big donger of a lineup and slapping it in the face of my friends, dropping big loads on their heads like manna from heaven”). Nick Kroll has a unique ability to make even the foulest mouthed rants seem palatable somehow. It’s quite a skill and one that I hope some other enterprising casting agents will tap into once this final season of the show is over.

Robert Ham is a Portland-based freelance writer and regular contributor to Paste. You can follow him on Twitter.

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