Whitney slightly broke the mold this week, but it was still driven by conflict in some way or another. It seems that a week can’t go by where the group just sits at a coffee shop and has a pleasant episode or rallys together to have some adventure. The show is supposed to be about Whitney Cummings’ experiences in relationships, and maybe she just always had terrible ones where she was constantly fighting.
“Getting To Know You” starts off with Whitney and Alex going on a double date with the underused Roxanne and a new beau named Rob. Roxanne is paranoid that there is something wrong with Rob because he’s not the typical narcissistic guy she normally goes out with. She thinks he asks too many questions, but Whitney just claims that’s what normal guys do early in relationships. The plot is propelled by Alex’s discussion with Rob about racquetball and his old poker games, which Whitney knew nothing about. It’s a typical case of people in a relationship thinking their significant other didn’t exist before they became “them.”
Meanwhile, Lily tries to embrace Neal’s Indian heritage and at first it comes off a little off-color. She wears a bindi on her forehead and claims she really wants to impress his family who she could tell was disappointed that she was white. There’s something about this plotline that is just uncomfortable and it comes off as a little culturally insensitive. It is saved when Neal clearly does not approve of her over-the-top approach to absorbing his culture, which includes discussing tantric sex and the Kama Sutra. He’s upset that he’s stuck dating Madonna in her most annoying phase when the group goes to an Indian restaurant and she’s dressed in a sari.
The scene where Whitney tries to impress Alex by playing racquetball with him is full of ups and downs. It starts off weak with a blue balls joke (really, Whit?) but then watching Whitney struggle is a little too pleasant to watch. Sure it’s a typical scene, but seeing Whitney suffer is extremely rewarding. When he tells her she’s not athletic she claims she played basketball competitively in Europe as part of a traveling basketball team, which leads to an over-the-top, LeBron-inspired entrance to a one-on-one game against Alex with the rest of their friends watching. She’s incredibly talented which is so unexpected like “when you first see a monkey make an omelette” (thanks, Roxanne for the hilarious line).
Surprisingly, seeing her kicking Alex’s butt is even more ridiculous and when he starts to freak out and swear repeatedly, I lost it for the first time in the entire series and uncontrollably laughed out loud. It just goes to show that Chris D’Elia is the hidden gem of the show.
This episode proved a lot of things: the show can be bearable when the other actors pick up more screen time than Whitney. However, the writers still don’t know what to do with Roxanne and have started to make Lily and Neal somewhat annoying. Also, it’s clear Mark will only be used when he has a central role in an episode and basically disappears in episodes where he’s not important. Once the writers figure out the balance of characters and plot, the show has a chance to improve. “Getting To Know You” was on the upswing from previous episodes, but I doubt it will last long.